Sunday, 27 February 2011

A Curious Tale... 10

It’s weird how criminals can spot one another. We both knew the other had done something crooked in the past, it just kind of showed.   
Anyway as you might have guessed I soon started driving for him. I told him it would only be a short term thing, and I meant it in the beginning, but I'm not that smart. I'm not being self-deprecating or humble or anything silly like that. I just am not as smart as a lot of people think I am. I've always been good at getting people to believe what I tell them. I don't know what it is, they just do. Most of the time anyway. And I had Dante around for far too long. I miss her. Awesome, amazing Dante.
Anyway when Martin told me he had something legal he wanted me to do I took it with several pinches of salt; a whole cruet in fact. I’d been driving for a couple of years and I hadn’t made a single completely honest taxi run yet. There was always something or another that someone or another would pay massively to obtain. He started off by assuring me that it wasn't criminal, just had to be kept intensely secret. That raised an eyebrow. He also said it was vitally important.
He said he needed me to help him pick up a young girl somewhere in Peckham, and get her to Lewisham.
"But that's hardly worth my time!" I said, incredulous. "She could just hop on the bus!"
I didn't work for him any more. I now had my own fleet of taxicraft. I wasn't rich, nowhere near as wealthy as Martin, but I was doing well on my own, and he didn't begrudge me my independence. He was a good friend. The only one I had really, now I didn't have Dante any more.
"I know," he said, his voice smooth. Too smooth if you ask me. But you won't and he didn't, so my opinion counted for nix right then. Unless I said I wasn't gonna do it. But he knew I eventually would.
I did make him sweat for it though.
"I ain't doing it." That's what I said next.
"Why not," he said, pretending to be taken aback even though he knew I wouldn't be fooled, just like he knew I couldn't refuse him.
"Because if it were that simple, you bloody well do it yourself, wouldn't you?"
"Yes I would," he said.
I shut up. I hadn't been expecting that. I thought he would make up all kinds of excuses and give reasons why he 'honest to God' couldn't go. But he'd admitted without much fuss that I was probably getting myself into something more than it seemed or just downright dangerous or worse. I paused, waiting to hear what he'd say next.
"You can take my car."
"The Rolls?"
"No, not the Rolls. The MXT."
"For real!?"
"Yes for real."
So I agreed.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

A Curious Tale... 9

I landed at the shuttle port with a gym sack. I’d arranged for a courier to transport the rest of my things. I realised I would never get them because the transaction would never be carried out. I was far too poor to pay the freight costs, and I’d hired the most expensive dudes possible. Daft as a cucumber. Depression started to set in again.
I walked through the arrivals section and frowned as the many cameras, biometric scanners, x-ray machines and good old fashioned customs officers deciphered exactly who I was and what I was carrying. It was boring, but at least it didn’t take up much time.
As I walked into the arrivals lounge I realised I had no idea where to go. I’d hustled my way into school, and crimed my way through it. The friends I’d made in school were quite frankly the only friends I had. I was lost, and the guy that walked up seemed to realise it.
“Hi” he said.
“Hi” I replied.
“You look like you could use some help.”
“No thanks. I’m fine.” Damn your foolish pride Tosoye! You’re not fine.
“I was only gonna ask if you needed a cab lad.” And he started to leave.  I was in England by the way. That’s where I’m from, I think. Anyway the little reason I still had left kicked in.
“Excuse me!” The man turned.
“I don’t have any money…” The man turned to walk away muttering something about him not getting enough to live on anyway without people looking for free rides.
I went to a row of seats and my phone buzzed just before I sat down. It was a message from Silas.
I’ve instructed that 2000 credits be paid into your account. I felt it wouldn’t be fair if you didn’t get a head start. Good luck.
I had to smile at the nerve of the man. Stupid cocky bastard. I went out and hailed a real taxi, not a crummy overcraft, but one of them old fashioned taxis that run on wheels. It was a stupid thing to do as it cost triple what a cab would, but I couldn’t care less. I had a little leeway.
The taxi driver was incredibly loquacious, and had told me about his entire family before asking me where I wanted to go. His name was Martin. He was probably in his late thirties, extremely fit, and if I was a girl or gay I’d be screwing a taxi driver, to state it succinctly. He looked very well to do though, and I had to ask him how come he wore a Hublot chronogram.
“I’m rich,” he said simply. “I only drive a taxi when I feel like.”
He looked in the mirror and saw how deeply I was concentrating.
“You want to know how I got rich enough to make taxi driving a hobby, don’t you?”
“Well that’s one thing I can’t tell you. What do you do, by the way.”
“I just graduated,” I said honestly.
“Oh, new to the job market. Have you ever worked… erm… what did you say your name was?”
“Tosoye. Hmmm. African origin I’d say.”
“How would I know?”
“Oh I wouldn’t expect you to. So back to the question. Have you ever worked lad?”
I was getting rather peeved, but he was obviously as rich as I was broke so I had to keep listening.
“Could you do deliveries?”
“I don’t see why not.”
“Got a driving licence?”
“Yep.  All craft.”
Good. Come over to see me.