We saw mark today.
He walked slowly into the store, walking stick in hand, limping heavily on his left leg.
His long grey greasy hair hanging lower than his baseball cap, his tracksuit trousers hanging limply from his waist. His tatty, blue trainers looking blacker than ever before.
His wife was with him. Her long greasy hair flowing all over her eyes, in her usual black skirt and so called white blouse. Her shoes are black.
No-one knows her name.
She never speaks.
Mark and his wife are both in their early fifties but she looks 20 years older. They have one son, whom no-one ever sees.
Mark and his wife have been regular visitors to our store and over the years we have seen the way mark has treated her. Sometimes she came in with a split lip other times with a black eye.
They walked around and picked up a few bits and bobs and then came to my checkout.
"Hello Annette." Says mark
I nodded and looked at him, "Hello mark." I said.
"Well what do you think of Gordon Brown then?" He asked.
"Oh, he's fine." I said turning away to pack his stuff as quickly as I could.
He smiled but I ignored that.
"Come on!" Says mark. "Don't just stand there, help annette pack!" He demanded of his wife.
He smiled at me but I ignored that.
She did what she was told and started to pack.
"That's £9.86" I said to mark.
"well, get your purse out." He shouted at his wife.
She did what she was told and got her purse out.
"Thanks annette. See you again." He said with a big smile on his face.
Mark has never worked because he is disabled, she does everyhing for him.
She picked up the shopping and turned to walk away,realizing this mark pushed her to one side, he then stepped in front of her and started to walk ahead. She walked behind.
I watched as they walked out of the store. Mark had a big grin on his face while his wife was walking three paces behind.
Just like she always did.
Every time it's the same, he's always the boss, never letting her do anything without his permission, but then again he never gives his permission.
I watched as he walked out of the door and wondered:
Anyone got a gun?