Grit: Mockney 1

It meant something once – but, like everything, popular culture had taken a big long piss over all of it and watered it down to shit. Within the sound of the Bow Bells – that’s what it took to make you a Cockney, not knowing a bit of rhyming slang and having a sloppy London or Essex accent. This bunch of cunts that were coming up nowadays didn’t only not have any respect for tradition, they just didn’t know anything about it.
They were all flash and nothing else – style over substance. Sure, there had been some of that early on, but those guys had been weeded out pretty sharpish. They’d come in being all mouthy and they would get on the wrong side of someone that was a real hard man, not just someone who had watched a few good gangster movies, and then they’d be on the floor scrabbling about trying to pick up the mouthful of teeth they’d just lost.
If Grit had a problem with an organisation it was generally with one these dumb fucks. Barry Mitchell was just one in a long line – he had taken it upon himself to decide what was what and if he saw you and he thought you needed educating he would try and go about it. Barry had beaten badly on more than one occassion and Grit couldn’t work out for the life of him why anyone would want such a liability kicking about. Barry wasn’t good for business. Barry either had something on Hutchinson or there was some kind of undisclosed family connection.
‘Hey, shithead, what’re you looking at?’
Grit looked up from his pint.
‘Yeah, you – what’s your name? Gripe? Who the fuck do you think you are? You walk around here like you own the place, acting likee you’re hot shit or something; well, I don’t think you’re anything special.’
‘Fair enough. Now if you don’t mind, Mr Mitchell, I am trying to have a quiet drink.’
‘Mr Mitchell, I am trying to have a quiet drink. Well, what if I say you’re not allowed to have a quiet drink, Grope?’
One of Mitchell’s companions came up and put his hand on his arm.
‘Barry, come and sit down – leave him alone.’
‘You’d be wise to do what your friend is telling you to do.’
‘Be wise, would I? I want you to step outside,’ he said and then spat in Grit’s face.
Grit took out his handkerchief and wiped away the spit. He finished his drink and then in a move that surprised Barry and those stood around with its speed, he broke the neck off the bottle, and he stabbed it into the obnoxious prick’s throat. Mitchell fell to the floor clutching his neck, curses trying to bubble out of his blood filled mouth. Grit stepped over him and walked out.
This wasn’t good – even if he did have good reason to do what he’d done, he had just killed his present employer’s pet and in front of people, and without getting paid for it. Not good at all.

Grit: Vacuum 2

Put the word out that you’re a gun for hire for the highest bidder – also let it be known that you are the one responsible for there being one less shark in the water. People sit up and they take notice and it doesn’t take long before the phone is ringing off the hook. The old school guys never needed telling about who Grit was and what he could do but he knew that there were some new players in the game and some who’d replaced the old guard that might need reminding. Grit has a reputation that got around quickly; revitalised itself with every successful job that he carried out.
Gregory Samson was the first to call him in – a lavish get up this one had … fucking ponce. Grit would happily put this bastard out of his misery if someone asked him. Man, this guy advertised way too much what he was about – it put him in a bad position regards bargaining a price on a job – how could he ever claim any kind of hardship when he had more gold on him than the Federal Reserve. He sat there spinning what Grit was surprised to see was a wedding ring; toothpick between his teeth.
‘So, what can you do for me, Mr Grit?’
‘What do you want done, Mr Samson?’
‘I want Tony Marsh dead and gone.’
‘Okay, any particular way that you want him to die.’
‘Seriously fucked up is how I want him to die – that motherfucker thinks he can make a move on me just because Grimoire’s not here to hold it all in check?’
‘Okay. Don’t care about the politics. Just the money. You sort me out with the money and we’re good to go.’
‘How much do you want?’
Grit handed him a piece of paper.
‘Very reasonable, Mr Grit. Cheap at half the price. How do you want it?’
‘In fifties; bring it to the address on the back of the card.’
‘Fine. Nice doing business with you, Mr Grit.’
‘Likewise, Mr Samson.’
Grit turned and left. Stupid fucker; he had no clue and all those tell-tale signs of nervousness — he was bricking it. Nervous people did not do well in this line of work – either some from the outside spotted it or even worse someone on your own crew. Even if Grit hadn’t planned on blowing the top of the fucker’s skull someone else would have done sooner or later.
He had another meeting in half an hour, just time to get across the city and beat the rush-hour traffic. He was hoping, and he didn’t know why, that Tony Marsh would be somewhat more impressive. It was funny that he felt odd if he was killing someone who out of their depth; someone who had no talent for what they were doing.
He was going to rake it in – these people couldn’t see far enough past their own reputations to know what was going on.

Grit: Love Interest 1

Do not get attached, that’s what they always told you. There was a reason why a lot of low level thugs only ever hung out with hookers – if they got killed you could go and buy yourself another piece of arse: Grit had always agreed with this line of thinking. Well, not always, but he was a quick learner – it had only taken one lesson to teach him that love was not an expense that he could afford. You had to be part of a big operation and have the security of that to be able think about settling down and having a family. Being a freelancer in the criminal world was not the best thing to be.
She’d existed on the periphery of his world for the longest time before he had ever considered her in terms other than someone he kind of knew. At first he just thought of her as something nice to look at – a bright spot in a day full of shit. He’d go out and do his job and then go to the pub to wind down, and there she’d be, something that really had no right to exist in a world such as his.
Brubeck caught him looking at her and shook his head, sucked on his cigarette and kept quiet, though he did shake his head. Parker noticed too and did a similar thing, except with him it was his pint he focused his attention on. It was Baker who finally opened his mouth and cut through the awkward silence.
‘Not a good idea, man – not a good idea at all. Whatever you’ve been thinking just forget about it.’
‘Not that I’ve been thinking about anything, but what’s the big deal? Why is she so taboo?’
‘Hancock’s daughter,’ said Parker.
‘Bad news,’ chimed in Brubeck.
‘Who’s bad news? Her or her father, be a bit more specific will you, you bunch of worry-warts?’
‘Nah,’ started Brubeck ‘She’s a good girl: never done anyone any harm as far as I’ve heard; hasn’t really been with anyone either, I don’t think. Nah, it’s her old man – he’s one of the meanest bastards who ever breathed.’
‘Is that so?’
‘Listen to him, Grit – we’re not just blowing smoke up your arse. What, do you think we’re trying to put you off so one of us can move in?’
‘I wouldn’t put it past you, Parker. It’s not like you haven’t done shit like that before.’
‘That’s true, but I swear, I just don’t want you to get hurt.’
‘Pull the other one – it’s got bells on it. Fuck me, Parker, what the hell is this? Since when did you get so sensitive, and since when did you give a flying fuck what happens to me? –‘
‘We’re mates aren’t we?’
‘We go for a drink once in a while, but fuck, you know if someone paid me enough I’d put a bullet in the back of your head. Same goes for all of you.’
‘Well, shit,’ said Baker ‘Same goes for all of us – we’re all fucking scorpions, ain’t we?’
‘Yeah, so cut the fucking three wise monkeys act, you lot. If I get with her – I get with her; not a damned sight her old man can do about it. If he wants to kill me after then that’s that – doesn’t mean he’ll get what he wants, does it?’
‘S’pose not,’ offered Parker.
‘Anyway, what’s her first name?’
‘Brenda.’
‘Good, you know what, wait here — I’m going to go and get myself her number.’