After being allowed to leave, we walked up the road towards the centre of town; me striding in front and him keeping pace behind. Our destination was less than 1 mile from the SEB and the streets were deserted. We looked for the entire world like friends walking home from a night out together. But if you looked hard enough, you could just make out the subtle submission in Kane’s posture and the calm, confident way I held myself that showed the relationship’s true nature.
Rounding the street corner, we finally came up to our goal. “The Moonlit Arms” pub was almost too exaggerated when it came to a hide-out for us. A steel full moon hung over the small side door for employees only. The real moon was shining down into the car park on the other side of the building and onto the fields beyond. It was not yet a full moon so the secret basement was full when we entered the trap door next to the employee changing room.
Dozens of men and boys filled up the thirteen tables scattered around the large underground bar. A few women and girls were spread throughout the room, either under the arms of the men or talking with the boys. Angie, the Moonlit’s owner, was chatting with the group who worked in the bar upstairs and a boy I knew from school called Oli was standing kind of shyly in the corner.
I looked quizzically at Oli. “Do you know why he’s here?” I quickly noticed that many of the other people in the bar where staring at him too.
“No...” said Kane in a rather detached sort of voice. He, too, was staring at him.
“He’s from my old primary school and he now goes to our school.” He took no notice and he tried to look away for a moment to find our table.