If anyone had used the phrase, “mean streets of Market Bosworth” twelve months ago, Billy would have laughed in their face. This was just a sleepy old market town wasn’t it, nothing ever happened here. Oh, but how quickly things changed when that bug kicked in. So here he was defying the curfew, shuffling down back entries and trying to avoid the street lights; he was thankful there were very few of them now. He was heading to meet a dealer. Not his usual one, as he’d been taken out by a rival gang. By all accounts this new guy drove a hard bargain. Billy stepped out onto Shenton Lane, scanning up and down as he did so. Police weren’t too much of a worry, he usually fobbed them off with some sob story about his grandma being ill with the bug. No, it was the vigilante groups that were of more concern to him. More often they were made up of local gang members, and they wouldn’t take kindly to him meeting up with a rival dealer.
He slipped into the shadow of the local cemetery entrance, and there he was. A short stocky bloke who looked like he could take care of himself. Although Billy knew he wouldn’t be on his own. No, not too far away there would be a couple of heavies hidden in the shadows. These two would be checking up and down the road for police or vigilantes, but also to be on hand in case of ‘difficult’ customers.
From a respectable distance – nobody got close anymore – Billy introduced himself. The guy said nothing, but stepped over and popped the boot on his black BMW. Yes, billy thought to himself, these guys were doing pretty well out of this dark market. The trick for them was staying alive long enough to enjoy their ill gotten wealth. Cautiously billy peered over into the boot, and his heart skipped a beat. There, nestling in a sports bag, was what he had come for. He moved a little closer, oh my, he thought. Now, he knew enough to know that some of this stuff was coloured. Just a little trick to attract the punters. However, there was no trace of dye here. He looked a little closer, and there they were. The tell tale criss cross markings. These were the real McCoy. For a split second he entertained the notion of grabbing the bag and legging it, but he knew the minders would be on him in a heartbeat.
So he opened up with an offer and the haggling started. Billy was banking on the fact of this being such quality stuff, that the dealer would want to shift it quickly. He would not want to get caught with a boot full of this. He managed to get him down 50% from his starting price and handed over fifteen quid. Then he slipped his prize into the plain shopping bag he hoped would be enough of a disguise and set off for home. Secretly he hated himself for this. He should be stronger willed for god’s sake. He’d tried to go cold turkey, but the inevitable abdominal cramps just proved too much.
Safely indoors, he opened his bag and peered into its depths. He caught his breath. Oh, what bliss, what ecstasy he was going to experience, for there almost glowing in the half light at the bottom of the bag, were two pure white, quilted, luxury, toilet rolls.