Little background first.
Eric and Diah... Main characters.
Jules, Eric's cellmate.
Wedgewood, an ex-magistrate who sent Diah to prison for contempt of court just because he said his name (and the letters after it, given to him by the award of a medal. Naturally, Diah's decided to make his life hell in there.
It's a prison based on an Edwardianish regime, so, silence in the canteen is mandatory. (such silence used to be prison wide).
* * *
He opened the door and they followed him to the queue. Diah scanned the faces, everyone at their tables.
He prodded Julian. A sweep of the arm, a shake of the head. Julian nodded and leant against the wall.
Before long, front of the queue. Eric placed his tray, the porridge and foulest tea in the world made their way onto his and Diah stepped forward. He prodded his number.
It was a different man than last night, he looked at something under the counter, his eyes widened and he filled the bowl with something hidden again. The same with his mug. Diah sniffed it and sighed. The porridge wasn’t grey and tasteless this time. It smelled of honey. Again, coffee filled his mug.
He took a seat and nodded to the one next to him for Eric.
The moment Eric sat, Diah smirked and pointed at Eric’s mug, making a huge scowl. He waved his under Eric’s nose.
Eric smiled, pointed at his eye and outward, walked his fingers and held up two fingers.
Diah nodded and scooped a glop of his porridge, shovelling it into his mouth. He surveyed the queue. Wedgewood stood at the end. He nodded towards Jules and nodded at the end.
Jules nodded back, joining the queue behind Wedgewood.
Wedgy placed his tray, turned and scanned the room. His eyes widened when he spotted Diah. The bowl of slop and cup of stewed tea made their way to his tray and just as he picked it up and stepped away, Jules grabbed his collar.
Jules waited for his to be served and dragged Wedgewood over. Diah pointed at the chair.
Wedgewood stared in terror at Julian. His shoulders sagged, he sat and put his tray down.
Diah immediately grabbed the bowl, cleared his throat, spat, picked his nose, removing a long string of snot and stirred the lot in. He smiled and replaced it. Julian sat beside Wedgewood.
Diah returned to his own food and took a gulp of his coffee.
Wedgewood stared, again in disgust, at his food. Diah pointed and glared.
Wedgewood sat, motionless.
Again, Diah pointed.
Wedgewood stared at Julian, at Diah, at Eric, then at the porridge. He put his finger in and raised it to his mouth but shook his head, picked up the bowl and stood.
This time, Jules gripped his shoulder and forced him back onto the bench. Diah again pointed. This time, he pointed at his nose and made the palm punch gesture.
Wedgewood looked in horror at the bowl, took a handful and shoved it into his mouth. He gagged but forced it down.
Diah nodded at the bowl again and finished his, taking another swig of coffee. He remained seated watching his victim intently until he’d finished his, then glanced at Eric to see if he’d finished too.
He had, so they got up. Julian hauled Wedgewood out of his seat, picked up his tray, handed it to him and headed to the racking.
Diah and Eric followed.
Trays left, they walked out of the canteen and the moment the door slammed shut behind them Diah rounded on Wedgewood, grabbed him by the throat and rammed his head against the wall.
* * *
And... one for darkness...
* * *
He stirred, groaned and gripped his head.
He rolled over, then sat bolt upright when his hand brushed against his naked skin. He gripped his wrists, felt the smooth metal bands and a second later his hands shot to his neck in horror. To the collar.
“What the fuck is going on!?”
It was dark. Darker than pitch. So dark he couldn’t even see his hand in front of his face. As his senses returned, he noticed the lack of bedclothes, the mattress felt strange. He reached down to the side of it. It felt cold, smooth, solid. Not his bed with its springs.
Gingerly, he felt about him, his hand brushed the wall by his bed and he stroked it. “Oh, fucking hell!”
The wall was smooth, flawless. Not the painted brickwork of his cell. He swung to a sitting position and the floor felt wrong too. Cold, stone and again, smooth, almost slick as if coated in a gloss paint.
“Where the hell am I?”
He felt around the bed to the wall, he reached a corner and his foot nudged something. It was smooth, light, he picked it up and felt it. Circular, a bowl of some kind, made of a material he’d never felt before. He felt around where it had been and clutched a roll of toilet paper. The horrible, waxy prison-issue toilet paper.
“Oh my god someone’s going to die for this! Prison issue? For me!? Do they even know who they’re dealing with?”
He continued his blind exploration of his cell. Each wall, smooth, slick. At each corner, he continued. Then he stumbled onto a shelf type… thing… He felt it. His mattress.
But… This wasn’t right. With more haste this time, he felt around the cell again, much more thoroughly, every wall up and down as far as he could reach. When he got to the bottom of the fourth, one of the narrower walls, something new. A small alcove of some kind at floor level. It extended about three feet into the wall and even the edges of that, solid, smooth, plastered? Painted?
The back of the alcove had a curve to it as if it was a tube. He tried to scramble inside but that got him nowhere. It was too small for a man to fit through, he couldn’t even get his shoulders in.
He continued again and again returned to his bed.
“Where the fuck is the door?” He sank back onto the bed in terror.