The dark underbelly of FEC occasionally surfaces in rumours. Only those who venture out at night may be privy to the truth. Or partial truths. While the pure of heart slumber obliviously, the deceptively quiet building entrances are manned by a night security guard and cameras.
For all the good they do. Security seems to be a part-time
either for goofing off or bettering one's lot in life. Personnel have
a way of changing frequently, due to terminal boredom or conduct
unbecoming. The more ambitious hirees spend their time on homework.
Potential chefs, landscape designers, and e-journalists have secretly
toiled away in the midnight hours, to the general approval of the
passing nocturnal populace. Less aspiring specimens take the
occasional slumber when not watching porn on the office computer. Or
stroll on the roof terrace wafting a little weed.
Mostly the job is undemanding. Discretion is a necessary component unless an Infraction occurs. Helping a few ladies find their doors after girls' night out. Preventing Archie and McElroy – Scooter Power – from demolishing the plate glass entrance after an evening at the Hearty Tartan pub. Showing drunks how to use the intercom system. Keeping Dominic's gypsies out. Subduing late-night carpenters. Tracking down the thumping bass of a musical artiste whose neighbours are going mental.
In the wee hours, a few
residents are treating FEC
security like the confessional. Or proverbial bartender. Engaging
security person in jittery-insomniac conversation on a regular basis
is a habit for Mouthy Monica who vies for the spotlight with Sally –
who never sleeps anyway –
and a hair-pulling match for the guard's attention is one of those
rumours. Guard's role in
this scenario of pretty much dreary monologue is contractually
undefined. It's been refined to a patient nod now and then with
There was the time the guard didn't recognize and refused to admit Jeremy freshly returning from a party. A cross-dressing party. A Near Infraction. Or the time Trevor developed a crush on the handsome young
guard; progressing to stalker symptoms was actually Trevor's
Infraction. We can't be certain but word is that particular incident
involved Upper Levels in the Chain of Command with legal Dispute
How the occasional street person gains entrance ‒ to be found sleeping in a common room or a hall corner ‒ is a puzzle. To be discovered by the most nervous of nightwalkers. Like Daphne, for instance, who habitually stumbles around looking for someone else who can't sleep. Once when she found a semi-comatose body, she shrieked unholy murder until the guard could figure out where the problem was. Finally someone had the foresight to shut her up with a slap; rumour varies about the culprit but we had a replacement security guy the next night. Big Possibly Undeserved Infraction.
Speaking of insomniacs, nothing beats a middle-of-the-night performance like a
at full throttle, shouting about a cat burglar climbing from balcony
to balcony. Didn't have his glasses on, of course. Didn't have his
required dose of medication either. Woke the whole street that time,
and the moving shadow was just poor Sandor the Super putting out the
garbage. Code Black Infraction. Firemen had to restrain some
sleep-deprived inmates from stringing up the dickwit on his own
balcony. No wonder the first-responders flinch when their alarms go
off and they know it's FEC.
Feckless nights in the life.