Sunday 3 March 2024

Sunday Serial: 240 x 70, by Gill James,6. Whistleblowing 18 April 2018, cold tea,

So, I've done it. There's no going back.  The people who need to know have been informed.  It's up to them now.  Yes, I'm afraid. But I'm brave as well. Actually you can't be brave unless you're afraid. That's what my mother always said and she's right.

I'm standing here with my back to the wall. It's cold and grey. At least I can see everything, though. I can see if they're coming to get me.  The law's on my side, isn't it?  It will protect me, won't it?

I'm out of a job, of course. They sacked me as soon as I made it clear that they'd been acting illegally, that they'd been telling lies, that they'd been cheating and that they'd tried to deceive people to meet their own greedy ends.    

I might end up on the streets. Employers don't like people who've been disloyal to their previous employers.

For the moment, though, I have money in the bank. My parents will help for a short time.  They've said so. It won't be forever, naturally. They're not rich. But they've been careful and saved. I don't want to deprive them or my siblings. It wouldn't be fair. 

I slip my hands into my jacket pocket.  It enfolds me in its luxury. It has a fake fur lining. It's a limited edition designer number. Deep brown and shiny. I wore if for that meeting.  It gave me confidence.

I have to tell Amanda now. How will she react? I'd like to think she'll be with me 100%. Or she’ll  just bundle the children into the car and drive to her mum’s.   

I’ll be left to live on the streets.       

About the author

Gill James is published by The Red Telephone, Butterfly and Chapeltown.  

She edits CafeLit and writes for the online community news magazine: Talking About My Generation.

She is a Lecturer in Creative Writing and has an MA in Writing for Children and PhD in Creative and Critical Writing.


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