Wednesday, 30 May 2012


A civilized sport, a day out for many across nations where picnics can be consumed whilst enjoying the sound of balls being batted about and wickets being taken.

Well at least it was!

What was a wholesome pinnacle of sport for the class system has been debased by those who are frankly no better than football hooligans. Yobos lie half naked gulping down pint after pint of overpriced larger and spraying half eaten burger remains over those unsuspected few sat around them. Air horns blare out from stands that Jerusalem once issued forth from. 

Blue hazes hang over stands from the language used and every Tom, Dick and Harry tries to claim membership in the Barmy Army when they come to but one game dressed as some form of supposed children's entertainment and don't know the difference between a wicket and a boundary.

This I know to be true from more than mere conjecture as the irritating Fred Barlow made me accompany him to a match. Now several things annoyed me about the whole occasion 1) My guns were confiscated until the end of the match and at least five people within spitting difference needed a bullet to dissuade them from idiotic activities. 2) Skin tight leather is not comfortable to sit in in 30 degree heat with no shade and no breeze. 3) Not once during the day did Fred buy me an ice cream.

I had always seen cricket as something akin to Wimbledon in the untouchable stakes.  An unshakable pillar, a cornerstone of true culture that would stand the test of time. Sadly it seems that when taking centre court there will be less Pimms, strawberries and cream and more Carling and pork scratchings this year given the fall of cricket.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Hunting a Priest Killer Day 2

So a warrant for my arrest was issued today. It isn't the first time this has happened and it won't be the last...but the reason for such a warrant is completely ridiculous. It's not like I did anything particularly dangerous...for once...and it's not like the general public were being put in unnecessary danger...for once... The reason for the demands for my incarceration came after I locked Frederick Barlow in a cleaner's cupboard.

Fred is claiming obstruction of justice just because I stopped him from arresting someone he thinks is guilty of murder because I needed to talk to them. In all fairness to Fred, the guy in question is probably guilty of several hundred murders. I still think the warrant was an overreaction.

I went to speak with Mitch, an informant in the gang underworld from the Hornet's Nest gang, who told me where to find Anthony. Now the reason I was seeking Anthony was that if anyone had authorised a hit on Patrick, he would know about it. That would then narrow down my search field. If a hit hadn't been organised then I was looking more at a personal vendetta or a points scoring exercise. Either way I was hoping the hit had been called for.

Anthony proved a difficult man to find. I looked in every darkened doorway, every dumpster, every seedy pool hall, bar and public house and couldn't find him anywhere. I decided to go and sit in one of the parks for a while as traipsing around the more...glamorous sights of the city had left me in need of fresh air and a shower. I sat down on a bench and low and behold opposite me was Anthony feeding the ducks...criminal indulgence really does take on all forms...

After a few minutes of harmless small talk in the park he asked to move to a more secluded location to talk about Patrick, this is when Fred had gotten involved. He walked casually over, sat down next to us and in a low voice told Anthony he was under arrest. Now this made me annoyed for three reasons. 1) It's rude to interrupt people when they are talking, 2) Arresting Anthony took away the only shred of a lead that I had and 3) Anthony ran, making Fred chase him and in turn making ME run...RUN!

Fred managed to get himself caught in the revolving door which gave me a chance to catch up to him, yell at him and throw him in the cleaner's cupboard near to the revolving door. So obviously this means that I should be arrested...fortunately I did get Anthony to tell me that Sykes, leader of the Snake Devils had just risen in power after completing a hit that meant he could start expanding their territory. This was a promising start...well as long as I could avoid Fred and not get arrested...considering the number of squad cars parked around my building right now, that doesn't seem like something I can avoid for too long.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Dangerous Minds

There was a time when it was easy to tell criminals from the rest of the cattle throng. The shifty eyes, the scarred face, the tommy guns tucked under the arm - ah what days of salad and glory were these.

Again the modern world has taken away the ability to spot the criminal mastermind with the insurgence of teenage cybergeeks into, hitherto, the province of men. Anyone on a skateboard raises suspicion now, especially when they are found circling cash points. If you are within any doubt of who these creatures are, they can be easily recognized by the inability to dress. Jeans are worn halfway down the leg so that the majority if not all of their underwear is visible.

The vulturic tendency of the beltless generation aside, most of them do not have the skills nor lack the intelligence that criminal enterprise demands. This may seem to be a contradiction in terms but there are many people I have come across who think themselves highly intelligent but have no form of skill in any field other than mindless conversation - Mayor Major Tyler is an excellent example of this.

In all honesty I miss the days of the street thug and his master lurking in shadows waiting to pounce on the unsuspecting hero. Granted this does still happen, Kevin Metis and Derek Long are cases in point, but both are now currently rotting in prison cells and this does make life fairly dull in places.

Yes there is the constant annoyance of Fred Barlow to contend with on a daily basis but dodging him has become more of a tedium than an activity. What would be a refreshing change would be a criminal mastermind with both skill and intelligence, like Professor Moriarty but sadly I am no Sherlock Holmes. So someone on my own level to match wits and gunfire against would make my day for all of three seconds.

This doesn't seem to be very likely though so I shall have to be content with beating and shooting young men and women who live like cave-trolls and have no upper body strength but do manage to amass much of what is left of the rest of the world's disposable income...or rather convert it into technology and a collection of mint condition comic books and action figures.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Hunting the Priest Killer - Day 1

With the capture of Henry A. Weldon out of the way and no new, interesting work heading my way and by interesting I mean well paying, I now have the time to hunt down the scumbag responsible for killing Patrick.

My first idea was to see what the police knew about the whole affair. There are two ways of learning about what the police know: 1) You take the officer in charge out for dinner or drinks, get him drunk and ask him or 2) You break into the police station and look at the case files. Since the officer in charge of the investigation was Harry Lee, it wasn't a good idea to get him drunk. Mainly because last time we had been in a bar together, Fred may have ended up throwing Harry through the window. We're all keen not to have a repeat of that incident.

Breaking into the police station isn't all that hard if you happen to have the keys of one nameless sergeant, who has always been very careless about where he leaves things lying around.    Not that I got the idea for this from watching Bill & Ted... Still if Fred finds out I have them he, at least, won't send me to military school in Alaska.

There are also perfect times for breaking into case files, namely lunchtime. For some reason the filing room is completely unmanned between the hours of 12 and 1 so it didn't take much to slip in and look over the notes.

All evidence suggested that the killing was gang related. No leads had been found as to which gang was responsible or what the provocation was. It's always so much fun to get so much information. 

Interestingly it was still useful in some small part. No gangs are known to operate in this particular part of town, especially not within spitting distance of my office and flat. There are also only three gangs that could operate in the area as it means they don't have to cross into anybody else's territory to get there. This did help a lot, so I just had to narrow it down to one gang and then maybe two or three morons who had made the biggest mistake of their lives.

Time to go talk and see what my friend Mitch has to say.

Friday, 4 May 2012

May the Fourth Be With You

Other than Halloween, today is the only day that I expect to turn around a corner and run straight into Darth Vader. 

Granted the first time this happened, about two years ago now, I was not only surprised to walk straight into Darth Vader but surprised to discover that inside the confines of the costume was a then police constable. Yes, you've guessed it, Fred Barlow is a Star Wars geek.

I wasn't sure which of the two was a more difficult concept to process - that I hadn't just happened across David Prowse or James Earl Jones or that Fred Barlow was spending his day off dressing up as Darth Vader and rushing to some secret event.

Naturally I had no choice but to follow him. There are, after all, few times in life when there is honestly nothing that could be more amusing than what you are about to witness.

I was hoping for some form of children's birthday party where he had been hired as the entertainment and would have to dance to Michael Jackson's Beat it, accompanied by Stormtroopers. Sadly though it was a private party in a bar, for which I was denied entry due to my lack of costume. Not even waving my impressive arsenal in their faces could move them to allow me in.

This called for drastic action. It took me half an hour to locate and change into a more suitable outfit. Thankfully I did not have to dress as Princess Leia as I really did not want to feature as the centre piece in any fantasy those around me may have been prone to. Instead Boba Fett provided me a way past the Wookie and Gamorrean that guarded the entrance. On the whole it would have been a fairly normal costume party except for the life-sized game of Dejarik being played in the corner. 

What caught my eye the most was the force lightning competition, which Fred seemed to have entered into. Round by round the contestants were whittled down until only five remained. The remaining five then had to recreate the lightsaber duel with Luke Skywalker (the rotund bar owner in this case) from The Empire Strikes Back. The whole thing would have lost its appeal had it not been for Fred making it through to the the lightsaber duel. It is surprisingly difficult to suppress laughter dressed as a bounty hunter, especially when Fred was declared the winner and asked to remove his mask.

Strangely enough the whole thing was supposed to be a secret, so when the photos turned up plastered all over the offices and cells of the police station it was probably a touch embarrassing. Still have no idea how it happened...or where I put the negatives...