This is the twenty-seventh part of a fiction serial, in 719 words. It may contain some swear words.
The second meet.
Alan went to the travel agent near Islington Town Hall and bought two Iberia Airlines direct flight tickets from Heathrow to Barcelona for Gloria and Angie. One way, that was all that was needed for now. They were due to fly out on Friday, and he had managed to arrange for Chrissie to collect them at El-Prat airport and take them to his villa. Rosa had been told to make sure she looked after them when they got there, and money had been transferred so Gloria could ask Rosa for whatever she needed.
After almost a week of having them both fussing around at the flat, he was pleased to wave them goodbye when they got in the taxi that morning. Gloria had a couple of thousand in her handbag to keep the pair ticking over until he got there.
With no more to do until the next meet, he took himself into Chinatown by cab, and had a slap-up meal in one of the best restaurants there.
On the Sunday, he was at the warehouse early. Once everyone had arrived, he stood at the folding table and addressed the smaller group. “Okay, gents. Strip off down to your underpants, and put all your phones into this”. He walked around each person holding a plastic box with a hinged lid. When every mobile phone was inside, he took it into the office and left it there.
Graham was still dressed.
“Down to your skivvies please, Graham. I have to be one hundred percent sure nobody is wearing a wire. Especially you. Don’t make me come over and undress you. You won’t like that, I can tell you now”.
When he had inspected the assembled crew, he was satisfied. “Okay, get dressed, and listen up”.
“We are going to work next Thursday. Kenny, what’s happening with the vans?” Kenny stood up, still buttoning his shirt. “Got them all. The two white vans are in our yard. False plates, but relating to similar white vans. We have a Post Office van and a Telephone Company van for the switch. Again, false plates, but they come back as the proper vans. They are in one of our lock-ups, and we will drop them off in a car park in Epping Forest before the job. I have one bloke extra to ferry us around on that morning, but I am vouching for him, and paying him from my cut”.
Nodding, Alan continued. “Good man, Kenny. The extra bloke is down to you, so make sure he’s solid. Graham, is it all still on as planned?” Graham stood up. “Yes, Mister Gill. We will be in that lay-by before ten that morning. I guarantee that”. Alan smiled. “Don’t forget you are guaranteeing that with your life, Graham. Stitch me up, and you won’t ever find any place to hide”. Graham sallowed hard, and sat down.
His voice hard and menacing, Alan continued. “There is going to be a lot of cash knocking around after this job, and I will be taking fifty percent before any sharing. I have put up a shitload of front money. Talking of which, Carl, I will weigh you up for the kit before you leave, okay?” Carl nodded. “So we meet here on Thursday morning, at four. You had better all set an alarm, because a no-show is not going to cut it with me. You will all get the guns then, and I will say this just once. Don’t fire them unless there is absolutely no alternative. Graham, you and your mate are going to have to be roughed up a bit, so it looks good. Okay?”
Graham swallowed even harder. He was a man who had never been roughed up. “If you say so, Mister Gill”.
Alan lit a cigarette. “Right, you can all fuck off until Thursday. Not a word about this job to anyone. And I mean anyone”.
After locking up and driving back to the flats, Alan went to the Londis shop to buy cigarettes and whisky. He decided to grab a pizza while he was there. Ten minutes to cook, and no messing around with veg or anything.
As he walked back to Gloria’s, he didn’t notice the kid on the bmx across the road.