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MYRRH: First in the Ceremonies of the Horsemen
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Hebephrenica/ It's Time You Knew
by:  Ken Egbert (aka K. Griffiths), One More Haggard Drowned Man
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November 14, 2015

The Human Game, pt. 362: On the point of departure

Philip and Al-Adil (‘Dezik’ and ‘Tsygyan’) found the old woman in an abaya and niqab at a crossing on Clapham Road. A slight hobble had impeded her progress. This was the team’s fourth ‘out’ call since ‘Sputnik’ had gone live. Approaching from an angle at which it appeared she might note them, Philip stepped back and to his partner’s left. Leila greeted the woman with a ‘Salaam aleikum.’ The woman ignored her, still awaiting the changed light.
Remaining a bit behind, Philip attempted a sentence in Urdu. The response was no better. Farsi didn’t help either. At last, Al-Adil in desperation tried her rather stiff Aramaic. The woman’s head turned slightly.
“I don’t know you,” she replied.
“Perhaps you have not heard, madam,” Leila told her. “I am from the British Home Office. We have heard that angry men are looking for Muslims to make examples of.” Philip took out his mobile to call a Five vehicle to pick them up while Al-Adil showed the old woman her Five warrant card. “We’ve left leaflets at every mosque in London.”
“I don’t belong to any mosque,” the woman muttered. She put her bags down. A few early evening passersby saw them talking and moved on in various directions. “They’re too expensive. I live by myself. I know where Mecca is.” She pointed. “I’m three blocks that way. Possibly you could help me with my groceries.”
A blind man (or woman, Nadia would remind me) could see this wasn’t one of those they’d been watching for. Philip chose not to guess either way; as he knew no Aramaic, he could but wait. Leila turned.
“Why don’t we just walk her home?”
“Will she stay there?” ‘Or,’ he indicated his mobile.
Asking the woman if she could remain indoors awhile and getting a tired assent, the Favored One took a bag and handed it to Philip; a sharp word from the old woman stopped her.
“Oh, dear,” he said at this, puttting his phone away. Leila shouldered two-thirds of the woman’s burden and the three set off Lansdowne, breathing a bit easier for the moment. Phiip walked behind them, hands in pockets; as ever, he scanned the street.

We spun repeatedly in a slow circle around London, intersecting the pre- winter sun’s arc twice per full turn. We’d all but paved our very own ring road in the air, waiting for the first pair of savage innocents to ready themselves and appear. There was not a plan in our heads, a nod possibly to the old old days. Had we been closer to it upon the next hour, we would have heard Big Ben chime, but it wasn’t to be. Some other church, who knows which, filled in for it.
“Sputnik launch unavoidably further delayed,” came the control voice from Thames House. Edith, as usual. She would be signing off shortly for the night. The early evening choir responded, one by one. We’d lost count how many times this had been said. We acknowledged in our turn. Imagine, if you like, a Vespers service from the night before had got stuck in infinite repeats. We cheered silently whenever a woman in ‘hijab’ was spotted by the NOS. At least there was a bit of excitement on the network. We were up to over one hundred fifty sightings and interceptions. Little notice was paid, other than the odd passerby wondering at two correctly dressed women (or in the case of South Lambeth, one woman and one man) approaching this or that observant Muslim woman, some accompanied and some not, speaking with her at some length and then all making scarce in a large automobile. Sir Hal had fielded a total of one call thus far from New Scotand Yard and had managed to talk down their interest. Something more about threats of violence from local right-wing groups.
(-Nicely played, Sir Hal. –P.)
“Belka, Strelka, Pchelka, Laika; any new coordinates?” intoned Edith.
-None, ma’am. –F.
She would ask again.

Copyright 2010 by K. Griffiths. All rights reserved.
This is an excerpt from a work of fiction. Any similarities between this narrative and actual events or between these characters and any persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.

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November 10, 2015

The Human Game, pt. 361: 'You still can't place them'

Edith noted Sir Hal’s hangup and immediately texted, -“Are you on? Next series in 20 sec.”-
-“Dear God, I hate lying to that man.”- The peer clicked back onto the network, moved towards his analyst’s desk. Stopping by the picture window, he closed his eyes, waited for seconds to tick. -“I will pay for it.”-
-“His wife works for the Gate, Sir Hal,”- Edith observed. –“It cannot be risked.”-
-“Felicia is not part of the problem, but very well.”-
12:00 noon GMT. Edith crisply pronounced as before, “Sputnik countdown further unavoidably delayed.” One by one the responses came to roost, ours included. Sir Hal walked back to his desk, waited for the channel to go silent.
-“You still can’t place them,”- texted Edith.
-“Ever so slight Greek accent. May be my imagination.”-
-“Why do they volunteer nothing?”-
-“They may know nothing at this juncture. Though one doubts that. We did provisionally calculate that ‘the client’ may have at first hired them to work alongside the Agency. Double blind, both ways. Client may have guessed it was them in Paris and slammed the door.”-
-“May have. Ergo they could know less than we do.-“
-“Or they wish to hear us squirm, which we will not.”-
-“One moment…”- The crew from the Net of Steel reported via instant message a woman, middle-aged, wearing ‘hijab,’ seen walking in Canonbury with a large box. A young man followed with one even larger. Edith called in the local ‘dog team,’ received an acknowledgment. Once she remembered to breathe, she texted, -“Some positive news, please, Sir Hal.”-
-“No one is dead yet. Where does Six stand on the Bernheim transfer?”-
-“I have an e-mail here; according to Propinq at Field Services, three female Six agents will be on the Eurostar in three hours, and the Doctor will be in London by eight-fifteen. Three!”-
-“MPs generally only get two.”-
-“Not as if we can lay hands on three more officers without some starting to ask what’s on… Are you actually going in the field if?”-
-“I won’t know until all turns mad, will I.”-
-“I’m still against it.”-
-“We lead as we follow, Edith. You heard what I said to Al-Adil.”-
-“That was to frighten her, and it doesn’t appear that you did.”-
-“Am I so transparent? Quite the fan base our very former Six liaison has garnered. If all survive the ordeal, shall I make her an offer?”-
-“She’d say no.”-
-“Just how much time did you spend with that young woman?”-
-“You already know, Hal.”- Edith ‘forgot herself’ regularly but the peer and she had worked together too long for him to call her on it. –“She convinced me from her performance that she’s good. Callow, yes. In her case, it makes less difference than you may think.”-
-“We could still lose women today. Or men.”-
-“Not thanks to her miscalculations. Not now. Stay here, Sir Hal. Please. We don’t remember 7-7 from this perspective. If you’re out there and I can’t get to you because there’s a building in the way, what’s the procedure? Call in Sir Wadsworth?”-
-“Normally that would be the instruction.”-
-“Not this time. No intent to wave the flag until I break my wrists here, but sometimes we follow as we lead.”-
-“Uncalled for, Edith, but.”- An e-mail from Buckelew and Rehm… yes, them again… at Six. –“Well, this is getting altogether too cozy.”-
-“What was that?”-
-“Further info from our counterpart. Re-examination of local transmission patterns has shown a general wide-range mid-frequency pulse at two to three hours previous to each of the successful bombings in Mashhad, Aleppo, Belgrade and Geneva. The bombs are not timed. They are remotely switched on and there is a different subsequent method of detonation in use.”-
Edith asked, -“There was no pulse in Paris.”-
-“There also has not been one yet today.”-
-“True. So their method may now differ.”-
-“Not impossible.”-
-“What if I were here by myself and didn’t look at your e-mail, Sir Hal? By the way? You want to find Sir Lawrence. I understand that.”-
-“Reading my mind again. Where in hell is he?”-
-“Part of my job.”- The NOS had detected a woman in ‘hijab’ at the corner of Lansdowne Way and Clapham Road. No male companion. Quickly she made the call to the South Lambeth facility and e-mailed –“Speak of the devil. Philip and Leila are on the move again.”-
-“Sturdivant and Al-Adil.”-
-“Yes, sir. Sturdivant and Al-Adil.”-
-“Done, then, Edith. Today it appears I follow.”-
-“Thank you, sir. I mean that.”- She decided that to mention his age – fifty-nine – would be ‘piling on,’ as they say in American football.
She was right. Dispirited, the head of Five attempted and failed to look on the bright side; he might not die today after all. Though others might, in his place. As we continued our circle of the city, he returned to the afternoon’s busywork.

Copyright 2010 by K. Griffiths. All rights reserved.
This is an excerpt from a work of fiction. Any similarities between this narrative and actual events or between these characters and any persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.

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November 5, 2015

The Human Game,pt. 360: We Lead as we Follow

Early morning passed into mid-to-late morning. On the top floor at Thames House, Sir Hal dealt with (when he had to) and batted off to subordinates (when he didn’t have to) all the other open files and surprise incidents and so forth of a typical/atypical MI5 working day. He had slept on the couch against his office’s back wall, earpiece waking him every two hours as it did us. When Edith relieved the night controller at seven he gave her a half hour to get acclimated that he might shower and change; on his return he began the e-mail/text swap they used to keep their impromptu opinions off the hot mike. Well into the eighteenth hour
(11:53 AM GMT) came the following, while we orbited the city on an M25 of our own making, as our invisible contrails sketched it out behind us.
-“Are they still in position?”-
-“They claim that they are. Their GPS is in and out. Bouncing around the city, more or less as our central signal does. I don’t know what kind of scrambler they’re using.”-
-“How many detainments are we up to?”-
-“Only fifty-eight. Props to the London Muslim community, they’ve come through.”-
-“So far.”-
Sangeeta announced a call on the inter-building: “Sir Hal, Sir Wadsworth, please.” The peer switched off his rig and picked up his ‘phone.
“Yes, Wads, good morning.”
“Strapped to the desk today, I see, Hal. Missed you at the AM run-around.”
“I’m certain you did me proud. Any previously unknown horrors?” Silently the head of Five wondered if his ADG had checked to see if he had left the building the night previous. Not his modus operandi, but.
“Just two topics. First, two of our men stationed at the northeast corner of St. James’ Park were hospitalized, about eight-ish last night.”
“What operation was this?”
“Not too savvy yet. Trying to find out. Some vestigial bit of business.”
“No, both struck with something like a diabetic coma. A truly fine citizen called the bobbies when he saw them in the car and couldn’t knock ‘em up. Odd, since neither of them are classified diabetic. There was a Five relief team on its way there already when they didn’t acknowledge a hail, you can imagine the ‘bung-ho’ when they arrived and found an empty vehicle.”
“Will they be all right?”
“Should be released from hospital tomorrow AM. For the next dissenting voice in the dawn chorus, let’s see… yes, Bendall at the Castle rang after the morning meeting.”
“Seems his human ear trumpets are getting what he calls ‘worrisome static.’ There’s this scattered web of signals emanating from here and there—“
“Well, then it could be anybody. London or--?”
“Here. Voice is terribly like your analyst Edith’s, he says. Muttering something about a long-dead Soviet Union space program. Seems to be on one of our frequencies. Wants to know do we have any concept.”
“Not a familiar bell. Can he forward a recording?”
“Asked him that, Hal, said he would but hasn’t yet.”
“Slow day for his listeners, perhaps. Field Services has no information either?”
“They do not. Claim that slot’s locked out for some reason, though.”
“Who locked it?”
“Home Office, of all people. Tried to get more info from them, but no joy yet.”
“Any other clues Bendall felt free to share?”
“Goes further along those lines; after the Edith clone makes some trenchant comment about a rocket prepping for launch, or not, there’s a group of replies from all over London. Mostly women, repeating names of dogs in Russian. One male.”
Sir Hal sat back, gesturing to Edith. “Naught in my Swiss cheese memory. A very obscure form of… oh, hell, art project? Post-postmodern? Does that exist yet? Could the HO have hired out one of our unused frequencies for an installation? They do keep moaning about our budget…”
The rote Sir Wadsworth Demain dry chuckle followed. “We are grasping at straws.”
“Not that such things take up our day, usually…”
“Might see it at the Tate, this time next year. Should I call over, again?”
“No need, I’ll do it as soon as we hang. Using one’s GPS may save one money on paint and canvas, possibly.”
“Who knows,” admitted ‘Wads.’ “Run it back on infinite repeats in one of the listening rooms with quadraphonic mikes? Shades of Bruce Nauman.”
“Oh, yes, those clowns that don’t make you laugh.” Sir Hal attempted sophistication. “Brilliant. We have taken note of what the Arts Council can get up to, given all those lottery funds. Look at that half-witted installation right at Vauxhall Cross, near Six’ HQ.”
“Might do to use some of that money to hire the Petrograd Philharmonic as opposed to this ‘whatever it may be.’ Schedule a nice long tour of the UK.”
“Educate the football hooligans.”
“Give Constantine the Great something to do, as well. All right, I’ll toss that ball to him if he shouts back or forwards a sound file. Edith in today?”
“Naturally, sitting right at her desk. Well, if that will do…”
“Comparatively uneventful morn in the Realm thus far,” Sir Wadsworth thought he was agreeing. Exchanging final pleasantries, they disconnected.

Copyright 2010 by K. Griffiths. All rights reserved.
This is an excerpt from a work of fiction. Any similarities between this narrative and actual events or between these characters and any persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.

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November 1, 2015

The Human Game, pt. 359: Not Drowning but Waving

“What, Peter…?” Already, in her mind she was well on the path back to her temporary desk and the Alps of still-unsifted information that waited.
-Your question about why the ‘windows’ face outwards in ‘Verse II. –P.
“I’m listening.”
-Do the power conduits come into the quadripole magnets from outside the
Colider tunnel or from inside it? I forgot to look. –P.
“When you were down there, sure. From outside, why?”
-Well, maybe that’s why the ‘windows’ face out, here. The electric field from the inputs sets up a slightly stronger magnetic field outside the tunnel than what’s within the ring. The conduits in the Collider in ‘Verse I are probably oriented the same way, but they may not have had a similar refit. So the impression on ‘Verse II is outwards, and the impression on ‘Verse I is inwards. If they were equal, I bet you could use any window to step in and out from either direction. –P.
Very little silence from Leah, then… “And the multiverse effect doesn’t come into play at all, does it? Which I haven’t even begun to formulate! And how about the insanely varying Higgs field measurements that Robot World -- sorry, Angus – got while you were ‘across,’ they don’t matter?”
-Oops. Knew I forgot something. –P.
“Not a bad guess, though. Time for you to vanish before I have nothing left to discover!”
At last we arrived at where my brothers waited. One by one she went to them and gave each a hug; still clear-eyed, she next did the same for me.
“At synagogue I prayed for your safety today,” she informed us. “So with any luck at all, Someone will watch over you as you did for me.” A CERN security officer approached.
-Our privilege, Leah. --F.
“Augustus says thank you as well, by the way,” Leah added. “I was on the phone with him for hours, on and off, yesterday. He meant ‘for everything.’”
-He is very welcome/ and do give him our regards --D.
Quietly as we mounted up: “…Au revoir, mes amis.”
-We’ll see you when we see you… --F.
Ever the charmer, that’s Francis. William in the lead as usual, he led Francis, myself and David to the main thoroughfare and, with a wave we set off west. At a turn in the road, we all but flew out of sight; just before doing so we looked back. Leah stood yet, beside the CERN officer, arm aloft. We too lifted our hands variously, and were gone from her sight.
-Not drowning but waving/ to misquote Stevie Smith –D.
-If we’d stayed any longer, she would have guessed who we were –F.
-An’ we’d be the ones lyin’ in th’ ditch. –W.
One doubted Dr. Bernheim would ever have been our Belisarius, though it was not entirely impossible. We would probably have forgiven her even that. All the more reason to aim for London, and for whatever ‘hole in the ground’ would claim us. We each tore the duct tape off our microphones and entered the ‘Sputnik’ net for good and all.

Tyrell slept in his clothing in the front seat of Silas Stingy’s Land Rover. Needing him at least somewhat fresh, the Gate flack had gone to texting in order to keep the noise down.
--“Sick of waiting for you to do your job. You’re off the assignment.”—

--“Ted, to the best of your knowledge is the phone line in?”—; --“Very good. Talk to you at nine PM GMT.”—

--“Is everyone holding in place to your knowledge?”--; --“Tell him we have his
dog and we’ll shoot it.”--; --“Fine, we’ll shoot his cat.”—; --“Then I guess his mother will have to do.”--

--“Phil, I’m stuck in ‘texting’ mode, I can’t talk to you verbally. What’s the news?”--; --“They actually have horses?”--; --“I don’t think they make Errol Flynn movies any more, he’s dead.”--; --“Pretty obvious these weirdos aren’t responsible for anything but watching Bernheim’s back.”--; --“No, you do not have permission to do anything but follow and report locations.”--; --“Very good. Revenge is overrated. Take it from me. You’ll keep me apprised. Any of your men along the route have cameras?”--; --“Good. And remember, Phil, the Agency thinks you’re fired. Don’t call them.”—
That was all for now. Early morning sunlight, among the towers of the City, finally reached the Land Rover, still in its space. Silas looked up and waved away yet another parking violations officer.
“Awake, then, I see,” the ‘bobby’ offered.
“Yes, sir,” replied Silas. “We’re still waiting.”
“’Ope she’s worth it,” the officer said, and meandered away for other misparked vehicles to have towed.

Copyright 2010 by K. Griffiths. All rights reserved.
This is an excerpt from a work of fiction. Any similarities between this narrative and actual events or between these characters and any persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.

Send author a comment on this post

October 27, 2015

The Human Game, pt. 358: Geneva Farewell III

“Is this the way it is?” she asked, relaxing a bit more. “You’re the smart one, William’s the clever one, Francis is the munitions expert and all-around man, and David is the poet.”
-Very accurate, although Francis is also the music buff. –P.
“While William clearly is not,” Leah kidded.
-You informed David that we should never tell you anything that we don’t have to. –P.
“That warning still holds…” She signaled for a left turn into ‘le centre-ville.’ That Hummer H7 which had nicely filled our rear-view mirror for a few klicks peeled off to the right and no other vehicle took its place. “I don’t remember you and Francis, though. From my recitals, I mean. I’ve utterly racked my brains.”
-It was a while ago. –P.
“I would think that I would have liked you two, right away. I’m not questioning your honesty! I told I don’t know how many adults that I wanted to be a physicist, a concert violinist and a track star, so you definitely talked to me. You may have seemed ancient then, maybe that was it -- no offense -- but having got to know you all, I don’t doubt that you spoke to me then as if I were an adult. None of that maddening ‘And what do you want to be when you grow up, little girl?’ I hated that. So two handsome grown men who didn’t… well, automatic route to a 13-year-old’s heart!”
-Thank you for that. –P.
“Can I ask you how old you were, back then?”
-Our late 20s. –P.
“I was right! Ancient. To a 14-year-old.”
-I’m very glad we met you before… --P.
“Me too! Made all this a lot easier. So… you’re in your late fifties, now. Not that I remember how you looked then. If, if you’d prefer—“
-No, no. Dead on! And, yes, Mediterranean men generally preserve well. --P.
“As long as you don’t let the sun dry you out,” she quipped. “So… what will you do when you’re too old to…?”
-Haven’t given it a lot of thought. I suppose we should. –P.
“And your horses, they must be getting on.” Quickly: “Not that I noticed, but…”
-They haven’t let us down yet. You heard us in ‘Verse I. Nobody pulled a muscle or lost a tooth. –P.
“…If you decide to retire, do you have property somewhere that you can retire to?” Nervously: “I’ll stop asking if you don’t—“
-An island in the Aegean Sea. It’s called Cythera. –P.
“Oh, well… count me among the ignorant, but I suppose business is good.”
-Good enough. If we should decide to close up shop, Leah, we will tell you where you can visit us. It’s very easy to find, it’s one of the Ionian islands. We take very seriously what you said Tuesday night. If you like. –P.
“I do, and you can bet on it. Nobody will ever find out anything you say to me. Or where you are. Nobody. I promise that.”
-Leah… you don’t have to. –P.
“Don’t mind me, I just… I just want you all to keep well. I do get vacation time. When you decide to move there permanently, I can certainly come see you! If
I’m welcome.”
-Definitely. –P.
Almost happily: “Fine, I don’t tan, I broil. I don’t know, I’ll get a big hat or something. And no bathing suits, either. It’s true, this clearly is not the world I thought, but...”
-You’ve grown accustomed to us anyhow. –P.
“I have…” she managed. “It’s hard to explain.”
For whatever reason I quoted our Chosen adversary.
-Not as if you didn’t already. You usually take your friends where you find them. As opposed to where they find you. –P.
“I knew you’d see it!” she agreed, her new old self again. “Everybody I know but you and your brothers are a very tight circle of scientists, engineers, technicians or family members. I’m not used to your work, I admit it. I’ll keep doing what I can to not be unbearable. I haven’t asked and I won’t ask about your next job, either.” A bit of silence as the dawn at last arrived. “Thanks to your expertise and your contacts, you and Leila have me all set up. So I can’t really say much against it, can I?”
Naturally it occurred that I should take a look above us. What stars the half-lit city allowed me to make out all appeared quite stationary. Should not have forgotten my bow and arrow anyway.
-Too late, I’m worrying already. –P.
“Well, try to stop and so will I. Try, anyhow. Leila’s been amazingly thorough. I don’t much like not being able to go home, I miss my violin plenty enough as it is, but maybe that won’t last. I’ll even have a guard staying with me at night.” Leah turned to give me a look. “Female!”
-So you’ve been trying to think of everything as well. –P.
“The list is pretty daunting, but those are my orders. I make my own coffee, I shop at a different grocery every day, no prepared foods, I use a different gym, I run a different route, you have no concept… oh, wait a minute,” she half-laughed. Better than nothing. “Of course you do.” At this point we arrived at rue St.-Leger 10, site of the Israelite Community of Geneva. “Means I also have to learn how to cook, unfortunately,” Leah added. “That’ll be scary.” Opening the door on my side, I took another view of the near- to-empty sky. “I’ve angled the car so you can watch it from that window,” she indicated the sanctuary.
-Well done. So you’ll also be attending a number of synagogues in no particular order. –P.
“Yes, Peter, Leila also thought of that,” she replied with continued tolerance. “I certainly wouldn’t have. I’ve come to like this one, but orders are orders.”
-Good. –P.
No other autos had followed us onto St.-Leger, so we appeared all right for the moment. I stepped out of the car after she parked, the vast number of my questions unasked. They never would be, now, I saw that; given I hadn’t found the words with which to ask them, of course… I had no doubt that had I done so, however, Leah would have told me the truth. She was that sort of person. Let this be a monument to our friendship. Whatever, at base, that actually was.

Minyan progressed without incident -- I sat at the prescribed window, ‘kipah’ inexpertly applied to my head after Leah handed one over -- and we left after the rabbi and some of the old men (pardon me, they were all old men) asked that we stay for coffee and egg-white omelets. Leah had ‘Verse I to get back to and we four had the road ahead, so we made our excuses. From her attitude I think she still wanted to ask where we were off to, but must have felt she’d been inquisitive enough. During minyan a hopeful voice requested in my earpiece the following formula.
“Belka, Strelka, Pchelka, Laika… any new coordinates?”
-None, ma’am/ --D.
Quietly I thanked David for his reply. I heard nothing more from the network until some time past our leaving Switzerland.
At CERN, four horses and three Horsemen – however accurate that name now was, or wasn’t – stood waiting in the grass across from the front lot. Geist snarfled a greeting as he recognized the arriving car’s driver. And its passenger, one hopes. “Well,” she said to me, drawing on her gloves after she parked. “You know where I’ll be, right? Here or in Cambridge? Or you’ll let me know where you are? I’m holding you to it.”
-We will. Are we forgiven? –P.
“Don’t be ridiculous,” Leah said. “Oh… all right. Am I?” We opened the car doors.
-I can only say the same. –P.
Locking the Mercedes, our friend – yes, at last I admit it even to myself – pointed out, “See, this is why living exclusively out of sight is bad for you, and living only the life of the mind isn’t necessarily good for me. You always assume that you’re invading the other person’s privacy. We’ve all had too much of that, and for too long.” Her shoes clicked onto the concrete walk, much as I had heard them eight days before while she’d approached us down the applied math building’s steps at Cambridge. “I very much hope I’ve done you all some good.”
-Oh, no, you’ve been a complete millstone around our necks. –P.
With another very attractive smile, “I’m serious. From my vantage… well, with you and your brothers around I’ve begun to wonder if I’m the person I thought I was. It was nice, actually. I have never bought a dress specifically for a dinner engagement before. I have never talked to men I’m not related to in the way I’ve talked to you and your brothers. Well, almost never. It’s – it’s so weird. Not that I dislike it.” She reseated the bag on her shoulder. “Hopefully I’ve done something similar for you.”
-…We’ve been alone for longer than I care to remember. –P.
“That’s changed too. You’ve got me, now.” We passed among the parked cars, towards my brothers. “I - I also hope I haven’t been overfamiliar. Or overbearing. Well, too overbearing. I don’t really think I’m very good at this yet.”
I only knew my response because I had, long ago, heard so many of humanity voice it. While I waited to strike. “I believe that friends are allowed those kinds of indiscretions.”
“Another reason why I’ve enjoyed your and your brothers’ company.”
-As have we, yours! By the way... –P.

Copyright 2010 by K. Griffiths. All rights reserved.
This is an excerpt from a work of fiction. Any similarities between this narrative and actual events or between these characters and any persons living or dead is entirely coincidental.

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"A good writer is an expert on nothing but himself. And on that subject, if he is wise, he holds his tongue." --John le Carre

Exactly how interesting can the author be, anyway, when nobody has any idea where their creativity comes from or how the mechanics of inspiration works? Maybe it's something we all have access to. Maybe it's a sluice that empties into your head when you're facing in a particular direction and thinking a particular series of things. Then again, maybe not.
However benevolent inspiration really is, to say nothing of what it is, I suspect that any good fictional character is a lot more interesting than the person who dreams it up. So mine speak for me here.

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