A Chapter by Peter Rogerson

The triumph of brains over brawn.


A few frenetic moments of violence ended with Bonecrusher Badass lying in floods of tears on the floor of the Evening Room of Swansdown Manor, with a young police woman sporting the prettiest of dresses squeezing his most vital organs in the sort of vice-like grip she’d practised at college when trainee male officers had suggested they were superior to her and foolishly tried to prove it. And not only was her grip devastating, her position astride his agonised prone flesh was equal to it. It reminded some of what the famous Queen Boadicea might have looked like if dressed by Marks and Spencer’s young people’s department.

What had happened leading up to this burst of violence was as follows.

Rosie Pinkerton had been grabbed in her cottage whilst she was preparing to go to the Manor for the last half hour and was therefore putting her vocal chords through the sort of exercises beloved of sopranos and folk singers the world over. Despite the sudden shock of a brute barging straight into her home without even knocking first she saw who it was straight away and would have remonstrated with the beast but for the fact he placed one rather grubby and ill-flavoured hand over her mouth and glowered at her. His other hand was just about visible, sticking out of a plaster cast on which someone had scribbled a rather rude word in felt-tipped pen.

Then she had been frog-marched across the lawns that separated the cottages from the Manor House and she was aware that besides her captor there were others not so far behind. Fear clutched at her heart, fear that she might be the subject for some foul desecration by hideous rapists acting in sex-starved gangs, so she struggled more wildly than ever and managed to bite the hand that was clamped on her mouth.

She bit it with a deliberateness and force that few would have believed her capable of, and the owner of that hand bellowed loud enough to waken the dead of several counties if not to alert the candlelight supper group inside the Manor..

Suddenly there was blood around. She could taste it and didn’t like the flavour.

It was then that she heard a voice shouting I hate thugs who take it out on women, so “Help!” she tried to shout out through the blood that was smeared across her face.

It was then that she was almost released as her captor struck out at one of the men behind them and struck him somewhere that caused a mighty gush of wind and gasp of pain.

I’ll get the swine,” roared a second voice, “just you let go of the lady, or else!”

But the brute didn’t let her go. Instead there was a jerk as he struck out again, and that was followed by a second thud, this time accompanied by the grisly crack of what might have been a bone snapping.

I’ll get help!” squawked a third voice, but whoever it was suffered the same indignity of the first two would-be rescuers before he could scuttle off for help.

Bah!” roared Bonecrusher, and he picked Rosie off the ground completely and dashed forwards with her. He was going to let nothing impede his attempt at extracting the money that a distorted corner of his mind was convinced the elderly woman owed him, and he was going to show her up in front of her friends, all the more quickly to get her to agree with his demands.

The one fly in his particular ointment, though, was the lack of her personal friends at Lady Dingle’s so-called candlelight supper. He didn’t know it, but half the lesser important members of the county set were in the Evening Room, with the ladies having drinks and the men admiring frocks as well as having drinks.

So when he thrust her through the door and she fell onto the floor with a great deal of his blood smeared on her he got a shock. And the shock was redoubled when he heard the hated voice of Inspector Jordan Walsh, who had been responsible for at least half a dozen of his more serious falls from grace before a variety of judges, bellowing out Bonecrusher, you’ve only gone and done it now!”

That was enough for him.

Leaving the old debtor to swim on the floor, hopefully in her own blood, he barged forth towards Jordan Walsh and flung himself in what may or may not have been a kind of rugby tackle at him, knocking him flying as his plaster cast smashed against his unhelmeted head.

It didn’t kill him, but it might have. In fact, he fell limply to the ground, out for a count of too many to guarantee him getting up in time to arrest his assailant straight away.

But Inspector Jordan Walsh wasn’t alone.

Before anyone else could react, and reaction times were somewhat increased by the excellence of the wine supped by one and all thus far, Police Constable Janie Stipple in the prettiest of frocks sprung into action.

There were two things in her favour.

Firstly, despite her extremely attractive femininity she was reasonably strong and knew how to use that strength to her best advantage.

Secondly, having grown up in a world of wannabe bullying boys she knew a thing or two about male anatomy, especially the delicate variety that can cause yelps of pain even at the lightest of squeezes.

And there was nothing light about the squeezes she subjected Bonecrushers trousers to. And she didn’t stop when he started weeping amongst his pain-filled cries for help. She barely released any pressure when he offered her a small fortune to do so. She kept twisting and squeezing right past the point that he passed out and her Inspector had recovered sufficiently to arrest him.

Which he did.


The battlefield that was the lawn of the Manor House might have born witness to two felled soldiers slowly dragging themselves to their feet had it not been so dark.

The first to become just about vertical was Ron Brown.

“What happened?” he asked nobody, and nobody answered until the second fallen fellow slowly rose to also approximate the vertical.

“What happened?” he also asked of nobody, and as before, nobody replied.

But confusion was nearing its end as Hilda Brown strode up, in battleaxe mode.

“What have you done to my Ron?” she demanded, but as has been pointed out it was a dark night, the moon was lurking far above a dense array of clouds, and it was her Ron she was questioning, thinking it was somebody else because all she knew was the simple fact that he had planned going to the caravan parked next to Number Seven in order to tell them to go in no uncertain terms.

So my Ron looked at her, or where he assumed she might be in the pitch of the lawns, and said “I’m here...”

“Who done it?” she squawked.

There was one thing above all others that Hilda Brown was good at when her ire was inflamed and that was squawking.

“It’s me,” replied Ron weakly, brushing himself down, “that bully in his white van has kidnapped the Rev’s widow...”

“And me,” introduced a second voice, “Baldy Tinker, trying to help.”

“Help who?” asked Hilda, needing to know who was on whose side.

“The gent,” said Baldy, trying to locate any bones that may have been broken. “That big fella has got a mighty big punch,” he added.

What’s our Jed telling me?” demanded a blissfully fresh voice, one belonging to a member of what history has recorded as the fair sex.

“Who’s that?” asked Ron.

“It’s me. Maria,” replied the voice. “From the caravan,” she added, “Josh came and told us there was a rumpus on the field.”

“Who’s Josh?” asked Ron.

It was so black in the middle of that field that nobody could see anything significant or anyone else, so a sort of inevitability happened, that Ron Brown suddenly found himself forming a bosom friendship with the despised caravanners, and even wanting to welcome them into his cottage, for drinks and a few bites in order to sort things out.

The arrival of a police car with its accompanying blue flashing lights did nothing to dilute the sudden warmth that flowed from him to the world all around him.

If that’s what a knock on the head does for our Ron then he should have had one half a lifetime ago, thought Hilda.

© Peter Rogerson 25.02.19

© 2019 Peter Rogerson

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Added on February 25, 2019
Last Updated on February 26, 2019
Tags: bully, night-time, punching, policewoman, friendship



Peter Rogerson
Peter Rogerson

Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom

I am 79 years old, but as a single dad with four children that I had sole responsibility for I found myself driving insanity away by writing. At first it was short stories (all lost now, unfortunately.. more..