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For Your Pies Only - 8


By Dr. B
May 26 2006

The Fellowship (minus 0007’s love interest Janette, who had been brainwashed by Hergan and forced into Tino with a tanker driver from Blyth) were sat outside Welford Road, the headquarters of the Pussycat Empire, currently mulling over their options. The cab of the tanker was warm and cosy, in stark contrast to the cold, dreary and inhospitable surroundings it was parked in. It was obvious to everyone that Welford Road offered no sanctuary to foreigners – Otago had the House of Pain; Leicester had Welford Road.

Alison was beginning to realise that she may not have all the merchandise answers to the conundrum of getting into Welford Road; sponsor’s logos adorned the roofs of the stands – alien logos assaulted Alison and Mick’s corporate senses.

“NEXT?” murmured Hergan in disbelief, “NEXT?”

“Next what?” wondered Alison, glancing through the windscreen at the unfamiliar words Mick was intoning like some sacred mantra.

“NEXT …… time the Falcons are heeyar, we’ll bring some bloody touch judges who aren’t totally blind like?” suggested 0007 helpfully.

“NEXT …… time I come on a road trip, it damn well won’t be sat in a sidecar between Perry’s legs?” offered Louchy.

“NEXT …… time I’m organising transport with sat nav and decent suspension!” groaned Mankey, whose bottom had been rubbed raw by the constant friction of the plastic seat of Tino, “which pretty much rules my car out …”

“I’ve seen your car before,” grinned Hergan, “parked in front of one of our meteorite craters in the East Stand car park at KP.”

“Damn right,” grumbled Mankey, annoyed at Hergan’s brusque approach to the long-running matter of the Hallowed Ground behind KP’s East Stand.
“0007, I think we’re going to have some problems getting you in there at the moment,” said Alison, twisting her hair furiously around her fingers in an outward admittance of defeat.

“Why’s that then hinny?” Micky looked preoccupied. The Seroxat was beginning to wear off now and his feelings of euphoria and eternal optimism were being replaced by a dull anger that burned in the pit of his stomach and a headache that could give an angry bull elephant food for thought. He also missed Janette, but would pull Hergan’s arms and legs off once the mission had been completed.

“Your Cruise suit,” sobbed Alison, tears beginning to stream uncontrollably down her cheeks (the ones that were visible at least), “it marks you out as a foreigner. They’ll know you’re not from round here. The next thing you know, they’ll come up behind you and it’ll be ‘Ey up mi duck, you’re not from round here are you love?’ That’ll be it; cover blown, back to KP without bringing down the Pussycats.”

“Nee probs pet. We’ll gan to the shops and buy somethin’ more sootable like.” Micky was feeling generous towards Alison, partly because he hated seeing women crying, partly because he didn’t want Alison whipping out any more promotional underwear for him to model for the benefit of the rest of the Fellowship.

“OK 0007, I’ll take you to the shops with Alison and we’ll get you suited up appropriately,” decided Hergan. “Mankey, Perry and Louchy; stay here with the tanker and work on a way of getting Micky in there to meet Oz Tin.”

Under cover of a storm of black hailstones, the clothing guru, the marketing guru and the front row forward ran from the tanker and headed towards the happy shopping district of Leicester town centre. Unable to find the happy shopping district, they instead settled for a shopping district where miserable run-down and harassed single mothers shouted abuse at their children, where the children shouted even more foul abuse back at their mothers and the shaven-headed chavs that were probably the fathers of the abusive children sat around on council-maintained benches drinking White Lightning and beating up students.

In the midst of this scene from Dante’s Inferno, Micky spotted a familiar logo.

“Why aye Alison pet! Looky there! A NEXT shop!” Micky was practically clapping his hands with glee.

Entering the shop with the bemused innocence of the small child, Micky wandered around and looked at rack after rack after rack of comfortable, functional yet stylish knitwear for the modern man. Shades of grey, beige, taupe and charcoal floated through his vision as Alison dragged him towards the suit section.

Not ever having clothed a gorilla before, Micky’s dimensions were proving to be a challenge for the young lady behind the counter.

“He’s the new Tiger’s signing you know,” added Mick helpfully, hoping that this would extract a smidgeon more customer service from the girl who was currently trying to find a jacket with a ninety-five inch chest.

“Really?” breathed the young assistant. “In that case, follow me. We’ll go to the Tiger’s corporate hospitality dressing rooms.”

“What did she say?” asked Micky, completely thrown by the East Midlands accent and racking his brains for the few words of other languages he’d learned just in case of emergencies like this one.

“Konnichiwa?” Nothing.

“Goden tag?” Nothing.

“Bonjour?” Nothing.

“Bienvenue?” Nothing.

“Guten tag?” Nothing.

“Whey, we’re not in a country ah recognise any more,” moaned Micky, holding his head at the thought of trans-border travel without his passport.

The young girl led them through a secret door at the back of the regular changing rooms into what could only be described as a bordello. Rich drapes of red and burgundy hung from the expansive, vaulted ceiling and enormous, leather Chesterfield sofas were arranged artistically around the living space.

“This is where the Tigers come to get suited and booted,” giggled the girl. The very tone of her voice suggested that she’d seen more male flesh and debauchery in this room than in the rest of her lifetime in the Midlands. “Ooooh, and that little fella Austin. He’s lush!”

“What did you say?” asked Hergan sharply? “You know of Oz Tin, leader of the Pussycat Empire?”

“I don’t know anything about a Pussycat Empire,” stuttered the young lady, “but I know Austin Healey, the little hairy one from the Tigers.”

“Dammit!” shouted Hergan. “His influence knows no bounds!”

“He’s really funny. So zany and humorous!” drooled the assistant.

“What’s she gannin’ on aboot?” asked Micky, bewildered by the use of adjectives with the letter ‘z’ in.

“She’s saying you’re lovely and a fine figure of a man,” Alison reassured 0007.

“Ah, ye’re a canny wee lass,” snorted Micky, rubbing her chin in what he hoped was a non-threatening way in the country he now found himself in.

Whilst Micky was being suited in NEXT finery, Alison took the opportunity to look further around the Tiger’s clothing boutique. She fingered items hanging on racks, shook other pieces of clothing from their hangers and felt the material and generally tried to get a feel for what she could get away with selling in the Kingston Park shop next season. Alison stopped at some delightful fleece beanies, just perfect for keeping frozen Midlands ears nice and warm on a winter day. One had enormous holes cut out of the side.

“What’s this hat for?” she asked the assistant.

“Oh, that’s Graham Rowntree’s beanie,” replied the assistant helpfully. “Have you seen the size of that man’s ears? Getting a beanie to fit him is an absolute nightmare!”

“Did you charge him for the holes?” asked Mick, never short of seizing a business opportunity.

“What do you mean?”

“Cut holes in and make sure you pass the costs on to the customer! Simple business sense!” laughed Mick. These southerners might like to think they know something, but they can’t get one over on the Mick-meister, he thought chuckling under his breath.

“How do you mean?” asked the assistant.

“Well, let me give you an example,” Mick was prepared to be expansive whilst Micky was getting finalised for his NEXT suit. “We had a puffa jacket for the Falcons …. AHEM … when I USED TO WORK FOR the Falcons and we accidentally had a batch without arms. Rather than write them off, we called them ‘gilets’ and sold them for £20 off! Who’s the man baby?”

“What a great idea!” exclaimed the young girl.

“Damn right.”

“Don’t forget them awaar shorts what had the wrong names on ‘em,” giggled Micky. “You tried to sell them as well! Some bloke called Boris ends up with a short that tells him he’s called ‘Josh’!”

“Genius,” cackled Hergan, becoming slightly deranged at the thought of his marketing megalomania.

“OK, you’re done!” The assistant backed away from Micky, eyeing her work. He still looked like a gorilla in mating season, but at least now he looked like a STYLISH gorilla in mating season.

“How much do we owe you?” Alison wanted to get down to brass tacks and get back to Welford Road as quickly as possible.

“For that tip over the holes in the beanie, you can have this one on the house!”

“What did she say Hergan?” asked Micky, getting thoroughly fed up with having to listen to outpouring after outpouring in this strange Swahili-esque language.

“It’s an the hoose!” shouted Mick at 0007 in the only language Micky understood.

“Alreeeeeeeeet!” Micky high-fived the assistant, breaking her shoulderblade in two places and taking one of the comfy sofas on his back as he left. “This’ll go nicely in ma flat like,” he said, avarice glinting in his eyes as he walked through the store.

As they were walking back to Welford Road, Micky spotted a camping and outdoor shop over the road. “Hang on a mo, ah’ll be gannin’ in theear for a tick then ah’ll be back oot.”

Not wanting to delay getting back to the tanker any more, Mick and Alison just sighed and left Ward to his own devices for a moment. He rejoined them minutes later clutching something strangely cylindrical in a plastic carrier bag.

Once back at the tanker, the seven got together to discuss a plan. Mankey, Perry and Louchy had come up a very similar cover story to the one 0007, Alison and Hergan had concocted in the branch of NEXT; Micky was go into Welford Road as a new front row signing, Mikhail Wardosewski dressed in his new NEXT suit and then try to make his way into the Pussycat’s inner sanctum for a showdown with Oz Tin. Perry would act as muscle backup, with Manky and Louchy providing surveillance thanks to some tiny cameras that Louchy had brought to clip onto clothing. Mick would act as translator again, with Alison being relegated to sitting in the tanker doing a crossword.

“Righty then! Ah’ve just got a little job to do before we stort then,” announced 0007 and briskly jumped out of the cab. Strange noises were heard from the back of the tanker and Perry wrinkled his nose. The last time Micky had had a ‘little job to do’, it had brought much of the western side of Newcastle to a grinding halt. Anti-terrorism sensors at the airport had detected biological agents drifting across Kenton, Bank Foot and Kingston Park. The cause had eventually been tracked down to a Mughlian Phaal that 0007 had enjoyed the previous night with Tom May, Sparks and John Fletcher. This had been two weeks ago, and Sparks was still in intensive care. Micky reappeared, tightening his belt and jumped into the cab.

“OK then kiddies, time for a last singsong,” Micky announced brightly.

“Ooooooooooooh me lads, you shouldn’t mess with Falcons,
Although our DoR is daft, we don’t come from the Balkans,
We’re sitting here all ready to go, safe within our tanker,
We’re going in to Welford Roooooooooooooooooooooooooad,
To smash a little annoying person …..”

Micky’s lilting refrain brought tears to the eyes of the Fellowship, although that may have been more to do with the strangely exotic smell he had brought back into the cab with him.

With Hergan leading the way, 0007 and Perry entered the domain of the Pussycats, looking back at their trustworthy companions for what seemed like the last time. Louchy checked the feed from the tie cameras.

“Everything’s fine in here boys,” he whispered. Micky and Perry were wearing earpieces which would allow them to communicate with Mankey and Louchy in the tanker. Louchy had neither the resources nor the inclination to offer one to Hergan, a fact which suited Mick down to the ground.

“Aye, it’s canny reet oot here an’ aal,” tested Micky. The earpiece annoyed him. It was like having a piece of hard plastic fusilli pasta jammed in your lughole. Still, it was a better option that where Mankey had suggested Louchy place the earpiece for Perry ……….

As soon as they entered the stadium, the trio of brave adventurers came face to face with an old adversary. An effigy of the great Pussycat warrior Joh Nno blocked their path. Being aware of the ritualistic nature of the Pussycat faithful, Mick adopted a position of submission.

“Hail the mighty Joh Nno,” he intoned in a trance-like monotone, “Without whose mighty leadership, Jonny would never have kicked that drop goal in 2003.”

Micky and Perry stood there, bemused by the sight of a senior KP official salaaming wildly to a statue.

“Do it! Do it!” hissed Hergan. “You’ve got to perform the sacred ritual or you’ll never gain access!”

Without further admonishing from Hergan, 0007 and Perry knelt on the hard ground and gesticulated wildly whilst making ethnic noises in the back of their throats.

Perhaps it was just the lightning in the sky causing extreme phenomena, but the statue of Joh Nno seemed to smile in benevolence at the trio and they could have sworn they heard the words “I am the one true god”; they then stood and entered the clubhouse.

Blocking their path was a stocky, curly haired fellow with a lilting accent and a hard, weather-beaten face.

“Ah, to be sure, me foine boyos, what’s the craic this afty then eh?”

Micky looked even more confused.

“Erm, nothing my good fellow,” said Perry. “We seek an audience with the mighty Oz Tin.”

“Is that so now? An arrdience with me boyo Oz eh? Oi think oi’ll haf to know a little more about ya before oi’ll let ya carry on boyos!”

“Who’s this git?” asked Micky from the side of his mouth.

“It’s the dreaded Morr Phi,” explained Hergan. “Scourge of defences everywhere. He wears the talismanic jersey 15, like God. He looks like a curly-haired aged leprechaun, but don’t let looks deceive you, he’s a slippery customer!”

“Why, hello there Morr Phi. Y’alreet?” asked Micky, his neck cracking as he positioned himself for his next move.

“Top o’ the marnin’ to ye fellas!” Morr Phi bobbed up and down, wearing what appeared to be a pair of green dungarees with a shamrock on the front. “None get to see the moity Oz widdout moi say so.”

“So ah need to go through YOU,” Micky pointed at Morr Phi, “tae get to Oz Tin like?”

“Indeed!” chuckled Morr Phi.

Hergan could see what was coming. So could Perry. 0007 hunkered down a foot or so closer to the floor and rolled his head around his neck a few times to limber up. Suddenly, without warning, Micky launched himself explosively at Morr Phi, smashing into his chin and nose with a head the density and texture of osmium. 0007 had learned some time ago that osmium was the most dense metal known to man and he liked to impress people with that fact from time to time.

“Ooooooooooooooooff!” Morr Phi collapsed under the ferocious assault from 0007, blood, cartilage and bone chippings flying in all directions as the front of his face essentially shattered under the impact of Micky’s osmium head.

“There’s your crack, you nasty little fecker,” shouted Micky in triumph. “How’d ya like THEM apples like eh?” Turning to Perry, he chuckled, “By that’s gannin’ to hort him tomorra!”

With a shout of delight, Louchy and Mankey cheered into 0007’s fusilli earpiece. Screaming in pain as a combined effect of the enormous volume he had just had to endure and a Seroxat hangover that felt like a ten ton rhino was taking up squatter’s rights in his head, Micky asked if Louchy could turn down the volume.

Just as Louchy was making the necessary adjustments to the system, the impressive double doors in front of our intrepid trio burst open and two tall men stood there. One blonde, one brunette; there was nothing cute and cuddly about this twosome however. Well in excess of six feet each, these men had muscles that looked like they were smuggling melons. And we’re not talking about the kind of melons we attract to Kingston Park.

“Who are these people?” asked Perry, taken aback by the suddenness of their entry.

“Hell! It’s Dee Kon and Moo Di! The Back Row Boys. They were in a homo-erotic boy band some years ago in the non-professional days then gave it up when Leicester signed them on professional contracts” Louchy knew his stuff. He knew a lot.

The tall blonde one moved closer and looked closely at Micky.

“I know you,” he snarled. “You play for the Falcons. You used to play with Semo Setiti. He broke my nose in the England v Samoa game last year. And me being such a good boy too. What I couldn’t do to him, I’ll do to you now!”

Di Kon moved closer to Perry. “I’ve got no real problem with you,” he apologised, “but I play for Leicester and thus my propensity for mindless, unprovoked violence knows no bounds so I’m going to pan your ass regardless!”

Both Pussycat henchmen moved closer. Mick knew when his time was up and vaulted the reception desk to hide under a chair on castors. If all else failed, he reasoned, I can lob the chair at the two monsters and run like bloody hell.

Micky’s long suit coat flapped slowly in a breeze that seemed to come from nowhere; six white doves took flight across the reception area, temporarily blocking the two sets of adversaries’ view of each other. Bass-heavy rock music started up from somewhere in the distance and you just knew someone was about to turn up the volume. It was like being locked in a room with Dr. B.

Moo Di launched himself at Micky’s solar plexus and Micky folded like a cheap origami crane. Moody liked being on top and rained punches down on Micky’s head. All he got for his efforts was a broken hand, four broken fingers and a shattered wrist. Howling in pain, he withdrew and stared at 0007 in suspicion.

Dee Kon meanwhile was in a strong position. He had got the better of Perry and was twisting Perry’s arm up behind his back whilst making vague threatening comments n his ear. Whilst Micky was still trying to get up off the floor, Moo Di ran over and tripped Perry, giving Dee Kon the upper hand that all Pussycat players liked to have before engaging in physical combat.

With Moo Di holding Perry’s arms, Dee Kon was free to stamp on Perry’s head time and time again. “

“I’m the stamping master, you ex-Marine (Royal) scum,” he boasted, bringing his studded heel down into Perry’s nose again, “and there’s not a jury in the land that would convict me either!”

Perry had been in this situation before and wasn’t overly concerned. He blotted out the pain and thought back to the days when he’s been a raw recruit going through Royal Marine training.

The humiliation, the ritual beatings every day, the scorn of his superiors and the nagging doubt that nothing he ever did would be good enough for The Man………………….

But enough of his time at Kingston Park, he needed to focus on the training.

He closed his eyes and shut his ears to Dee Kon’s pathetic mewling. He could beat this man. He took a deep breath (not easy when your airways are being squashed into a volume equivalent to a thimble) and then exploded upwards, knocking Moo Di onto his back and grabbing Dee Kon by the foot with which he had been stamping enthusiastically on Perry’s face.

Whirling Dee Kon around his head like a cheap lasso, Perry let go at just the right moment and Dee Kon went hurtling over the reception area and crashed with an almighty shattering of glass into the mirrored wall behind the desk. As Dee Kon landed heavily on the floor, amid shards of broken glass, Hergan took the opportunity to dig him in the ribs a couple of times, just …… because he could.

Moo Di laid upon the floor dazed. He had been quite happily holding a man’s arms down to the floor so his mate could knock seven bells out of him and now he found himself staring at the ceiling …. No, hang on …… He wasn’t staring at the ceiling any longer. He was staring at a face full of anger, full of fury and full of sadistic intent. A massive beefy fist descended from the sky and hit him square on the chin. Unconsciousness descended on Moo Di.

“Louchy, can ye do us a fava like?” Micky whispered into his mic.

“What is it Micky?”

“Can ye send Alison in here with some really awful clerthes for these two? Ah reckon that’ll get ‘em gannin’ hyam cryin’ fo’ their mams like!”

“Of course! Pure genius!” giggled Mankey.

Micky walked over to Perry, who was stood over Dee Kon’s prostrate form.

“What d’ye reckon meeyat? Energy for one more of the Pussycats then?”

“Bring it on ………”

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