My name’s Friday. It’s Tuesday and the boss says I have to file my report on Sunday’s mugging.
Sunday July 14. Cool, shady day in Perth. My partner is Eagle; Avenging Eagle. Who let dames on the squad? We were working the day watch for the Gang Squad. The Purple Heart gang were reported to be squaring off with cross-town rivals the Blue Moods.
2.30: The gangs appear. I look for the usual suspects, but Selwoods, Kerr, Shuey, Waters and Hurn are all waiting parole at the big house. The Purple gang are mostly there except the big smiling assassin in the backline. This could get ugly. First thing I notice is how big and muscled the Purple gang have got. Fyfe, Hill, Barlow all used to be skinny kids. Looks like they have been getting the good gear from the Windy City. Peptides to promote Purple Heart growth.
2.35: The mob bosses are out on the sidelines. Lyonovich heads the Purple gang. Haircut says it all. Standard Ukrainian mafia issue. O’Woosh is old school Boston Irish heavy. Jowls hanging loose from sudden weight loss. Stress of holding the gang together, or working out for the new blonde down at the Bad A Bing? Believe half of what you see, and less of what you hear.
2.40: Fisticuffs commence.
2.55: Looks like the Blue gang are in for a mauling, but I’m not looking at them. The local cops on the beat are clearly on the take. Thrown away the law book. Haven’t found a single infringement in all the muggings by both gangs. No “ball”; “throw” or “back” today despite loud warnings from 40,000 witnesses. Make note to check their bank accounts. Regular weekly payments from the ARU. Local Sergeant Giesch is holidaying on Riviera courtesy of Rugby mob bosses. They want to wean locals of traditional footy dope, and get them used to this rugby heavy shit. Looks like the fix is in. Game could be decided 9-8 on penalties.
3.10: Blues hit back late. Down only 11 on the spread. Could be more interesting than I thought.
3.30: Getting out of hand again. Purple Hearts racing by 18.
3.50: Check the vital signs. Blue Moods still have a pulse. ‘King’ Jack finally taking uppers again after a year on the downers. Has 3 big ones in the bag. Blues little guys are in every scrap. It’s tight and its ugly, but it’s a contest not a fix. One point spread to the Blues as the gangs disappear back down their tunnels. Time for a breather while I go to collect my brown paper bag.
3.55: What’s this country coming to?? They want me to pay them 5 bucks for cold horse meat in a brown bag. Used to be when the bag contained a wad of used twenties just to keep me sweet. I had to head West after things got a bit hot in the Valley for me and Sir Terry. Every team used to have a bagman. Lockett, Dunstall, Ablett, Suma – someone got 10 big ones every week. Now it’s all scratching around for nickels and dimes.
4.30: This is good shit. One gang delivers a big hit and then the other mob tops them. I’m enjoying this. Old school biff. Mr Blue takes out Walters with a shot to the shoulder. Mr Purple retaliates with a head shot on Mr Brown. Both boys have recent rap sheets, and look like they will be taking a long stretch up the Swan River at the cracker family farm.
4.40: I try to calm my partner the Avenger. She has a bit on the side for the boys in Blue. She is excited that they have a 2 point spread when the local cops call a temporary halt to hostilities. I tell her to cool it until the fat dame sings.
4.50: Like I feared, it’s ‘rope a dope’ time. Lyonovich pulled out the Uzis in the huddle and said “ok boys, time to run and spread now and give ‘em a good spray.” Lyonovich is a ruthless bastard, but he knows how to run a top gang after his time with the Killers and the Reds.
5.10: Ugly. Ugly. Big Cox and the Big Fijian both started on one leg, and now they have none. The little Blue Heelers in the midfield have showed plenty of fight, but the Purple Rottweilers have finally chewed them up and spat ‘em out. Sad, but as cage fights go it’s been a good spectacle all day.
5.20: Fight went the full 15 rounds which few predicted, but the bookies got the cash as always with a 28 point spread for the Purple gang.
Purple Charge Sheet: If there was one kid I could take home for the Purples its big Izzy Clarke. The kids got moves, and with Big Laurie back and running protection for him this kid can make it in the big time. The other is the MJ Cool – the Black Prince of their Backline. Since Lyonovich got him up against the wall with the rubber hose a year back, the kid has given up the gear and showed what he can do. Hill, Mayne, Fyfe, Mundy, Barlow, Walters all gave the sort of disciplined effort that would have warmed Boss Lyonovich’s heart if he had one.
Blue Charge Sheet: King Jack, Toughened Glass, Big Eric, Mr Blue Embley, Larry Priddis, Curley Masten and Moe Hutchings all worked their patches hard for O’Woosh.
ICAC Inquiry: The local beat cops are on corruption charges for murdering the game. Remember when you could go down the street of an afternoon and you would always hear the local cop’s whistle, as he pulled over some kid and gave him a clip over the ear as a warning. Now it’s only silence as the cops are paid to stay mute. They mostly practice drawing squares in the air and waiting for the TV to do their jobs for them. Word is they are all after the Aleem Dar gig, taking the big money from the Indian bookies to fix the Old Trafford Test in August.
Epilogue: The Purple Hearts will take out one of the big Eastern State gangs in September. The Reds, the Hoops and the Chamber Pot gang all need to watch out. The Purple Hearts are a ruthless, disciplined outfit under Lyonovich. They can keep it tight and then ‘switch to vaudeville’ whenever the boss asks for it. With their full gang on the park they will make it to the last 4, and maybe even to the Big Dance. If they do I will be going for a short walk. I may be gone a little while. Concrete shoes in Fremantle Harbour.
BLUE MOODS 2.3 6.5 11.8 14.9 (93)
PURPLE HEARTS 4.2 6.4 11.6 19.7 (121)
Blues: Darling 5, LeCras 2, Schofield 2, Kennedy 2, Cripps 2, Embley
Purples: Walters 3, Mayne 3, Pavlich 3, Barlow 2, Hill 2, Mzungu, Crowley, D Pearce, Fyfe, Sutcliffe, Sheridan
Blues: Darling, Glass, Embley, Mackenzie, Priddis, Hutchings, Masten
Purples: Hill, Mayne, Fyfe, Johnson, Mundy, Walters, Barlow, Clarke.
Beat Cops on the Take: Farmer, Jeffery, McInerney
Malarkey Tipoffs: Hill 3 (PH); Mayne 2 (PH); Darling 1 (BM)