Saturday, 30 January 2010

Episode 25

    The phone rang . Mr Teeth set down the scissors he had been using to open his morning sachet of protein drink (beef flavour today) and picked it up.
    “This is Peck. “ came the cultured voice of the private investigator . “Your boy is back in town. He was seen hanging around the club last night. Unfortunately, he left there in the company of some others – two men, two women. We have a licence plate though and my contacts are tracing the owners.”
    “Thanks,” grunted Mr Teeth, “I still want to speak to that boy, so keep on it, will you?”
    “Of course,” came the smooth reply, “I’ll let you know if anything changes.” The phone went dead. For 1500 dollars a day, the man might at least say goodbye occasionally, thought Mr Teeth.

    They had given Harold a tiny, hastily emptied-out office with no windows (to prevent opportunistic escape attempts, presumably). Someone had rustled up a camp bed and they had left a desk and chair in there too. It wasn’t the Ritz, but it was better than nothing.
    Teatime was still delicately sawing logs when Harold woke from a pleasant night of quiescence, wondering what the day would bring. He dressed, opened the door and stepped out into the main operations room of OGS. This place had fascinated him on his last visit but he had not exactly had a chance to explore.
    Even at this early hour, the place was far from deserted: there were agents tapping reports into computers, agents on the phone, agents scouring the internet for information – a veritable hive of activity. A fresh-faced young agent at a nearby desk noticed Harold.
    “I don’t think you’re meant to be wandering about out here.” He said, rather timidly. Harold guessed that he had probably not been in the job long. It was wrong of him, he knew, but he could not resist having a little fun. He placed his hands on the desk in front of the agent and leaned over him, forcing him to lean back to maintain eye contact.
    “I was just looking for something to eat,” he said, bestowing upon the agent his most friendly grin. “Know where I can get hold of some nice fluffy kittens?”
    The young agent looked horrified.
    “Err, I don’t think we can do that.” He stammered, “I can get you something from the canteen. Will that do?”
    “That would be lovely.”
    “Stop that!” India snapped, having just arrived.
    “I’m sorry,” Harold said to the young agent, “I was just having a little fun. Some food would be nice though. Teatime will be hungry by now and he gets really grouchy when he’s hungry.”
    Relieved, the young agent scuttled off.
    “Do anything like that again and there’ll be trouble.” India said angrily, looking like she could have slapped him.
    Harold held up his palms apologetically, “I’m sorry. You idealistic types have a certain stereotypical view of us demons, so I was just living up to it. Won’t happen again.”
    The fried egg of his apology splatted against the Teflon coating of her cool stare and slid off, leaving no trace of humour in her eyes. Mind you, when Harold thought about it, he had been a bit mean to torment the young agent like that. The young fellow had been about as tough as a marshmallow and not really fair game. He sighed. Guess it was just his wicked fallen nature coming out.
    “Get your monkey-thing and come with me.” India ordered.
    She was back to being dark-haired again today for some reason which tickled Harold’s curiosity somewhat. He’d have to ask her about that at some point – after making sure her taser was well out of reach first, of course.

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