Honour of the Line

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Authors: Brian Darley
workers had used the hut as the fire was alight, but we were getting more confident and lit it for ourselves if we were feeling cold. It was so cosy and like our little home. On this particular day, I lit the fire, which was roaring by the time Angela arrived. She explained to me that Miss Page had spoken to her and asked if we were still together. Miss Page was amazed we had managed to keep things so quiet and said no members of staff had a clue and our secret was safe. She also told Angela to take care as young boys had strong desires.
    Despite all of my feelings for Angela, I was still always drawn towards Woollies and I would go there if ever I had half a chance. The girl on the record counter had by now changed her hair style. It was much shorter which suited her down to the ground. It also showed her earrings which were just very plain small rings but boy did they make her look even more gorgeous. Every time I popped in, I noticed a glow in her eyes but she was a sales assistant, wasn’t that how they got customers to part with their money? After much soul searching I came to the conclusion that all I had ever spent there was the money for my record player. I couldn’t afford sweets and no matter how desperate I became I would never stoop so low as to buy their crap records. She was always so nice and friendly to me and I so wanted to find out her name but always lost my nerve. Her conversation was slowly becoming more intense but being so much younger I only really answered questions as opposed to instigating any conversation. On one occasion she asked if I had a girlfriend, she just seemed interested and I was liking her more every visit, although these were becoming sadly less frequent. Somehow she didn’t seem so concerned when Supervisors came round and they seemed to accept me being there. I mentioned to her that she was taking a chance and she said that she had told the Supervisors that I was her younger brother Peter.

Mystery Man
    Footie was going well and it made me feel extremely special that Angela and Georgina often came to watch the matches, although communication between us was rather minimal and matter of fact. Suddenly I was hoping that games would be called off. I didn’t like missing out on seeing Angela, either at the hut or Saturday morning pictures. She always came with me to County home games and stood with Miss Page, who was now becoming more of a friend than a teacher. Some games attracted really large crowds where others, such as school matches on rainy days, were watched by only a handful of spectators, mainly kids and sometimes an unfortunate parent who had lost his job. Whenever a parent showed up my first thoughts were ‘poor sod, he’s right down on his luck, please don’t end up at St Jude’s’, which incidentally now was running on a near empty tank and about to have the last rites administered. Employment was in reasonable supply if men were prepared to work for paltry wages. Bosses were beginning to get really greedy and four lads from Liverpool had somehow managed to change the World almost overnight. More families were getting cars and most were now getting televisions, including Mum and Dad. Grandad would come to our house on Friday evening after we had tea together and I had finished playing footie at the rec. He would stay with us until the box went off the air around 10 pm. I still remember the white dot slowly disappearing and the awful humming noise which sounded as though the television was about to explode.
    Very few adults watched kids football unless they were a parent but I began to notice one very smart suited man making notes as he watched a County match and then a while later another slightly younger man seemed to be watching every match and making me feel very uneasy.
    At one away game, the younger of these two men spent almost the entire match speaking to Mr Tindall, the games teacher. This wouldn’t be possible at home matches as Mr Tindall had

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