Skip to content

Wyrm Cast – Chapter 1

Chapter 1

Two By Two

Mr Buckley Harold Trip and Mr Henry James Gig were every inch the image of fine, upstanding Victorian gentlemen.  The very best of friends for as long as either could remember, the two of them – though in no way related – were as similar as two very similar peas in a pod. Both were slightly short, and perhaps slightly overweight, with round friendly faces featuring quick and easy smiles.  Their hair was the most notable difference between the two – a lustrous black (though flecked  grey in places) for Mr Trap and a vibrant red for Mr Gig. Though, as is common for men approaching their middle years, they were somewhat thinning on top but both went some way to making up for this by sporting a most impressive pair of bushy sideburns – indeed, these sideburns were the most reliable way to tell the two apart when they were wearing hats (as they always did in polite company).  When Mr Trap and Mr Gig were about town, as was the case on this particular evening, they often accentuated their similar appearance by dressing identically.  So as they stepped out into the cool night air bound for their club for an evening of good food, fine port and quality cigars (having no duties to discharge for their employer, the esteemed Mr Blackthorne, and having taken their leave of their darling wives for the evening) Mr Trap and Mr Gig were clad in matching evening dress courtesy of the esteemed Grieves and Hawkes of Saville Row.  They sported well fitted (and flattering) trousers, weskits and jackets in a pleasant deep blue, along with skilfully-starched shirts and white cravats made from a really quite expensive imported silk. Decked to the nines, their panoply was completed by matching ivory-handled canes of darkly-stained mahogany, dapper top hats and well-cut woollen Chesterfield coats to ward them against the November chill.  All in all, Mr Trap and Mr Gig looked the very model the of fashionable, well-heeled gentlemen that one would expect to meet in the finer clubs and other establishments in the final years of the nineteenth century.  Which meant they looked really quite incongruous strolling down the streets of Hendon, a somewhat unpleasant little suburb of Sunderland, at 1am on November 27th in the year of our lord Two Thousand and Twelve.

‘Now I do believe we may have taken a wrong turn at some point, Mr Trap’ said Mr Gig, taking in the deserted dark streets, the boarded up windows, the graffiti-scrawled walls and the small drifts of litter and detritus building up against the walls and kerbs.  ‘I could have sworn we should have reached Allcots by now, but these environs are really quite unfamiliar to me.’

‘Quite so, Mr Gig,’ said Mr Trap. ‘I fear that we are, in fact quite lost’

‘Indubitably, Mr Trap’, said Mr Gig.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ said Mr Trap.

Mr Trap and Mr Gig surveyed their rather bleak surroundings despondently.

‘And I was so looking forward to my dinner this evening, Mr Trap,’ said Mr Gig with more than a little remorse.

‘Indeed Mr Gig’, replied Mr Trap.  ‘Unless I am very much mistaken Pierre was to serve his famous devilled kidney tonight.  I do declare that there is not a man in this country who cooks kidney better than young Pierre, would you not agree Mr Gig?’

‘Indubitably, Mr Trap’, replied Mr Gig.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ added Mr Trap.

Not far away from where Mr Trap and Mr Gig were walking, a young man by the name of Danny Thomas was  reflecting on what had been a rather bad day all told. He’d spent much of it aimlessly wandering the streets of Sunderland becoming increasingly cold, bored and frustrated with each passing hour. In theory he’d been job hunting, but having decided before he’d even left the house that morning that no-one was going to employ a 17 year old school leaver whose only worthwhile qualifications were three grade ‘C’ GCSEs he hadn’t really tried very hard on that front. In reality he’d spent his time walking aimlessly around the town centre, looking in shop windows at a whole range of junk he couldn’t afford and wishing he had enough change to get something to eat that was more substantial and better quality than the questionable cheese and onion pasty that had been his only meal all day. Things had got worse when he’d returned to the scruffy two bedroom terraced bungalow he shared with his waste of space mother on one of the roughest estates in town. Upon trying the front door he’d found it locked tight, and repeated checks of his jacket and jeans pockets confirmed he hadn’t picked up his keys that morning. That left Danny with the options of trying to break into his own home – and knowing his luck getting bloody arrested for it by coppers who wouldn’t believe he actually lived there – or to continue roaming the streets until his mum got back from wherever she was. Danny had a bad feeling that she wouldn’t be back for a while – it was Giro day, so she’d probably be in the pub till late, if she ended up coming home that night at all. So it was Danny found himself huddled in a shop doorway on a deserted, frosty street, trying to keep out of the bitter November wind at 2am, cursing his luck and how damn unfair life in general was. He was so busy shivering and wishing he would get some response to the myriad of voicemails and texts he’d left on his mother’s phone that he didn’t see the two men approaching him, and was only aware of their presence when they were a few feet away and one of them addressed him. “You there, boy!” said the man in cheerful, upper-class voice. “I say lad, I wonder if you could assist my good friend and I this evening?’ Danny span to face the new arrivals, jumping back into the shop door in surprise. The two men standing opposite him  in no way looked like the usual kind of people you might find wandering a city’s streets in the middle of the night. They both looked about fortyish and were short, barely over five feet, the better part of a foot shorter than Danny, and were somewhat chubby. Danny thought they must have been in fancy dress or they’d been at a particularly posh wedding, given they were decked out in identical honest to goodness top hats, pale blue overcoats and even had old-fashioned little walking sticks.  Both of them sported huge sideburns, one with black hair and the other a fiery ginger. The whole ensemble and manner of speaking reminded Danny of a pair of characters from some god-awful BBC adaptation of some Charles Dickens book. ‘I fear we may have become lost, my boy’ continued the black-haired one who had addressed Danny. ‘We are attempting to locate the Allcott Club, aren’t we Mr Gig?’ ‘Indubitably, Mr Trap’ confirmed the red-haired one, as Danny wondered what kind of names ‘Trap’ and ‘Gig’ was meant to be.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’  added the original speaker, who was apparently called Mr Trap. Somewhat unnerved by the men’s sudden appearance and strange manner Danny tried to dismiss them with a perfunctory reply.

‘I… I’ve never heard of an Allcot Club, sorry mate’ he said through chattering teeth. ‘Er… can… can I just get past you there?’ He wanted to move on and find a new place to try and get out of the cold, but the way the two men were standing meant he would need to try and push past them, and Mr Trap and Mr Gig simply acted like he hadn’t said the last part.

‘Oh come now sonny’ said Mr Trap happily. ‘Surely everyone has heard of Allcots! Why, they must have the finest selection of port known to Christendom, and Pierre’s cooking is the talk of the city, particularly his exquisite kidney. Is that not so, Mr Gig?’

‘Indubitably, Mr Trap’, agreed Mr Gig.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ added Mr Trap. Danny was starting to panic now. It seemed these two freaks were trying to keep him pinned in, and God only knew what they were intending to achieve by that. He edged forward, trying to encourage them to part and let him past but they stood their ground, their faces still the very picture of congeniality.

‘Look mate, I don’t know where it is’ insisted Danny. ‘Now I gotta go…’

‘I know what you’re thinking my fine fellow’ chuckled Mr Trap. ‘And you are quite correct. It’s only fair that we make it worth your while. If you furnish us with directions, there’s a shiny half-a-crown in it for you. Is that not fair, Mr Gig?’

‘Indubitably, Mr Trap’ confirmed Mr Gig.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ laughed Mr Trap. Danny tensed. That’s it, he thought. This is getting two weird. Time to make a break for it. As he prepared to try and barge past Mr Trap and Mr Gig another voice came echoing down the quiet street.

‘Hey look over here!’ it called, ‘Danny’s gone and pulled!’ Danny looked past the two top hats in front of him and saw a group of four lads heading towards him. At first he felt relief – maybe he could get some help in getting away from the two nutcases in fancy dress, but then he recognised the leader of the group. Big bloody Mick, thought Danny. Aged only 16 but still six foot one and built like a bloody bus shelter. Big Mick was the estates prime cause of petty crime and vandalism, and Danny was pretty sure he was behind a fair few assaults and stabbings too. The other three with him were a couple of his interchangeable cronies, pretty much indistinguishable from each other in their chav uniform of tracksuits, caps and hoodies, the latter pulled up around their faces to both keep out the cold and obscure their identities. Danny was pretty sure they’d all be pissed up, stoned or both and were probably heading from one of the house of one gang member to another in a search for more booze, pot or glue. If anything the gangs arrival had only made the situation worse – not only did he have to deal with two olde-time lunatics who probably wanted to touch him up or something, now there was also four barely-literate thugs to deal with, who would quite happily kick the shit out of him as soon as look at him on the off chance he had some loose change they could nick. Danny generally tried to avoid Mick and his cronies as he had no interest in getting mixed up in their brand of trouble, but they had seemed to take this as some sort of personal insult and always went out of their way to make his life difficult whenever possible.

“You a rent boy now mate?” sneered Mick, the addition of ‘mate’ not sounding entirely sincere to Danny. “You gonna let these two homos double-team you? D’you charge cash or d’you just tek payment in fags?” Mick’s henchmen sniggered as they moved around the Danny and his two original harassers, loosely hemming them in.

“I say, young man!” exclaimed Mr Trap, as he turned to face Mick. “There is absolutely no need take such a insolent tone or to speak to this young chap with that kind of coarse language. It is simply unacceptable that you choose to behave in such a manner, is that not correct Mr Gig?

Indubitably, Mr Trap!” Scolded Mr Gig.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ stated Mr Trap. Mick and his gang just stared at first, bemused, but then burst into laughter at Mr Trap and Mr Gig’s outrage,

‘Fuck me, you’ve got a right pair of nutters here Danny’ gasped Mick when the laughter subsided. Danny pushed further back into the doorway, praying that the commotion would wake up one of the people living in the nearby flats who might call the police on his behalf. Fat chance, he thought. They’d be more likely to look out of their window, see Mick was involved and then ignore it, in case their actions prompted a certain someone to put a brick through their double glazing or even torch their building.

‘Now listen here, you blackguard!’ said Mr Gig firmly, stepping forward to confront Mick. ‘If you do not refrain from such boorish behaviour we shall have no choice but to summon the constabulary!’

‘Quite right!’ agreed Mr Trap, stepping up next to Mr Gig ‘If I am any judge I would say you are fuddled by alcohol. Mayhap a room provided by her Majesties police force would be the best place for you to sleep it off. Is that not right, Mr Gig?’

Indubitably, Mr Trap!” agreed Mr Gig.

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ concluded Mr Trap. At this the sniggering amongst the gang stopped dead. All of a sudden Mick’s face was hard, all pretence of humour gone

‘You threatening me with the fucken police?’ he said softly, but in a voice that made Danny’s blood run cold. Danny then realised now that Trap and Gig had moved forward slightly it would be easier for him to make a break for it. He just had to pick his moment…

‘You gonna call the police on me, is that it you pair of cunts?’ snarled Mick. His gang had altered their positions slightly, Danny noted. One had joined Mick in squaring up to Mr Trap, while the other two were slowly moving in on Mr Gig.

‘If you do not step back,’ said Mr Trap in a controlled, authoritative tone, ‘we shall have no choice but to…’

‘Fuck you, you fucking faggot’ snapped Mick, clearly not interested in what Trap had to say. ‘Tell you what, youse two look like you’d carry a bob or two and I need some fucking money. Haway lads, looks like we’ve found a cash-point. lets make a fucking withdrawal.’ With that Mick lunged forward to grab Mr Trap, followed a split second later by the other three who pounced to join the assault.  Mr Trap and Mr Gig’s hands moved so fast, with such an incredibly swift series of short, sharp motions, that at first Danny had no idea why Mick and his cronies collapsed to the floor so suddenly.  The truth quickly became evident as the Mick and the other one on Danny’s left were quickly awash with blood from where their throats had been opened from ear to ear.  He could tell instantly that they would bleed to death to death within seconds as they scrabbled helplessly on the cold pavement.   Mr Trap still held the weapon that he had used, a long, old fashioned and now blood-slicked straight razor.  Danny could not comprehend how he quickly he had retrieved the blade from where ever it had been hidden, opened it, and despatched his two assailants.  Inhumanly fast would have been a fair description.  Then Danny realised that with the same lightening speed Mr Gig had produced a long corkscrew from about his person and had about four inches of it’s curled, metal worm protruding from between the fingers of his bloody fist. The gore covered corkscrew was clearly the cause of the the wounds inflicted upon the other two thugs, who lay quite still, flat on their backs and both sporting a bloody ruin where there left eyes had been seconds ago. Danny tried to run, but shocked by the suddenness and brutality of the violence he was frozen to the spot, unable to force his legs into action.  He stared at the dead and very soon to be dead forms on the street in front of him, mouth agape, unable to even cry out.  After about ten seconds he managed to lift his eyes away from the corpses to look upon the killers, who only moments ago he had dismissed as some kind of eccentric upper-class mental cases.   Now for the first time he saw their true faces – eyes red on red, like pools of fresh arterial blood, black lizard like tongues flicking over rows of thin, almost translucent, needle-sharp teeth… both still wore wide smiles but and pretence of joviality or even humanity was utterly gone, replaced by an unmistakeable. unspeakable and unnatural visage of evil.  And then worse still, the razor-wielding Mr Trap began to laugh – a perfectly normal, jolly laugh as if he was hearing a friend recount some humorous anecdote

‘I say, Mr Gig, it would appear all is not lost for our evening out!’ he chuckled.

‘Whatever do you mean, Mr Trap?’, asked Mr Gig.

‘Why, it would appear that we’ll get our dinner of kidney after all, not cooked by Pierre of course but maybe all the better for being fresh’, replied Mr Trap, suggestively twirling his straight razor in surprisingly nimble fingers.

‘Indubitably, Mr Trap’, hissed Mr Gig..

‘Irrefutably, Mr Gig’ snarled Mr Trap..

As the two gentlemen bent over the bleeding bodies of their victims, Danny’s legs finally listened to the urgent entreaties from his brain.  He turned and fled as if from the devil himself, putting as much distance as possible between himself and the sight of those inhuman red eyes and the sounds of laughter and tearing flesh.

* * * * *

The next day, the news of the deaths of four, fine upstanding young men (with their whole rich and promising eyes ahead of them) shook the estate, the city and indeed most of the country to the core. Particularly when piece by piece certain horrific details began to emerge – a few of them scurrilous rumours dreamt up by the over-active imagination of gossips, but most of them all to horribly, sickeningly true.  The police cordoned, tent covered site attracted many visitors – the curious, the ghoulish, and of course the bereft carrying their wreaths, cards and heartbreak.  Then, at around Two o’clock that afternoon there were two visitors of particular note – two men who, in there own way, could be fairly described as just as strange as the two that had caused the atrocity.  They weren’t too unusual to look at – one short, stocky, with mess of back hair and a slightly beat-up face – nose somewhat askew, ears a little swollen, possible signs of an interest in a rough physical activity like boxing or rugby.  The other was taller, thinner, with close cropped hair that was clearly a surrender to early male pattern baldness.  Both of them couldn’t have been much older than their mid twenties, and judging by their cheap, supermarket-purchased suit trousers, shirts and ties they had clearly come from one of the city’s many offices or call centres.  In fact the security passes with the light blue and white lanyards that were hidden in their pockets would have confirmed that they were both employed in the Gener-8 2000 contact centre and their names were Paul Waterson and Alan Clearly respectively, though those names were at this time not especially relevant, as we shall see.  The curious thing is that if you’d asked the fellows colleagues at the contact centre, they’d probably be surprised that they were strolling down the street in each other’s company – they’d never really got on, never fraternised at work, the even barely ever talked despite sitting on opposite desks .  Their manager might also mention that he wanted an urgent word with the pair of them, and that he was keen to find out why both of them had left the call centre that morning, both standing up and striding away from the desks leaving customers taking pointlessly through their abandoned headsets. The shorter of the two walked with clear purpose, his face fixed with a determined expression, eyes forward, shoulders back, fists lightly balled as if ready for a brawl at the drop of a hat.  This demeanour along with his rough countenance gave him something of a dangerous air, despite the slight limp that caused him to drag his right foot somewhat as he strode along.   His taller companion moved more cautiously, his hands thrust deep  into his trouser pockets, shoulders hunched forward. His eyes darted to the left and to the right almost constantly, seemingly always on the look out for some danger or other, and every now again he muttered to himself nervously.  The two men walked up to tape that marked the edge of the crime scene – briefly glanced at the white clad forensics moving between the tents that separated the nosy public from the atrocious sights – then carried on down the street.

‘That was, I assume, what we were looking for?’ asked The Limping Man.  He noted The Worrier’s brief nod of confirmation and continued. ‘Any sign… any hint as to what we are dealing with on this occasion? Anything we’ve encountered before?’

‘I’m afraid so,’ replied The Worrier. ‘I’m sorry to say it but I’m quite certain it is the handiwork of Mr Trap and Mr Gig’. The Limping Man’s face didn’t betray any emotion, but he swore softly under his breath. The two men walked on in silence for another hundred yards, lost in their own thoughts for a few brief moments.  The Limping Man was the first to break the introspection.

‘Of course, if Trap and Gig are abroad then this means…’

‘I know full well what it means George,’ said The Worrier quickly, preferring the rest of his companions sentence to remain unsaid.

‘Blackthorne and Company’ finished The Limping Man, ignoring the interjection. ‘It’ll be a bad business, Percy.  Bad business.  It can’t be anything but with that Bastard’s hand at the tiller.  Can you tell which way Trap and Gig went?’ The Worrier considered the question for a few moments.

‘Maybe, George… but I’m sensing something else too.  Another presence. Mainly an impression of fear, but it’s tainted with Trap and Gig’s malevolence.  I think someone witnessed them at their work and yet escaped them.’

The Limping Man swore again, a touch louder this time.

‘That poor soul is going to be in all manner of trouble before too long, Percy’ he said. ‘I don’t think we can just let that go, so I don’t. I’m afraid Trap and Gig will have to wait for a few hours at least’.

‘Do you really think we can help them George?’ asked The Worrier.  ‘We’re almost ten hours behind. Do you think we can get to them before their… contingencies take effect?’

‘Indubitably, Percy’, replied The Limping Man with a sneer of distaste on his face. ‘Bloody well irrefutably as well I should imagine’ he added.

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: