Judging by the crumpled plastic bag sat between Mike’s tatty old boots I’d say he’s been to Safeways to get his lunch.
Probably a baguette and some brie knowing him.
Anyway, we’re both sat outside on a wall in the quadrangle of grass and cement plonked in the centre of the college building. I skip lunch for a can of coke and three or four cigarettes instead.
Mike’s inevitable brie and baguette remains hidden in the flapping plastic bag.
‘Lunch?’ I ask him, nodding to the bag.
‘Hmmm.’ He eyes his purchases like he’s deciding whether to laugh or scream.
‘You alright there?’ I ask.
He’s miles away.
Then he tells me about it.
He was walking towards the car park at the rear entrance of the supermarket. He saw something like deep scarlet paint collected in a large pothole near some white Transit vans. Then he heard a siren whooping up behind him. The ambulance pulled into the car park and its luminous occupants sprang out.
‘You alright there mate?’ one of them said.
Mike starts to look pale, and speaks with a half grimace on his face.
He saw a man wearing a tee shirt and shorts moving back and forth in the gap between the vans. The man then staggered from behind the vehicles and trudged off, out of the car park and up the hill. He had large, gaping, ovular wounds bleeding all over his legs.
‘There’s a Stanley knife here!’
* * *
Mike prises the bread apart and pulls off chunks of gluey brie, pressing them, one by one, into the crevice before sealing it all together. He stares at something in the distance that may or may not exist and takes a big bite.
‘…really weird…’ he says.
Read the full story at Underground Magazine.