It’s Life on Mars meets Roy of the Rovers in this 1970’s football crime caper. Terry Lamont is a true football great. An elegant midfielder with skill, vision, and pace he dodges brutal tackles on mud soaked pitches with the ease of Vaslav Nijinsky.
Like all geniuses, Terry has a flaw, namely gambling. Unfortunately Terry is not a particularly good gambler and is quickly in hock to the West London villain Harry ‘The Gent.’ To add to Terry’s woes he finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time as he ends up in trouble with the law. So much so that his club Camden Wanderers want shot of him.
Can Terry get himself out of trouble with the law and convince the Camden to give him another chance? More importantly and to protect his precious knees, can Terry find the money what he owes Harry? Also will his ex manager Vincent stop hassling him to call him. Find out in this 1970’s football caper Full House.
Wrong place, wrong time
‘I’ll raise you twenty,’
‘I’m out,’ Lenny replied.
Terry could feel that hidden thrill coursing through his veins like a virus. His hand was pretty strong that he just wanted to enjoy that ecstatic hit of winning. Of course he could be wrong and Chris could have a Royal or a straight flush but Terry was sure he was bluffing. Besides the thrill of the unknown and making that calculated gamble saw Terry meet Chris and raise him another twenty.
‘Splashing the bleeding cash aren’t we?’ Chris laughed. ‘You’re luck can’t keep going.’
‘It ain’t luck mate,’ Terry smiled. ‘I just know how to play cards.’
‘Give over,’ Chris scoffed. ‘The only game you know how to play is snap.’
‘I think you should have walked away when you had the chance,’ Rod said as he raised the pair up to fifty.
By now the nerves were twitching as Rod sat there pan face like a piece of granite stone. So much so that Terry wondered if he should have took his winnings. After all Camden were playing their London rivals Spurs tomorrow.
The early Friday morning sun weakly shone through as Terry casually met the pot. He was in too deep now to just walk away and besides his hand was just too good to back out of. Terry’s mind was already working out the few hundred pounds that he could potentially walk away with.
‘Okay,’ Chris said. ‘Let’s see what you’ve got.’ As he now showed his hand to be a flush with the King, four, eight, ten, and Jack of spades.
‘Three of a kind,’ Rod grunted.
The sudden surge of his heart rising and thumping furiously made Terry feel extremely high as he held his cards excitedly.
‘What you got Terry? Two pairs?’
The slow click of the card of one Queen, then two, then three, and finally the fourth made Chris look like one of the many hapless goalkeepers that Terry had rounded and scored.
‘You jammy bastard!’ Chris sighed as Terry laughed as he scooped away his winnings. ‘That’s me out.’
‘And me,’ came the replies around the table.
Terry glanced at his watch. Maybe it was just as well as he was expected for morning training at eleven.
‘Well I’d best make tracks and get some shuteye before training.’
‘Any of that money going to make it’s way to Harry?’ Chris asked. ‘He’s been asking after you, you know.’
‘Of course it is,’ Terry said with as much sincerity as a kid promising his Mum he wouldn’t go mad spending all his pocket money in the sweet shop. ‘Although I am on a lucky streak and you do have to take advantage of it don’t you?’
BANG! BANG! BANG!
There was a look of bewilderment amongst the group which changed to one of alarm as it sounded like a battering ram was smashing the door.
‘What the fuck?’ Chris shouted as he raced over only to be knocked straight to the floor.
Panic broke out as Rod threw a punch at one of the burly men who had stormed in only to join Chris on the floor. In the meantime Terry was trying to edge his way to the back entrance to the fire escape of the kitchen only to feel a large whack at the back of his head as he saw a yellow flash.
‘Not the legs!’ Terry screamed as he curled up in a ball.
‘Get on the fucking ground,’ a large hulk of a man screamed. ‘We’re the Sweeney Todd and we haven’t had our dinner.’
‘I am on the floor,’ Terry winced as he suffered another kick to his ribs.
‘Don’t get fucking smart me with sunshine!’
‘What the fuck is this about?’ Chris asked despite being in pain.
‘I don’t know we thought we’d pop round for a cup of tea and a friendly chat,’ Don sneered. ‘It’s a fucking raid you dipstick.’
‘You can’t burst in here like this,’ Terry cried indignant. ‘We’ve got rights. This ain’t some tin pot country.’
Don paused feeling slightly amused at the cheek of who he felt were low life.
‘That’s right,’ Chris wheezed as he suffered another kick. ‘We’ve got rights.’
‘Where’s your warrant?’ Terry said as he instantly regretted his bravado.
Feeling outraged Don grabbed hold of a petrified Terry as he pinned him up against the wall.
‘What did you say you little scrot?’
‘I was only, you know, you’ve got to show us a warrant.’
‘Here’s my warrant,’ Don snarled as he thrusted a piece of paper right before Terry’s eyes. ‘Do you want me to shove it were the sun don’t shine?’
‘I’m going to put in a complaint against you,’ Terry said as he suffered another smack with his lip starting to rise like a Yorkshire pudding.
‘Are you?’ Don snapped angrily. ‘Well here’s something for you to complain about then.’
With that Don continued to kick poor old Terry like a football who cried out in pain. In the meantime the other members of the flying squad conducted a thorough search of the flat for the counterfeit money that Chris was storing.
‘Loads of Mickey Mouse money in the bedroom, Guv,’ Owen said as he came stunned to see the Camden Wanderer star player Terry Lamont being beaten up by his boss. ‘Is that Terry Lamont your jumping up and down on?’
Don paused with Terry grateful for the respite as the face suddenly registered that he had beaten up one of the most talented players that England had produced.
‘So it is,’ Don said surprised. ‘What the hell are you doing here?’
‘Visiting friends until you lot gate-crashed,’ Terry said feeling that the loud laughter meant he was out of the woods.
‘Sorry about this Terry we thought you were part of Chris’s firm,’ Owen said.
Terry tried not to look surprised as he knew it was Harry the Gent’s firm that ran this particular part of West London.
‘That’s okay,’ Terry said as he carefully fixed himself. ‘Now as much as it’s been nice meeting you all I’ve got to go. The big game tomorrow against Spurs and I need my rest before training.’
With that Terry walked with the confidence of a Hollywood movie star entering a premiere towards the front door.
‘Where do you think your going sunshine?’ Don barked incredulously at the continuing cheek of Terry Lamont.
‘Look I’ve got nothing to do with this caper and the boss will have my head on a plate if I show up late. Besides I can’t afford the fines.’
Don ignored Terry as he continued stare directly at him that he could feel himself shrivelling inside. ‘I know your playing Spurs tomorrow because I’m a big fan.’
There was a slight panic in Terry’s voice as there was still animosity over him picking Camden over Spurs or more precisely Camden prepared to pay off his gambling debts at the time.
‘Ah. Look I had no choice but to join Camden. The circumstances were purely out of my control.’
‘Relax Terry,’ Don said with the sincerity of Chopper Harris promising not to hack down the centre-forward he was marking. ‘I ain’t going to break your legs. Who do you think I am? One of your friends or something?’
‘Look,’ Terry said as he tried his best to barter his way out. ‘I know it’s a bit late in the day but I’m sure I can sort you and your mates a few tickets for the big game tomorrow.’
‘I’m a season ticket holder,’ Don replied coldly. ‘And besides which we don’t take kindly to big shots trying to bribe her Majesty’s Police force.’
‘Come off it that wasn’t a bribe,’ Terry protested.
‘Shut it and empty your pockets.’
Terry sighed loudly as he slowly pulled out the wad of cash that only a few minutes ago he had won with Don snatching the cash to inspect.
‘Now lads what do we have here? A bundle of notes that don’t look like Mickey Mouse money.’
Upon seeing the greedy glint in Don’s eyes, Terry started to panic like a school kid being confronted by the school bully who had hold of his priceless football stickers.
‘That money ain’t mine,’ Terry said. ‘I owe someone that money.’
‘Damn right it isn’t your dough,’ Don scoffed as he carefully put the money in his inside pocket. ‘So kind of you to make a donation to the Police trust fund.’
The loud cackling laughter of Don’s sidekicks made Terry feel quite alone. Hopefully they would now let him go whilst he would have to work out a way to pay Harry.
‘Can I go now?’
‘That’s right Terry,’ Chris cried. ‘Leave your mates in the lurch!’
‘Don’t worry I’ll get you my brief to get you lot out.’
Unfortunately Terry could hear the loud whirring noise of Don’s brain working overtime as he grabbed hold of him by the arm.
‘I’ve got an idea lads,’ Don cried animatedly. ‘Everybody knows Camden are not the same team without dear old Terry. So let’s give Spurs a helping hand by keeping hold of Terry long enough that he won’t be able to play.’
‘Now hold on,’ Terry said appalled as he tried to break his arm free from Don’s grip.
‘Guv, we can’t keep hold of them for that long,’ Owen said. ‘Camden will make sure Terry is released in time for the game.’
A frown broke out on Don’s face as the lines wrinkled his face like a pebble skimming a river.
‘You’re right,’ Don paused. ‘Which is why we will throw them in the cells and officially charge them tomorrow morning then question the little toe rags later.’
‘Now hold on,’ Terry replied ‘You can’t do that.’
‘Shut up Terry, we can do whatever we like now let’s round these scrots and bung them in the cells until later.’
‘Nice one Terry,’ Chris grimaced as they were all frog marched to the waiting Police van outside.
End of part one.
Find out next week to find out what happens to Terry