Saturday Night, Sunday Morning, Gone Fishing
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Saturday night, Sunday morning,
By Wolf E. Boy.
Looking back, Dan would wonder sometimes how something so innocent could get so fucked up, so quickly; but then I guess if you look close enough at life, chaos plays a bigger part than we might imagine.
As saturday nights go it was nothing special, no one was clubbing so it was down the local for pool, beer and banter, feed the jukebox with banging dance tunes and try to ignore the fact that they`re only at the pub round the corner. Jambo and Cassy picked Dan up from his place; after a quick doob and cuppa,(just to be sociable), off they shot to the `Nag`, their local. Jambo`s a drummer waiting to make it, hyperactive,bit of an alcy, and noisy as fuck; Cassy`s a full on good time girl who loves her parties, potions and puff, she also happens to be criminally sexual, Dan`s in his thirties, been there and done that, and reached the point where another change in life is imminent, constantly re-inventing himself. The three of them, other than being mates at this point, form a sort of counselling committee for each other, Jambo and Cassy are in fucked up relationships, treated like shit by their partners, but in love so they put up with it. Dan, a single, born again student has his own personal turmoil which Cassy is a part of, they get on like a house on fire and sexually she drives him nuts, but it`s never going to happen, or not any more at least after their dud date. So there it was for everyone to see, Dans innermost shame laid bare at the local. Itd taken Cassy one date with him to put her off anything further, and here she was in the Nag, being plenty touchy feely with a new fella. Dans approach was to talk to them when required and sit on the shit thats doing his head in, it didnt matter much though, as just about everyone in the boozer knew what was what on this particular subject.
His most painful and embarrassing weakness, the inability to function properly faced with anything stronger than friendship with a girl he fancies, so he always fucks it up somehow. I am the Anti pull, if I fell in a barrel of tits Id come out sucking my thumb!, was one of his unfortunate conversation killers when the booze started to take over during one of his low points, as though self destructing was preferable to the imagined knife through the heart he always thinks is in the post, self perpetuated fatalism. But that was another night.
The Nag has a good old fashioned public bar, wooden floor, two pool tables, dartboard, jukebox and no poncy furniture, but not quite spit and sawdust,- a proper pub. In through the double doors they burst, to the kind of reception that tells you the entertainment has arrived, Dan hits the bar, Jambo hits the jukebox, and Cassy grabs their coats to stake a claim for seats by the pool table. Tone, the barman with the perpetual tan, or` Costa del Tone` as Jambo calls him, shouts, raised pint glass in hand, "Guinno` Dan?", Dan at this point is in a state of momentary confusion, caught between acknowledging his mates, and trying to order the round, a raised thumb to Tone gets the order under way, while a sweeping hand followed by "alright you lot" speeds the whole process up. Beers in hand Dan heads for the table Cassy has claimed, stopping enroute to bung his marker down for pool, the pool table is Dans domain, meaningless outside of the pub but definite status within it, much to his amusement. "There you go", says Dan as he dumps the beer on the table,"get your laughing gear round that", having fed the jukebox for some of his beloved Prodigy and Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Jambo is using the table as a drum kit, while Cassy in full student mode gets her baccy out and rolls up.
It`s only a matter of time before Dan gets established on the pool table, leaving Jambo and Cassy to swap stories on who`s getting fucked over the most in their relationship, this is one chat he`s probably better off without. Cassy`s the kind of girl that would still look gorgeous in a coal sack, about 5` 7" tall, shoulder length natural blonde hair, a body that Michelangelo would have been proud to have sculptured, with a sweet and inviting looking face, and blessed with a lovely nature, you know, that bouncy, keen, smiley sort, all in all a real friendly lass who happens to love sex, which she`d openly admit, put all that together and you have a walking time bomb, whenever they hit the clubs it`d be like watching schoolboy football with her being the ball and both teams chasing her around for the whole game.
Jambo`s not quite the male equivalent, but he`d sure get his share of attention from the opposite sex, combat kid meets surf dude with a shock of bleach blonde waxed spiky hair, and with his full on hyperactivity on top of that, he's impossible to ignore. With Jambo around you're guaranteed entertainment, the boy can't keep still or quiet for a minute, unfortunately for him some people that don't know him often take him the wrong way which can lead to problems, not that Jambo ever notices, he always presumes someone else must be the cause. Nothing slows him down and no amount of beer is too much for him, he's truly happiest, (other than during his marathon sex sessions with his equally lively and gorgeous girlfriend), when playing his drums in a gig with his mates around and a constant supply of his lovely 'fizzy beer' as he calls it. Love him or hate him it's never dull while he's around.
Dan's a bit of a social chameleon adapting to whatever surroundings he's in, with the look that says `sweet` to the girls, much to his annoyance, and completely the opposite to lads that don't know him, in fact the more pissed he gets the more he becomes like Jambo, all he wants is to enjoy life to the full wherever he goes, which tends on occasions to create conflict. He's also crap with women though he shouldn't be, but somehow he always manages to fuck things up in gloriously embarassing ways, generally when drunk. The main thing all three of them had in common was their desire to have a fucking great time all the time, and to a large extent they did, one way or another.
Dan had tried to break off even the friendship with Cassy after the pub one night because she was still churning him up emotionally, but true to form his timing was shit. She worked at a care home and her favourite patient had just croaked, so this was all too much for her at the time. " Eric died last night, I don't need this too ", she told him in between sobbing her heart out, ' fuck sake, I don't believe this ', Dan thought to himself, you'd have thought they really were a couple to see it going on. Her heart was breaking at this desertion and he couldn't stand seeing her cry, suffice to say he walked her home, knowing he couldn't just switch it off like that, and nothing changed except they now knew they had a friendship they were stuck with, sexual tension (on Dans side that is)or not.
Cassy had been quietly topping Dans drinks up after he started on the J.D & cokes, something they often did to each other, so come last orders he wasn`t quite as sober as he might have thought. Everyone was going back to Jedi Jims the computer games genius for some Playstation and a smoke after hours, just a five minute walk from the pub. Ambling down the road from the 'Nag', Dan had his hands in his pockets looking skyward with a wide smile, Cassy knew that look, " what's goin' on mate? ", as she moved alongside him he turned his head slightly, and without breaking stride said " fancy a drive ?". Jambo could see the two of them grinning at each other like a toothpaste advert, "oy what's occurring ?" not wanting to be left out. He had bird problems on his mind, a not unusual occurence which he widely advertised with his loud and high pitched whining rows of which he had many with his part time psycho bird Charlie, and there`d be no sympathy from the mob back at Jims. Dan and Cassy had other ideas already, what they were thinking of only normally involved the two of them but they knew they couldn't leave him out of things, Jambo s life revolved around making sure he was happy and very little else, which meant getting what he wanted. Whining like a bitch was part of his armoury.
Having only known each other a year or so Dan and Cassy just click when they`re together, even though there`s nothing going on between them, they'd been close to it but as with most of Dans potential relationships he'd fucked it up. Now she has another boyfriend but he doesn`t always want her around, so as Dan and her get on so well they spend a fair bit of time with each other, clubbing, pubbing, smoking, and every now and again taking off in the car on unplanned mystery tours through the countryside. This night Dan fancied one of their jollies into the beyond and Cassy was up for it straight away, Jambo effectively invited himself along too and even had a destination in mind, one of the fishing lakes he`s a member of.
There was only one proviso for these trips, country roads only, no main roads, Dan and Cassy had had some pretty surreal experiences on their mystery tours so they knew it would be unforgettable, this time with Jambo along aswell, a new dimension was added. Back at Dans place all the smokers travelling kit was coming out, skinning up tray, duvets, blankets, tapes for the journey, gather up some puff, (bit of solid, bit of grass) and some whizz, and finally, having sorted all there was to sort at Dans, load the van up and set off to Jambos` place to get his fishing gear. Jambo was living at Jedi's gaff where the rest of the crowd had gone for a smoke, so stealth was required not to give the game away, they didn`t want a convoy.
While Jambo was sorting his bits out, Dan and Cassy were getting into the theme, doobs on the go, blues in the tapedeck, and giggling like a couple of school kids about anything or nothing, next thing, out runs Jambo looking more like Rambo, combat gear obviously being the order of the day for the more discerning fisherman. What Dan and Cassy didn't know at the time, was that what looked like a set of rods that he threw in the back was in fact just a fishing brolly, along with this he had a gas tilly, a flask, and extra layers of clobber. Two out of the three sorted, next stop Cassys` place for her boogybox, duvet,and camera; almost ready to go but one last thing to do, get to the 24 hour garage for supplies, all the usual stuff, skins, water, chewing gum and fill the van up. Dan and Jambo sorted all that out while Cassy snapped off a couple of shots of them as they were playacting in front of her, now everything was set to go, just hit the country roads and take it from there.
By now it was about one in the morning and Dan had had far more to drink than he could have realised, so it was just as well he had a bit of billy with him, a couple of dabs and he`d be fine, Cassy and Jambo were up for some of that so there they were, billied up, smoking for England, and gently cruising through the country lanes in the early hours with a bit of Muddy Waters playing on the tapedeck. Cassy and Dan started reminiscing about their previous trips and the cool while dreamy way they turned out, the winding country roads with their weird names and weirder surroundings, (especially on a comedown), cricket pavillions at sunrise in quaint old villages, and the stories they made up between themselves while wrapped around each other about villagers and farmers in dungarees coming to get them from out of the woods armed with assorted farming tools. They decided once, while sat on the veranda of some olde worlde cricket pavillion, that as they couldn`t see these yokels, they must be coming over the roof but they`d be safe because their dungarees would snag on the guttering leaving them suspended and harmless. Canehead dreamers.
Jambo was far too busy being impressed by the surreality of the road, a low dense mist had settled just below eye level and with the headlights illuminating it, as well as the haunting overhanging trees with shed leaves laid like a glimmering carpet on the road surface, it was all too much, "god damn this is fucking trippy man!", he just had to remark. Cassy and Dan looked at each other and grinned, Jambo was beginning to understand what it`s all about, getting away from everything and just being free for a while in the coolest surroundings with some class herb and sounds. After that little moment passed, Cassy looked at Dan, "I wish we could just keep on going, don`t you?", it didn`t need a reply but Dan knew he`d love to be able to, he smiled to register his agreement, and promptly followed that up by asking her if she`d mind skinning up, after all, you know how it is.
As they ploughed gently through the mist, Dan suddenly noticed something he recognised, "I know where we are, there`s a lake up ahead we can stop at", straight away there was an air of excited anticipation, Dan was in his element now, he just happened to find himself on a route he used to take to work years earlier. Before Cassy and Jambo knew where they were, Dan was telling them what they were gonna see before they got to it, the school, the pub, the pond, but he was just counting down to the lake. Sure enough five minutes later as Dan sailed past they noticed it, followed by jamming on the anchors and a swift bit of reversing, "here we are then" said Dan, and after some minor preparation, skin up, wrap up, fetch torch, out they got to the point where reality was about to cross over to surreality, "look at all those cars with their steamed up windows, I wonder what they`re up to" Jambo remarked with a smirk on his face, momentarily shifting the focus.
The lake is next to a dip in the road, deep in the countryside and completely encloaked by dense woodland, there`s no street lighting around, but this night there was a full moon. Jambo, with his glow lamp, took the lead as they set off round the lake for a spot to chill and ponder, Cassy and Dan followed behind with the torch, soaking up every moment, they ambled slowly along a path by the waters edge, ducking under clusters of tree branches and trying not to trip over the exposed roots, until Jambo spotted a pontoon walkway onto the lake, "this`ll do" he said, Cassy and Dan grinned and gave a nod of approval, it was perfect. The lake was as calm as a millpond with the full moon glistening across it towards them, little ripples here and there indicating the presence of carp as Jambo the fisherman informed them, the mist seemed to just hang around the edges of the lake creating a spooky image, and then as if the audience needed further entertainment, out of the water jumped a carp just feet from where they stood, Cassy let out a little shriek, just a nervous reaction, and wrapped her arms around Dan who was just drawing down on the last of the joint, momentary bliss presided as though time had been temporarily suspended until the silence was broken by Jambo, "Where we`re going next is better than this". Flicking the roach into the darkness, with a bit of a sigh and one last look, they turned and set back to the van.
Dan started the engine up and Cassy was assembling another spliff for the journey, " not far now " Jambo commented, " five minutes and we`ll be there ", with the music playing off they rolled once again through the country lanes, this time though there was no talk in the van as they pondered on what had just been and what coolness lay ahead. Dan saw the signpost for their destination and went to take the turn only to realise it was taking them onto a dual carriageway, " no main roads " he said and turned around, " we can go the backway and stay on the country roads ". Cassy was puffing away and Dan was navigating his way through a village when Jambo noticed traffic police parked in a recess, "old bill" he said straight away, but Dan had already spotted them, " it`s alright they`re not pulling out ", he said as he braked to approach a roundabout,"they are now" said Jambo, Dan checked his mirror, " Fuck it, stash the gear Cassy ", she stubbed the joint out and packed the stash in the glove compartment dead smart, " we`ll be alright " Dan assured them.
As the police approached with lights flashing, Dan slowed to pull in;- even though he knew everything should be alright if he stayed cool, he wasn't happy, he never liked the police and trusted them even less. He got out of the van to be greeted by this overweight copper and asked what the problem was, " did you know you have a brake light out " was the answer to his question. Cursing his luck Dan said he hadn't known, to which the copper came back with " have you been drinking sir ", he knew he was on thin ice here but replied with a "no" as convincingly as possible, by now the fat coppers attention was drawn to Jambo in the back of the van as he circled it, " did you know it`s illegal to carry passengers as unsecured load in the back of a van sir? ", again came "no" from Dan who by now was feeling more uncomfortable by the minute, why had the drinking business been so hastily forgotten?, he'd been breathalysed before and they didn't normally waste time getting him to breathe down the tube.
Inside the van, Cassy and Jambo were becoming concerned, " oh shit Jambo, do you think they`re gonna search us? ", a worried Cassy asked, " no, they`ll just talk to Dan and breathalyse him ", Jambo replied with misplaced confidence. Amazingly the coppers didn`t follow up the drinking line of questioning, which was just as well for Dan considering the amount he`d unwittingly slung down his neck earlier that night. Unfortunately for all of them, this wasn`t the good fortune they might have thought it was, these coppers had a different agenda, something Dan was suspicious of but hoping he`d be wrong. Cassy, still sat in the passenger seat, wasn`t comfortable at all, as the younger of the two coppers stood alongside the open window, she asked him, " what`s going to happen?", " everything should be alright " was what he told her but whatever else, things were definitely not going to be alright.
About here the fat copper started talking about only having half hour left on his shift, as if anyone gave a shit, and how he didn`t want to be late off duty tonight, but then, for some reason and without any warning, he decided he wanted to look inside the van, as Dan opened the back up Jambo hopped out, grateful for the chance to get out of the goldfish bowl situation, as he got out, so Cassy decided she`d get out too, she felt there was something up, something more than a routine stop. Dan by now was getting really irritated but biting his lip, "where are you going?" inquired the fat copper, Dan explained that they were off to a lake for some night fishing, "where are your rods then?" the officious copper inquired further, at this point Dan was stuffed, he didn`t know they had no fishing gear with them, he`d just presumed Jambo had it all in his kit, he pointed to the bound brolly, half hoping a rod would emerge but resigned to the fact it wouldn`t. Now this coppers nose was obviously flared, his small little world hadn`t seen this much excitement since `Countdown` at four thirty, "would you mind opening your ashtray", Dan obliged unbothered, they hadn`t used it so it was clean. This didn`t deter the excited detective, his next remark was that he was going to search the van and it would be better if they told him what he would find rather than him having to find it. Dan reached into the glove compartment and brought his tin out, he probably should've tried to blag it but wasn't thinking sharp enough, "open it please" ordered the copper, Dan opened the tin and his face dropped, he knew there was puff in it but he`d forgotten about the billy, "fuck it" he thought, he had more at stake than this fat bastard copper realised.
The copper took Dan to one side and pointing to the speed he asked if it was cocaine, " no " replied Dan not even sure why it was in his tin anyway, " it`s the remnants of speed " he added, even here the copper was only talking about possession, small amounts and slapped wrists, but Dan had a bad feeling about it all, even though he had less than an eighth in his tin, it was as if he`d been here before and he almost knew what was coming, the sword of Damacles was falling. As he was put in the back of the patrol car, Dan could see Cassy having to empty out her bag onto the bonnet of the van, now he felt sick, he knew the risks but never wanted Cassy of all people getting caught up in it, but then drugs and risk go hand in hand and they all knew it. Jambo would be alright because he barely smoked anyway and never had any puff of his own, they had no reason to take him. Dan, while watching it all from the back of the patrol car, remembered he had two `White Lightning` trips in his wallet that he`d picked up a couple of weeks earlier and forgotten about, keeping his eye on the coppers he felt about trying to find them. Once located he necked them, not wanting to get caught with class A`s on top of the rest, maybe not too bright in the circumstances, but compared to what was coming for Dan it was the least of his worries.
Cassy, for the moment, was the focus of the ever more enthusiastic fat coppers attention, having dubiously attained her permission to snout through her bag, he rummaged for a while and found a quarter of puff then gave up, he`d got enough to warrant taking her back too, anyway not even Cassy could be sure what else he might find in there. Having briefly checked her bag, and with Dan secured, fatty started to rifle around in the van to see what else he might find, other than bits of roach, ripped up rizla packets, and loose baccy, there wasn`t much else until he returned to the glove compartment, here he found the joint that Cassy had just sparked up then chipped as they were pulled, he put it behind his ear and continued to nose meticulously through, like he was expecting something better than he was coming across.
With Dan in the patrol car and Cassy being questioned, Jambo was left to wander around feeling a bit lost so he started trying to make conversation with the coppers about fishing, as if to validate the fact that they really were going, then he noticed the joint behind the fat coppers ear, " you wanna watch that mate, that stuff`s illegal ", he said grinning, this didn`t impress Cassy who was worried enough as it was, " shut the fuck up Jambo ", she thought to herself. By now another patrol car had turned up and Dan was starting to think they must be the star attraction in this one horse district, in fact the second car was supposed to bring a w.p.c to search Cassy but there were none available so they brought a second car to take her back to the station. Jambo was still wandering aimlessly, probably a bit confused by it all. Dan could hear the coppers talking to each other about Jambo trying to get something out of his pockets, they were all trying to be Hercule bleeding Poirot now, on hearing this Dan told them, " you must be joking, he`s hyper mate, he doesn`t need anything, one can of Lucozade and he`ll be up all night ", which was just as well considering he was in for a much longer night than he originally planned.
Once Dan and Cassy were in the police cars, Jambo was informed that they'd only be gone for half an hour so would he stay with the van until they returned, " do you want anything out of the van before we lock it? ", they asked him, but Jambo was pissed and confused by all that was going on, and thinking naively that this would be over in half an hour, he just shrugged his shoulders and said no, with that, the cars with Dan and Cassy set off to the local nick. On the way, Dan started to wonder about the `White Lightning` trips he`d taken, and how long they were going to take to kick in, he didn`t fancy the prospect of coming up in the middle of questioning, hardly a good impression to be tripping your tits off while trying to come across as a normal bod that likes a bit of puff every now and again, Cassy in the other car was wondering why her and Dan were in seperate cars, something was wrong with all of this, it didn`t feel right to her and she was worried for Dan, although she had landed in it herself, she knew that Dan had a bit more to worry about.
While Dan was getting a condescending sympathy trip from the coppers that busted them on the way to the station, Cassy was in the car that had been called out and they obviously weren`t happy about actually having to do something for their money so they took it out on her in their own petty way by making her spend the journey with her hands under her knees, doubtless this was to disable the evil, dangerous, 19 year old girl and reduce the very real threat to the couple of wankers escorting her, wankers that is, with 5% less grey matter, would be superstore security twats. Feeling intimidated and sick with worry, and with the mixture of alcohol, whizz, and no small amount of puff running around inside her on top of everything else, it was all too much.
Even here there was a feeling that everything should be alright, after all they hardly had a lot of gear on them, and it was only a dodgy brakelight, but Dan couldn`t get this feeling out of him that something more was up, maybe it was paranoia, drugs or both but it was there and it was nagging away at the back of his mind however much he tried to ignore it. As they pulled in to the police station he looked around but couldn`t spot Cassy, the coppers were playing mister nice guy and being all chummy, which just put Dans back up, although he wasn`t gonna give them the satisfaction of seeing it, and remained minimalist with his replies. Cassy, he would soon discover had already arrived feeling rough and shitting herself, she hadn`t been in any sort of trouble before and it all seemed a bit unreal to her, now she had to watch as this copper systematically emptied the contents of her bag while asking her to confirm it all belonged to her. Cassys bag was unmistakeable, a kind of leopardskin bag that looked like one of Jamiroquais hats with string attached, it was a trademark for her among their crowd, and renowned for it`s seemingly ceaseless capacity, here it was bit by bit, item by item, coming out of the bag and on to the station desk, baccy, lipsil, tampax, hairbrush, three different driving licences which she instantly got grilled about, and so much else that it took two forms to write it all down. When the copper thought he`d got it all, he tipped the bag up to make sure it was empty and out came about three or four joints worth of loose baccy, skunk, and resin dods all over his forms, in amongst all this debris was an untouched 'teenth that Cassy didn`t even realise she had, " sorry about that ", she offered nervously, half suppressing a giggle inside, to which the copper just returned a dirty look, " wanker ", she thought to herself. Having checked and confirmed the contents of the bag with Cassy, she was led away to wait while a W.P.C could be found to search her person, Dan wasn`t far behind, his fun was just about to begin.
Didn't expect that!
In front of the station sergeant, he was asked to empty his pockets on to the desk, little realising the next suprise in store for him, out came the wallet and keys, then as his hand went back in, he felt something he really didn`t want to be feeling right at that moment, something plastic with a seal top, with all that was going on Dan had managed to forget completely that he`d picked up some extra bags of whizz before he left earlier that night, this was a fucking nightmare!. Trying to remain composed in front of by now four coppers performing their various duties, Dan glanced up and was grateful to see they were busy checking his wallet, filling out forms, but most importantly not watching him, with a quick cough and a quicker hand, he had the whizz out of his pocket and into his boxer shorts right under their noses. His mind was racing now, with pockets potentially like Pandoras bleeding box anything could happen, gingerly and with one eye on the coppers around him, Dan worked his way through all his pockets and finished with four grams of whizz in his boxer shorts, how he managed it he just could not believe but he knew he wasn`t out of the woods yet, they surely had to search him, he was just praying it wouldn`t be a strip search.
While all this was going on Dan wondered how long it would be before the trips start to kick in, this thought was interrupted by the fat copper that nicked him, " would you remove your belt and take off your shoes please ", how nauseatingly polite considered Dan as if he even had a choice in the matter. Having removed his belt and shoes he was moderately concerned to see the copper putting on plastic gloves, " where the fuck`s he going with those " he thought to himself and was mightily relieved to discover it was just a frisk he was going to get, although he was still relying on the whizz in his boxers not being noticed. The copper started padding down Dans clothing, and when he came to the pockets it was make or break time, would the bags rustle and give themselves away or would they remain silent, buffered by his boxers and jeans, fortunately for Dan they went unnoticed. The frisk concluded, Dan inwardly breathed a sigh of relief at getting over this latest hurdle with the whizz bags still intact, but the hurdles were going to get higher and more frequent as he would find out in the ensuing hours.
With Dans belongings bagged up, he was taken to a cell to await questioning, as he walked along behind one of the coppers he caught a momentary glimpse of Cassy in a sort of cubicle room, she raised a smile but however much he thought of her, Dan just didn`t have a smile in him at the time, if he`d known what she was in there waiting for he`d have made an effort, that was the last he`d see of her that night. As the cell door closed behind him, it was almost as if peace and solitude could take over for a while, his mind was going ten to the dozen and he needed to sit down and try to take it all in.
The cell, a nine foot square room of bleakness, conformed to the very basic necessities, smooth yellow speckled floor which sloped from all sides to a small circular drain in the centre, a grim looking stainless steel toilet which would probably have made a fine home for a disease farm, the bed, if you could call it that, was a long thin hard plastic rapped cushion laying on the floor, the window, a composition of bottle bottoms, and with white flecked walls meeting the fetching yellow floor, the grey cell door with sliding view hatch finished the ensemble of this masterpiece of design, not forgetting the vents and voice tannoy, what more could a person want coming up on two trips with four grams of billy to carry them along.
As Dan settled in to his new surroundings, the W.P.C had arrived to search Cassy, she was taken in to another room and told to strip to her underwear while her clothes were turned inside out and checked, this all seemed so far over the top for such a small amount of puff that Cassy was near panic stricken with worry, mainly because she knew that if they continued sniffing so vigorously then Dan could end up right in the shit. Having scoured through Cassys clothes, the W.P.C told her, " I could search you further but I wont,bear that in mind for future reference ", Cassy was relieved to be spared that particular humiliation and indignity but past caring any deeper than that. With the search complete, she was escorted to the cells in her socks, carrying her trainers and still worried sick, her mind still racing because of the billy, " what`s going on?, are we gonna be alright?, Jambos still with the van, the coppers said we`d only be gone half an hour ", all these thoughts banging around in her head.
When locked in the cell it was even worse, nothing to do but think, in a state of disbelief as to how enjoying a smoke made them criminals, " is that really enough ", she thought to herself, her work, outside college, was caring for the elderly, " who are these bastards to make me feel I`m bad, why am I being punished ?", her head was spinning with the injustice of it all, nearly everyone Cassy and Dan knew smoked dope, but none of them were bad people, they all worked and paid in to the system, good honest people that like a smoke as much as a drink, and occasionally a bit of whizz or a smile smarty, their choice, their money, their business, who the fuck are the law to dictate what to do with their own, honestly earnt money in the name of enjoyment, the sick joke of it all is that it`s their tax that pays these dictators wages.
Dan meanwhile, not being too sure of what to expect next, sat down on his cushion and fumbled around in his boxer shorts trying to locate his contraband, with all four bags in his hand he sat back and studied them, a couple of dabs wouldn`t hurt, after all it was late and if the evidence had to go, well he might as well enjoy it, certainly this dungeon could do with improvement and everything looks better with a bit of billy in your system. After a little while the duty copper came along to ask him if he`d like some coffee, "what a service" he thought, just the job to wash the billy down and kill the shyte taste in his gob, also a perfect accompaniment for the rest of the first gram, maybe life wouldn`t be as dreary as he thought, " Do you think you could sort me out with some fags too? ", Dan enquired, " I`ll see what I can do " came the reply from what seemed to be a fairly friendly officer, " how`s Cassy? " Dan added, " can you tell her I`m sorry about all this ", he was gutted that she was involved, and with her mum being a crime prevention welfare officer on another force, this wasn`t going to go down well.
Having assured Dan that he`d pass the message on and try to sort the fag situation out, the officer dissappeared to get the coffee. With a couple of dabs short of four grams left and coffee on the way, hopefully followed by some fags, things seemed not to be quite so miserable for the moment. While he sat waiting, Dans mind was rumbling around with all sorts of disjointed thoughts like how Cassy was feeling, was she coping?,would they be grilling her?, " probably, fucking bastards ", he said to himself, also he thought back to Jambo in the car, "hope to fuck he thinks to phone the gaff, please God let him be thinking!" went through his mind like it was on a loop with the other thoughts pushing in every now and again. There was still this ominous feeling lingering at the back of his head that more than just a simple bust was occurring here, he`d run this scenario through a million times but until you`re there, well, you just don`t know, again he thought to himself he`d been here before, " wish to fuck I didn`t know the ending ", he muttered to himself, not completely aware of how much control the drugs were starting to have, they were creeping up and quite soon a very different person was going to be in that cell.
After an hour or so in the cell, Cassy was taken to be interviewed, so much for the `only be half hour` bullshit, she wasn`t feeling great as it was, but now in a small room with the two coppers that busted them, she felt victimised. The fat copper ran the interrogation, while the younger of the two remained silent throughout, as he had done almost all the way so far, firstly the procedure was explained and Cassy was asked if she wanted legal representation, she should have said yes, but few would have predicted the outcome of this little episode, as it was she said no, thinking she shouldn`t need it. With that, the interrogator took out some sealed bags with tapes in and inserted them in to a recorder, then he gave it all the usual spiel before starting on Cassy, all the contents of her bag were on the table in front of her in sealed evidence bags, one by one she was asked to confirm or deny whether they were hers or not, as they came to the spliff, the fat copper asked, " is this cannabis cigarette yours? ", to which Cassy replied, " it`s a reefer! ", at the same time thinking, " wish I could smoke it now!", just the sight of it was mouth watering, especially in the circumstances, " did you intend to pass it around ", the fat antagonist proceeded, " of course I fucking did, it`s a joint! " retorted a, by now, pissed off Cassy, " what do you think you fucking dummy " she thought to herself but wishing she could say it. Next it was, " were did the cannabis come from? ", " I got it from a bloke in a club ", the standard bullshit answer but one she was going to have to retract later, " how much did you pay for it? " the copper asked next, constantly probing, when she told him it had cost £25, he remarked that it was a bit cheap, " no! " Cassy hit back annoyed, he was really getting on her tits.
Not satisfied with the answers he was getting, Cassys interrogator started trying to intimidate her with accusatory threats about intent to supply considering the amount of puff she had on her, before she even had a chance to deny it, he followed that up by saying he thought Dan was cultivating grass, " no way! ", Cassy replied, trying hard to control her increasing dislike of this copper, he looked unsure as he took in Cassys reply, but his next line of questioning was really going to put her patience to the test. Trying a different approach he asked, " what would your mother think if she knew you were here? ", as if it had anything to do with the nights events, " she`d freak out " Cassy answered, one of her main worries being that she hoped to fuck it wouldn`t come to that, after all, working for one force and having another force nick your daughter for a drugs offence was hardly going to improve `entente cordialle ` in the workplace. Seeing Cassys concern around this subject, he followed it up with, " does your mother know that you smoke pot? ", " yes she does ", Cassy replied indignantly, a smile seemed to be breaking out on his face at the arrival of this latest answer, " then your mother`s in the shit ", he countered, this didn`t have the effect he`d hoped for on Cassy, " fuck off moron, dopes OK ", she thought to herself, barely controlling her anger towards him. As the interview ended, Cassy was filled with mixed emotions, she wanted to cry at points, she needed comfort and she was worried about Dan, but her hatred for this copper, who was trying to make her feel like a criminal, concentrated her mind until she was back in the cell.
While Cassy and Dan were banged up, Jambo had been left to wander around by the van, not knowing what the fuck was happening, still a bit pissed from the earlier session at the `Nag`, along with the effects of the billy which he knew he shouldn`t have had, he`d been trying to amuse himself for an hour before he realised that the police hadn`t locked the tailgate of the van, " fuck, it`s open! ", he squealed with delight, " result ", he said to punctuate his exclamation. By this time he was dying for a fag so he dived in the van and rummaged around finding rizlas all over the place and then a pouch of baccy, " ah joy ", he said, little caring that he was talking to himself. Soon enough he`d located his flask of tea and a bar of toblerone that they`d picked up at the garage, so with all the comforts and the warmth of the van, he settled in, smoking the odd rolly, drinking tea, and eating bits of toblerone, still not making the connection between Dan and Cassy and drugs and the need to phone home, an oversight which was destined later to torment him and cost Dan very dearly.
As Jambo was enjoying the relative comfort of the van and the supplies they`d gathered for the journey, Dan was being marched in for his first interview, had he been aware of the amount of time he would be banged up, he might have considered a different way of getting rid of those trips, for the moment though, as far as he knew, he only had to get through this interview, get a slapped wrist and be sent on his way with all the usual, "don`t do it again" routine, if only. Once in the interview room, Dan had the procedure explained to him and was asked if he had a solicitor he`d like to be present, if not, a duty brief could be organised. Under the illusion that he shouldn`t need one, Dan declined, also thinking to himself that asking for a solicitor would make it look as if he had something to hide.
With the tapes in the recorder and the introductions out of the way, Dan was confronted with his baccy tin and asked to confirm it was his, " yeah that`s mine" he answered, as he gave his reply, a strange sensation ran through him, " oh shit ", he thought to himself. Dan was starting to come up on the trips as well as the gram of whizz he`d necked in the cell, normally this should be quite a pleasant experience, but not necessarilly when sat across the table from two coppers trying to squeeze information out of you, on the one hand he felt nice and cosy, enjoying the warm rushes running through him, but on the other hand he knew he had to try and appear normal in front of his interrogators.
As Dan was experiencing his drug inspired euphoria, the fat copper continued quizzing him about the contents of his tin and where it all came from, " some bloke in a club ", Dan told him, feeling pleasantly relaxed but trying desperately not to smile, for the moment he couldn`t really care less. Steadily the copper progressed with his line of questioning, how much had the cannabis resin cost, did he intend to share it(intent to supply), where did this grass come from, all the time being answered by a patently unbothered Dan in an as unincriminating way as he could manage given his state of mind, when asked about the small amount of whizz which the fat copper had presumed to be coke, he couldn`t figure out (or remember) how it got in his tin, so just played dumb.
Play the line
Just as Dans mind was about to be lost to fairyland, the fat copper said something which temporarily straightened him out with a jolt, "I warn you now that we intend to search your property ", Dan sat up straight feeling like a startled rabbit, " where the fuck did that come from! " he thought to himself, " do you want to tell us what we`re going to find there? ", the copper continued, desperately Dan struggled to make sense of this, things were going tits up and it just didn`t add up, barely hanging on to his marbles he managed to answer, " you`ve got everything I have in that tin, isn`t that enough for you? " in his best innocent and misunderstood voice. For a moment there was silence, the fat copper and Dan just stared at each other, the copper, unsure whether to believe him or not, was watching his reaction to the question, Dan with the whizz in his system and coming up on the trips, could`ve stared at anyone all day without knowing why, not so caned though that he missed the gravity of what was happening.
Bored with staring at this arrogant fat twat opposite him, Dan rested his forehead into his right hand and wondered how the jump from a tiny amount of puff to house searching had occurred, all as a result of a dodgy bleeding brake light, " how bad can your luck be " he thought. Perhaps thinking that Dan may not have believed the threat to search, the fat copper asked again, " I repeat, I fully intend to search your property, what am I going to find there? ", by now Dans mind was all but scrambled, he raised his head and gaining eye contact, answered as best he could, " you wont find anything, you`ve got all I have in that tin ", hoping to christ that they were bluffing, but if they weren`t, then fuck `em, let them do their own dirty work, " fucked if I`m doing their job for them ", he thought to himself.
Having reached what seemed to be a stalemate in proceedings, Dan was asked if he thought he had a drug problem, this was one question he was going to enjoy answering, " smoking dope isn`t a problem, dope smokers are no harm to anyone, during the day I do what I have to do and at night when I relax, I like to smoke a few joints, and as far as I`m concerned that`s none of your business. ", he had spoken, the copper however, just repeated the question as if he hadn`t even heard what Dan had said, " you twats must have nause lessons ", he wanted to say but decided better of it and remained silent until the interview was terminated, much to Dans relief, and he was led off back to the cells with plenty to think about and a decent amount of whizz to ensure that`s just what he`d do.
Something he hadn`t given consideration to, was how long the remaining whizz bags would stay in his boxer shorts, as he was approaching his cell, Dan could feel something sliding down his leg, the situation was becoming so comical he almost laughed, changing his stride to a gentle glide, he prayed nothing would spill out, fortune was with him just about, as he walked into the cell he looked down to spot the plastic sachet slip out by his foot, like a light he had it covered as he spun around to see the cell door being closed behind him, through the view hatch Dan was asked if he`d like anything to drink, " a cup of coffee would go down well " he answered, giving thought to how well it would accompany his whizz.
Along the corridor, Cassy wasn`t having such a good time of it, she knew purely by the amount of time they`d been kept for, that something was definitely, very wrong, their innocent little jolly into the countryside wasn`t turning out to be very jolly at all, the moonlit lake with it`s jumping carp and glorious serenity seemed a lifetime away. Now, with a cocktail of vodka, cannabis and speed running around inside her, stuck in a grim spartan cell, on top of being verbally victimised and bullied, and made to feel like a criminal by a couple of tossers in uniform, she was drained, tired and sick. Unfortunately, being tired and having speed in your system doesn`t make a good combination, many`s the time they`d all been out together clubbing and wished to fuck the speed hadn`t been so potent when trying to come down in the early hours of the morning. In vain, Cassy tried to be sick down the toilet by putting her fingers down her throat, nothing would come up, then she remembered that she hadn`t eaten anything that day, so gave it up as a futile exercise and opted instead to try and just rest on the uninviting cushion. As she lay there, feeling cold but sweating in her freezing cell, full of pent up passionate emotion, she was thinking, worrying about Dan, she wanted a hug and to know that she`d be alright, not surprisingly Dans thoughts were pretty much the same, if not his mental state, if the two of them had been put in the same cell at that time they could probably have created enough electricity to run a small housing estate. It was typical of their relationship that at a time they desperately wanted to be with each other, it couldn't be, certainly Dan would love any opportunity to dish out some comfort and a bit more to her, especially in his present drug inspired state, however, given that Cassy had a boyfriend it was probably for the best, although it caused them both a great deal of confusion at the time.
Knowing that none of her wishes were likely to be granted, Cassy focused her concentration back to her hatred for the fat copper, so smug and content, full of his own piss and self importance, her mind was filling up uncontrollably, as if the floodgates holding the hate back had just given way, " he should be punished for the suffering he`s trying to put me and Dan through, more than we`ve ever caused to anyone " she thought, Cassy would by no means be considered a malicious person, but with the passionate hatred she`d developed, she might have made an exception for him, after all, who wants to be rational when they've just been nicked, rightly or wrongly.
Back at the van Jambo was becoming irritable and restless, he couldn`t understand why Cassy and Dan had been gone so long, inside the van he had everything he`d need to sit the night out, after all, they had prepared for a night out for three, but Jambo didn`t expect to be spending it on his own in the back of Dans van parked by the side of the road in some obscure village. To keep himself amused, when any cars passed, he did his best to look as suspicious as possible, thinking that perhaps he might draw police attention to himself and maybe find out what`s going on, every now and again he`d get out and go for a walk, pick out the poshest looking house and piss up their walls, trying to look furtive and suspicious all the time. Jambo would prefer an audience for his little games, but given that his auditorium was presently vacated, he`d have to rely on his imagination, he had a prediliction for getting his cock out at any given time and just pissing wherever he was, Dan had commented that he was like a fucking cat spraying its territory. Pissing while walking was a definite Jambo trademark, always accompanied by a huge childish, naughty boy grin, he was real big on toilet humour. Once back in the van after his latest wander, he set himself up with the duvets, hung up a glow lamp and slowly began to fade, by the time he was to wake, things would be quite different.
Chill out room
Dan by now was away with the fairies, having had his interrogation he decided not to try and fight the trips, he didn`t want the horrors on top of everything else, so there he was, sat in the corner of the cell on the cushion, watching the smooth speckled floor dissolve and swirl around nice and gently, rubbing his hands together he could feel the nerve ends tingle, his feet with no shoes on felt like they were dissolving in to the floor, " ahhh this feels good " he thought. One of the things about tripping is the heightened awareness of the senses, you can see things that aren`t even there, your body feels like it`s going through metamorphosis, and your hearing`s so sharp you could hear a fly fart in another room, right now Dan had the lot, he felt nice and warm with gentle rushes flowing through his body, he could forget where he was and why for a minute.
As he looked around the cell, it seemed a different place to the one he`d been brought into earlier, then he thought about Cassy and wished she was in there with him, he wanted to wrap her up in his arms, tell her everything would be cool and take her away from reality for a while, much the same as they had done before on their trips together, away from everyone and everything, in their own private worlds, worlds that became whatever they wanted them to be Thoughts of a shag inevitably forced themselves to the front of his mind too, even though he knew it was out of the question, but what the hell, if the thought's there then she'd always be his first choice leading lady, it was as well for Dan that he had a reasonable imagination because his success rate with the opposite sex made a pretty miserable and pathetic story. His cosy dreams were interrupted for a moment by the arrival of his coffee, this presented a slight problem for Dan as he was by now, well up and high as a kite, negotiating his way to the door to collect his drink would by no means be straight forward, slowly he hauled himself up to a standing position, and keeping his eyes fixed firmly on the floor, he shuffled across the cell with all the concentration he could manage, trying to look straight, and desperate not to have to see the coppers face, watching floors and walls move around was one thing, but he didn`t fancy seeing some coppers boat race changing shape in front of him.
Having made it to the door and picked up the coffee without incident, Dan, both hands clasping the cup, shuffled back into the corner of the cell looking like something out of a refugee camp. Sat back down, and with his coffee in hand, he fumbled around in his boxer shorts and pulled out the whizz, looking at the whizz then the coffee, and cheekily thinking back to his interview, " drug problem? ", " whatever! ", he licked his finger, stuck it in the bag, and necked a decent dabs worth, followed by a gulp of coffee to wash the foul taste away, a part of him was still conscious enough to realise he was in a bad situation, but they had him and there was nothing he could do about it, so why not make the most of it.
It seemed reasonable to assume that he wouldn`t be searched again, so Dan put the rest of his stash of speed back in his pockets, as the last bag went in, he looked up to the view hatch and an idea came to him out of the blue, nothing sane of course, but something that would amuse him in the hours to come, fishing around in his pockets, he pulled out one of his bags of speed, made his way across to the cell door and scooped out a reasonable amount before dabbing it into the corner of the recess for the doors view hatch. Standing back, Dan admired his handywork, allowed himself a giggle and shuffled back to his corner to await the first victim of his mind games, not exactly the stuff of mensa, but plenty enough to amuse a cloud nine test pilot trapped in a barren cell. The thing with Dan was that even when straight, his mind would be going ten to the dozen, so he always had to have something to occupy it, but with amphetemines and L.S.D in him, the thoughts were whizzing about so fast, they were sometimes hard to stop and make sense of.
Soon enough your thoughts are gonna settle somewhere for a while, and as Dan was tripping, what better place to settle than the memories of his first trip some five years earlier. For most drug users, the experimental period comes during youth, not Dan, other than a rare bit of puff and consumate amounts of alcohol, he was drug free until the latter half of his twenties, add to that, he was a full on sports junkie until injury brought him to a halt, nobody that knew him then would believe what he was now, this was the boy that wouldn`t touch any kind of chemicals, and those that did told him he didn`t need them anyway, he was normally full on without any assistance.
Dans fate was redirected as he was driving his van home one night, it was after hours and he was nearly home when he spotted a mate of his, Reaper, pushing his bike with a flat tyre, " want a lift? ", Reaper gratefully accepted, pushing a flat tyred treader when pissed up`s no kind of hobby. Reaper got his name through having the grimmest, most lung ripping bong in town, shaped, not surprisingly in the form of the Grim Reaper, he and Dan knew each other from years back through the pub circuit but never were that close as mates, in the years to come, Dan would look back and ponder on how significant that chance meeting was the night he picked up Reaper and his pushbike.
That night, he dropped him off at his gaff, they had a smoke together, caught up on old times, annoyed Reapers landlord, (who was on the job at the time), with the stereo being up too far, and swapped stories on their present hardships, Reaper was fed up with the restrictive regime at his lodgings, Dan wanted another lodger to help with the mortgage, suffice to say, within a couple of weeks, Reaper had moved in at Dans place and an era had just begun, it was like the moment when you`ve just been strapped into the roller coaster and there`s no turning back. At that time Dan had no idea just how much Reaper liked his drugs, he soon learnt, but managed to hold out and remain chemical free, that didn`t matter though, Reapers cannabis contacts soon became Dans contacts, and with Dans financial muscle, they pretty quickly had the nucleus of a dealership set up, not something Dan had ever planned on doing, but why not, after all, everyone they knew smoked and travelled far and wide to get it, sometimes from right sketchy scumbags, so, localise the supply, make a few bob, provide a safe smoking environment and steer clear of class A`s, it worked well too barring one fatal night when his guard dropped, Reaper had been given a bag of magic mushies at work, it was well out of season for mushies, but they`d been kept frozen by a mate of his and forgotten about, now Reaper was the grateful beneficiary of this good fortune.
When he got home, Dan had finished work early himself and was getting a nice fat doob together, " alright boy!, fancy some mushies? ", Reaper asked as he held them up like a trophy with a mile wide smile on his boat, " no thanks mate " Dan answered grinning back, he`d never touched the stuff but he knew how much the others loved it and always wondered what it`d be like. Having assembled the doob and ignited it, Dan took a wander into the kitchen to investigate the mushy cook up, banging house music was drumming around the place, his full strength doob was taking effect nicely, everything was rosy, the mixture of temptation and intrigue was finally too much to resist any longer, " fuck it, brew up for me aswell mate ", Dan had succumbed, what he wouldn`t find out until later, was the strength of the brew.
Reaper never gave a thought to the future, you give him drugs and he`ll do the lot a.s.a.p, there he was brewing 600 magic mushrooms in one hit, with only him and Dan at that point to use it, 50 or so per person gives a reasonable kick, but a 600 mix shared with someone that`s never tripped before, well.... Before the brew was ready, Baz, one of Dans cricket club team mates, had come round to score some blow, he didn`t expect to be long, but as soon as he spotted Reaper cooking up the magic in the kitchen, any plans he had went out the window, he wasn`t passing up an opportunity like that, so there they were, skinning up, smoking furiously and waiting for the brew to be served up, what an advert the two of them were for a cricket club, both captains of different sides in the town club, coaches for the club colts, and members of the club committee alongside high ranking officers in the police force, one of whom was head of vice, but what they didn`t know didn`t matter, and it amused the fuck out of Dan and Baz, and Baz`s old man was the chairman, talk about taking the piss.
After a while, in came Reaper with three cups of mushroom coffee heaped with sugar, "let the party begin " he said as he passed around the poison, Dan just didn`t have a clue what was coming. For the first hour the three of them skinned up relentlessly and relayed to each other how their trip was coming on, Baz and Reaper were loving it but they`d been there before plenty of times, Dan couldn`t believe his eyes, other than the fact that he felt so good inside, the stuff he could see was fucking wild, and it wasn`t even there, everything he looked at changed as soon as he focused on it, faces were appearing out of the curtains and walls, the T.V was on but seemed miles away, like looking through binoculars the wrong way round, the room became a holographic toy for his mind to enjoy, as he scanned around the place, grids of rainbow lights were coming out of the furniture and carpets like computer graphics, octagonal grids, swirling layers of lines, vivid colours, raining multi-coloured lights, " this is fuckin' awesome ", commented a spellbound Dan. As he looked down at his wicker footstool, there was a wolfs face staring right back at him clear as day, although he was hallucinating massively, he still had an idea of what was going on in reality but had no idea of how out of hand things could get.
All three of them were gone, laughing, smoking, losing the plot and not even caring, the concept of time becoming less relevant by the minute, Dan was on his first trip and fuckin` lovin` it. Just as he was saying to Baz and Reaper how he`d missed out `til now the phone went, Baz and Reaper knew not to go near it but Dan didn`t, he calmly drifted over and answered it without a care and high as a kite. " alright Dan?, it`s Milk mate, what you up to? ", Milk and Dan went back years, he was like a mixture of Dan and Reaper, he loved his beer, drugs and sport, and everything had to be done to excess, and always competing with whoever`s with him at the time to see who can do the most, or get the most wasted, he was a paradox, fit as fuck and in to his weight training but just as in to drink and drugs.
When Dan let Milk know he`d just done mushies for the first time, the bastard couldn`t fucking resist it, " make sure you go to the bathroom and look in the mirror when you`re really up ", what a cunt!, phones, bathrooms and most fucking definitely mirrors should have warnings on them, `Tripheads beware! `, of course Dan couldn`t have realised that Milk was on a wind up, and after a relatively senseless conversation, he put the phone down feeling a little perturbed but not knowing why. Reaper had boiled up a re-brew by then, and Rod, Dans other lodger, had just got in from work, one sniff of what was going off and he was out of the traps like a light, " count me in boys, re-brew or not, I`ll soon catch you fuckers up ". Dan had known Rod for a lot of years, but seeing him when tripping was spooking him, he didn`t realise that the phone had already triggered him, now he was at that point where it could go either way, his next move would prove decisive. Feeling a bit unsure and weird, Dan remembered his phone conversation with Milk and navigated his way upstairs to the bathroom, partly because he needed a piss and partly because he was curious about the mirror.
The stairs and hallway had no carpet down and the bare floor had paint spatters all over it, now they looked luminous and bright, Dan wasn`t bothered, it all still seemed pretty cool and completely surreal. In the bathroom everything was bright and glowing at first, Dan felt warm, cosy and spongy, as he had a piss it felt almost sexual, but in a completely relaxing way, like he was floating in heated cotton wool, once finished he moved to the sink and mirror, something he would learn never to do again when tripping.
Everything seemed to be happening in slow motion, and as he looked into the mirror he felt drawn to it, slowly and without conscious thought, he raised his hand towards his face, then like a flashbulb had gone off, he could see his own hand peeling his face off in the mirror, straight out of the film Poltergeist, " fuck this ", a freaked out Dan said to himself, " I`m out of here ", he had the horrors, and badly, as he manoeuvred his way out of the bathroom, the walls and floor were breathing and suppurating, every little blemish was screaming out for attention, his balance was gone so he had to lean against the wall and slide along it, all the time seeing weird shit around him, his own house now looked like some kind of evil cartoon.
Having made it along the hallway, he sat at the top of the stairs and looked down in to the lounge where the others were, now the fear was starting to kick in, all Dans senses were fried, he didn`t understand what was happening to him, as he looked at the others they didn`t appear normal to him, more like gremlins, the stairs kept going flat, then stepped, the ribs of his corduroy strides were going up and down like escalators, Dan felt like all the fucked up drugheads he`s ever imagined, the joy had gone out of the trip and now everything looked unfriendly, dirty and frightening, he wasn`t prepared for such intensity, taking his hands off his knees, he held them up looking at the back of them, something like weevils were crawling up through the skin and out towards his fingertips, even though it was gross, he couldn`t help but look.
From the top of the stairs, the lounge seemed to be further away than he remembered, it was moving around and everything was distorting, he wanted to get down the stairs but couldn`t move, the other lads had noticed him by now, and even though they were tripping themselves, they could see Dan was losing it, " you alright mate? ", Reaper called up to him, " no I most fuckin` definitely am not alright ", answered Dan, feeling and looking nervous and frightened, " I feel like I`m fuckin` dying, I need a doctor ", " no you don`t mate ", Reaper could see things were going pear shaped and was trying to reassure Dan, " come down here and we`ll go out for a walk, that`ll sort you out ", that didn`t do any good though, Dans primary worry was whether he`d be swallowed by the stairs on the way down, any tiny gap looked like a chasm big enough to fall into, and the lounge didn`t look too inviting either, the carpet had started to sprout fungal growths which moved around, everything looked ugly now, especially Rod, however long Dan had known him for didn`t matter, he was spooking the shit out of him right now, Baz tried not to get involved too much, he could see Dan bringing them all down and didn`t want that.
After what seemed like an eternity, but was probably no more than 10 minutes, Reaper coaxed him down, and persuaded him to get out for a walk, the decisive factor for Dan was the chance to get away from Rods spooky boat race, after a bit of a stumble about, Reaper guided a shoeless Dan out of the door and off into the great outdoors, hardly aware of the kind of attention they were going to attract, or the power of the trip that Dan was in. Initially the idea seemed to be working, Dan became mesmerised by all the new colours outside, it was dark by now with a clear sky and the stars occupied him for a while as he zig-zagged his way from one side of the road to the other looking skyward as he went, Reaper was glad to be able to enjoy his trip for a moment without worrying about this tripped over herbert. Not for long.
Wandering along the road, up the grass verges, across the pavements like a pinball machine, Dan could see daisies firing out of the grass like shooting stars, the dandelions were bright as the sun, the colours were awesome. Unfortunately, at the top of the road there was a hospital, and he had already focused on it, he didn`t even realise it himself for a while, there was too much to see. As they got closer, things started going ugly again, the trees were really haunting with their long tendrils, the pavements became craggy and daunting, this was bungalow area and they now looked like a scene from Grimms fairytales. Dan was becoming overwhelmed by the fear, the harder he tried to control it, the worse it got. " you know where I`m going don`t you? ", Dan called to a bewildered Reaper, " what are you on about? ", came the reply, wondering what the fuck was up now, " I`m off to the hospital to get checked in, I`m fuckin` dying man ", Reaper didn`t want this hassle but he knew he had to sort it, no good on a trip, " listen Dan, you don`t need a fuckin` doctor, no one dies on mushies, and anyway they haven`t got an A&E unit ", things were getting desperate, he was tripping his tits off too and he didn`t want to get as far as the hospital still arguing with Dan, fortunately his last words did the trick and Dan stopped, confused and frightened, he couldn`t think what to do next, Reaper suggested they went back and in the absence of a better idea, they turned and walked.
On their way back down the road, Dan just got worse, he had the horrors real bad and had convinced himself he was going to die, his memory was collapsing fast and the harder he tried to get a grip, the messier and more confused he got, Reaper kept talking to him as they walked, trying to make him understand he`d be alright but Dan wouldn`t have it, steadily their voices raised as they disagreed until it sounded like a full blown row. This was a quiet suburban area with mainly old people for neighbours, Dan got on fine with all of them bar one, but not so well that they accepted what seemed like a blazing row going off in the early hours of the morning. Before long a police patrol car had turned up to check things out.
By this time they were outside Dans place, however much Reaper tried to persuade him to go back in, he wasn`t having it. His own house was like the pit of Hades to him now, and there was more chance of getting handcuffed to a ghost than there was of persuading Dan to go inside, he wanted sanctuary and to know things would be alright, to Dan the police were a godsend, they couldn`t let him die, they`d get him to hospital, his mind had just one objective now, and getting to hospital was it.
As the car pulled up to the two of them, Dan made straight for it, " is everything alright ", the P.C at the wheel enquired, " no it fuckin` isn`t " retorted Dan, so convinced by now that he was dying, he didn`t give a monkeys about upsetting anyones feelings. Seeing that all did not appear to be well, the police got out of their car, as they did, Dan grabbed hold of the car door with its window down, " what are you doing? ", asked the bemused driver, Reaper was staring wildly at the situation and wondering himself , then Dan answered, " this is my only fuckin` grip on reality and I aint lettin` go of it ", in his mind he was on his way to sanctuary, in the eyes of the police he was a full on space cadet.
Asking a series of simple to understand questions, the coppers gradually worked out what was going on, all the time trying to calm Dan down as he maintained his vice like grip on their car door, while they knew now that he was tripping on mushrooms, they had no idea what he was seeing and how vividly. In Dans eyes their car was expanding and dilating massively, the coppers turned into Trumpton soldiers and all the time he held tightly onto their car door, utterly convinced he was going to die, showing no sign of sanity and noisily shouting his demands for an ambulance. Lights were coming on and curtains were twitching, then the one neighbour that Dan didn`t exactly see eye to eye with came out in his dressing gown to complain about the noise, " some people are trying to get some sleep " he shouted across the street, that was like red rag to a bull for Dan, not giving a toss about the coppers present and without letting go of the door, he swung round and bellowed, " why don`t you fuck off, can`t you see I`ve lost my fuckin' mind ". Everyone seemed temporarily stunned, everyone except Dan that is, he was so far gone he couldn`t give a fuck about anything any more.
It didn`t take Einstein to work out that Dan wasn`t going to calm down in the immediate, and no matter how convincing they tried to be, the coppers couldn`t get the other lads to use the phone for a doctor, ambulance, or anything else, they could see how it had affected Dan and didn`t fancy any of that. Still trying to pacify him, and avoid calling an ambulance, one of the coppers asked Dan if he thought he might be a danger to anyone, " I fuckin` well will be if you don`t call me an ambulance ", with that they got on the radio and succumbed to his demands, one space cadet taxi on its way. Reaper, who was on the last train to trip city central himself, had had enough and gone back indoors, he was followed by one of the coppers who went in to get a sample of the mushrooms for the ambulance.
As the copper came back out, Baz was behind him, he was curious to see what was going on but not capable of speech, him and Dan looked at each other like a couple of stunned fish, with no worthwhile thought in their heads, as Dan turned his attention back to the coppers, they were going Trumpton on him again with guns, bayonets, tall hats and tails in glorious technicolour, now he was starting to doubt whether they were real at all, reaching out he tried to touch one of them, this obviously wasn`t appreciated and the copper backed away, not put off by this, Dan gave a certain amount of consideration to lamping one of them to see if they were real or not, luckily for him he didn`t follow the idea through. " Where`s my fuckin` ambulance? ",he shouted, irritated, " don`t worry, it`s on its way ", the copper assured him, just as keen to get rid of this burden, Baz just stood and looked on, mesmerised, he knew something was wrong but it was entertaining and he didn`t want to miss out, this was no average trip. Soon enough the ambulance turned up, as it rounded the corner Dan at last let go of the police car door and headed straight for it, as he made towards the ambulance he became overcome with fear again, " Baz, you`ve got to come with me, I`m dying, don`t let me die ", he was so chunked that whatever he thought became reality, Baz was believing it too now.
The relief was evident on the faces of the coppers as they handed over responsibility to the ambulance men, one basket case plus mate delivered. Dan was guided gently aboard, still cursing, swearing and pronouncing his death to come, while Baz followed behind in a haze, neither knowing or particularly caring why, merely intrigued by it all. As Dan laid out on the bed with the cotsides up, he still believed he was going to die, he called across to Baz, " hold my hand Baz, tell me I`m still alive ", without hesitation he was there and they were holding hands like a couple of infants on a school bus, not the sort of behaviour you`d expect from these two normally, but this was by no means a normal situation, Dans horrors had affected Baz too, he was starting to think Dan was going to die aswell.
Knowing that he was on his way to hospital pacified Dan for a moment, but he still insisted they put a pulse monitor on his finger to prove he was actually alive. Looking at the monitor kept him and Baz occupied while the medic humoured them as they went, asking their names and addresses and trying to convince Dan he wouldn`t die. Baz too wanted to know if Dan was going to die, " is that monitor working?, is he alive? ", he asked the medic, an oldish bloke but not as old as he now looked to Baz and Dan, to them he seemed to be about 140 years old at least, this would be one of the more amusing calls for him.
As the ambulance pulled in to the hospital, they weren`t prepared for the whirlwind of abuse about to be unleashed upon them in the shape of Dan, he was wildly hallucinating again, shouting and swearing, abusing everyone that came close and some that didn`t, " keep your language down! " a particularly stern looking nurse barked at him, " this is a hospital not a pub ", this wasn`t the way to win him over, " what the fuck do I care, I`m fucking dying anyway " he shouted, even louder than before. Baz was alongside clutching the stretcher rails, not completely aware of the scene creating around them, and unwilling to be seperated from Dan. As the two of them were manoevoured through casualty by the porters and nurses, it looked like a scene from a loony bin, Dan was still ranting, Baz wouldn`t let go of the stretcher rails, which made steering the bed a nightmare, and the hospital staff were desperately trying to control all three, without a great deal of success. Eventually they managed to get Dan into a casualty ward bed and he calmed down for a while, Baz, who had only come along to keep Dan company, got admitted too, he was so mashed himself that he just rode along with it.
Dan was tripping so heavily that the hospital staff couldn`t get near enough to him to give him anything, every time they got close to him, he`d erupt again, they looked like mad scientists to him, and naturally he believed they were going to cut him up for experimental purposes. Baz, on the other hand, was much easier to handle, quiet as a mouse and seperated from Dan, he was just staring around like a wide eyed child, he made a much less objectionable patient, so when they gave him some charcoal solution to drink, to soak up the remaining poison in his system, he dutifully drank it, as an obedient infant would take medicine from its parent.
While Baz was taking his medicine, Dans horrors were subsiding gently and he was enjoying feelings of floatation and out of body experiences, actually believing at one point that he had died and this was it, he was in a rosy state of acceptance with everything, everything that is, except what was about to appear from around the screen next to him, Baz had been administered with the charcoal solution, and now he had black stain all around his chops, he couldn`t quite stand up straight and was still tripping, the combination of this lot, as Baz hove into Dans view, was too much, what Dan was looking at was a concertina like gremlin with a big black mouth, and after all the shit he`d already seen, he wasn`t having this, mate or not, he had to go, " oh no, you can fuck right off ", Dan shouted at him, without a word and appearing a little wounded by the rebuff, Baz just shrugged, turned, and dissappeared back to his cubicle, leaving Dan to slip back into his floating experiences.
While Dan was being carried along on the comedown of his trip, the nurses had managed to get the phone number of Baz` parents, he lived on his own but they obviously weren`t too confident in him getting home without help in his present state, so there it was, Baz` old man, the cricket club chairman, called in the early hours of the morning by the hospital to come and collect his son, who, as they put it, " .....has been treated for a drugs overdose and needs to be taken home ". Dan they decided, was too far gone to bother moving, (plus his behaviour was keeping the staff amused), when Baz`s dad arrived to pick him up.
The first sight he was greeted with as he walked through the casualty ward was Dan, stood on his bed with a cardboard pisspot on his head, surfing. As if it were perfectly normal, Dan looked at him and smiled a mile wide grin, " alright Tom ", he beamed, " I might have known you`d be here ", came the stern reply from Baz`s singularly unimpressed old man. There was the club A.G.M in a couple of days time, and here he was, confronted by two of his committee members, out of their faces on drugs he knows nothing about, and they`re going to be sat alongside not just police, but the chief of bloody vice, he wasn`t prepared for this kind of scenario, in the world he`d been raised in, drug takers were low life delinquents, drop outs, losers and pop stars. Even if he`d had his suspicions, he`d prefer not to have to accept the fact that some perfectly normal people enjoy drugs on a recreational basis, obviously on the evidence he`d just witnessed, Baz and Dan didn`t exactly portray a rosy view, in his eyes of their particular drug taking community.
As Baz was being driven home, he still wasn`t sure whether Dan had died or not, " is Dan dead ? ", he kept asking his old man, in between reaching out to grasp imaginary stars from the windscreen, he was still spaced out, and without even realising it, pushing his dads tolerance, " he`s not dead and he`s not going to die ! ", he said, gritting his teeth with suppressed thoughts of " more`s the pity ", eagerly waiting to spring forth, not a genuine wish, more a sign of annoyance at being forced to face up to a different, and to him, disturbing reality. He couldn`t possibly have known that this was a time of awakening for Dan, his first taste of mind altering drugs, one of the more harrowing experiences of his life, and yet a truly eye opening experience, some people would have drawn the line after a trip like that, but Dan just saw it as a challenge, he didn`t like being beaten or not knowing, he`d have to further explore this new world he`d discovered, he`d come to a fork in his road of life and taken the turning with no guarantees.
A few hours had passed by as Dans mind returned to his present predicament, he knew he`d been there a long time but wasn`t sure how long, even though he was speeding and tripping his tits off, he dragged himself across to the wall tannoy and pressed the button in an effort to find out what was going on, " can someone tell me what`s happening ? ", he slurred as best he could, " I`ll be right down sir ", spoke the wall, the moment of truth was nearly upon him. As Dan heard the jangle of the cell keys, he tried to straighten himself up a bit, when the view hatch of the cell door slid open, he mustered all his concentration and asked how much longer they intended to keep him and Cassy for, the answer he got confirmed all his worst fears, " owing to the large amount of illegal substances found at your property, we`ve been empowered to detain you for further questioning ".
Dans mind was in turmoil, how the fuck had it all come to this, realising now that the worst case scenario was upon him, he told the copper he`d better have a brief, " ....and can you sort those fags out that I asked for earlier, you can take the money from my wallet to pay for them ", he needed a gasper like never before, " more coffee sir ? ", the copper politely asked, obviously happy to have the catch netted, " yes please ", Dan uttered, slightly obliviously, he was spiralling into fairyland again, this latest information acted as a full on trigger and as the copper went away, he could feel himself losing it but didn`t even try to fight it, after all, the reality of his situation was well worth escaping.
The coffee and fags took a while coming, and Dans thoughts were all over the place, thinking about his family and how to go about explaining that their supposedly straight laced son is also one of the more successful dope dealers in the town, or at least was, and now lays at the mercy of the judiciary, all because of a dodgy fucking brakelight. It just seemed too unbelievable, one wrong turning, one dodgy brakelight, and instead of going to a fishing lake to chill and smoke, they end up being the catch themselves. Dans world was at another turning point, and the options appeared to be narrowing, in his current drugs affected state, he couldn`t imagine fully what the penalty was likely to be, but he didn't expect it to be light.
Thinking to himself that his recent life as it had been, was about to be turned inside out, he started taking his clothes off and turning them inside out like some kind of bizarre symbolism, the sort of strange behaviour you might expect from someone tripping, but not necessarily when in police custody, add to that that it was colder than a witches tit, and imagine the look of surprise on the coppers face when Dans coffee and fags arrived, he was stood in the middle of the cell in his boxer shorts and socks, both inside out by now and the rest of his clothes in a pile on the floor, he just stared at the copper with the supplies as if it were perfectly normal, he wasn`t in much of a state to say too much, so he drifted across to the door to collect his delivery. Having got the fags, Dan pulled out half the packet and asked the copper to give them to Cassy and tell her he`s sorry, then picked up the coffee, got a light for his fag, and wobbled back to his clothes on the floor and proceeded to chainsmoke his way through the fags, while putting his clothes back on back to front, and necking yet more billy which he washed down with the coffee, the way he was thinking, how much worse could it get, if they`d found everything that he had at his house then he was fucked anyway. The irony of it was that he was doing more drugs while in police custody than he would have even considered if their journey had been uninterrupted.
Another half hour passed and Dan had caned all the fags and most of the whizz when he was called out to phone a duty brief, by now he looked and felt a right state, all his clothes on inside out and back to front, even his baseball cap was inside out and the wrong way round, looking like coco the clown he was led to a phone. The phone was on the wall in a small cubicle room with a bench alongside it, and the same decor as the cell, " if you`ll pick up the phone, I`ll read the number for the brief out to you ", the copper told Dan. As he reached for, then picked up the receiver, he could feel an overwhelming sensation running through him, that old 'phones and trips' business coming back, the copper was reading out the number but Dan couldn`t hear a thing, slowly and gently he slumped against the wall with the phone in his hand, and proceeded to dribble diagonally down it holding the phone out. The look on his face just said help, if their hadn`t been a bench there, he`d have collapsed to the floor, " what`s going on?, are you all right? ", the worried looking copper enquired.
Doing his best, Dan managed to summon up a few words to explain his problem, " phone,.....no good,.... fuckin` tripping ", he drawled, almost incoherently, the copper wasn`t ready for this, there in front of him was this weirdo, dressed inside out and by now, laid out on the bench holding the phone at arms length pleading for it to be taken from him.Taking the phone out of Dans hands, the copper again asked what the matter was, " do you need a doctor? ", he was clearly concerned at this turn of events, Dan was too scrambled to make much sense and could just about manage single word sentences, " tripping.......,phone.....,trigger ", at the same time he was hallucinating and couldn`t see too clearly, " brief,....... you.... dial ", he mumbled.
Having dialled the number and explained the situation to the brief, the copper passed the phone to Dan, who was sprawled out across the bench, he didn`t want to use it but he knew he better had, he needed legal advice badly, " hello?, Dan? ", " yeah, I`m here ", he replied, struggling to stay in control for a bit. As the copper looked on, Dan was both watching him and listening to the brief, " if the sergeant`s still there, then ask him to leave ", he was instructed, " he says......, you gotta go ", Dan dutifully slurred while pointing at the phone, as if to signify where the order came from, " has he gone yet ? ", asked the brief, wanting to be sure that Dan could speak safely, " yeeeaah...yeah he`sa gone, but ehhm,... listen, I`m tripping aaannd w..whizzin' off'v my chunk so errm... I..yer,.. dunno how long I`ll last on this phone " he drawled almost incoherently, " okay then, tell me quickly what the situation is ", Dan ran through the nights events as best he could to put him in the picture, when he finished, the brief asked him what the police were likely to have recovered at his house, " otherrr , ehhhmm, other than the fact I`ve got three mates lodging who'll've had, like,.... a rude awakening, if they`ve,... if they've done their job,.... then pre-,... probably up to 30 to 40 skunk plants in the garden plus another 20 to 30 babies growing in the conservatory, 7 ounces of resin and a quarter of whizz ", he matter of factly declared, " right Dan, don`t worry about your mates, their rooms wont have been searched, but you`re in danger of custodial with that little lot, so for the moment keep quiet until I can get there ".
As he hung up the receiver, Dan was grateful to be off the phone, it had worn him out concentrating for that amount of time. Once again he was led back to his cell, with nothing more to do than sit and wait to see how things develop, his head was spinning, as he laid down on the cushion, all kinds of erratic thoughts kept jumping in and leaving just as quickly, was he going away for this, how far back could they dig, had someone dropped him in it, the possibilities were endless and driving him mad thinking of them.
A brief encounter
When the brief arrived at the station, another half hour or so had passed, Dan didn`t look too clever when he first saw him, he was curled up in a corner of the cell and appeared a bit bewildered, as Dan looked up, he was glad to see it wasn`t some strange looking person, this bloke was dressed sharp and had a friendly face, things like that definitely matter when you`re tripping, after initial introductions, the brief got his note pad out and began trying to get what information he could from Dan regarding the affair in hand, half way through, it came to light that Cassy had said she didn`t want a solicitor, " yes she does ", Dan insisted, " can you represent her aswell ? ", mortified at the prospect of her faced by those twats with no legal assistance, " that shouldn`t be a problem Dan, it`s best I know all your details first though, it`ll help for when I see her ".
Once everything was clarified, they agreed it would be best if Dan said he`d given Cassy her puff because they could prove if it had come from his block of resin or not anyway, as it had done, and given the amount that would have been found at his place, it couldn`t make much difference, quite apart from that, Dan didn`t want Cassy involved in this shit anyway. Before he left the cell, the brief asked Dan if he`d like to see a doctor, " maybe he could give you something to calm you down ", he told him, " yeah, perhaps you`re right ", it didn`t seem like a bad idea, the prospect of more drugs to combat those in his system and a visitor to take up some of the time appealed to Dan.
Having finished with Dan for the time being, the brief informed the police that he`d been asked to represent Cassy, they weren`t happy about it but grudgingly agreed, a room was organised and she was brought along to meet him. Her first impression of him was a good one, good looking bloke with a kind face, this settled her for a while, until she found out that Dan had necked some trips and whizz, it made her feel sick again, she was so worried about him anyway without this on top of everything else. As he gave Cassy the information to date of what Dan had said, she was comforted to be having some kind of contact with him, albeit through a solicitor, he informed her of Dans intention to say he`d given her the puff she had been caught with, and that she should give the same story and no comment when questioned on anything else.
The next bombshell he dropped on her was the news that Dans place had been searched and that her mums house was about to be, a sinking feeling of panic swept through her, " oh my god no ! ", she let out, " this can`t be happening ", it all seemed too hard to believe that it had come to this, Cassy by nature was emotionally led, she cared deeply about those close to her, and the thought of being responsible in any way for bringing this kind of deal to her mums doorstep was a bit much for her. Having concluded their business for the time being, Cassy was returned to her cell, she had more to worry about now than before she met the brief, Dan had to be aware of an element of risk which came with the territory, but Cassy would never have envisaged a situation where her mums place would be turned over as a result of her smoking habit.
After a short while, she began banging away at the tannoy buzzer, trying to hassle the police to let her make a phone call, eventually a young officer came along and informed her that her mums place had been searched so she could make a call now, when she was making the call, the phone rang for quite a time before it was answered, which seemed strange as the police would have woken her for the search, eventually her mum picked up the phone, the officer was stood close by so the conversation was a little muted, " hello mum, I`m so, so sorry ", a slightly confused voice replied, " hello ?, is that you Cassy ?, where are you ? ", then it dawned on Cassy, " haven`t the police been around ? ", " no !, where are you ?, what`s going on ? ", as briefly as she could, Cassy relayed the story to her stunned mum, " oh my god, is there anything in the house ? ", the acutely concerned mother enquired, " yes ", Cassy said, feeling embarassed as she said it, " christ !, where is it ? ", Cassy told her where to find it and her mum assured her she`d sort it out, then in an emotional end to their conversation, they swore each others love and Cassy passed the phone back to the officer before being taken back and locked up again.
As Cassys` mum had just flushed the herb down the toilet, the police had arrived and were knocking at the door, someone had cocked up nicely on her behalf, other than a packet of prescription homeopathic tablets, which the morons took away thinking them to be ecstacy pills, they had a fruitless visit. As it transpired later, Cassys` place was the first place the police searched, so when Dan had been told that he was being detained further as a result of their findings at his place, that wasn`t in fact the case, something was amiss.
Although there was no joy for them at Cassys` place, the visit to Dans was about to make up for it, at 7 a.m they let themselves in to his house using his own keys which they`d taken from his belongings. Dan had three mates that rented rooms at his place, they were all herb smokers too, virtually everyone that passed through the house was. Phil, Kev, and Tom had all been perfectly aware of the potential risk involved in staying at Dans, but it had been safe for years and everyone knew the score about keeping mum, apart from that, if you weren`t a mate of Dans, you wouldn`t get through the door anyway, so what better place to live, no need to go anywhere for your herb, all your mates constantly coming round for theirs, and plenty of high times along the way.
What the fuck!?
Phil, a builder, would have been Dans choice to meet the coppers first, builders not generally being overly bothered with niceties, he was not to be disappointed, having gained entrance already using Dans own keys, the first door the coppers were faced with was Phils, it`s hard to say who would have been the most shocked as they pushed open his door and shone the torchlight at his face, Phil just presumed it was Jambo fucking about, back from his trip, " fuck off you cunt ! ", he screamed with violent intent, " it`s the police sir ", spouted a visibly shaken copper, " we`d like you to be a witness to a search of the house ", Phil couldn`t work out exactly what was going on but he wasn`t happy, " get that fucking light out of my face ".
Like Dan, or any other herb smoker, Phil didn`t go much on coppers, so politeness would not be wasted on them, he was a little disturbed to note when the lights were turned on, that they were wearing bulletproof jackets, " what the fuck`s going on ? ", he demanded. Having explained Dans misfortune, and waking up Kev and Tom, Phil was left to get changed before bearing witness to the search of the house. Room by room they went through the house turning out cupboards, draws, boxes, bags and anything else that they considered capable of stashing drugs in, of the bedrooms, only Dans was searched, the others not being suspects, first find was the weighing scales which Dan kept in a kitchen unit, as the search continued, it became obvious that the suspicions were justified, Dans bedroom yielded a tidy hall of cannabis resin and a small amount of whizz, the real find was to come when they got to the conservatory and garden.
Dan had proven to have extremely green fingers, his conservatory was busting to the limit with new skunk plants on the go, while the garden just heaved with the remains of what had been fully developed female plants. Back in the height of summer, the smell of the skunk could be smelt throughout the house as the soft summer breeze would gently waft its aroma in through the windows, better than any pot-pourri ever offered. As the extent of the haul became apparent, more police were summoned to assist in the gathering of evidence, fairly soon the place was swarming with them, Phil continued to witness their search, while Kev and Tom looked on pretty much in a state of shock and saying nothing, wondering what the fuck had happened. The whole episode lasted about an hour before the coppers eventually left, armed with the confiscated contraband, all neatly wrapped, sealed and labelled in plastic evidence bags. As they pulled away, eagerly watched by the lads through Kevs bedroom window, the three of them swapped glances, " skin up " they said almost simultaneously, if ever they needed a joint it was now.
Dan had pretty much accepted by now that his fate, for the moment at least, was out of his hands, the drugs were still carrying him along and worrying wouldn`t make any difference to the outcome, one of his pastimes was poetry, especially when high or on comedowns, a talent (if it could be called that) he only realised he had after his nightmare mushroom trip. He kept himself amused composing vindictive anti authority lyrics, nothing awe inspiring just a form of release, later his mates would remark that some of his stuff should be written in blood as it had so much spite and venom in it, but that was Dan all over, if he felt about anything he`d feel it passionately, whichever direction it went, and he always despised anyone exerting any control over him.
Who are you to say to me
What I should say or toke
When half you fuckin' hypocrites
Get high on busted smoke
You fuckin' scum you live your life
Fuckin' others up
You live a fuckin' shit stained life
But drink from the same cup
Because you wear a uniform
You think your shit don't smell
But that's just your illusion
And we know it fuckin' well
While he mused over his poisoned poetry, there was a rap at his cell door, the doctor had arrived, Dan had given no thought to the doctor, or how his appearrance may affect him, this proved to be a stark contrast to his sharp looking brief, there before him stood at least 22 stone of a dishevelled, sweating mass, he was not a pretty sight, on top of that he looked as nervous as a kitten in a dog pound, Dan detected this immediately, despite his drug affected condition, " are you all right ", he politely enquired, rather paradoxically, " you seem a bit bothered ", it had often been commented on that Dan had an unnerving appearance to some people, even more so when on chemicals, his eyes, he`d be told, looked wild, not something which he readily understood, but he`d been told it too many times to dismiss it out of hand.
As the obese doctor shuffled around uncomfortably like an unwilling lion tamer, Dan removed himself in to the corner of the cell and sat down with his hands under his legs, trying to look as unthreatening as possible, " is that better ? ", he asked, not particularly wishing to be responsible for the doctors discomfort, " don`t concern yourself over me ", the doctor offered, not very convincingly, " now what seems to be the problem ? ", by now Dan was pretty much at the stage where everything was cool again, he was almost enjoying himself, " I`m all right actually, I just lost it earlier because I had to use a phone ", he explained, " what do you think caused that then ? ", asked the curious medicine man, " probably something to do with the two trips and rakes of whizz I`ve necked ", Dan answered curtly, the next comment from the doctor, Dan found hard to believe, " I`ve no experience of L.S.D, how does it affect you ? ".
Looking up unbelievably, Dan wondered how serious the question could be, was he taking the piss or what, could a practitioner with an education in medicine really not be aware of hallucinagenics, Dan focused on him for a moment dubiously, but gave an answer anyway, he described some of the usual effects briefly, all the time studiously monitoring the captivated doctors responses. Having listened to Dans description of the sensations he was in the grip of, he then prescribed him some diazepam to calm him down and took his leave, not knowing how long the police would hold him for, Dan decided to save his prescription til later, he was still under the effects of his own drugs for the moment anyway.
With that bit of entertainment finished, Dan was once more left alone to reflect on his situation, it couldn`t be too much longer before he`d be hauled back in for interview if they had all of his gear from the house, just a case of holding his hands up and waiting to see what happens next, he just wanted out of there, he was getting bored of hanging around, drugs can overcome tedium to an extent, but sooner or later they wear off and then you feel like shit, more so after tripping, that dirty, grubby can`t get clean feeling which all tripheads know about, with a tired shrug and sigh, Dan slumped back to his thoughts and hoped for a 'speedy' climax to the current proceedings.
The embodiment of paradoxical paranoid self hatred and extreme denial, looks for the good or even, only sees the good in others, yet often hates so much about himself. Occasionally likes certain aspects of himself but very rarely and then not for long, and when he's on one of his many downward spirals he has so many different self destruct buttons that he gets a headache trying to beat himself up. No one could ever diss him as well as he does it to himself. In company though, whether they're friends or total strangers, he's a social whirlwind, happy & lively with a coat hanger grin. A social virus, he's highly contageous and difficult to ignore, like him or not and most do, he's an all or nothing master of the extremes that wants to do everything well but only ever remembers his worst moments, mentally deconstucting and ripping himself to bits, occasionally in public & almost always in private.Whatever he lets on,-what his shortcomings are, to whoever, which he does embarassingly well when hammered, in his mind he has a list twenty times as long which he taunts himself with. He's long since been in search of what he wants out of life, unfortunately he hasn't a clue what that might be or how to find out. Constantly rearranging his life, reshaping his surroundings trying to find something, as if there were a formula out there for happiness or contentment at least, but the 'monsters from the it' lurk at every corner of his mind, continuously looking for the weak points in the wall and then tearing it down brick by brick until the barren wide open spaces are left exposed and beckoning, or even worse the sea of confusion with oceans of choice but no guide to which is the best direction to go. Now and again through drugs or booze, he reaches out like a drowning child bemused and frightened extending an arm for the never coming lifebelt to bring him to safe haven. He's experienced all the things that society instructs us make life complete,- the long term relationship, success at work, social acceptability, personal achievements & property, only to find that any of these things are fragile and offer only temporary relief from the potential world of shit. Trouble is, he fits in to this world with sublime ease when he feels like it, he just doesn't feel like it that often, hardly at all in fact any more because he no longer believes in it & it's rules of conformity. Having tried tasted, disliked and spat out this mainstream existence, other avenues had to be sought out, different lifestyles, societies allegedly unacceptable face where institutional law becomes the enemy and society itself is some growling wolf slavering and flashing it's canine teeth at any that would upset it's middle class propriety with it's aspiring elitist ambitions. Dan's a very mixed up kid wearing the body of an adult and surviving in a world he understands perfectly but doesn't understand at all. This is the way he thinks in the clear light of day, but tripping,-step aside Freud
At around 11.30 a.m, the duty brief came back to see Dan and explain that Cassy was about to go for her second interview, she would tell them she had been given her puff by Dan, as they had discussed earlier, and no comment to any other questions, Dan was to be interviewed afterwards, " I`ve got to tell you mate, I`ve seen what they`ve turned up from your place and they`ll be pressing for intent to supply ", this didn`t come as a particular surprise to Dan, " well it`s up to them to prove it isn`t it, I`ll be telling them it`s for personal use and I couldn`t give a shit what they think ! ", that was Dans only card in the situation, he really didn`t give a shit about the police or what they thought, as far as he was concerned, anyone that actively sought employment in a job that tries to have control over others, must be a power freak, probably bullied at school and seeking revenge on normal people, or was a bully at school and wanted to stay in the profession, either way, not the sort of people that would ever inspire anything other than loathing in him, he despised authority and they represented it, born to be enemies.
Looking a little concerned at Dans reactionary attitude, the brief hoped he`d keep his hostility bottled up during interview, things were bad enough already. Dan was no fool though, he`d know what to say and what not to say when the time came. He was left to wait just a little while longer, as the brief went off to take Cassy through her interview, true to plan she told them Dan had given her the puff then no comment to eveything else. The interview was a short one and afterwards she was led back to the cell until her mum arrived to pick her up, where upon she signed release forms and was bailed to reappear at a later date, being a close and openly emotional family tears were shed by both of them.
Dans time had arrived, he was curious about what was to come but not nervous, he was also glad things were finally moving along, that bloody sword of Damacles had well and truly fallen and must be stuck firmly in his head by now, the cell door opened and Dan stood up, not in the least bit self conscious about having all of his clothes on inside out, he may have looked an odd sight but he didn`t much care, with his brief alongside, he was led to the interview room. As he walked in, he glanced around and was surprised by the amount of space the evidence was taking up, " is that all mine ", he wondered, almost cheekily proud. With Dan, his brief and the two arresting officers sat around the interview table, they again read him his rights, explained the procedure regarding the tape recorder, and began.
Introductions first, followed by a summary of the nights events, and then producing a bag at a time, Dan was asked to confirm or deny whether or not the evidence contained in the bags was his, he wasn`t bothered too much, he`d often wondered about this moment, and now it was here he didn`t seem to mind. Once again it was the fat copper that handled the questioning, as before, as Dan surveyed each item and confirmed it to be his, they would ask him particularly dumb questions to accompany each admission, " did you intend to smoke this ? ", ( the cannabis ), " is this cocaine ? ", ( the speed ), then came the scales, " what do you use these for ? ", " weighing things, what do you think ", Dan answered sarcastically, " but they`re not mine anyway, they were left by a mate of mine ", he added, perfectly honestly, they were in fact left by Dans mate and former lodger Reaper, who had played no small part in Dans development in the drug scene, something he had always been grateful for.
It took nearly an hour to go through all the evidence bag by bag, then, having established ownership, they moved on to the bit Dan had been expecting to come, " will you tell us where your supplies come from ? " regarding the resin and speed, " no ", replied Dan bluntly, he was amazed that they left it at that, could it be that easy. With the admissions out of the way, the fat copper proceeded to try and convince Dan that it was obvious that he was dealing so he may as well admit it, " you`ve already admitted giving Cassy her cannabis, that`s supply in itself ", " giving something away isn`t dealing ", retorted Dan, " it is in my opinion ", answered back the annoying fat copper, " yeah, that`s just it, your opinion, not mine ", Dan liked a good argument, this line of approach wouldn`t bother him.
As the interview continued, the fat copper tried to put pressure on Dan to admit intent to supply by intimidating him with threats about how bad it would go down if he refused to admit and was subsequently found guilty anyway, this avenue failed too, Dan was resigned to his fate, whatever it may be, " whatever happens to me, so be it, I`ve held my hands up to possession and that`s the end of it, it`s my problem, I`ll deal with it, and on my own ". Throughout the interview, Dans brief furiously jotted down notes whilst casting occasional worried glances at Dan when it seemed as though he may lose his rag, which wouldn`t exactly help his cause, he was no hardened criminal and had little experience of police interview tactics, he knew well enough not to get dragged in to a row though.
Dans philosophy on drugs was simple, there`s nothing wrong with them, never talk anyone into doing them, and everyone should take responsibility for themselves if they make the choice, if anyone`s that weak that they can`t control their habit, then it`s the person and not the drug that`s the problem, if drugs weren`t their problem then alcohol probably would be. With this philosophy in mind, Dan felt no guilt or remorse because he had complete faith in that belief, at the same time he had no qualms about dealing, ( not that he`d let his interrogators know that ). Everyone that bought puff from him, and the numbers were substantial, was already an established smoker, he just provided a safer environment than his friends were used to elsewhere, as a result a very tight knit dope smoking community evolved from his house, and such was the popularity of this safe smoking haven that it remained a closely guarded fact amongst everyone involved so as not to spoil the situation. Fortunately Dans neighbours being in their dotage meant their faculties weren't what they might have been so they didn't notice that people were arriving with clear eyes but leaving caned and bloodshot to bits, what they did notice was how polite all the visitors appeared to be. Not like living next to a pub.
Looking at Dan, the fat copper reclined in his chair, holding his chins in his hand while he studied his prey, there was far too much puff for him not to be dealing and yet he`d owned up to everything except that, " you are obviously dealing ", he told Dan, and sat staring as if expecting a reply, Dan left it a while before he bothered to make a comment, " are you waiting for me to say something ? ", he asked, " do you think you should then ? ", came straight back from the smug faced question master, " not at all ", Dan replied defiantly, " but I could tell by the look on your face ", more silence followed with yet more eyeballing between the two, Dan could hardly believe what was going on, it was almost childish, surely they couldn`t be unaware he`d taken trips, the duty sergeant had witnessed the messy phone scene and a doctor had been called as a result, both of whom he`d informed that he was tripping, given that information, he thought they`d have known better than to try and stare him out, quite apart from that, it would be hard to ignore the fact that Dans eyes had pupils like saucers, what kind of coppers were they if they couldn`t recognise a giveaway like that, or maybe it suited them not to notice.
Once all the avenues of questioning had been exhausted, the interview was terminated and Dan was taken back to his cell for one last time while the coppers and his brief had an off the record chat, while this went on, he decided it would be a good time to neck the diazepam he`d been prescribed, it seemed ironic that he`d been nicked for a drugs related offence, and yet while under their supervision, he was allowed a drug he`d never done before, which gets sold on the street as much as most illegal substances. Dan knew full well what the so called, off the record chat would be about, the only thing left was where the resin had come from, and as far as he was concerned the issue wasn`t up for debate, dope dealers are a community service, you don`t give them up, simple.
Sure enough the brief came back to his cell and relayed the message, but he also had to make it clear that they weren`t actually allowed to officially ask him to name anyone, so they tried to get around that by asking via a third party, not that it made any difference, Dan had no intention of helping them in any way to incriminate anybody else. He was informed that he was going to be bailed to reappear back at the station at a later date, allowing time for analysis of the substances removed from his house, for the moment he was being bailed without charge. Other than some forms to fill in Dan was free to leave, the relief evident on his face, he`d been kept for just over twelve hours tripping and whizzing his tits off while in custody and he was worn out.
Handing back Dans belongings, which he also had to sign for, he was given a date to return, ten weeks on, and told a letter would follow to confirm the time and date officially. In a bewildered state, he signed the various forms placed before him, not even bothering to look at them. The fat copper that arrested Dan was satisfied he`d got his prey and was now trying to be mister nice guy, asking him if he`d like the number of a drugs rehab centre. Not wishing to prolong his stay any longer, Dan eyed the patronising adversary, wondering how much it took to get it through their thick heads that dope isn`t a problem in the eyes of the people that smoke it, but he couldn`t be bothered to get in to a row and ignored the question.
Leaving the station, he began to feel a bit daft, the drugs had pretty much worn off and it was about 2-o` clock on the sunday afternoon, he had to find somewhere to change his clothes back to the right way round, a pub car park across from the police station provided sufficient cover without drawing attention. Asking directions, Dan made his way to the local railway station where he got a taxi, he wasn`t entirely certain where his van was but he had a vague idea and pointed the driver in the general direction, after a brief search of the area they found it as it had been left, but with no Jambo in sight, he paid off the driver and looked over the van for clues as to where he`d be, he wasn`t even sure what he might say to him anyway.
Jambo had woken up earlier, a hot sweating mess, with sunday afternoon village folk wandering past the van and peering in. Waiting until the coast was clear, he'd trotted off to find a phone box, something he might have given thought to about 12 hours earlier, the only answer he could get was from Dovsky, another member of their crowd, " alright Dovsky, have you heard anything about what`s happened to Dan ? ", he asked him, " no mate, why what`s going on ? ", word had not reached him yet, " Dan got pulled last night in his van,they found his and Cassys drugs and took them away, I think he`s been done for drink driving ", it`s hard to believe how he could have come to that conclusion, given the situation he'd been a witness to, but he did and that was that. Having put Dovsky in the picture as best he could, he wandered back to the van and around and about, waiting for Dan to return, Dovsky was back on the phone as soon as he`d finished talking to Jambo, trying to find out what might have happened to Dan, before long, phones were ringing all around town as the bush telegraph went into action, when Dan returned home, everyone would already know of his bust.
Returning to the van again, Jambo was greeted by a sharp whistle, he looked up and spotted Dan walking towards him, as they approached each other, Dan spoke first, " you wont believe what`s happened to me, I`ve just had my life turned upside down ", that said, he was massively relieved to be out of his short term captivity, and on the way back he explained the whole story to an entranced Jambo, who in turn, grumbled about the crap night he`d endured in the van, Dan resisted the urge to have a pop about the telephone issue and whether he'd have preferred a cell instead, it was too late now, it had happened. Driving home, he wondered what exactly lay ahead for him, the word custodial ringing loudly in his head, how had it come that after all the care he took with his business, he`d finally been turned over by out of town coppers that just got lucky, they pulled him over a minor problem and sniffed around because they had nothing better to occupy themselves, and to make it worse in Dans mind, he`d actually changed direction to end up going past the bastards.
In the weeks that followed, everyone rallied around for Dan, they knew things would never be the same again, the coolest herb dealing environment in the area had gone up shit creek, and it was time to be cautious, his mates that he had been supplying, now supplied him, making sure that he didn`t have to run any unnecessary risks while possibly being under the watchful eye of the constabulary who'd followed him home from the pub on a number of occasions since. Driving alongside at walking pace with a spotlight on him, he'd ignore them until they`d stop him to give him the old " where you from, where`ve you been, where you going " routine, then he`d make towards them and ask for a lift seeing as they`re all going the same way, this would inspire a sense of humour failure and they`d fuck off.
One by one, Dan, with the help of a few of his closer mates, steered all of his punters on to another trustworthy, and very grateful, supply line, his original dealer in fact. It meant a bit of travelling, but kept everyone in gear and it made Dan happy to know that for all the police efforts, they hadn`t made any difference to the overall situation. If anything, they were directly responsible for a whole new crop of dealers springing up to take Dans place, and for every dealer they bust, another one will always step in, supply and demand, feed the need.
The initial reaction from their community had been almost like a death had occurred, but not for long and as time passed, Dans mates kept positive about the possible outcome. He`d never been caught for a drug related offence before, and the feeling was, if there were any real justice in this life then things shouldn`t be too severe.There were a couple of drama queens that felt obliged to point out the worst case scenario, but Dan knew them well enough to expect their reaction before it came and duly ignored them, not because he didn`t agree with them, if anything, deep down he expected the worst, but why be a doom merchant before sentence has been served, the waiting game commenced.
Shithead for tea.
" I saw that you dodgy cunt! ", Poly had been spotted again, " what ?, I `aint done nothin` man ", the grin on his round blushed face had already given him away, dimples deepening as the grin widened. " You checkin` my hand out you sketchy fuckpig ? ", Guzzi chipped in, at the same time using his height advantage and stretching his long thin neck to clock a view of Polys cards, these two sat together`s a nightmare, can`t even help themselves doing it, second nature like. Big issue though, shithead for tea.
Although Dan had ceased trading, his place continued to be the focal meeting venue for cards and smoke sessions, shithead on thursday nights being the main event of the week, a ritual which originated as a mobile bong sesh for Billy the Bird-dog, Guzzi,Cops, Tommo, Zak and P-dog some seven years earlier when they were fledgling drug abusers. They`d take off, all crammed into Tommos jag, and `bong on` in varying locations around the area, usually out of the way car parks, or up on the Sussex downs, the downs being the most popular in the summer, and always in the company of other smoke filled cars with glazy, bloodshot eyed occupants, occasionally the police would cruise past causing the furious winding down of windows and expulsion of drugs and bong water, they obviously know the effect they have because they hardly ever fuckin` well stop and search. In time, the ritual progressed to Milks place, with Reaper being the connection, mate of virtually the entire dope smoking community.
With the benefit of a roof overhead and relative comfort, cards were introduced to the gameplan, shithead to be precise, and the tradition had begun. Shortly after Reaper moved in at Dans place some years later, Milk moved out of his and the natural transition of venues occurred, cards nights and smoke sessions combining to play no small part in Dans evolution into dealership. Most card games are played out to determine a winner, not shithead, it teaches you to be devious and cunning in the art of stitching up your opponents, the object being to seek out an outright loser who is then bestowed the title of the aforementioned Shithead. There`s no glory to be had, just the pleasure of watching others fail, children that enjoyed tormenting and inflicting pain on insects or small animals would make good players in later life, a sadistic streak being common among devotees of the game.
" You aint fuckin` stitchin` me up again Dan ", Cops was forlorn, he always makes the mistake of being the one to suggest shithead for tea, generally followed by Dan saying " cheers Cops, white, no sugar ", from there a kind of unspoken conspiracy goes into action, of which Cops always ends up as the scapegoat. " How do you manage every bastard time ! ", as the game unfolds and it becomes clear that the prediction is coming true once again, Cops is resigned to his fate.
" Nice tea Cops ", " fuck off Dan ".
Dans place looks like a student house, all furniture donated, raggy old couches, rugs and assorted foot stools, surrounded by unwashed mugs, plates and pint glasses, with half full ashtrays interspersed, it did nonetheless have a homely feel to it, and with three couches and two armchairs, as Dan often boasted, " comfortable seating for 13, or luxury class for 11 in the smoking cabin ". Thursday night escapes to Dans for shithead were always a good time to catch up on everyone elses escapades and relay any new jokes. Although they were all associated through smoking herb, Dans mates came from all sorts of different social networks and work environments, the stories were therefore highly varied, and the jokes generally of the sick variety.
During the swapping of stories and jokes, joint rolling and bong mix mulling, shithead would be played and Dans fun could begin, he knew all the tricks for stitching up the others, but he had far more fun watching the cheats, Guzzi and Poly with their swan necking and hiding cards down the seat cushions would always be the main culprits, not that it ever makes any difference to the outcome. Poly puts his blind cards on the floor and then tries to flip them up with his feet to see what he`s got, always believing nobody noticed, the fact was that Dan got more amusement from spying these two cheating than he ever did playing the game. The only time shithead becomes remotely serious is when it`s for tea, when you`ve got thirteen players in the game you don`t want to be the shithead that brews for them, more joints get rolled in a shithead for tea game than at any other time, as one by one they get rid of their last cards and escape, a fresh doob gets assembled out of relief.
As a dealer, cards night had always been Dans busiest time of the week, everyone knew he`d be in for sure, and that meant it was a guaranteed scoring night, his supplies were almost never affected by the herb droughts, if anything, when there was a drought, Dans business went through the roof. He`d always get home early thursdays so he had time to get loads of pre-weighed deals ready, he earnt more in that evening than he was getting in a week on the buildings, and he was dealing there too after a while, he`d come a long way since Reaper got him started, and lived a high life on the profits, and to anyone else living there, no short amount of free herb.
After ten weeks of stewing over the possible outcomes, Dan and Cassy were summoned seperately back to the police station to find out what their fate would be. Cassy, who went first, had a fair idea she was going to be cautioned, Dan was expecting to be charged, but he didn`t know what with, would it be supply, intent to supply, or the outside bet of possession. Cassy turned up with her mum, who insisted on being present at every stage of the proceedings, much to the discomfort and annoyance of the fat copper that had nicked them in the first place. " I'm coming too " she said as each time he'd lead Cassy off, hoping to shake off his irritant, he'd glance behind and there'd be her mum too. She'd already reported the fat weasel to her chief superintendant for what she described as 'the outrageous treatment' of her daughter, Cassy loved it, she could see he wasn't happy, " shouldn't do such a lowlife fucking job, suffer arsehole " she thought to herself. After all the ritual bullshit she got her caution as expected, followed by fingerprints and photos for the files.
Dans situation wasn`t so cut and dried, he`d been put in touch with a brief that specialised in drug related offences. When they turned up at the station, Dan was told to wait outside while the police spoke to his brief alone, after a half hour wait they came out and Dan was bailed for another ten weeks. Apparently still waiting for analysis of the substances removed from his house, and still without charge. Taking Dan out of earshot of the station, his brief explained, " I don`t know exactly what`s going on here, they're talking cautions,but with what he's told me they`ve got on you, and they're talking about cocaine too, I can't see why they haven't banged you up already ". Raising an eyebrow, Dan looked at him as if to question whose side he was on, this wasn't what he wanted to be hearing and he didn't believe any caution bullshit, " what!, I didn't have any fuckin' charlie, I've had some good deals in my time but dealers aint charities and they don't give you charlie for the price of speed, maybe the other way round if they think they'll get away with it, fuckin' cunts are trying to stitch me up and that caution shit's just one more fuckin' lie from that fat twat, he told me they were taking me back to the station to caution me the night I got nicked, I only had about six quids worth of herb and whizz and from that the jammy fuckwit made a lucky bleedin' guess and it paid off, although what they're doing with Cassy's homeopathic pills I'd love to know, that just about sums the dopey twats up". Something stunk, " he told me they`re hoping you might drop them some names but they can't ask you, it has to be volunteered ", Dan belly laughed " yeah that's a fuckin' good one, not in this lifetime ". There wasn't much more to say after that, making a note of the time and date of return, they went their seperate ways, Dan was fairly pissed off, he didn`t particularly want to get put away, but he`d rather have things sorted out than all this waiting, and now on top of it all it looked like they might be trying to fit him up for charlie he never had.
When Dan got home the phone had already started to melt, everyone was checking to see if he'd returned, been banged up, charged or whatever. " No way man, charlie?, fucking sketchy cunts, still, least they didn't bang you up there and then, ..... beer? ", " fuckin' too right Mon, see you up the Nag yeah? ", he'd repeated the story ad nauseam since he got back and the suggestion of a slurp was all he needed. Mon was part of Dans 'inner circle' of smoking mates and his main competitor at pool in the Nag, he looked like Jesus would if he'd been dressed in a surf shop, Quicksilver, Billabong and Vans trademarks emblazoned across his duds. With a spliff for the walk, Dan set off for the Nag and a few Guinno's. He wasn't gonna remember this night.
Jambo loves his food, and getting up Tesco's is one of his little treats, unlike Dan who couldn't be arsed with either, but nonetheless relents occasionally and even then wants to be finished before he's begun, bit like his sex life would have been if he had one. But shopping with Jambo's an experience in itself (or a nightmare depending on your viewpoint), everything in life has to be made to entertain him, and Dan loved to see him in action. Even the drive there would be amusing, swearing at the other drivers, hooting at the skirts and his beloved Prodigy booming out of the stereo of his delivery van. Inside this mega shop Jambo's in paradise, not just because of the potential feasts but also the boundless opportunities he could see to keep himself amused. Billy the bird dog was with them too, he got his name because of the amount of times they'd go out and he'd play the shy fucked up bastard routine and come away with a different girl, not always a pageant queen mind but he wouldn't be without for long.
" Fuckin' 'ell Jambo, this place is like an airport lounge ", " yeah great innit, and a Mac Donalds to walk past before you even get in ", " corporate bleedin' con trick so parents get dragged in by their kids for a fucking Disney burger " Billy added, " fuckin' shit looks nothin' like the pictures of 'em, and man, those fuckin' gerkins, sheeyite! ", Dan couln't stand the things. Soon as they're in Jambo shoots off on his own, " there he goes Billy boy, wonder what he's gonna get up to this time ", " why's that ", Billy looked at Dan confused, " you'll see, it'll be funny though, I promise you ". Dan and Billy didn't do so bad themselves, Dan was picking up food and eating it as he went round and putting it back somewhere else half eaten, Billy always put his shaving stick head replacements in his egg box, " fucking right man, they charge seven quid for these things ", as Dan looked at him, laughing, " that pork pie was shit, I should've taken one of the expensive ones " as he put the half eaten remains on another shelf.
At the checkout they met up with Jambo, he looked excited, " what've you done this time? " Dan looked forward to hearing, " see the old boy at number 9 checkout ? ", they all looked down the line and there was this confused old pensioner looking all mystified and embarrassed as he denied all knowledge of the Anusol haemorroid cream in his basket. " You're mad boy ", Billy chuckled out, Jambo's eyes were darting around, searching, " wait until you see the old biddy with the condoms ", " I really do worry about you sometimes ", Dan told him. Shopping doesn't have to be a dull experience.
The night before Dans trip back to the police station, some of his D.J mates had booked up The Escape, one of Brightons more banging clubs for a birthday gig, and he figured he may as well have a proper night out if it was going to be his last for a while. " There you go boy ", " cheers Pops ",Dan smiled as he looked down at his hand and then back at Popeye, a handshake's a friendly enough gesture as it is, but when the hand you're shaking slips a smile smarty and a wrap of charlie into yours, well.... . He hadn't intended doing any drugs on this patricular night, but " fuck it " he thought, a few of the lads had got together on his behalf and he wasn't going to disappoint them. Drink after drink found its way down Dans throat courtesy of his ex clientelle, " don't worry mate it'll be cool ", " we'll come visit ", " it's easy to get herb inside ", and other well meant comments made to him through the night, all delivered and met with cheery dispositions induced by drugs, alcohol and quality mixing on the decks.
On the road up in the morning Dan was still running the night before through his mind, it had been shit hot, banging tunes, sound mates, quality drugs and a decent amount of booze on top, no hangover either, double bonus. Expecting the worst, he'd given thought to where he might be sent and whether it'd be an open prison for his first offence, or the first one he'd been caught for at least. Maybe he could do a course inside, take up writing perhaps. The drugs were still swimming around his in his bloodstream which accounted for his easy attitude to the situation, and it amused him that he was destined always to meet his fat antagonist when either up or down on some drug or other.
Trying not to smile in the station Dan was brought down to earth straight away when informed that his solicitor couldn't be there owing to a mix up, " you're fuckin' joking, I don't believe this ", his previous confidence immediately drained from his body. What they told him next he could hardly take in, " we've decided to let you go with a caution this time around as you have no previous ". Dan was stunned, " what's the catch " he thought to himself, he hadn't trusted this bloke from the unfortunate time he'd first met him but he couldn't speak for a moment or two, there really had to be something going on here. " We need you to sign a caution sheet, and then fingerprints and photos ", Dans head was spinning, how the fuck could this be happening, no court appearance, no sentence, no fine, nothing at all, this was fucking mad. " I want to phone my brief ", he needed to check this was koshe. " Yeah that's right just a caution, can this be for real? ", " sounds like you've been very lucky but I can't be sure why so sign that caution sheet and get yourself out of there, and you know what to do after that don't you ", " oh yes!, off to the pub and get completely fuckin' wankered thanks very much ", " you got it Dan, and just try and keep your nose clean for a while ", " no probs, cheers mate ".
After a short wait Dan had the caution sheet laid out on the station desk for him to sign, in front of him stood the desk sergeant and the fat copper that had nicked him. After informing him officially of the situation, they asked the bewildered Dan to sign the sheet as proof of recognition. Still not able to believe it all, Dan began to read through the document and his eyes stopped dead when he spotted the word HEROIN, he looked up at the coppers then back at this word, which seemed to be getting bigger. " What's this about Heroin?, I've never been near Heroin in my life! ", " don't worry, it's just a term for the form ", Dan could detect his unease, something distinctly dodge was going on here and he knew it, but he also knew he was getting away with murder. " You're not trying to tell me you put speed and dope under the same category as Heroin ", " yes that's right ", Dan definitely didn't believe them but he wanted out of there and sharpish. Signing the sheet he made a mental note to contact his brief later, he was already putting a fairly reasonable picture together of exactly why he was getting away with a caution now. Thoughts of evidence mix ups or even loss running through his head, he began to feel his confidence rising, " if they've cocked up then this fat cunt's for the fuckin' high jump ", he thought to himself smugly. Maybe Dan deserved a little tug purely for the amount of time he'd been involved in the business, but even though he was having the result of the century he knew something was being swept under a large carpet in the guise of his caution sheet, the old bill were resorting to a bit of internal corruption to cover their own fuck ups.
As he was being led around the station for dabs and mugshots, Dan kept his eye fixed firmly on this by now toothless (in Dans mind) antagonist, at the same time thinking what shit the twat might be in for for fucking up what should have been a straightforward case after all, he could have been had up for any number of different offences and yet got away with the lot. At the end of it he even had the cheek to ask Dan if there was anything he wanted to do for them, he knew full well what was meant by that. " Fuck off " was his initial thought, but then it occurred to him that he could have some fun of his own here and waste their time into the bargain, " O.K then ", he gave them something they wanted to hear, tell these idiots he knew a coke dealer, (Coca Cola delivery driver actually), and watch the twats eyes pop out at the thought of a real bust. Dan didn't really expect anything to come of it, he just did it to amuse himself but if they went for it then that'd be a double bonus, and after all they'd fucked up pretty spectacularly in his case so why not.
On the way back from the station Dan banged on a tape Billy boy had made up for him, as he joined up with the M23 heading back to Brighton, the words "I'm freeeeee-- to do what I want to doooo" from 'Ultranate' belted out of the speakers and a big rosy grin hit his boat race.
If Dan discovered anything from his experiences, it was that he could explain his thoughts through words, stuff we all think on occasions but can't be arsed to talk about. Whether you call it poetry, rhymes, odes or otherwise didn't matter to Dan just as long as it was understood. For himself he'd just refer to it as 'stuff' that he wrote. Now here he was on the threshold of a whole new experience, performance of his work for an audience,-- would they like it ?, understand it ?, want more ?. Who could know, but that's what it's all about, no guarantees, bit of risk, open yourself up and see what happens, after all, Dan's a naturally lucky bloke most of the time, would you bet against him ?.