The Werewolves Crew

Matt is an ordinary boy with a horrible family. One day he leaves for school and his life is thrown upside down when he encounters not only the police but notorious criminals The Werewolves Crew. As he's been chased through the streets for crimes he didn't commit, one of the Werewolves, a girl named Scar comes to his aid and makes him a member, Mutt.

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1. Accident

We’d be mistaken for thinking that everyone lives similar lives. We’re born and forced to go to school, only to graduate to a dead end job and pay unfair taxes. Buy an overpriced house and pay excessive bills because that’s what we think we should be doing. Maybe we’re lucky enough to get married and start a family, all so they can start the cycle over again. Then we all inevitably die.

But for some, they realize that not everything is so simple. And life would never be the same again.

 

  Matt pulled the front door closed as fast as he could behind him. The old wood practically splintered in shock as he stumbled backwards down the driveway almost tripping over his untied laces. He shot a look at his tattered shoes finding the fraying laces loose around his feet. Matt didn’t dare stop to tie them.

  The screaming behind him was bloodcurdling as he twisted around and escaped on to the street. He winced as he heard something break inside. His stomach turned ice cold and plummeted to his feet.

  He couldn’t stand hearing his parents fight and knowing there was nothing he could do to stop it. Matt lost it, he threw a badly aimed fist at the widow of the car parked outside, swearing through gritted teeth. The glass barely cracked, mocking him, only leaving him with blood on his sure to be broken knuckles, but he didn’t care. He was certain he would be made to regret it later.

  Matt clutched his aching hand in frustration and slammed his foot into the rusted old car leaving a satisfying dint in the side. It was a piece of shit anyway, he told himself. He kicked the car again and again, wishing it was usually this easy for him, like it was for his parents, to do so much damage.

  Matt gave himself a second to admire his handiwork before hurrying down the street. He realized he was shaking, his chest ached and he dreaded what that would mean. It was safe to say he felt pathetic, with a generous heap of shame on the side. One thing was certain, that was definitely not how he’d planned to spend his morning.

  It wasn’t the most unusual scene the street had seen so he wasn’t expecting anyone to bother him. Matt and his parents, if they deserved to be called that, lived in the roughest, most disgusting and looked down upon part of town. More often than not there were police at one of the houses for something or other. At least a dozen neighbors had been taken away from the estate in handcuffs since he’d lived there. He’d seen more cars than he could count with yellow clamps on them or just simply being towed away. They were always stolen, or had been drunk driven a fair few too many times. He wasn’t unfamiliar to the rain of clothes and belonging being hurled out of a window and the dance of the cheating ex-partner below as they tried to catch what they could. And not forgetting the couple of weed farms that had been found as well.

  Matt kicked a stone as he went past, he had to laugh. Long gone were those fifteen minutes of fame as the most popular kid in school. Of course he’d been arrested and excluded for it. Ironically he’d never taken any of the drugs himself. He just knew it was good money.

  When he was a lot younger it surprised him how people could treat their belongings so carelessly. He’d seen people evicted from houses, throw decent furniture out on to the street, run cars up lampposts and yet spend all their money only on alcohol and cigarettes. It was only when he was a bit older he’d learnt that no one on his street owned much of their stuff. It was crime and benefit central around there, council houses and cars. He was pretty sure most of the stuff in the houses had been robbed as well. It was a shame but it was true. He hated living there. He hated everything about it. Especially that he was inescapably associated with it. The kids in school and even the teachers looked down on him for it and he was well used to the bullies by now.

  Matt cleared the estate and the streets started to normalize the further he went. No more beer bottles and cans littered the pavements, there wasn’t a lady with rollers in her hair or a fag in her mouth in sight, he passed lawns that didn’t have couches on and bus stops that had managed to keep their glass intact. He expelled a sigh, the pain nagged in his chest again. It was like a bad joke when he saw how normal the rest of the world was. And a cruel irony that he lived barely a ten-minute walk away from somewhere he wouldn’t be ashamed of living.      

  Matt stopped to tie his shoe lace after he tripped again, he swore as he nearly bit his tongue with the jolt. When he stopped he realized his heart was hammering against his chest, each beat more noticeable than the last. He ran his hands down his face in defeat and stormed down the street. You must look wonderful, that little voice in his head told him.

  No one had passed him yet but he was used to the looks he received off people from the nicer part of town. A kid from the estate was all he was known as, but he wasn’t like the others there. Most of the kids were just like their parents, they wanted free council houses, to never have to work and to dress like the local charity shop had a sale on.

  Matt couldn’t get away fast enough. He’d already been through a few jobs. At first he’d been a paper boy but that had ended when he’d woken his dad by accident getting ready two hours before school and wasn’t let to forget it. Matt felt the corners of his mouth tremble at the memory. 

  When he was older he’d washed dishes in a café in the nice part of town but after a while they decided they didn’t like having a boy from the estate working there. They claimed that the posh old ladies who went there were put off by him. All for the best, leaning down to reach the sink that always seemed to be an inch too low for weeks had left him feeling like he might develop a hunch.

  After that no one would hire him, his CV was awful and his references were worse, what more could a fifteen-year-old do? Other than sell weed, he snorted a laugh, momentarily cheered up.

  Matt was frustrated thinking back to how hard he’d tried for years, the money from the jobs only went on decent food, clothes that weren’t scruffy and ripped, shoes that didn’t have holes in and a backpack for school after he’d been bullied for bring his books and lunch in a plastic supermarket bag.

  The little shits he’d been in school with had ripped it out of his hands so his stuff had gone all over the floor, leaving him eight years old and crying in the school yard. He’d been excluded a few days later for hitting the kid who’d done it in the face with an apple. Matt actually smirked at the memory, he’d stolen it from a stall outside the shop, deciding it was the heaviest fruit he could easily nick and had given the bully a black eye that lasted nearly two weeks.

  Matt’s hands were stuffed in his pockets and noticed he was distractedly squeezing his house key tight in his fist. Matt uncurled his fingers to find the key had ripped open his already scarred palm. His jeans were faded blue and riddled with holes, a fresh wave of anger came over him. The one time his key doesn’t fall out of the hole in the pocket he scorned bitterly. He shoved it in his jacket pocket suddenly thankful that some sensible part of him had managed to pick up a coat. The other not so sensible part noted that he was still wearing the t-shirt he’d fallen asleep in. What could he do but shrug and plod on?

  After yet another morning in living hell he’d had enough. His parents never wanted him around and they let him know it whenever he got in the way. They hadn’t planned on having him but he had turned into a free house, car and money every month, none of which had been spent on childcare. As far as he knew the schools had always sorted out the transfers when he’d been kicked out, he wasn’t sure his parents even knew which school he went to.   

  They wouldn’t notice him most of the time but whenever something went wrong in their lives he’d soon be dragged into it, with a vengeance. Every arrest, lost job, crashed car, every bill and eviction notice and drug problem had ended with a beating. What did they expect, punch me and fucking fairy dust comes out? They only noticed him when they needed a punch bag that bled.

  He was used to it he supposed in a sad, pathetic way.

  Most days turned out the same. He couldn’t wait to get away from them and get to school, and that was saying something. With everything they’d had seen, it pissed him off why no one had thought to take him off them before it was too late.

  Welcome to too late. This morning had been a lot worse. His dad had been fired from yet another job, no surprise there. The boss had called him before his shift and told him he’d better not show his face.   

  From what Matt could gather there had been a robbery the night before at the store he worked at. His boss claimed that the store hadn’t been locked up properly – or at all. The conversation hadn’t been tremendously long but it sounded like the back door was left wide open so the thieves had been able to walk right in. There wouldn’t be an insurance company in the world that would cover it.   

  Matt wasn’t surprised that the drunken arsehole would be capable of something so incredibly stupid. But of course he somehow he managed to drag Matt into the middle of it. Not that he should have expected anything different by now. It wasn’t thirty seconds before he was crashing into his room in a drunken rage.

  One hell of a screaming match and a good beating later, Matt was in no condition to go to school. He hadn’t been walking long but seemed to have developed an unfortunate limp. It was only then that it dawned on him that he wasn’t wearing his uniform anyway, oh well. Instead he planned on getting as far from the estate as he could. 

  He was squeezing his fists tighter and tighter in his pockets. His threadbare shoes pounded the street, each step seemed to zap more of his energy and slowly the anger ebbed into hopelessness. Matt desperately wanted have normal parents who moaned at him to clean his room and do his homework, not ones who blamed him for getting themselves sacked. It was depressing that it was too much to ask. It’s not like he was the one who’d broken into the store.

 

  A little while later Matt was still wandering aimlessly when he found himself close to the shop his dad had worked at, however briefly. Matt was morbidly curious to see the damage that had warranted his beating. He made his way down the street and when he got there he wasn’t disappointed.

  “Holy shit.” He didn’t know it had been the Werewolves Crew.

  The Werewolves Crew were a notorious gang of criminals that broke into stores all over the county. They had a trademark and always made a lasting impression wherever they broke into.

  The shop was only small so the graffiti took up the entire front window. It was always ‘The Werewolves Crew’ in black letters that were painted like ragged fur. This time they had painted over the shops name, so you couldn’t read it. The windows were decorated with the names; Robin, Paintz, Underdog, Chip and Ca$h.

  Matt was shocked to see how professional the graffiti was, not the type of masterpieces teenagers scrawl on bus stops after a night out with traffic cones on their heads. He’d only ever seen it on the TV and internet, and maybe the occasional newspaper. Being up close he was surprised police and paparazzi weren’t swarming the place already. Just goes to show how much no one gave a crap about that part of town. Matt decided to take advantage and have a closer look.

  It was always the same trademark but with different names like, Venom, Boxer and Razor. The names were always different. Matt could only guess how many members there were. He was sure he’d be able to find out online, they had some serious fans. This would be all over the news eventually, when people decided news was news even if the area was a shit-hole.

  Whenever they hit a store close enough the town went into chaos. None of the Werewolves Crew had ever been caught. They didn’t even seem to come close. No one had managed to catch them on CCTV yet. There were plenty of theories about them but the police didn’t seem to know an awful lot. No one really knew how they managed it but they were infamous for their crimes. And of course the younger kids thought they were real werewolves. They only came out at night and were pretty much invisible since no one had seen them.  

  Matt waited for a car to pass before jogging over the road, easier said than done with a limp. The shop was deserted now and he looked inside through the gaps in between the names feeling weirdly excited. He caught sight of his reflection and winced, the smile wiped from his face like he’d been slapped. He had blood matted in his dark hair and a nice red mark coming up under his left eye.

  He groaned and peered through the glass, ignoring the fact that he looked like a mug shot. Inside some of the shelves had been knocked over, food had been strewn all over the floor, drink bottles lay empty, their contents spilled out. Matt’s smile returned - this was all his dad’s fault.

  Matt was half pleased that they’d robbed that store. It was crap anyway. They didn’t sell anything good and no one with half a brain would buy any food from there. Matt had learnt that lesson the hard way. He’d vomited for a week after his dad had given him rotten popcorn from hell, much to his amusement. 

  He did feel bad for whoever had to clean it up though. The shop might not even be able to open again after something like this.

   Matt had only been there a few minutes when he saw the owner arriving. He quickly left before he was discovered, and legged it down the street limp and all with his backpack bouncing against him.

  The younger generation thought of the Werewolves as legends. They always trashed the stores completely when they robbed them. Once they’d robbed a DIY store and poured hundreds of cans of paint all over the floor, leaving multi-coloured mayhem behind.

  The other half of him sympathized with the older generations now, but mostly it was personal. If they’d have robbed any other store in the area, he would be sitting in class feeling as miserable as usual and certainly wouldn’t be limping around the streets with the worse yet to come.

 

  Matt found himself walking towards his school, old habits die hard, he told himself. But honestly he didn’t know where else to go, his head drooped a little lower and he scuffed his feet against the pavement when he thought about where he’d be sleeping tonight. At some point that morning he’d decided it wouldn’t be at home.

  Hoping no one saw, he made his way round to the back of the school. Lessons had already started so it was eerily quiet in the grounds. Math and science was the last thing on his mind so instead he found his classroom window after not so skillfully hopping the fence. A rip on his jeans caught the spiked on the top and almost left him dangling upside down like a punch bag piñata. Luckily he managed to struggle free without ripping himself a new one. His classroom was on the second floor and he could imagine the boredom inside.   

  Matt rummaged in his pockets and found the bloodstained key, looking at it sickened him. He had raised his arm and launched it at the classroom window before he could stop himself. The key hit dead center and bounced off the glass with a loud ping.

  Matt hadn’t meant to hit it and braced for the rush of students to the window. When it never happened he felt an unexpected pang of disappointment. He picked up a stone in the dirt at his feet and weighed it in his hand. It was heavy. Matt rolled it around his palm a few times before lifting his arm high above his head and hurling it at the window. The glass shattered.

  “Shit!” he cursed, stepping back as shards of glass rained down. The window must have been older than he thought, either that or he was having a Peter Parker turns Spider man moment. He hadn’t realized he’d been punched by a radioactive fist this morning.

  A chorus of shouts came from the classroom and one girl screamed. Matt figured she’d probably been hit over the head. He felt guilty for a split second until he remembered his ex sat by the window.

  Matt snapped out of it when he heard his teacher shout. Guessing he was marching up to the window; Matt bolted. Big mistake.

  As soon as he ran around the front of the school, someone shouted to him.

  “Hey you, stop!” Matt spun around on his heels and saw a police officer advancing on him. Matt stood frozen before coming to his senses and took off down the street, determined not to add arrested to the list of reasons why today had been shit.

  The officer shouted louder this time and Matt was forced to run faster. The pain in his leg screamed at him but there was no way he could stop now.

  “Kid, get back here!”

  It was just a fucking window! Matt cursed.

  “Get back here!” the officer shouted again. Matt was imagining a gun aimed at the back of his head and bolted down the next street, arms flailing in the air.

  No way! If The Werewolves could get away with robbing a store and ruining his life, then he could get away with a broken window. He zigzagged down a few streets heading for the busier part of the town hoping to get lost in the crowds but he soon realized it was only getting worse. Two police cars skidded around the corner and the tires screeched as they raced towards him.

  Suddenly he realized he was wanted for more than just a broken window.

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