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Bullet - Issue No 1

Bullet - Issue No 1



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Published by rokerboy
Issue 1 of Bullet - hard hitting stories, noir laced with rock'n'roll attitude
Issue 1 of Bullet - hard hitting stories, noir laced with rock'n'roll attitude

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Published by: rokerboy on Apr 02, 2007
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Published bydigitalent LtdPO Box 38Wylam, NorthumberlandNE41 8YUContact:info@bulletmagazine.co.ukEdited by Keith Jeffrey
"Anniversary" byJason DeBoerfirst appeared in"Eleven Bulls".
Issue 1£2.50www.bulletmagazine.co.uk
Ken Stockill, smelled and looked like his yard, dishevelled and ill kemptwith the aroma of clean fresh pine wood acting like cheap cologne.Stockill’s had been the first into the Mount Talbot Business Park in thesixties. A big success story for a small town like ours. At their peak they’demployed 120 men in yards throughout the region but Ken had fucked itall up and now he was down to this one yard. I wanted that yard, for theclients, for the men but most of all the goodwill. He had a brand and thetwat didn't know what it was worth.Ken was up to his neck in it. Manual workers liked to get paid, it was abasic, forget that and you ain’t got a business. He’d forgotten it. As Iparked the car up opposite I could see Ken, grey balding hair, in a sea ofangry pointing fingers, his hands held up in surrender trying to bereasonable, trying to be the voice of reason against thirty pissed offblokes:"I’m sorry lads, but I thought I would have had the money today but thebank has withdrawn our overdraft and the VAT man’s served a windingup order. I need a couple more days.""You fucking lying bastard, this is two weeks without pay."A middle aged man, grey hair greased back in a dying quiff grabbedKen by the tie and pulled him up close to his face so that Ken could tastethe Brown Ale on his breath."If you don't pay us now, we’ll take our pay out of what’s left of thisshithole and you can fuck your business.""Lads do anything rash and I’ll have the police on you." Ken was noKissinger. Time to step in."How about if I pay these lads off for you?"This startled everybody and they all turned to look at me, the brand newstar of the show, the knight in shining armour.Ken looked at me with the disgust he reserved for war criminals: "I mighthave known a toe rag like you would be behind this."It was at times like this that my look of injured innocence came in handy."Ken, Ken, I’m only trying to help, make sure these lads get the moneythey’re owed and keep the business going." The lads saw a glimmer ofhope."So who are you mate? Are you gonna buy the business or what like?""Hang on, hang on. Ken knows that I have offered to put money into thebusiness, I would like to buy but Ken won’t sell."The quiff: "Is this true?""Look it’s not as simple as that, he'd make half of you redundant in amonth or two, with me we've all got a chance.""Aye but he's got the money hasn't he?"I got the cheque book out:"Anytime you want Ken, I could do it now if you want."The crowd surged tightly around him. Past the grim faces Ken saw theVAT man arriving. He gave up, he had no chance."OK, OK it’s yours, just see them right will you?"Ken walked back to the office. Like I said, it should always be like this.
Take Over 
The speed of events was making me buzz like Johnny Ramone's guitar.It was an electric intensity, bone deep. Thought was unnecessary, I waspure velocity and it forced me to action. The situation was clear andextreme, the options black or white. This is the way it should always be.I clicked shut my mobile, the news was good. I moved quickly into myoffice and cleared the papers from my desk, catapulting them to the floor.The desk phone, was inviting, beckoning me on, glamorously black withglowing green bulbs of light. I punched in the number. An electric tone, avoice and then me, staccato, spitting out terse, clear instructions.Twenty seconds and then on to the next call. This would take some time,the calls would start coming my way soon and I hadn’t got things inplace. Whacked out on adrenaline I paced the room as I talked.Motion was necessary; it relieved the tension gnawing at my joints.As I spoke I looked through the small wired safety window in my officedoor. The staff were getting on with things, photocopying, making phonecalls, it all seemed insignificant, unimportant. I was dealing with big stuffhere but out there they were oblivious. Out there they got on withordinary things, their small lives, worrying only about the pinhead jobs Igave them to justify their wages. They could never have this, they couldnever do this, they wouldn’t be able to cope.Half an hour later I'd spoken to everyone I needed to, things were inmotion, all I could do now was sit back and wait for the storm to burst.I needed to calm down, my heart was pounding through my ribcage andI thought I was going to explode. I took five deep breaths and then sat inmy fake leather executive armchair that framed me like a cheap overcoat.The office was second-hand and nasty, magnolia paper, marbledpolystyrene suspended tiles, grey carpet and a Viking Direct desk that costless than fifty quid. The sign of a business with its priorities right, moneyout there working, not tied up in fancy decor and expensive furniture.Things like that meant the backers had faith in me, they knew I did thingsright, I planned carefully, thought through every eventuality. I was a goodrisk. Solid.The time was now.The phone rang with a querulous tone that I'd always meant to change,banging through my thoughts with a jarring intensity. The voice confirmedthe news. I rushed out of the office, door banging on the frame, face fullof grim intent, Alison looked up startled as I spat the words at her liketracer bullets:"The Press will be on the phone any minute. Fob them off best you can."Alison’s face frowned like a puzzled baby:"The Press?""I’ll tell you later - I’ll be back in an hour."Stockill’s had been a big employer but had been on the skids for as longas anybody could be bothered to remember. Over manning, crapproduct, no marketing, if you ain’t growing you’re dying. I’d had my eyeon the place for years. They made wooden packing cases, not glamorousI know but this was a killer growth business. For a cheap price, I neededthem desperate and ready to sell but I had to get in quick.
Milky Wilberforce (Sunderland, UK)
Bullet No.1
I arrive in the conscious world with a jolt, and the feeling that something immenselyimportant must be done. And that this something is linked firmly with my feeling ofhope. But the pills have taken effect and I am utterly confused, I can't hold a singlethought.
Newspaper reports about a missing child - 2 bodies found in a skip.
I needto get a grip and do something. Hope. I lie in the bath for 5 minutes (maybe) andthen, not really fully aware of what I am doing I get up, dozens of pains swim aroundmy body, a head ache spreads across my cranium...pins and needles down myarms, I feel dizzy, begin to loose my balance, fall over. I can feel my face going red.I open my eyes and the room seems small, too small, closing in on me (too small).My breathing, my breathing, my breathing is irregular and the pins and needlesspread across my chest.I stand and the walls seem to be moving, no bubbling, the room is alive.
Or I am dead.
For a split second an image fills my mind-
me stabbing, stabbing my landlord (blood).
I begin to wander aimlessly around the room, I almost lose my balance,again. I go over to a chest of draws, open one and rummage, as though I'm lookingfor something, even though I'm not, but am I? I feel sudden anger, pick up the TV,throw it at the wall. The screen shatters and the room seems a normal size again.I walk into my bedroom, over to my cupboard, open it and take out a small box(a shoe box), remove a gun (which I don't have a clue where I got) and check that it'sloaded. Only half knowing where the hell I am going I leave the apartment, walk outa corridor and up some stairs. I'm hyped up, confused, and only vaguely aware that Iwill soon be responsible for the end of another life.Soon my mind is full of a thousand thoughts, but none of them make any sense atall. I am simply driven on by something to keep climbing the stairs. And the stairs aremoving from side to side, like a rope bridge in a strong wind. Suddenly one imagebecomes crystal clear in my mind -
my own face covered with blood.
I’m at THEdoor, and now I feel a fresh emotion - fear. But this only kills my momentum for amoment, and then I raise the gun and shoot the door lock, then kick the door wideopen. The apartment I enter smells of vomit and mould, newspaper clippings havebeen pasted all over the walls: CHILD SEX KILLERSTRIKESAGAIN, KILLERCLAIMSTENTH VICTIM, SICK PERVERT FINALLY CAUGHT, PAEDOPHILESHOT IN ARREST,KILLERFREED ON TECHNICALITY. FAMILIESOUTRAGED. Suddenly I know fully whyI came here. A door at the other end of the room opens and a man comes in, hisface fills with shock and fear.I point the gun at him when suddenly he seems to take the form of the black demonin my nightmares. Then he is just a man again then the demon then the man thenthe...My arms begin to shake and I feel dizzy, the entire room begins to spin aroundme, and I see my grandfather's hateful face, he stares at me and I stare back, westare at each other and he looks away, the room becomes completely still and I seethe man as simply a man. I pull the trigger.The man is knocked over.He whimpers in pain.Blood pours from his mouth and chest.His eyes bulge.I walk over to his dying body. Aim the gun at his face. Pull the trigger.His face explodes.Hot blood splashes my legs.I stare at the remains of his head for what seems like a lifetime. Then, as if suddenlydeciding that I've seen enough, I close my eyes, put the cold gun against my sweatytemple, and pull the trigger...The gun clicks. I am Alive.
Redemption Vodka 
Fractured memories run through my memory like a discoloured blur.
My sister falling,falling, repeating...
ah my mind is fucked. For almost a year it has been, my entire lifethus far is a blur, with the occasional clear patch.
Land lord giving me shit about the rent today.
The warm feeling is wearing off now, but my vision is still blurred, mythroat is dry - it feels like it has been burnt and covered in salt.I see the vodka bottle, a quarter full, it's gonna hurt my throat but I really want a drink- I think downers will be best, I want to sleep although I don't want to dream.
A nightmare about demons chasing me...
Shit the vodka is a few metres from mychair, I can't reach it with my foot, and I don't want to move, but I really want a drink.
My sister, my fuckin' sister,
get out of my mind. Then I see on my lap, after all thistime, a half smoked joint, that'll do, it’ll make my throat worse, but fuck it.I realise that I need a lighter. I feel like I'm gonna be sick. It's by my foot, yes thelighter is by my foot, and the floor around it is moving, wobbling, and the lighter ismoving with it. Imake a grab for it, light the joint and toke. Where's the smoke?!?Irealise that its gone out and then so do I.I regain consciousness and my eyes are hot and dry, I crawl onto the floor and overto the Vodka. Now I have it, I drink half of what's left in one.
Being beaten up in a bar by three men, my nose gushing blood, the taste of copper in my mouth.
I lie onthe floor and close my eyes, bright patterns of light swim in the darkness. And I driftinto them.I awake desperate for water, I'm dehydrating. I drink some more vodka and mymouth burns, my throat burns and my chest burns. My sister's funeral. My headbegins to ache intensely and I vomit violently. Then I vomit again, and again until Irun dry, thick spit hanging from my lips. I wipe my sleeve across my face and fallback to sleep.The sun cuts cross the room and burns my eyes, and my mind feels like it's beenripped clean in two. It's morning and I feel something I haven't felt in years,I barely recognise the emotion, and it feels strange. Hope. My back is covered insweat, I feel like shit, but I feel hope. There's something that I can do (something)......But what? I want to get up, wash myself and do whatever it is that can save me. I pullmyself to my feet and drag my self across my lounge/ bedroom/kitchen - where thefuck am I? It's my lounge and I walk into the bathroom. Sweat down the back of mylegs and back, my eyes watery, my vision blurred and a foul taste in my mouth. Ireach the bathroom and step into the bath.
Warm blood splashing my face,something hard and sharp driving into my thigh.
I turn on the shower, the cold watershocks me (cold, cold, fuckin' cold).
Shattered glass all over me. The water warms up and I rub my face. My sister's dead body on the car bonnet, her left arm torn almost entirely from her body - her bloody face, her fucking bloody face.
I sit downin the bath and let the water pound my back, I feel slightly better, but not much (notmuch).
My mother screaming at me, endlessly screaming.
Hot water covers me andself hate fills me. I need a drink, a strong straight drink and some pills, there are pillsin the bathroom cabinet, I really want some pills. I stand up and am able to reach thecabinet without getting out of the bath, I grab 2 types of pills and swallow a hand fullof each, they'll take effect soon, I hope. That word again - hope- is there hope?
The funeral, my grandfather and the look that he gives me, he hates me, the old bastard,
except I'm the bastard. That face haunts me. I turn the shower off and lie inthe bath, before long I fall back to sleep.
A tall black demon has my sister's mutilated corpse in his arms, he is laughing, and begins to dance with her corpse. I am watching and can't do anything, I can't move, I sit in a chair and watch as they dance like lovers (entwined). Her arm hangs limp by her side. She is like a broken puppet.
Ross Bradley (Notts, UK)
Bullet No.2 

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