On the Other Side of the Fence

'This is a dog eat dog world, and their kind of dog is much bigger than ours!' In a post-apocalyptic state, the world has become divided in two, the poor behind one fence and the rich on the top and Mary is amongst the unlucky ones. But things are stirring, gangs that litter the Lowerhalf are planning an uprising to bring down the rich and disturb agreements much older and wiser than them. Mary's brother Kieran is in trouble with infamous gang leader Caesair and he won't tell her why. Secrets are brewing and revenge is coming to the boil.

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2. The Worst Thing Since Sliced Bread

It was a wild pig chase. Kieran dropped, moving free from his pursuer and becoming one himself; a pursuer of me. The figure I'd assumed was some infamous wannabe yelled out slurs which I couldn't quite make out, proceeded by the words "three days". There was no time to stick around staring at this stranger, I'd just question Kieran about it when we got home, well, if we got home. 

One foot darted in front of the other. There was no question as to what I could do or where I could go; I'd have to go to our shabby little hut. Kieran would chase me there and we'd have it at each other's throats. That's how it always went, but at least we got some food out of it right? Wrong, Kieran had caught up with me and had me by the back of my dress. Spinning me around he pulled my face to his and looked right in my eyes. I could tell from their muggy brown colour that he was more than just a little mad with me. His brow was furrowed in a fit of rage and the two dark slugs on his head almost met in the middle. A waft of his breath washed over my face and sent shivers along my body as he gritted and bared his teeth, vicious like a dog. 

'What the hell was that?' he barked.

Our bodies burst in through the front door; it's inhospitable creak was drowned out by Kieran's furious temper. 

'Why would you do that? What were you thinking?' There was no use in trying to argue with the boy, especially as my only real answer to that would have been "because I'm fed up of pulses and greens"  and it didn't seem like the right time to bring up the subject. His matted brown hair stuck up in a sweat as he threw meaningless anger around the hut in the form of words. It bounced of the walls and reverberated through my skull, making the place seem even more depressing. 

Our hut was small, as you can imagine. It's walls were orange where the newer clay was and more of a beige where the old clay had formed a thick cement which was slowly crumbling away. It had two rooms, three if you count the piss pit. In the main area was a barely working ceramic sink that had been poorly fitted into the water supply via a homemade counter made from odd pieces of wood. In front of the counter stood a petite round garden table with small ceramic squares on it that patterned to form a lizard which I had routinely named Sammy. Two ridiculously uncomfortable bare-back chairs surrounded it, one with a woven seat and one with a de-feathered pillow. Baskets of vegetables from Kierans failing plot were stuffed into a bruised cupboard near the back of the hut to keep rats and bugs from feasting on them. There was a sofa, which we were extremely lucky to have, in the middle. It was completely mismatched from anything else in there, but Kieran managed to salvage it from god-knows where and I didn't bother going into details asking him. It wasn't the best and it could barely seat two people and it's horrific murky green colour was completely mismatched with the browns, oranges and creams that the rest of the hut followed. Odd books and other junk were strewn about in piles around the place too, but don't get me wrong, the hut was completely minimalist. 

'Mary! Are you even listening to me?'

'What? What else could you possibly have to say that I haven't heard before?' I spoke calmly, and admittedly a little under my breath.

'Don't be a brat!' Kieran was angry, but that was nothing new and for once it seemed to not be wholly at me.'Why do you do thing's like this? Are you trying to get us into trouble? Do you want to be carried away or murdered in your sleep? Because that's what happens to little girls who can' keep their filthy hands from stealing.' 

'Oh give it a rest Kieran, I'm not a kid anymore-' but before I could even begin to vouch for myself, his familiar interruption kicked in. 

'YES!' a pause as his screech stopped time 'you. Are.' the last bit was uttered more to himself than anyone else. I rolled my eyes. He was even more grumpy than usual. 'Tomorrow we are going to trade him some of our own goods for that bread.'

'What goods would that be exactly? Our souls?'

'You're insufferable, you know that?' He had began to cut some carrots on the counter. 'That mouth will get you into serious trouble one day, I don't know why you can't just stay out of mischief for five seconds.'

'Like you' This was a window of opportunity, an opportunity to get dirt on brother dearest.

'Ha, yeah'

'Maybe give me three days to see if I can manage it.' Kieran stopped chopping the vegetables and spun round in irritable rage.

'What are you talking about?'

'Don't play like that, it's insufferable. You know perfectly well what I'm talking about'

'For a 16 year old, you're awfully insolent. Stay out of my business.' 

'Is that what your little talk with Caesair was about? Business...' In all honesty, I don't know why Cessair's name rolled off of my tongue. I'd had a hunch when I saw the sickly figure, but there was no way my brother, my meticulous goody two shoes brother could be involved with the most feared gang leader in Lowerhalf. It was virtually impossible for him. But the prolonged silence and look of guilt in his fragile brown eyes made me think that maybe I could actually be right. 'No way have you actually- I mean this must be a joke- tell me you aren't serious.'

Kieran couldn't keep his eyes on mine.

'I said stay out.' 

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