Unlucky For Some
“Hi, Hoody you ok mate?” James asked.
It was quiet for a second or two, and then he heard a voice. “What a nice surprise…! I thought Hoody had your phone…?” “Are you ok…?” “Of course you can come over…!”
“I’m in the Excelsior Hotel…!” “I’ll meet you in the bar, say 30 minutes…?” “I’m looking forward to it!” James put the phone on the bed and had a quick shower. He hadn’t got any other clothes so he wore the same ones. He checked they didn’t smell and he sprayed some stuff he found in the bathroom and went back down and waited for Harry on a bar stool.
James ordered himself a drink and waited, looking around the room. After a while he got a text;
Sorry been held up be a little longer. Sorry H x
While James sat there thinking about Harry, a stunningly attractive black-haired girl came into the room and sat on the stool next to him and they smiled at each other as she ordered her drink. James moved his glass forward on the bar. “Can I have same again and I’ll get that one as well,” he said as they glanced at each other again.
“Thank you!” she said smiling. James turned and looked at himself blushing in the mirrors behind the optics and watched the girl as she sipped her drink and checked her phone.
“Nice Hotel isn’t it?” James said turning towards the girl.
“Yes, I like this place, if I’m working in Liverpool, I always stop here.”
“What do you do?” James asked.
“I’m a model.”
“That’s interesting,” he said with a grin “I’m a photographer myself, my name is James and it’s a pleasure to meet you.”
“James, my name is Calla.”
“Where are you working?” James asked.
“We are doing a few takes down in Albert Dock in the morning. It’s Just down the road; I don’t know if you know this area, you are from Birmingham?”
James smiled. “So you can tell.”
With that, Harry entered the room. James stood up and they kissed each other on the cheek.
“You look stunning!” James said and Harry thanked him.
They sat down and James asked her what she wanted to drink and he ordered it while she made her self-comfortable on the bar stool.
James noticed Calla’s partner arrive and they moved away from the bar and sat at a table.
“I didn’t think you would talk to me again after I dropped you off at the hotel in Meriden.” Harry lifted her glass and sucked on the straw of her cocktail.
“At first I wasn’t going too, but it’s all worked out ok in the end.” She said sucking the straw again.
“I know the parcel turned up because I was with Hoody when he got the call this morning.” Harry put her drink back on the bar. “I know you and Hoody working together!”
James Smiled. “I quite enjoyed it, if I was honest. I haven’t had the adrenalin pumping like that for years. He is a nice bloke considering his lifestyle isn’t he?”
“Yeah, I get on well with him. If he likes you you’re his best mate, but if you cross him. He won’t forget it. Like me and this parcel, it’s my brother that’s saved my skin. My brother was his mate from a long time ago. He’s told me a few things about Hoody and what’s happened to him over the years. He’s had it rough with children’s homes, different people looking after him, fights, abuse and the police of course. He doesn’t talk about it at all, but I have picked bits up from both of them over the time that I have known him.”
“Does he have a real name?” James asked taking a sip.
“Well, the name he gave himself in one of the homes he was in, is Daniel Hudson.”
“So he’s not called Hoody because of his tops he wears?” James asked.
“Oh yeah, not many people know his name, in fact, no one knows the name he was born with not even Hoody himself!”
“How old is he?”
“Again no one knows for sure 28ish he thinks.”
“What about Johnson, how do you get on with him?”
“He’s alright in small doses; I think he fancies me, to be honest. He is always following me around and asking if I’m ok. Between you and me, it was his idea for me to take the package. He knew what it was and its value before it was on the train from Leicester.”
“Oh, so he is not as loyal as I thought!”
“No, he is a strange one, always trying to find a deal or a scam!”
“Would you like something to eat? I assume there is a restaurant here.” James asked.
“Yes, that would be lovely!”
“Excuse me!” James said to the waiter walking past. “Where is the restaurant?”
“If you want to follow me, Sir, I will take you there!” James stood up and helped Harry and they followed the waiter.
They chose a table by the window and James ordered some champagne.
“This is a nice way to spend a Tuesday night Harry said with a smile as the waiter brought the bottle over in a bucket full of ice.
They sat and sipped the champagne and ordered their meals. Harry told James about her life as a delivery girl and James talked about photography and they got on together well and of course, both of them were wondering how the night would end.
The waiter cleared the table and left them there chatting to each other like two old friends that hadn’t seen each other for years. James called the waiter over again and ordered some more drinks.
When the waiter brought them to the table, he said: “We have a dance downstairs tonight, it’s free to guests.”
James looked at Harry. “Do you want to go and have a look?”
“Yes, that sounds great!” she said finishing off her drink. They went down to the dance and found a table and carried on chatting, they had a couple of dances and a good time.
James left Harry sitting at the table and went to the toilet and while he was washing his hands Johnson walked in.
“What are you doing with Harry?
James turned to look at him. “We are having a drink and a meal why?”
“I suppose your splashing your cash around now you have won the lottery.”
James screwed his face up. “What you on about?”
“I followed you to the Camelot building yesterday.”
James had to think quickly. “Did Hoody tell you to follow me?”
“Yes he did, but I haven’t told him where you went.”
“Because I thought we could keep it quiet and between ourselves.”
“Ok, so you think I have won the lottery and you want some money from me to keep quiet or you will tell Hoody and he will do what?”
“He would want more than I do!”
James moved over and dried his hands under the blower with Johnson following.
“Was you with Hoody on Sunday when he picked up Harry from Meriden?
“So you know I have a photography business!”
“There was a couple there yesterday that won the lottery and they came from Birmingham and I took some photos of them for our local newspaper.”
“So you didn’t win the lottery?”
“No mate. If I had won the lotto I wouldn’t be here would I?”
“I don’t know!”
“I would be in the Bahamas by now with two birds on each arm splashing the cash as you put it. I would have had the first plane out of here!”
“How do I know you are telling the truth?”
“You don’t, and I don’t care, mate. Oh and I’ll ring hoody in the morning and tell him where I went and why!”
With that James walked away. As he walked through the door Johnson shouted. “TELL HARRY I’LL TAKE HER HOME IN 15!”
James just carried on and went back to the dance.
James noticed the music had got a bit louder and he shouted in Harriet’s ear “JOHNSON’S COME TO PICK YOU UP!”
“WHAT DID YOU SAY?” she shouted back. James’s grabbed Harriet’s hand and they moved away from the speakers.
“What did you say?” Harry asked.
“I just met Johnson downstairs; he wants to take you home!”
“You’re joking! I told you, didn’t I. Come on let’s go! Where is he?”
“I don’t know he was in the loo.”
Harry grabbed James’s hand and she pulled him through some double doors at the back of the room. They ran along a corridor and hid behind a large red curtain and watch Johnson go running past through the gap in the middle. They giggled and ran in the other direction and up the stairs to James room holding hands.
James fumbled with the key and eventually, they both went in and slammed the door shut.
James and Harry left the room at about 7 am Wednesday morning and dropped the key at the reception on there way out to the car.
“Can I treat you to breakfast in our Albert Dock?” Harry asked as they pulled away.
“Yeah, that’s a great idea!” James said reaching for Harriet’s hand. “I had a really nice night, thanks.” He said.
Harry gave James directions and eventually they parked the car and walked to the cafe. Harry pointed to the Beatles statue and the yellow submarine in the dock and there were a few boats and ships moored and then they found the café and had breakfast.
Again they chatted about this and that and left after a full English breakfast each. As they walked out the café James asked. “Do you fancy a ride on the big wheel?” Leaning back and looking up at it.
”No, thank you I’ll be sick after what I just had!” Harriet said shaking her head.
They got back in the car and James drove Harry back to the hotel so Harry could get her car. They kissed to say goodbye and Harry noticed Johnson sitting in a van in the car-park.
“I told you he follows me everywhere.”
“How do you know that’s him in the van?”
“Its Hoody’s, they use it to move stuff around, they can get anything in that; Johnson uses it if the valet company have Hoody’s, Range Rover.”
James looked over as Harry said, “you better get off, and the next time you are up here call me again. I had a nice night too thank you.”
With that James got in his car and drove off and decided to get some fuel. As he pulled into the fuel station and parked he opened the door and put his foot out on the floor and his phone rang.
James looks at the screen to see Samantha’s name.
“Hello…!” “I don’t know I’m taking some pictures for a client up in Bootle…!” Why…?” “About what…?” ”What about JP…?” James looked up and the man in the kiosk is waving at James and telling him to get off the phone.
The conversation stopped, and the phone went quiet for a few seconds. James noticed two girls on the other side of the pumps laughing at each other trying to put the nozzle back.
James looked at his phone and noticed the battery had gone flat and put it on the charger. Then waved to the man in the shop to say sorry and got some fuel.
When he went in to pay the man told him off for using his phone by the pumps.
James apologised again and left. He got back in his car and started to travel home. He hit a couple of traffic jams and eventually got going.
James was travelling along when his phone went again. When he looked it was Samantha for the second time.
“Hello…?” “M62 just left Liverpool back in about 2 hours or so…!” “Why…?” “What do they want…?” James looked to see the battery was flat and put it back on the charger again.
While he was on the phone James missed the turning onto the M6 and had to go to the next junction to turn around and come back again. As he pulled off the motorway and went around the island to get back on the motorway the other side he noticed a woman hitchhiking and she had a sign saying Birmingham on it. James pulled over and the woman got in.
“Thank you so much!” she said, “I thought I was going to be there all day.” James pulled away and asked why she was hitching a lift. She explained to him that she was a Trade Plate Driver and to save money because it wasn’t a well-paid job a Trade plater will often hitchhike.”
James pulled back on to the motorway and got himself in the outside lane and headed home he turned off and on to the M6 and headed south chatting to the woman about her job. She told him a story as they drove along that made James laugh.
Samantha’s name comes up on James phone and he answered it. “Hello…?” “M42…!” “Who’s been on the phone…?” The signal dropped off the phone and Samantha voice was distorted and breaking up. As he put it back on the charger again he said to the women, “I’ll call her back in a bit.” While James was driving in the outside lane he looked in the near-side mirror and saw a large van overtaking cars on the inside. James watched it as it got closer then all of a sudden the van hit the side of James car and forces him into the crash barrier. The car scraped along the rails, there were sparks flying in the air and the noise was horrendous as the car spun around and came to a halt. James looked at the women and asked her if she was ok and she nodded as another car smashed into the side and pushed them further along the barrier and then another car hit the back of that one. James sat there in a daze looking at the cars on the other side of the motorway as they slowed down to look and see what was happening. It looked like a massive scrap yard with bumpers, lights and bits of cars all over the motorway.
The first thing James noticed was the smell of petrol. James tried to open the door but it was jammed. A Man appeared, “ARE YOU, OK MATE?” James nodded. “Can you open the door I want to get out.” Two men were pulling at the door while James held the lever to open the door. “It’s stuck mate!” He said to James and then shouted, ANYONE, GOT A CROWBAR TO GET THIS DOOR OPEN!” As another man appeared.
While he is sitting there in all this mayhem and all the people are running around, there was smoke and steam rising from under the bonnet. People were shouting and screaming. “GET HIM OUT IT’S GOING TO BURST INTO FLAMES!”
James looked down, he couldn’t see his feet or legs. They were covered by the broken dashboard and bent steering wheel. He tried to move his toes but he couldn’t feel anything. Another man started to cut the roof open with a knife hoping to pull James out that way. James looked at his phone as it lit up and Harry name appeared on it. “Hello…?” “Harry I have had a car crash…!” “I’m wedged in the seat and I can’t feel anything below my waist…!” There’s blood everywhere the woman next to me is not moving and I don’t know what to do…?” “I’m on the motorway...!” “I can smell petrol, there are people running around with phones…!” “I can’t see I’m facing the wrong way…!” "Hold on Harry."
“Yes mate I’m ok, can you see if this lady is ok next to me please?” The man ran around the car opened the door and felt her pulse. Then he shook his head. “Sorry mate!” he said and ran off.
A large slit appeared in the cloth roof just above James’s head but the steel bars were in the way. “Can you open the roof so we can get you out? James pressed the button. “No, it’s not working.” Another man was tugging at the door shouting WE GOT TO GET HIM OUT, THERE IS FUEL ALL AROUND!” James picked the phone back up “Hello…?” “No it’s not good, I’m feeling worse they are trying to pull my door open but it’s stuck…!” “I don’t know I was driving along and a red van smashed into the side of us and pushed the car into the crash barrier…!” “I’m feeling really weak and I’m still stuck in the car, Harry!” James‘s vision was going and he could just make out that people were still pulling at the door. A helicopter flew overhead really low. “Harry, are you still there…?” “Ok, I’m not going to be able to hold it soon let alone throw it away…!” “OK!” As the men trying to open the door ran off, James tossed the phone onto the other side of the motorway. He just sat there, he seemed to be on his own the noise was dimming as his eyes where heavy he could just hear sirens getting louder as a man in a yellow reflective jacket started talking to him through the broken window.
Did you enjoy my ongoing story so far? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, Vaughan WilliamsWrite a Review