It’s a baking hot day and our street is buzzing with people, kids, cars and trucks all rushing by. Mum is inside cleaning and cooking. Dad’s at work I miss him a lot, so does mum. He says the long-distance driving helps to pay the bills and I should be no trouble for her.
I am spending the day with Tom, my best friend, we have been friends since I can remember. We do everything together, neither of us have any brothers and sisters and mum says that’s what we have become like. He is late as usual.
I hear Tom call from halfway down the street, “Hi Becky are you ready? Some of the gang from school have organized a game of soccer and my mum has given me some money for us to get a burger after.”
He can be a bit of nightmare, he’s so loud. Now all the street knows what we are doing. “Do you have to shout like that Tom everyone can here you?”
“Sorry are you ready, hey what’s happening at Mrs Pauleys house?” said Tom.
It is just then that stuff begins to happen, a cop car has pulled up outside old Mrs Pauleys house opposite.
“I don’t know shall we stay and watch for a while, the game will last for hours it usually does,” I said.
We decide to wait and see what was happening. Two cops get out first and then that fat pig the landlord. Our neighbours have started to come out too, nearly all the street. Someone says Mrs Pauley has fallen behind with her rent and the cops and landlord have come to evict her. By now my Mum has come out too.
“Can they do that Mum? It seems so unfair, she is such a nice old lady and her husband only just died.”
“Yes, they can do what they want. That’s why Dad works so hard and is away so much so we can pay the rent.”
“Did you tell Dad yet about the landlord coming round and bothering you while he is away,” I said.
“No and you mustn’t tell, promise. I’ve dealt with the landlord, he said he would leave us alone,” said Mum.
I knew she wasn’t telling the truth. He always appeared when Dad was furthest away from home demanding money that mum said she’d already paid. I hate him and it wasn’t just my mum he bothered. I know things about him, things about my mum, I’ve heard them. He bothers my friends and me too. He’s a bad man. I’ve told Tom, he has said I should tell someone but why doesn’t someone else do it everyone knows what he’s like. I think everyone is so scared of him.
This is awful Mrs Pauley is crying and one of the cops is having to kind of drag her down the steps. That horrible man is just standing on the top step watching with that look on his face. Everyone in the street knows what he is like. Why doesn’t somebody do something?
Tom and I just sit there, I’ve been told to keep quiet or we will get evicted aswell. I’ve got to do something, she’s an old lady, this is so mean.
“Will you come with me Tom,” he’s my very best friend and knows straightaway what I mean.
“Let’s go,” he said in his usual shout so people near us were startled and looked round.
We both got up and ran across the street to the second cop waiting by the car. He was friendly and listened to what I said while Mrs Pauley sat in the back of their car. They decided to take Mrs Pauley back in her house and told her she could stay for today.
It went a bit crazy in our neighbourhood after that. There were cops everywhere for a few weeks. My Dad told me that the landlord was something called a loan shark and he had been threatening and beating lots of people in our neighbourhood. There were other things much worse. A few people were mad that I’d told the cops what I knew about the landlord but it helped Mrs Pauley.
Social Services came to see her and she can stay in her house as long as she likes. The landlord doesn’t bother anyone in our street anymore. He won’t be bothering anybody round here ever again. My Dad says if he does he will kill him. That scared me a bit when he said that. It doesn’t matter though because it’s been a few weeks since the cops came for the landlord and no one’s seen him since.