Helpful Leddy, a story of exploding restaurants, runaway rivers and teenage love – Chapter Eight

Once again, I’m late with Leddy’s adventures, and so near the thrilling climax too! My life is going a tad upsy-daisy at the minute, mostly Uni-related stuff.  I’ll just have to keep on posting when I can, happy blogging!

      While all this was going on however, Leddy and Sandy remained trapped in the mansion. Having been chased all around the building and pursued through every room it had, they eventually managed to elude their capturer’s and find and make their way into the attic. They entered it through a small trapdoor that came up in the centre of the room. Behind them lay the top wall of the mansion, while in front of them they gazed in silent awe. The whole room stretched from one end of the mansion to the other, and in the dim-light of the small light bulbs that flickered away like stars on the ceiling, it almost looked like a far-reaching runway, lying dead in the night sky.

     Leddy and Sandy closed the trap door behind them and fell to the floor, their backs against the wall and their faces bright and shining from sweat and exhaustion.

     “Y-you okay?” asked Leddy, unable to catch his breath.

     Sandy slowly turned her head to face Leddy, partly from exhaustion and partly from sarcasm.

     “Okay? Am I Okay? D’you know, I had a nice quiet evening planned when I would get back from work. I was going to settle down with a bowl of cereal and catch up on Family Guy.” As she spoke, she moved closer to Leddy, her face going redder than before. “Instead, I’ve spent my evening being locked in an underground dungeon by a shrivelled up old bitch, getting shipped off to a diamond smuggler’s mansion, and being chased by mountainous thugs!”

     She then settled back down to her former position, looking the other way whilst Leddy sat in reasonably stunned silence.

     “Well,” he said at last, “it was more than what I myself had planned.” Sandy rolled her eyes in exasperation and continued to look the other way. “But you’re right; this whole situation has got so out of hand. Let’s look at the facts; we’re being pursued by some large men because we don’t want to join in helping our village putting some white powder into small diamonds.”

    “You make it sounds so lovely.”

     “But there must be more to it than that. Everyone likes diamonds, why should it be kept such a secret?” Leddy pondered, starring into the floor.

     “Maybe they’re illegal diamonds?”

     “Nah, I don’t think so.”

     “Why not?”

     “Too clichéd, that’s why, like Fiona said back in the pub.”

     “Okay, so what else could it be?” asked Sandy.

     “Well that’s just it, I’ve no idea. But I wonder what that white stuff was? Did you notice, when we were being chased and ran through every room…”

     “We ran through every room at least ten times! It was like one of those Scooby Doo scenes where they all go running through six doors that are right next to each other and keep running through each door!”

     “At least ten times, exactly! But when we kept running in and out of that factory room, where everyone was busy with them diamonds, literally everyone in that room was stashing some of that powder for themselves and everyone in that room was someone from the village? Whatever Arthur’s got going on here, it must be damn convincing to make everyone work like that and take some of the stock for themselves!”

     “He said he was going to give our village a new lease of life.”

     “I know, our village has been going down hill lately, the post office, the garage, the bank. They’ve all been closed up in the last year alone!”

     “So whatever he’s doing, he must’ve convinced the village that helping him will put the village back on track, but all for diamonds? Bit of an anti-climax if you ask me!”

     “What if it’s not just diamonds?” said Sandy, suggestively, “What if its diamonds and cocaine? Those two things can easily fetch in a pretty penny, especially if they’re both together!”

     “What makes you think cocaine has anything to do with this?”

     “Because I swiped some from the factory room.”

     Sandy brought out a small, see-through bag full of the white powder from earlier. She opened it up and dipped her little finger into it, and Leddy did the same.

     “It’s cocaine alright!” said Sandy

     “How do you know?” asked Leddy incredulously.

     “Well, we all get up to a bit of hanky panky in college didn’t we?” answered Sandy cheekily. “And they’re combining the two somehow, selling them on for a profit. These two things put together must fetch an amazing profit to the right person.”

     “But how?” asked Leddy. “Do you think it’s like a party bag? You know, where you get some crappy little toys and a slice of cake after the party’s over?”

     “No, Leddy! Didn’t you see what was going on in that workshop thing down there, with Muriel? All those tools they were working with, and they each had diamonds and cocaine on the table. They must be combining the two somehow!”

     “Cocaine encrusted diamonds! I never thought of that!”

     “Meerkat soup with snail pie.”

     “I hadn’t thought of that either.”

     “Chocolate pie with whipped cream.”

     “I do have some spare time, you know!”

     The two guffawed with laughter at the joke, empowered with a sense of satisfaction that they had managed to work the situation out. Once the laughter died away, they heard the sound of heavy moving down below the floor. Suddenly, the trapdoor they had come up from began rattling away fiercely, only the lock on top preventing it from being flung open.

     “We’ve got to get out of here!” Sandy pocketed the cocaine away and leapt to her feet.

     “There may be another door at the end of the attic, let’s go!”

     The two of them set off with a run along the attic as fast as they could, only guided by each small light. As they ran on along the attic, which seemed to never end, they either passed through or jumped over several long-forgotten pieces of furniture, but the more they ran the more they began to feel dizzy in the head and sick in the stomach. Each light bulb that stretched along the roof seemed as dull, worn-out and dirty as the last one, and what with running as fast as they could, Leddy and Sandy felt that somehow they were going round in circles. Suddenly, as Leddy looked back once more to see if they were being pursued, he noticed Sandy falling face-first to the floor.

     “What are you doing down there?” he knelt down to his friend, “those fat gits are up here now, and they’re catching us up!” Sure enough, two round figures were making their way along the attic at a pace slower than Leddy and Sandy. They seemed to dive in and out of the pitch black spaces between each dull light bulb.

     “I tripped over something!” said Sandy, spreading her hand across the floor looking for whatever it was that made her fall. “Hey look! It’s a door handle!”

     “Well lift it and see what happens!” ordered Leddy frantically, the two round figures rapidly becoming closer and closer.

     Sandy lifted the handle and with it up came a slice of the floor.

     “It’s another trapdoor!” she exclaimed.

     “Yes, I’m sure everyone has worked that one out by now.” said Leddy dryly. He peered down the trapdoor. “It looks alright, down we go then!”

     They dropped themselves through the trapdoor, closing it as they jumped. The two men arrived too late to stop the two friends, but as they stared down into the black abyss, a smile spread across their faces.

     “They’ll be safe in there.” said one of them with a low laugh. “Let’s go tell Arthur.”

     “You mean we have to back again?” said the other annoyed.

     “Yes, we do!” said the first, like a mother giving an order to her child. “Come along, it’ll be good for you, you could do with losing some of that tubbiness.”

     He patted the other on his stomach, sending ripples gliding across his belly like a wave tearing its way across an ocean.

     “You’re no different than me!” said the other in protest.

      As they walked back in and out of the darkness, they bickered on, moving pieces of furniture as they did so. The first began to move a sofa out of the way, but then stopped to stare at it.

     “Do you think this’ll look nice in out living room?”

     “You can do what you like with the living room.” the other snorted, carrying on walking.

     “But I want to do what we like with the living room!”

     “Well I don’t care, you just do whatever the hell you want with the living room and my feelings!” his voice began to echo as he walked on into the distance.

     “Oh hang on a second!” the first called after the other, dropping the sofa and going after him into the flickering darkness.

     Meanwhile, Sandy and Leddy were falling through darkness; the two of them suddenly realized their mistake in being so quick to jump. Not knowing what they were to land on, nothing to hold on to, and unable to see each other in the darkness, they feverishly shot their arms into the darkness, hoping for something to hold onto.

     Finally, Leddy felt himself landing on something solid yet soft which collapsed as he fell onto it. When he finally returned to terra firma, he felt more of the solid yet soft things fall on top of him that seemed to split and spill its contents all over him, covering him in what felt like little soft bags. Picking himself up cautiously, Leddy called out to Sandy.

     “Sandy? Are you okay?” his voice echoed out into the darkness, unsure if a reply would come.

     “I’m just great you goddamn twat!” was the answer Leddy was holding out for.

     “Where are you?”

     “I don’t know! It’s completely pitch-black in here!”

     “Well, just stay where you are, I’ll come to you.”

     Leddy began to move, what he thought was, forward in the direction of where he thought Sandy might be, with his arms outstretched. With every step he took, he tripped over more of the solid yet soft things that had broken his fall and fallen on his face.

     “Are you even trying to find me or are you just fumbling around with whatever’s down here?” enquired Sandy.

     “Shut up you!”

     After managing to evade falling over for several steps, Leddy ceased his slow, careful steps and proceeded with a normal yet quickening stride. After two more steps he tripped over again, bringing several more soft yet solid things with him as he grabbed hold of whatever he could to stop the fall. As he fell to the ground he felt something else fall down too, something softer than the other things, something that was warmer, and something that made a noise as he grabbed it.

     “Leddy, get off me!”

     “Oh look, I found you!” exclaimed Leddy triumphantly.

     “Yeah, great, well done! Now will you get off me, and then get these things off me!”

     Leddy and Sandy fumbled around each other in the dark, not knowing what they were removing off Sandy. Finally, chucking the soft, brick-like bags anywhere they could, they settled down with their backs against a stack of boxes which stood still.

     Sandy panted in the pitch-blackness, recovering her breath, while Leddy did the same. Finally, Leddy spoke.

     “Okay, so, let’s just see what we’ve got here. Our boy Arthur has got our village, which before he came along, laid in disarray, to do his dirty work for him, namely encasing cocaine into diamonds which Arthur presumably sells on for a huge profit. In return, he presumably gives the village a percentage, thus setting the village back up again!”

     “That’s all fine in theory, but who knows how long he intends to keep this village under his thumb?” asked Sandy worryingly.

     “And also,” continued Leddy, “they’re working with cocaine, right?”

     “Yeah.”

     “Well, have you noticed, in the past couple of months,” his voice became distant and anxious.

     “Noticed what?” enquired Sandy, equally anxious.

     “Well, just, various people in the village. They don’t seem their usual self.”

     “What do you mean?”

     “They just seem quite, well, jittery, and in a rush, and tense, and some of them have been looking ever so frail.”

     “Leddy, what are you getting at?”

     “You don’t think that Arthur’s got this village, well, hooked on the stuff, do you?”

     “Oh, Leddy, what a horrible thought!”

     “Well it is only a thought! But what if it’s true?”

     Both Leddy and Sandy fell silent as they pondered the situation.

     “Well, either way,” said Sandy, “whatever Arthur’s doing can’t be legal at all! Who knows what he’s mixing the village up in?”

     “But they must all be here for a reason,” suggested Leddy, “maybe he’s serious about turning this village around, helping it get back on its feet.”

     “Oh, God, what a mess.” finished Sandy, letting her head fall downwards in despair.

     “I know.” Leddy added, feeling more helpless than ever.

     The two of them sat in silence for sometime, digesting the whole situation. As they sat in stillness, a small window up above let in some light from the moon. It seemed to be deliberately shining in on them, as if it were either taking some sympathy for them and the mess they were in, or else it was peeping in uninvited, and was keen to see where this moment was going for the two of them.

     Presently, Sandy’s head returned to its original position.

     “Still,” she began, “not as much of a mess as it was when you and I went to Scotland last year.”

     Leddy instantly brightened up, a smile beaming across his face.

“What do you mean? We had a great time!”

     “Yeah,” began Sandy, “except we were meant to go Wales!”

     “It is amazing where one little wrong turning can take you.” said Leddy, nostalgically.

     “And then you tried to convince me we were actually in Wales!” said Sandy, raising her voice but still smiling.

     “I wasn’t trying to convince you,” protested Leddy, “I thought we were in Wales too! It was only when we came across Hadrian’s Wall that I began to realize.”

     Both of them laughed, remembering the trip.

     “We had fun though, didn’t we?” asked Leddy, his voice becoming warmer and more inviting.

     Sandy looked up at him, her pale, pink skin turning a bright, flustered red.

     “Yeah, we did.” the two of them gazed at each other for a long time, letting slip some slight giggles every few seconds.  

    “Leddy,” Sandy began, taming her sniggering, “I-I’m sorry things didn’t work out between us.”

     “Hey, its okay.” said Leddy, “We’re still friends, aren’t we?”

     “Well that did get put to the test today didn’t it?” said Sandy, giggling some more as she spoke.

     Leddy sighed.

     “Oh, Sandy, I really am sorry about the whole situation. I was only trying to make things easier for you, I had no idea they-“

     But Leddy suddenly felt a finger placed on the middle of his lips and instantly became quiet.

     “Hey, its okay.” Sandy whispered. She lingered for a while, deliberately turning Leddy’s face to the colour of a boiled beetroot. At last, she let his lips go and got to her feet. “Well, we should probably get going.”

     But before Leddy could join her, they heard the sound of a doorknob being opened, and instantly the room was filled with a bright light from the outside. They saw a figure standing in a doorway, which moved forward to the side and turned on a switch, giving the room its own light.

     Leddy and Sandy could now see the room they were in was filled with cardboard boxes, many of them in disarray thanks mainly to Leddy, and some of the boxes were split open, also thanks to him. Spilling from the boxes were several bags of various sizes, some small, some medium and some half of the size of the boxes they were kept in. In each of the bags was the same white coloured powder that the friends had seen which was being used downstairs.

     “I do hope we’re not interrupting anything.” The figure stepped forward, offering a hand to the teenagers. Leddy and Sandy hastily picked themselves up, separating themselves from each other hastily, not bothering to take notice of the hand. “You don’t happen to know where your two friends have gone, do you?”

     In the light Leddy and Sandy could see that Arthur had managed to track them down, his tense, sweaty and jittery complexion more tense, sweaty and jittery than before. His crumpled suit showed dark, damp patches where he had been perspiring more than ever before. They could see that all of this was getting to him. The two beefy men who had chased Leddy and Sandy across the attic stood behind him either side, their faces still smug from earlier.

     “No, we don’t.” Leddy’s face first registered relief at the fact that Gary and James hadn’t been caught yet, but it soon changed to anxiety as he wondered what could’ve happened to them.

     “Oh, well,” Arthur began to shake where he stood, the beads of sweat on his forehead dancing as he jiggered uncontrollably, “well, no matter. I’m sure they’ll… turn up again soon.” He drew his finger beneath his nose and gave a rumbling snort, running his finger along the bottom of his nose as he did so. “Right, you’d best err… come with me. We never got round to discussing our future together.”

     Ever the quick and optimistic thinker, Leddy began to move forward, following Arthur towards the doorway. Surreptitiously clutching several split bags of cocaine with one hand and Sandy’s hand with the other, he whispered as softly as he could, taking notice of the two stinging stares of the two guards who waited outside.

     “Just stick with me.” he whispered.

     “Oh god, what are you doing now?” muttered Sandy to herself under her breath.

     As Arthur made his way out of the room turning left, Leddy suddenly charged forward, drew several bags to his teeth, ripped them open and chucked the contents all over the two guard’s faces. Leddy, with Sandy still in his hand, turned the opposite direction to Arthur and, turning a corner, they were gone in a flash. On seeing this, Arthur drew a feeble hand to his face and uttered a cry of disappointment.

     “Oh my, this all getting rather thick.”

Next, the penultimate chapter!

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One thought on “Helpful Leddy, a story of exploding restaurants, runaway rivers and teenage love – Chapter Eight

  1. Pingback: Helpful Leddy – chapter links and after-thoughts | Frambles

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