Borstal – short story

The first creative writing assignment I did as an OU student


Looking back my shift at the centre started as a night like any other. I-wing stands for isolation wing; not very original but at least you know what you’re getting. I’d been here ten years and thought I’d seen everything. This is where they put the worst of the young offenders; junkies, the Hep-C’s and AIDS kids and the just plain violent ones.

Each screw gets given two cells. There are usually five or six suicide attempts every week. On top of them you’ve got the ones that just like causing trouble. I saw Tommo heading to the showers with a kid

“Little shit has puked all up the walls” he said. “Two hours ago; jizz, now shit. Thinks he’s entertaining.”

“Gonna be puke again next” the kid smirked. “I just like to watch you clean up mate.”

“You’ll be laughing the other side of your face when you’ve spent the night in the bare cell, concrete bed and a hole to piss in. Happy Christmas kid, you’re gonna freeze.”

Yeah, I though, just another normal shift. That night my two cells were full. In I7 was Wee Billy, five feet two inches of adrenaline. When he wasn’t high on amphetamines he was high on E-numbers. He’s been in and out of the system for years, preferring to be off his face on drugs or locked up with us rather than be at home with his old man knocking ten bells out of him every night. Funny little shit, I’d quite like him if only he didn’t finance his drug habit by beating and robbing old ladies. He should be careful though. The next time he gets himself locked up he’s in with the adults. I checked through the slot and he was fast asleep, jittering and shaking as the drugs left his system again.

Then came I8. I could cope with the junkies and the screamers but this kid gave me the creeps just sitting there so quietly never making a sound. Billy hid from his parents through drugs, this kid…he chose to slit their throats. The warden didn’t know what to do with him. They put him in a cell, he tried to kill his roomie; let him into the canteen he shafted someone with a fork….Oh yeah this one scared the hell out of me. And as the night went on I was right to be very scared indeed….


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s