7| Criminals and Cruelty

253K 6.7K 1.4K


The Kings of Cullfield were criminals. I had heard the stories of their succession, how they maimed and murdered, how they paid off and threatened to get their way. I knew this and yet there was something about seeing things with your own eyes that made everything so much more real.

My bad luck kept on getting worse and I had barely even lasted a week employed under the family of gangsters, but once again I was here in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I shouldn't have gone back to the pub to grab my things, if I hadn't then maybe I wouldn't have owed Freddie King my life.

I hated him almost as much as he scared me, but there was a part of him that was hidden behind all the brutality and rage, a part that didn't annoy me as much. I saw it in the softened way he looked at me sometimes, almost like he had wished we had met under a different circumstance in a different life.

I'd been avoiding him for a couple of days now, the same way he had been avoiding me but I would catch him watching me sometimes. It wasn't in a malicious way, it was like looking at me calmed him down more than anything else could. Sometimes he didn't even realise he was staring at me, his eyes darkening in a trance as he followed my movements—those were the times I enjoyed the way he looked at me because when he had his eyes on me like that, I knew there was no way he could have been thinking of something bad to do to me.

He consumed my thoughts when I was at work and when I was at home, he consumed them to a point that I had forgotten that there were worse men than him.

My brain was scattered as I re-entered the pub with an annoyed sigh, it was my own fault that I had realised I'd forgotten my things when I had made the journey home—forty minutes of walking wasted only for me to walk back, and then after I had grabbed my things I would have to do it all over again.

Getting my bag from behind the bar was a simple enough task, even through the dark I could easily manoeuvre through the room, it was everything after that which screwed me over.

The door swung open just as I was about to leave, and instead of making myself known to the gangsters in the room my heart picked up its pace, my brain short-circuited and my legs refused to move. The dread filled me from the ground up as I watched them all walk through the door, and when I had gotten over the initial shock of the position I had put myself in, I knew it was too late.

I slowly and quietly retraced my steps as I moved back behind the bar, crouching behind the counter and hiding myself with the wooden panelling. Even as I prayed that I wouldn't have to see anything I wasn't supposed to see, the gaps in the wooden structure I was hiding behind gave me a front-row seat.

Freddie's father had been the first one through the door, and even though Freddie had learnt everything he knew from him, trying to reason for your life in the face of this town's most ruthless and influential gangster would be much more useless.

Victor King was the cunning behind Cullfield's very own gangster operation, a man who wouldn't need a reason to kill you or need to lift a finger if he wanted to. Just like all his sons, Victor King had a violent reputation—but he much preferred to work in the shadows as he gave his sons charge of the crueller jobs.

Freddie was the next person to walk through the door and I couldn't help the way my heart had leapt out in relief when I saw him. Despite his obsession with me, and despite the dangerous way in which he wanted me—with each day that had passed I had started to feel safer in his presence. I had barely noticed the gun in his hand as I took in the foreboding look on his face, the dark metal glinted in the artificial light and suddenly I understood that safety with him wasn't an option anymore, especially not with the rest of his family here to watch him.

Kiss Me DangerousWhere stories live. Discover now