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  1. Cash.Nexus
    Car is kerb-crawling, pacing you. Feels like a shark, a white shark. Cops. Fuck. Nah, got to be an apparition. Another 'gotcha!' Cocaine nonsense. Tripping balls man. Risk another wee glance. POLICE. Fuckfuckfuck. Too much. Walk normal. What do they...they don't know shit. Can't know it was you.
    Was it you? You running payphone to payphone, until finding one 'anonymous' enough to report your own impending death. Made the O-D call, then hung up spooked. Urgency in that voice. Concern. Then in like just a three-count the sky lit up flashing blue, sirens closing. Yikes, get the fuck away. This is an emergency.

    Now this. Cop car hasn't evaporated like most crazy coke-FX. Serious as a heart attack. Which hasn't happened yet, after all. Strange. Fucker's still on the gallop like a panicked stallion, but no more of that skittering stuttering stop-go shit. Downers must be kicking in...'ray for Valium! Or will it try to kill you too? Stupid prick.

    But later for getting harsh on self, because that fucking cop car is STILL there. Look, they know fine well who it was messed everyone about. Not crime of the century, or even the night, but here's a fucking junkie pest and they're trying to work out if it's a 'known'. Like, warrants. You known? Hey, who really 'knows' any---QUIT BEING A SMART CUNT. You'll be put in shit deep.

    Shouldn't you falter to a stop, look mildly concerned and ask the cops if you can help them? Depends. Depends on sanity, or absence of.
    Really? Look, you're just a dude walking... Walking round the corner a few blocks to the All-Nite to get shit. OK?
    Oh man...head is crackling like a MIG-arc torch. Shouldn't inject cocaine. Even though a fifth of no.3 was riding on that coke rocket like a busty big-mane chick on a hell-bike from a comic.
    Despite or because of that, when the load hit top and blew like a smelter meltdown, death felt certain. This time, for sure. Poor mother. Isn't that sad? Just enough time to put five 5-mg yellows in the mouth - swallow, don't inhale, silly. Stop panting then. Rush out the door, leap down the stairs. Out into everything to take on the world and phone an ambo.

    No-one could meet that gaze, a man possessed. That was then. Now goose-step marching to the All-Nite, because it's bright and cop cars cannot enter. Chance a glance sideways. Boss-looking shit stuck all over the motor door, heraldic stuff. Ooohh! Peek at the window – then eyes front! God save us from that evil-ish mother-fucker. Black-clad Pan-faced Orc-type thing. Or was it a reflection? Well, maybe terrible drugs aid TRUE perception. An idea that's heard around.

    Ideas don't help right now. Stop thinking. Isn't that what these drugs are for? Who needs ideas, horrible ideas. Like, one horrible idea is that the last place you want to go is the All-Nite, because in such a place cocaine psychosis is screamingly obvious. Staff might call cops. Who aren't far away, as it happens. Already on it. Shit........

    Look. Got to keep on. You aren't going to stop striding onward, more like wading now the downers are digested. Limited options while being clocked by law. Rule out bolting. Ditto attacking. Try not to look like some twat with no idea why you here or what you about. Bury the truth deep.
    Story is, going to All-Nite for smokes and shit. Remember. But there's a lit smoke in hand and best part of a deck in pocket already...??? So? So, chocolate. Could buy it and toss it. Give it to some cunt. Anything but eat it, eat anything...no. Hang on, no good. Looks weird, buying stuff to hand out. Cops would just laugh. Look at this muppet! First a wind-up call, now he's urging Snickers on random public!?! OK forget it. In: litre of cider: out. Crack it, few tilts. Shit, that's illegal too now, drinking outside. Also don't want to drink that shit. Shoot, snort, smoke shit but no drink, no fizzy piss. Thanks anyway and all that but sadly you're way past the age when that was fun.

    Well here comes the main road and still clueless. At least cops should fuck off here and bug someone else, someone bad. You're not bad...starting to feel bad though. A little. Without the no.3 H and Valium you'd be a scooped-out babbling wreck. Nope, you're just numb. Opiates. You like them. Every day. Might be babbling even so. Check lips not moving, saying this shit out loud. Doesn't help the case.
    So it's a case now? The Case Of The Crazy Druggie. Big mystery. Elementary, Watson. Recklessly injected a chemical cocktail. Went mad, freaked out. Note the many collapsed veins, doctor. A chronic case. Quite so, Holmes.

    Crossing main road to All-Nite, cops don't speed off. Well, attention is always nice. And paying attention: don't get knocked over, idiot. Cherry on the fucking cake, get knocked over after a near-death-experience. Phone the cops, get a bloody ambo! Someone's dying! Haha.

    Long, long road this. Longest in the world or something. Way back when. But not wide. Deceptively narrow. But trying to cross, there's more shit going on than first seemed. Step back, consider. Almost there! The lit-up All-Nite. A beacon...and a warning. That light isn't human. Now the cop car has spun in the road and parked right outside the fucking shop. What is their problem, man? A cocaine addict could justifiably feel picked on...

    Look both ways. Funny how the cars and things look like toys down the street. Tonka. Or, what, Scalectrix. Ha. Up close though, fuck. Mass and speed. Woof. No idea who's even in them. Also noticed, this road is shining. Look at the tarmac. Shiny, like a river. A super-river. A river, but more. Scuff the soles back and forth. Hard to determine if it's shiny as it looks.
    Wait: everything is shiny, mega shiny. Whatever holds a gleam, is full-on gleaming. Drugs! Must still be tuned up. Hard to tell when so much shit goes down; all and sundry fuck up a cat's buzz. Distract you. Hey! Why can't they do them, you do you. Fuck them all.
    Then again, lots of lights right here. Many colours. Eyes dilated, plus. Full spectrum. Try sonar. Close eyes, listen. Squiggles, re-verb, croaks, ping-pong?
    Right, well, the mission awaits. Whatever it is. Should abort. Back to base...'cept the cops are sitting watching the pilgrim's progress. Like, you seemed so keen to get here, now you're doing a 180? Huh.

    But those guys? Respect. But... They are no longer a huge deal. Like the thing going on 3 blocks ago. They had you going a bit there. They were just THERE. Realer than real. Thought they were angry. Hoped you'd made them up. Would have prayed but why pray?
    Then nothing happened. They sit in that tricky car. Maybe being informed. Instructed by radio. Them there, you here. OK their faces look like carved from gravestones. But it's all part of the job. Vigilance, eternal. Nothing goes wrong no drama. “Protect And Serve.” But that isn't this lot. What is?
    Oh. Too heavy to need a motto. Right? Everyone knows anyway. “Behave Or Get Crushed”. Hey, you could get a fat marker from the All-Night. Help the Force, write that motto across the back. Roof too. As you like, whatever. All caps, commas. Sixes, nines...ha-ha. See you're not bad. Could banter. Laugh along. Really they should help you. Help you across. Trained and stuff.

    Fuck a duck, you're mad spun. Slamming righteous. Mixing this shit? People sometimes don't get a grip, or keep a grip. Don't get it wrong. May still die. But right now...yeah. Just get this done. Shop for snacks, jumbo puffs. For later. And a cheapo lighter please, man. Or no. Not a lighter. Don't say man. Or even please. Just hand a note. Get change, walk out.
    Cops? By now everybody's all cool. Did you lose it big? Break things nearby? You did not. Not that you know of. So. Could even trade words. Chap cop window with a suitable coin. A smooth river pebble or whatever. Legit bag in left hand.
    Ahem. Good evening officer. Bit shiny for a Tuesday, isn't it? Or Thursday, sorry. Word to the wise, gents. Very shiny river tonight...you take care, now. Braking. Be gentle. Hate for you to mash. Not as dark as usual either. Behold the lights. That's why. Oh yes... Behave or get crushed, right? Nod and wink. Another wink. That means all know the score. And it's cool. If handled. Like this.
    People do shit: insanity. But rules are rules. No breaking nearby things. No touching people. Things like that. Because... What the fuck? Really, what the fuck? It's like that, so that's the way it is. Heard that said. Maybe it was a radio. Maybe it's a saw, an old saw. It should be. Let's make it so. A good old saw.

    Strange to think. It is a shame about drugs. Guess so. Get so high yet no escape. But it's a sort of thing. Many ironies. Like, best part is getting them. Going here, going there. Talking to all sorts. Always on amber alert. It's like a thing. Seeing shit you don't forget. Marks time. Makes you take journeys. You could be in the tube. Maybe you have cocaine. Special. The screechy metallic noise of tube rails. Identified. Like a rush, full effect. A gram in hand, noise in ears. You think: mmm.

    Specious balls. Of course it needs hit. Otherwise, just buy it, toss it. Sorted. No chance. Easy to think things up later. Things that sound true, yet aren't. Like if you take heroin, a day feels like it gets longer. Longer than usual; much. At first. But you don't remember shit. So what's going on? Something like: taking all your laters now. Is it true? To some it's obvious. They act that way. Balls balls balls. Making up balls.

    So dangerous. This mad road, or river. Or super-river. Whatever. Call it a ribbon. Finally you cross the ribbon. The orange-black shiny ribbon. Clock the cops. Peripheral vision. You shouldn't trust it. But anyway. Seems cool as you stroll past their sinister grille.

    Shop isn't busy. There are the puffed snacks in coloured shiny bags. You zone out for a minute. Reflecting on stuff. How things seem one way, then another. Jerk awake, dropped the bag. Oh.

    Enough shit. Go up and pay. For whatever's in hand. Let the boy ring it up. See the back of you. Poor dude. Working this fucking place. Mental. This late, this road. White shirt. Fluoro lights, way bright. You'd rather die. You're working on that. Let him do him, you do you. Yeah?

    Why? Fuck alone knows. Fuck alone isn't telling. For now, anyway. Fuck it. One thing is... Be good to have a bit more. La nina blanca. Cogs start turning as you exit.
    Oh yeah... Cops. Now you really don't give a fuck. What? Frisk you? Whatever. Calm now, very calm. It works. Cop car fires up, slides off. It's a free country. You were just shopping. Prove you did whatever. They can't be arsed. Over some bullshit. Not the first time a junkie thought it was the end. When it wasn't. And the other way round. Vice versa.

    Anyway. Next. One thing for it. Bell Jimbo. Use your change in that payphone. Bound to be awake. Up smoking up shit. Talking shit. UFOs and racehorses. If anyone's daft enough to sit still for it. Sometimes you have to. What else? Go home. Drink water, two glasses. Television, nod the fuck out. Burned out, man. Thrashed.

    Jimbo is up! Tells you come whenever. This late he'll be well stoked. Who isn't? If they can. And you can...if this bastard credit card still goes. Last one, the spare. Emergencies. Extra heavy charges. Wait.
    For what, you knob? Stick it in the machine outside wall of All-Nite. Money. Read your diary, the PIN is there somewhere. Lean against the wall a minute. Take five.
    Fuck, you're beat. Some session. Still a little no.3 brown. Plenty Valium. Only yellow 5's. They work. Like, you could sleep right here. Standing up. Only you are not standing, but sliding down the wall a bit. You come to, the machine is beeping. Do the PIN. Except the numbers are hard to read. Page is glowing, but numbers are blurry. And sort of moving. Fuck this.

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