April 21, 2021

Timothy Tittleworth hardly recognises Half-Job-Bob as he strolls timidly into the Daily Grind a week after Planet Ice. He looks somehow ‘less’ than Tittleworth remembers. Thinner. Gaunt. Diminished. As if the pressures of the world are on his shoulders. Indeed, Tittleworth is surprised to see him alive at all! The last time he saw Half-Job-Bob he was being dragged into the seething black mass of evil, clawing at the tarmac and screaming for help.  Tittleworth naturally assumed he was dead. He wishes he felt good about the fact he is alive but there is something odd about him that scares Tittleworth.

Half-Job-Bob’s hair, which was thick and black only a week before, is now thin and white. In some places, it is totally bald. There are yellowing bruises on his face. His clothes look unclean and ill-fitting as if he has lost a lot of weight. He looks twitchy and nervous. His dark eyes dart around the room continuously looking for imagined dangers. Half-Job-Bob’s eyes finally fix on him. It takes him several moments to approach Tittleworth, who is sitting at his usual table by the far window with an Americano. His fourth. Insomnia is still unleashing its blitzkrieg and his body needs caffeine just to keep running. He honestly believes if the coffee stops so will his heart. He is nothing more than a toy whose batteries are running out.

Half-Job-Bob takes the seat opposite. The sound of the wooden chair scraping loudly across the floor tiles makes him cringe. Tittleworth notices other patrons in the coffee shop staring at them with distaste. Tittleworth doesn’t blame them, he notices the smell too.

“What happened to you?” he asks.

Half-Job-Bob’s reaction is sudden and terrifying. He shrinks in on himself like an animal whose previous master was violent. Although his face is looking down at the floor, Tittleworth can see tears in his eyes. They have a sparkly, moist look. His dirty hands are shaking and he is attempting to steady them by rubbing them vigorously together. Tittleworth notices the ruined fingertips. Several of the fingernails are missing, and Tittleworth sees them snapping back on the tarmac in his mind’s eye.

“Are you ok?” Tittleworth asks. A stupid question perhaps, but what else can be said in such a situation?

“I have a message,” he whispers.

“From who?” Tittleworth asks, but inside he already knows the answer.

“The devil,” he hisses back at him. A string of spit falls from his mouth. “From her.”

Tittleworth doesn’t respond straight away. After a while, he says: “What’s her message?”

Half-Job-Bob looks up at him. “You must take your place as leader of the Order of Logical Monkeys,” he says nervously. He looks around the room to make sure no one has overheard. “She demands it,” Half-Job-Bob whispers. “She requires it of you.”

“The Order of Logical Monkeys?” TIttleworth croaks, his mouth now dry.

“She said she has lived up to her end of the bargain. It is all ready for the taking. All you have to do is reach out and seize it. Your time has come. You have the chance to be someone, to do something important. To have power and influence … just as you wanted.”

Tittleworth’s mind is now racing. So the whole Logical Monkey thing had been her after all. It explained a lot: the dreams, the strange encounters with people all over Solihull saluting him and telling him they heard the call. Now it is here he feels scared about moving forward. Terrified about taking what’s been given. Although in reality, he knows she will claim his end of the bargain now whether he seizes it or not. That was the deal. There really was no choice, only to step into this role and become what he’d always dreamed of: a man of power and influence.

“How?” he asks.

“There is a place, a unit under a railway arch, out of town. You are to go there. The way ahead will become clear.” Half-Job-Bob whispers. “I am to go with you,” he adds. “I am to serve you.” He rolls up his sleeve to reveal the Logical Monkey symbol burned into the flesh of his forearm as if it were branded with a hot iron. A monkey’s head, its mouth opened wide to expose its sharp viscous teeth. Surrounding this head are hands. Open palm and closed fist, alternating.

“Jesus,” Tittleworth moans. “Did she do this to you?”

Half-Job-Bob doesn’t answer. He just looks down at the floor and weeps.

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April 4, 2021

Half-Job-Bob stands erect in one corner of a dark, disused cellar. He is a shadow of his former self. His pale face, streaked with grime and dried blood. There are tear-lines through that filth. There have been many tears since he first woke in the darkness following Planet Ice, although they are less frequent now. He is sure there’s barely any fluid left in his body. He has been reduced to a husk. Dry and cracked like a desert. Totally deplete of moisture. The witch has seen to that. He shudders to think of it. His hair has fallen out at the shock of it, although a few sorry clumps stubbornly cling to the sides of his head. These clumps are no longer black, but a brilliant white, like milk. 

The bare brick walls are filthy and damp. It is freezing in there and his ragged breath escapes in clouds around his unshaven and withered face. The floor is coated in an ancient layer of dust and other detritus. The ceiling is high for a cellar and covered in cobwebs. A set of cold, hard steps climb up into the only source of weak light there is. He assumes this is distant sunlight because it fades away cyclically, to be gradually replaced by a pasty yellow luminescence like that of a street lamp. The room reeks. The smell of his own stale sweat. The odor of his piss and shit, which he drops where he stands, unable to move.

He is being held by some sort of invisible force. A prison of air, stronger than iron. He stands there erect like a statue, muscles twitching and aching, screaming for relief. Cramping with the effort of sustaining himself in that position for so long. His skinny body hangs naked and slumped in midair, supported by his invisible bonds. He stares at the bare bricks of the wall opposite him, unable to look anywhere else. His mind has retreated deep into itself where it dwells on the concepts recently communicated to him by Timothy Tittleworth. The ideas making up Logical Monkey theory. He seizes hold of it desperately clinging to it to prevent himself going mad. He focuses on that one spot of wall, refusing to take in the horror all around him: the discarded remains of half-eaten children, limbs lying where they were tossed. His torn clothes. A girl’s head rolled into one corner, her pale face staring up at him with an expression of terror frozen into its features. And, although she is gone at present, the worst part of the room, the ceiling where the boiling black mass of energy gathers itself and broods. Her face occasionally becomes visible in the depths of this vapour as blue flecks of static electricity flare up inside it like lightning in a storm cloud. Painting the bare bricks of the room in brief flashes of blue. It remains there, gathered on the ceiling during daylight hours only flowing out of the room and up the steps when darkness falls and the pasty yellow light from the street lamp begins to flow down into the cellar.

She’s been gone for hours now. There is always a sense of relief when she leaves, but he’s come to dread her return. Her reappearance is terror to behold, always with an unconscious child in tow, a child she proceeds to devour in a terrible frenzy. When all is done, she stands before him in physical form, as if somehow the feasting on child flesh makes this possible. She stands there before him in the darkness of that damp cellar, a hideous crone with green-tinged skin and fixes him with the darkest eyes he’s ever seen. A bulbous, crooked nose and jet-black hair that reminds him of seaweed. Cloaked in black like a ringwraith from Lord of the Rings or a dementor from Harry Potter. The first time she appeared to him she laughed. The sound of a rattlesnack or the rustle of dead leaves beneath a boot. The dark pools of her evil eyes fixed on his own terrified ones. “I have plans for you,” she told him; “but before that, I intend to make the most of you.” And she dropped her dark robes to the cellar floor. That was the moment his hair turned white. The next morning it was stroon all over his shoulders and on the floor around him.

He barely remembers how he came to be there. He remembers fleeing with Tittleworth, desperately trying to reach the car, and then it had him by the ankle, dragging him back across the tarmac. He desperately tried to claw his way to freedom, his fingernails snapping on the black tarmac and the skin on the tips of his fingers being scraped to the bone. Then darkness. Then, the cellar. He has no idea where this cellar is. Is he even in Solihull? As far as he is aware, he could be anywhere.

During the days that follow he often hears the witch muttering to herself. A dreadful whisper emanating from the very depths of the boiling black mass of energy. A constant string of mad unintelligible ramblings that only deepens his certainty that he won’t make it out of here alive. Some of it sounds like latin, some of it sounds like an old form of English too hard to make out. Those parts he can distinguish are filled with terrible hate and promises of a dreadful vengeance to be meted out on her enemies – whoever they are. He senses incredible anger at her failure outside Planet Ice to do whatever it is she is doing. He becomes certain she intends to use him somehow. To turn him to some evil purpose. A thought that terrifies him more than death. He begins to prefer the idea of death. Almost, desirous of it.

The darkness appears at the top of the cellar steps and begins to creep down into the cellar like a black waterfall. His bottom lip begins to quiver and fresh tears begin to form in his eyes, spilling over to create fresh tracks in the filth. The darkness pools on the cellar floor in front of him and begins to take the form of the old hag. She must have already eaten, a small mercy perhaps that he doesn’t have to see it. She stands before him, eyes fixed on his for what seems an eternity. And then finally she speaks. “Are you ready to serve your purpose?” she asks. “There is something I want you to do. If you do it well, you might yet live.”

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March 18, 2021

Maya Gohil drives her fist into the punch bag with incredible force. For a small woman, she is fearsome. Her rage is something to behold. Her black hair is tied back and her forehead is shiny with perspiration. She is wearing a light grey tank top and black shorts. Black sparing gloves cover her hands, which she repeatedly drives into the punchbag, hanging from her garage roof by a chain. The thick packing sounds of leather gloves on the bag can barely be heard over the music blaring out of an old sound system: Rage Against The Machine. Her teeth are gritted and bared like a wild animal and her eyes are focused and determined. With every strike, a hiss of breath escapes through her clenched teeth, like a spitting snake. She dances around the bag, striking from different angles, simulating how she’d move in real combat.

In her mind, she isn’t in the garage. She is back at the station driving her fists into Chief Inspector Campbell. Beating him with every ounce of her strength, driven by her anger and frustration. Now, she is in the carpark outside, doing something similar to Timothy Tittleworth and a number of other people who pissed her off today. She comes out to the garage whenever she has a bad day. That seems to be far too often of late. She has to let out these kinds of emotions or they build up in her, screw her up inside. Bad things happen when she loses control, and she would rather let out those kinds of emotions here. She learned that lesson long ago.

Why did Campbell intervene in her investigation? Why did he insist on releasing Tittleworth? Something wasn’t right here. He told her Tittleworth was a person of special interest, that he was working on something important and couldn’t have his cover blown. That was total bullshit! She knew it and she said as much, but Campbell is her superior and she knows better than to go up against him openly. Better officers than she had been sacked for less. There is something off with Campbell, something stinks. The worst thing about it all is that she knows Tittleworth is involved in whatever is going on in Solihull. She knows he’s involved and she has no other leads to go on at the moment. She just needs to find a new angle, that’s all. Something strong enough that Campbell can’t step in and rescue him.

Gohil changes her striking pattern and begins driving her elbows into the bag. More power. More damage.

There have been so many reports of unusual activities in the area over the last month it was hard to keep up. Complaints of sexual assault and aggressive behavior have doubled. Reports of road rage incidents, smashed-up cars and crude graffiti have also increased. Dicks had been burned into the grass at local golf clubs using petrol. A dog’s arse had been superglued shut because its owner failed to bag up and dispose of its shit. Sometimes these incidents were silly and not that serious unless they’d been done to you, but there was a general undercurrent of something bigger or nastier building. Something sinister. She didn’t like it.

Several of these incidents had been linked to a man matching Tittleworth’s description. A smashed-up car, reportedly carried out by a psychotic taxi driver.  An unprovoked assault on a woman at a coffee shop. Clear descriptions that couldn’t be anyone else but him. They had footage too. Undeniable evidence. His appearance and style were unique after all. The bloody idiot was his own worst enemy. If you’re going to go around carrying out crimes like that, at least try and blend into the crowd.

That is just the silly stuff.

Field-fulls of sheep have been slaughtered by some sort of unknown animal. Children keep disappearing off the streets with zero trace and no leads, even in areas where CCTV technology is in place. All that has been found of any of them is a child’s leg floating in the Grand Union Canal. A local priest was attacked by a man claiming he’d been interfered with as a child. A wine bottle had been inserted somewhere unpleasant and then shattered, whilst inside, with a hammer and chisel. Horrific things! Brutal things. People seemed to be going crazy.

And then to top it all off, Planet Ice. She’d seen some murders in her time, but that was something else. The massive amount of flesh making up his back had been torn right down the middle as if unzipped. She’d been able to see the white of his spinal cord when she stepped into the forensic tent. The man’s face was pure white, being dead and all. And his mouth was opened about as wide as it could possibly go without the jaw breaking. Whatever ripped into that mammoth made her blood run cold. The CCTV covering the carpark was offline that evening for no explicable reason. The multiple statements and reports coming in from the public, and witnesses who were in the carpark at the time, are filled with ridiculous accounts of some sort of beast seen charging about the streets.  Some people have suggested it was a werewolf. She laughed when she first heard that suggestion, but she’d checked and it had been a full moon. That made her think of the field of sheep the month before. Again, she checked. It was a full moon then too.

So many questions. Not enough answers. The victim was not known to them. He had no ID on him, and they were still trying to confirm who he was. Judging from the amount of Class A Candy in his massive pockets, he was a dealer of some sort. It wouldn’t be long before they got an ID and when they did they’d be able to start digging properly, and there would be some answers for sure. One thing she does know, Tittleworth is somehow involved in it all. She’s going to prove it. She’s going to get to the bottom of it and she’s going to put an end to him.

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March 12, 2021

Silas opens his eyes and sees the sun coming into the room through a gap in the curtains. The taste of whiskey is heavy in his mouth and his brain screams in memory of it. He’d hit the bottle hard after they made it back to the flat safely the night before. He needed it to steady his nerves and stop himself from breaking down. He rubs his forehead with the palm of his hand and mutters “Jaysus,” in his strong Irish accent. He notices movement in the bed beside him and an arm vacantly falls over him.

“What the hell!?” he shouts and clambers out of bed as fast as he can. Laying in the bed beside him is Percival, now back in human form. He is butt naked and still half asleep , although he looks a lot less bothered by the situation than Silas is.

“Morning,” Percival sighs and then also notices he is human again. “Oh god, no!” he wines.

“You must have turned back in the early hours of the morning,” Silas suggests. When they fell asleep, Percival had been a dog and Silas felt a lot less worried about falling asleep on the bed together, particularly after everything that happened the evening before.

A mug full of whiskey sits on the bedside cabinet next to his gun and an empty bottle.

“Get some fucking clothes on will you,” Silas mutters. “If you ever mention this to anyone I’ll introduce you to my Persuader!”

“Don’t think I want anyone knowing either,” Percival exclaims; “My taste isn’t that bad!”

Silas rolls his eyes. “Well, it looks like the reverse-werewolf theory is true anyway,” he goes on. “More like a wereman, I guess.”

“Oh God, does that mean it’s going to happen again tonight?” Percival moans.

Silas shrugs, “I guess so. And if that’s the case, then you won’t be the only one having a bad night,” he finishes, referring to Carlo Fray.

Percival pulls the duvet up to his chin and whimpers in the manner of a dog.

“Coffee?” Silas asks and walks to the kitchen area to put the kettle on.

“Yes, please,” Percival replies.

Silas fills the kettle and then switches it on. After a few seconds, the sound of the elements firing up fills the kitchen. He takes two mugs from the draining board and puts a teaspoon of cheap coffee granules into each. His hands are shaking with the effort of holding himself together. The hangover is now raging through him. He spills some of the coffee powder on the side and mutters “shit” to himself before throwing the spoon in the sink and going to the couch to throw himself down. He flicks on the television. Almost immediately he wishes he hadn’t. The news comes on and the screen is filled with images of the carnage at Planet Ice. Armed police and forensic officers fill the shot. The carpark looks like a warzone. Crushed cars are everywhere. One is on its roof. Glass from shattered windows carpets the tarmac like transparent snow. A news reporter, standing at the carpark entrance says “A man was murdered here last night. The police are not giving out any details yet but it’s plain to see something extreme took place at Planet Ice. Witnesses claim a local drug dealer has been killed in a bloody display of violence.”

“He died then,” Silas says to himself, remembering the terrible scene as it had unfolded in front of his eyes. “I bet Carlo’s woke up with indigestion this morning,” he jokes.

“What was that?” Percival asks as he walks out of the bedroom, now dressed. He notices the images on the television and turns pale. “So, it was real then?”

“Don’t you remember?” Silas says and then walks to the back window to see if he can get a glimpse of the carpark. He can’t.

“Jesus, what am I going to tell Thackeray Senior?” Silas mutters to himself. His only lead is dead. The only one who knows what happened to the kid is now silent. “I guess I’ll just have to come clean to the old man and tell him the lead has gone cold.” This doesn’t look good for business at all. He has a reputation to uphold and if people start questioning his ability to ‘fix’ things his whole income will disappear overnight. He’s never failed before. There must be another way. People just don’t vanish into thin air. Then it occurs to him, that fucking pigeon. That nasty vermin that was always flying around the Candy Man. Last night he was certain he saw it trying to warn him. Actually talking, like a human, in plain English. What had happened to the bird after he split? After the Candy Man was ripped open like a jacket potato? That bird is the answer. He needs to find the thing. And fast.

His mobile phone starts ringing. It’s on the kitchen work surface near the kettle, which is convenient because it’s just finished boiling. He crosses the room and freezes when he sees the name on the screen, Carlo Fray.

“What is it?” Percival asks, concerned.

“The beast is awake,” Silas replies. He picks up the phone and answers it, placing it on loudspeaker so Percival can hear. He then sets it back on the work surface.

“Did it, did it happen again?” Carlo says quietly. It is an eerie whisper that makes Silas’ hair stand on end. “I don’t remember anything about last night. I just remember seeing you outside Planet Ice, and then nothing.”

“Are you near a television?” Silas eventually says.

“Yes, I’m at home now,” Carlo replies; “Why?”

“Switch it on.”

There are muffled sounds on the phone as Carlo locates the control and turns on the television set.

“Now what?” Carlo says reluctantly.

“The news. Turn on the news.”

After several moments Carlo mutters the word “no” to himself.

Silas can sympathise, he is still watching it too.

“That was all me?” Carlo eventually asks.

“Not all,” Silas replies and glances at Percival with a raised eyebrow. “There was a lot that was wrong last night. You were just part of it.”

“But did I, was it me that … that, killed someone?”

“I don’t know what to tell you, Carlo.”

He is crying now. “Oh, Jesus. Oh, Jesus. Oh, Jesus;” he keeps repeating to himself.

“Listen, if it makes you feel any better the guy probably deserved it. He was a local Class A. Candy dealer. The lowest of the low. A real piece of shit.”

“Do you believe me now?” he says. “I need you to help me. I can’t stop it from happening! What if I kill more people?”

“You could always kill yourself,” Silas suggests.

“I’ve tried, three times, and I just won’t die. It must be part of the curse or something. I need to find the old woman. The witch, Morag Black. She’s the only one who can stop it.”

“I think she might have been there last night,” Silas sighs heavily; “at Planet Ice. There was this black, smoke, and there was a face in it … real ugly, like.”

“I need you to help me find her. It’s the only way to end this.”

“And, what happens if we find her?” Silas probes.

“I’m not sure yet.”

“Kill her you mean?”

Carlo doesn’t respond. Silas thinks about this for a minute. On the one hand, he doesn’t want to make an enemy of someone who has the power to do this sort of thing to people. He saw some of what she can do last night, and he has no idea how he can fight against that. Even his club hammer would be useless if he came up against it. On the other hand, if he can solve this problem he might also be able to help Percival get his life back too. And, if he can find that bloody pigeon he might get some answers about what happened to Milton Thackeray Junior.

“We need to meet up,” Silas suggests. “Today! As soon as possible. We need to work this out. I’m going to help you Carlo.”

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March 3, 2021

A grey timneh parrot sits on a lamppost staring down at the carpark of Planet Ice. The whole area is sealed off by armed Police. From his position on the lamppost, Ryder can see a cluster of reporters and television crews standing on the grass by St. Mary’s Church; prohibited from coming any closer on account of the ongoing forensic investigation. There is a strong breeze this morning. It ruffles his feathers and makes him feel cold; but not all that cold can be attributed to the temperature.

The carpark is crawling with white-clad forensic officers and other official police types. A white tent has been erected over the top of Vardy. Members of the forensic team move in and out of it like bees in a beehive. Due to Vardy’s massive bulk the police have not yet been able to shift him; although Ryder does give them credit for trying. He loosely wonders whether rigor mortis sets in on excessively fat people. Or, whether the mass of soft fat remains wrapped around a slowly stiffening core like the gelatinous coating around the meat in a pork pie. Ryder doesn’t often feel feelings, but there is a very slight sense of sadness as he remembers the effort Vardy put in to the Shake the Cake Body Wobble Weight Loss Programme. All that hard work, but in the end a complete waste of time. Not to mention the psychological scars Ryder experienced seeing Vardy gyrate in front of the television every day. Ryder overheard a police officer calling in a specialist vehicle to shift the deceased, but it is yet to arrive.

They are still combing the carpark for clues but Ryder doubts they’ll find anything useful. What is there to find? If they are looking for a weapon capable of doing something like that to Vardy, they won’t find it. There is no weapon for them to find. It wasn’t a blade that ripped Vardy’s back open like a packet of crisps. It wasn’t steel that created those huge lacerations in that wobbling mass of flesh. It was claw and fang. Ryder has another flashback. He sees the beast pinning Vardy to the tarmac, face down, digging into his back like a dog digs for a bone. Ryder remembers seeing blood and chunks of flesh flying out behind the beast as it did so. The horror of it still turns Ryder’s guts to water. He’s grateful he is a bird at this point. No one has noticed the mess he’s made of the car below.

None of it makes sense to Ryder. They’d gone out to make some drop-offs as they did most evenings. Timothy Tittleworth was the last on the list, and then they were meeting the Persuader in the carpark afterwards. Ryder arranged the meeting to discuss getting rid of the mad Irishman who’d attacked Vardy outside the Daily Grind several days before. They thought it might be a good idea to kill two birds with one stone; meeting Tittleworth and the Persuader both at Planet Ice. Ryder took up position on the car to watch the drop off and Vardy walked towards Tittleworth, who was standing with some friends outside Planet Ice. From his vantage point, on the roof of the car, he watched as Vardy stopped suddenly, noticing the insane Irishman with the club hammer standing there with Tittleworth. If only the Persuader would show up now, but of course he hadn’t. He was just about to call out a warning to Vardy when everything went crazy. Something was happening with two of the men standing with Tittleworth. Something awful was going on. He watched their bodies rearrange themselves like Rubix Cubes. The screams and bone-snapping sounds had been chilling. And when it was all done, a terrible beast stood on the right and a tiny pathetic dog on the left; facing off against each other. That dog is possibly the worst werewolf in history. Then, everything became a blur. Even the mad Irishman, who was about to go for Vardy again with that bloody club hammer. He stood there in terror, eyes fixed on the beast. Everything was a blur after that. Ryder had tried to get Vardy to run but the beast charged before he could get away. It moved with a speed that defies scientific principles. In the chaos that followed, the Irishman disappeared.

Then the darkness came. The black boiling mass of smoke and cloud. What was it? It came out of nowhere, crushing cars and uprooting lampposts as if they were nothing. He can see police officers combing the carpark right now, looking under cars, trying to find evidence of an explosive device or anything that could explain the damage. They won’t find anything though, Ryder thinks. The darkness dissipated the moment everyone scattered. It left no trace. There’d been a moment when Ryder thought he saw a face staring out at him from that seething black mass. A twisted and demonic face. Ugly beyond words. Evil. But then it was gone. A momentary glimpse of something he shouldn’t have seen. And that wasn’t the only thing unusual he’d seen that night. There was the black woman too, standing in the corner of the carpark , cloaked in shadow. He’d seen her as he flew up from the carpark to find safety. She had no hair, or hair that was cropped very short at least. She had a kind but hard face filled, from what he could see, with an emotion Ryder couldn’t quite pin down. One minute she was there, the next she wasn’t.

A short distance away, a plain clothed police woman stands, talking with a number of colleagues. They are too far away for him to hear, but he can tell from their frequent gestures towards the tent they are talking about Vardy. He thinks they might be aware Vardy was a Class A. Candy dealer. The infamous Candy Man. This of course steers their investigation in a whole new direction. What previously might have been a macabre murder case is now turning into something that could cause Ryder massive problems. One thing they don’t realise is the fact the real ‘Candy Man’ is sitting on a lamppost just meters away. That the real brains behind the operation still lives on, and that his empire isn’t going to stop just because Vardy was killed. This is a blip, certainly, but he still has plans. Very big plans. And Ryder intends to see them through. First, he has to deal with the fallout of this whole nightmare. For a start, he has a large penthouse packed with cash and Class A. Candy he is currently unable to get into. Vardy always carried the keys. They are in the pockets of his gold shell suit jacket only meters below, but it may as well have been a million miles away. That’s why he’s been sat there on the lamppost all night; waiting for an opportunity to get down there. But of course, no opportunity has presented itself. Those keys are now gone as far as he is concerned. Even if he could retrieve them, he wouldn’t be able to physically use them himself anyway. This is a big pile of shit and if he doesn’t solve the problem soon the Police will work out where the penthouse is and seize all his cash and candy. Over half a million pounds of it.

Now Vardy is gone he needs someone else to replace him. He spent all night trying to think it out and the only person who keeps coming to mind is Tittleworth. He’s been ordering from them for some time and he is reliable as far as payment goes. There is also the other matter of the drugs he stole from him last night. The package Vardy dropped just before the beast charged. Tittleworth snatched it up as he ran by, that thieving bastard. Under normal circumstances Ryder would have him killed. He still might, once he’s served his purpose. It wouldn’t be the first time. Lucky for Tittleworth though, Ryder needs someone. And as Tittleworth already owes Ryder, that person will be him. Ryder saw Tittleworth drive off in a taxi and that would be how Ryder would find him. Find the taxi, find Tittleworth. It might take a while, but he will find him for sure. 

Ryder leaps up from the lamppost and flies off in the direction of Solihull town centre. A single grey feather floats down on a current of air and settles on the white roof of the forensic tent where Vardy lays.

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