- October 1983
It was a beautiful autumn day. The sun was shining and it was an unusually warm day for October in Stoke-on-Trent. It was 55 degrees as a matter of fact. The warm breeze blew through the red and orange leaves on the trees lining both sides of the streets, and people were out with their families walking around in the park, having lunch in one in the many outdoor cafe or just enjoying the day. That is everyone but a 17 year old Murdoc Niccals who was sitting by a canal under a small bridge smoking a cigarette that he nicked from his older brother Hannibal. His friends had long left him only but an hour to go to go home and have lunch. Murdoc wasn't hungry nor was he in a good mood. He absentmindedly licked his bottom lip with his abnormally long tongue and it stung a bit. It was only two days ago that he suffered a fist to the face from his dad all because stood up for himself and refused to give his dad any of the money he had earned by working at the local diner.
"So much for sticking up for myself." Murdoc finished his cigarette and threw the butt into the canal then watched it go downstream until it disappeared. He got up and walked up the small hill and down the street. He didn't care where he was going and just let his feet take him where ever. Murdoc began to cut through an alleyway when his ears picked up the soft sound of crying. At first he ignored it but the crying got louder as he neared the source. Curiosity getting the better of him, Murdoc searched and found the source of the crying. He stopped in front of a small crook and saw boy sitting in it crying his eyes out. Murdoc stood there and watched. He really didn't care about some brat crying his eyes out and when he was about to walk away, the boy called out to him.
"W-wait, can you help me find my mummy? I lost her."
Murdoc stopped in his tracks and turned around to look at the kid. Part of him told him to just say no and walk away but the other half of him, well his conscience, told him to help. Also Murdoc knew what it was like not to have a mom, his mom had abandoned him on his father's doorstep when he was an infant, and never came back.
Oddly enough he only remembered parts of her like how she smelled which was like cherries, her bright smile and hazel eyes, but that was all he remembered. When he had a rare thought of his mother he'd get the feeling of being insecure and even scared sometimes. Murdoc shook his head and sighed and looked back down at the kid.
"Sure, I'll help you find her." The kid had stopped crying and looked up and his rescuer with teary eyes. "You will?"
"Yeah. So are you gonna sit there and sob all day or are we gonna get going? If you keep sitting there, I'll change my mind." He began to walk away from the boy.
"Wait I'm comin'." The boy stood up and followed Murdoc out of the alleyway and out onto the crowed street.
Murdoc took a good look at the boy. He had thick dark brown hair and blueish/gray eyes. He was wearing a pair of jeans, red and white sneakers, a green Paddington Bear t-shirt, and was carrying a small royal purple messenger bag. "What's your name kid?"
"Stuart Alexander Pot and I'm five years old. What's yours?" He looked up at Murdoc, his tears long gone.
"Don't you 'ave a middle name?"
Murdoc also took notice of his Cockney accent. "Yeah."
"Wha' is it?"
"I like it." Stuart looked up at Murdoc with a smile on his face.
Murdoc just grunted and kept on walking. They came to a crosswalk and waited for the light to change.
"My mum said that I can't cross the street withou' holdin' a grown-ups 'and you look like a grown-up." Stuart promptly took Murdoc's hand into his own and waited for the light to change as well. When it did, they walked across the street but Stuart never let go of Murdoc's hand afterward and Murdoc noticed so he let go.
"So where did you last see you mum?"
"We were 'eading to one of the park when we got separated. A few people accidentally bumped into us causin' us ta separate." He began to tear up again.
"Don't you dare cry, you're a faceache when ya do."
Stuart stopped tearing up and looked up at the older person. "Wot's a 'faceache'?"
Murdoc took hold of Stuart's hand and headed to the park. He was thinking the sooner that he found this child's mom the better. "'Faceache is when a person make an ugly face and it becomes an ache to anyone that sees him or her."
"Oh. Are you a grown-up?"
"Close to it."
"How old are ya?"
"Seventeen. I'm a teenager."
"Wot's a teenager?"
"You'll find out when you're thirteen." They walked in silence for about five
minuets then Stuart spoke again.
"My mum gave it to me."
"Gave you what?"
"This shirt. I like Paddington Bear. He's one of my favorite cartoon characters." He looked at Murdoc's denim jacket. "Did your mum give you your jacket?"
"No. I bought it myself and I don't have a mum."
"Did she die when you were born?"
"What?" Murdoc gave a sharp glance.
"Well my best friend Tommy's mum died after he was born and now she's his guardian angel. So if your mum did die, she's your guardian angel too."
Murdoc felt that feeling of being insecure and scared again, but he very quickly shook it off again. "Yeah...I guess she did die after I was born...." He saw the park up ahead and began to walk at a quicker pace. Stuart kept up. They finally reached the park and began to search for Stuart's mother. "Alright Stu, as we walk you look left and I'll look right got it?"
"Awright." Stu smiled and looked left.
After thirty minuets of searching, Murdoc and Stuart sat down on a bench.
"The sun's setting and we still 'aven't found my mum. I miss 'er."
Murdoc thought if they didn't find Stu's mom then he'd take him to the police station and let them sort it out. Of course that was the first thought on his mind when he first saw the boy. He was about to say something when his ears picked up on a woman's voice. "Stu you hear that?"
Stuart listened and he too heard the woman's voice. "Mummy?" He stood up from the bench and listened even harder. He could faintly make out his name as the woman came closer. He grinned as his name became even clearer. Stu turned to Murdoc still grinning. "That's my mum!! C'mon." He jumped down from the bench and took Murdoc's hand and began to run. After running for at least five minuets Stu saw his mother standing some feet away calling out his name. "MUMMY!!" He raneven faster dragging his new found friend behind him. Murdoc tried to let go but Stuart's grip was iron clad. Rachel Pot saw her son running towards her and she gave a cry of relief. It wasn't until they were inches from each other that Stu let go of Murdoc's hand.
"Oh Stuart where have you been?!? Are you okay? Did anybody hurt you?" Rachel turned her son around and checked him over for any cuts, scrapes, or bruises. She then hugged her son to her chest.
"M' okay mum....mum you're squeezin' me...."
Rachel let go. "Sorry luv."
Murdoc looked at the scene in slight amusement.
"Mum someone helped me find ya." He turned to Murdoc. "This is Murodc Alphonce Niccals."
Rachel looked at the teen who helped her son and she went over to him. "Thank you young man." She then embraced Murdoc in one of her bearhugs. Her quickness took Murodc by surprise and he didn't have any time to react. When she let go he was stood erect. Murdoc swore he heard his back pop in the midst of the hug. "Why don't you join me and my son for dinner?"
Murdoc relaxed a little. "Um sorry I can't. I have a prior engagement to attend to."
"Then let me pay you then."
Murdoc's mood brightened quickly. Free cash is worth just about anything. Even another bear hug from this woman. Rachel took out her wallet and retrieved eighty pounds from it and handed it to Murdoc. Murdoc smiled and happily took the money then pocketed it.
"Well Stuart, it's time to go back to your aunt and tell her what has happened today." She took Stuart's hand and smiled down at him. She looked back at Murdoc. "Thank you again."
"No problem." He watched Rachel and Stuart walk away. He turned and began to walk away as well but he then felt something wrap around his legs. He looked down and there was Stu hugging him.
"Thanks friend." Stu beamed up at Murdoc for one last time and ran back to his mother.
Murdoc just about forgot Stuart and Rachel Pot a year later,then he forgot about them completely.
That is until August of 1997.....