Although my legal team had predicted the outcome pretty accurately when the judge handed down my sentence I still broke down – which set junior into action too. Mr Rogerson, our legal beagle hadn't tried to sugar coat the situation, it's pretty much mandatory for anyone found guilty of arson to be incarcerated, for how long – well that's the thing.
Its difficult as I sit here in this cell to feel lucky to get just a six month sentence, but I suppose I am. With ‘good' behaviour Mr Rogerson thinks I'll be out in about twelve weeks so hopefully junior won't arrive behind bars – that really would be the pits.
It was only a few hours that she'd been in the remand cell but already she was getting stir crazy. Tomorrow she'd be moved to the young offenders centre, her ‘team' seemed to think that she'd be sent to some place near Scunthorpe, at least it wouldn't be too far for her rents to travel.
I wonder what Drew and the girls are up to? And Marty. Will I get to see them again anytime soon? I don't even know what time it is, I guess they have their reasons for taking my watch and stuff but it's a bit of a bummer nonetheless. I hope Mum's okay, she looked pretty broken up, I thought we might at least get to say goodbye.
I was surprised to see Mr Wood and Mad's mum in the court, I guess they both had their reasons for wanting to me go down. I mean, Mr Wood I can understand, it was his school I tried to burn down after all. Mrs P though, I'll have to ask mum or dad when I get to see them.
That bloke from The Chad was there, I suppose I'll be all over the rag again, ‘Arsonist sent down' or some such, last time they used a picture of me in my Foresters uniform which must have gone down like a lead balloon. I guess my rep at school is non existent now anyway.
She surveyed her temporary accommodation for the umpteenth time.
You'd think the toilet would have a lid, I guess its better than the bed pan I had to use last time I was in custardy. Custardy indeed, geez I could murder some spotted dick and custard, I wonder if I get fed tonight.
As if on cue there was a rattle at the door which opened to admit a stern woman bearing a tray which was placed on the built in shelf by the door. She exited and with much clanging the door was relocked. Bern stood to investigate.
I suppose I'll have to get used to this, plastic cutlery and eating off a tray. Hmm, cauliflower cheese, doesn't smell too bad I suppose and whats this? Eurgh! Tapioca, that is so not good. Well I suppose I ought to eat it whilst its still at least warmish.
She was roused from a fitful sleep early, like six oclock early, fed tea and porridge – yep they really give those in custody that stuff, and then marched out to a waiting transport. that was worse than the cell, she was put into a tiny cubicle and locked in. the seat wasn't exactly comfortable and the seat belt wouldn't stretch across her distended belly.
Other ‘travellers' were loaded on board and after what felt like hours the truck juddered into life. It was soon evident that this wouldn't be the fastest journey and with the nausea inducing motion as they travelled out of Nottingham, not the most pleasant experience for anyone on board.
With no real idea of time, or even of the final destination Bernie found herself dozing off which at least relieved the motion sickness. The truck was soon clear of the city and heading north towards Newark where they picked up the Great North Road. The thirty miles or so to Doncaster were quickly covered and the prison transfer truck made its first stop.
Bern woke with a start and not knowing what was happening keyed herself to exit the vehicle. Of course her door remained stubbornly shut although she could hear others disembarking beyond. There was a further wait before the truck started up again and resumed its journey. This time the journey was shorter before they halted again at another of the institutions in the St Leger town. Of course Bernie still had no idea where they were, from her windowless cubicle there was no clue.
For a second time they resumed their journey, Bern was actually the last drop of the run and as they'd been on the go for some three hours they were soon stopping for a third time.
The door opened and a female guard appeared in the portal.
“toilet stop Rose.”
“where are we?”
“M18, you've got about another hour from here.”
She climbed down from the truck before suffering the embarrassment of being cuffed to the guard. At least the motorway services were fairly quiet, they got a few stares as they made their way to the conveniences. Once inside she was released into a cubicle whilst her escort stood at the door. the essentials were quickly seen to and the cuffs reapplied for the journey back out to the truck. The cruelty of walking her past the food court where travellers were tucking into their burgers and lattes had her salivating, breakfast was half a day past.
Once she was returned to her travelling box she had expected them to set off again but instead it was a good half an hour before the engine restarted and they moved off. Well there was an hour to go, that's what the guard had said so once again she got as comfortable as possible to try and sleep for a while.
The correctional facility wasn't actually in Scunthorpe, more correctly it was at Whitton, several miles to the north, hard on the Humber waterfront. The last few miles were along twisty, badly surfaced lanes had Bern turning green once again before journeys end.
So this is it, home for the next few months.
“I've spoken to your mother.” Dad mentioned as I emerged from the garage after my training session.
“what did she say?”
“she is not happy.”
“'kay.” I was chastised by those three words.
“she says you can borrow her pink suit for the wedding but you'll have to go to that dress place in the old town for something for the reception, she's going to call them in the morning so they'll be expecting you after school tomorrow.”
“yes suit, it's a formal wedding and you will not show this family up.”
“you'd best take the suit with you tomorrow, if it needs altering they can hopefully sort that too.”
That means I'll have to tell the gang, I'm never gonna hear the end of this am I?
“what you got there?” Con enquired next morning.
“my Mums suit.”
“you taking it to the cleaners?”
“um no, the dress shop.”
“you're mum put on some weight?”
“its for me.” I allowed through gritted teeth.
“ooh do tell.”
“I'm not repeating myself, I'll tell everyone when the others get here.”
to be continued....
Maddy Bell 26.04.11 © 2011