As my USA trip came to an end, I flew back to England and boarded a coach to the North East in time to have one last night out. I met a few mates in the local pub and my old boss, Bob Hangdog, was sat at a table with his drinking buddies. I hadn’t seen him in about four months and he asked what new skills I’d learned. All I did was spend a summer in the sun. My mates looked at me.
“I’ve learnt how to laze about on a beach.”
They sniggered, but Bob wasn’t happy. After a few prickly minutes, he turned to my imminent studies.
“Degrees aren’t easy you know. It takes an effort to stick it out. Do you think you can do it this time?”
His friends smiled at each other.
“Yeah and I’m gonna get a First Class Honours,” I said.
“Look…” he smirked a sideways glance, ”I’m not being funny, but I just missed getting a First myself. There’s no way you’re going to do it. Take a step back and concentrate on passing, that’s all I’m saying. You’re not of requisite calibre to get a First…”
His friends openly laughed at me.
I leant over the table. “…We’ll see,” I interrupted.
I left for another pub and met my brother, Marky, for a quick beer. After last orders, we walked over an open grassy area when I heard someone shouting from about thirty metres behind.
I looked and saw someone running toward us. I carried on walking and talked to Marky.
“Can you see who it is?”
“Nar, it’s too dark.”
I heard the footsteps running on the grass behind and, as he was just about on me, I turned to my right, raised my elbow and thrust it into his throat. He hit the floor like a sack of shite and I stood over him. Looking, my heart dropped. It was a really good mate of mine. He writhed around the grass, holding his neck, gasping for breath. I helped him back to his feet and apologised, a lot. When he recovered, we talked and I knew we were okay. I was just so used to trouble there that I thought he was going to attack me. I hoped that moving away would enable me to have a different life.