The Standalones

Chapter Forty

Ken Preston

8 July 2024

Silhouette of a rock band against a spotlight and the words The Standalones

Ratzo’s feet were cold, and he was sure his toes were starting to wrinkle, they’d been in the bucket of water for so long. Wrinkled toes were the least of his worries, though. At the forefront of his mind was the gaffer tape binding his arms and legs to the wooden chair, the tape over his mouth, and Frankie Henderson standing in front of him and casually holding a live cattle prod like it was just a normal day at the office.

Which for Frankie Henderson it probably was.

The twins had ambushed Ratzo not long after he left Euston. Ratzo had been so caught up in his thoughts that he hadn’t noticed the twins until they were on either side of him, and he was powerless in their strong grip. They had tumbled him into the back of a van and brought him here to this warehouse, where they had gaffer taped him to the chair. Ratzo had been left sitting alone in silence for what seemed like an age.

And then Frankie Henderson had arrived. The twins had pulled Ratzo’s shoes and socks off and placed his feet in the bucket of water. Frankie had made a big show of producing the cattle prod, uncoiling the cable, and plugging it in. Just to prove a point, and probably because he enjoyed it, Frankie had prodded one of the twins with it. The cattle prod buzzed, and the twin yelped.

Now here they were. One touch of that cattle prod in the bucket of water and Ratzo would be electrocuted.

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