Gordon G Hall
Writer and Neo-Philhellene

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This rain was not for stopping. Water cascaded off the pavements into overwhelmed gutters causing grief to the evening traffic that sluiced its way homewards toward havens of dryness and warmth. The neon displays of the shop fronts looked out uncertainly into the blurring downpour in a vain attempt to beckon the eye.

"Penny for the Guy, Mister?"

No sooner were the words out of his mouth than the small boy was in full retreat.

The tall hooded figure took no notice of the fleeing child but paused, leaving something long and curved in the doorway of one such empty, neon emblazoned establishment. It then turned towards the busy crossroads, apparently oblivious of the deluge, and seemingly captivated by the swirling reflections: red, red and amber, green, amber, red.
A large car hummed its way imperturbably city-wards against the flow of traffic, unfazed by the awful conditions.

"Take the ring road, Barry".

The chauffeur bit his lip and nodded. He had intended to take the ring road anyway, but throughout this journey his passenger had taken it upon himself to bark directions as they approached any point of decision. Sir Charles was not a man to be crossed, Barry knew that from bitter experience. To answer him with even a simple 'yes' or 'no' might lead to a prolonged spate of verbal abuse. Nodding was the best option.

Sir Charles had enjoyed his day, a rare occurrence outside the city. He had seen off those damned European financiers, well frankly told them to stop sticking their heads up their jacksies. Some of these lefty political types just did not 'get' the way that money was made. And Sir Charles made money. He permitted himself the faintest of smiles when he recalled how he had seen off that frightful female who had berated him for being responsible for the unemployment that now threatened the economies of the EU. Fund managers do not create social conditions, anymore than bankers do, they react to the market, going short to provide a cushion against the Bear, and stabilizing prices through going long in commodities.

He doubted if his wife would be expecting him home tonight, and he saw no reason to surprise her. His PA would have sent that charming youth up to his penthouse suite. Pleasing young lad that, just slightly reminiscent of that chap at school, what was his name, May, that was it, Raymond May. He felt the arousal of that first encounter in the Groves. He no longer sought sex in lavatories.

It was not, thought Barry, entirely the fault of Bankers that the country was in such a mess. But it had started with money and these big cheeses, like Sir Charles, were all in it together. They all knew each other, a cosy little international club.

The hoodie ceased its contemplation of the light sequence. It glided over to a chunky piece of street furniture, leaned over it, and made some minor adjustments. If anyone had been watching carefully they would have noticed that all the reflections were now green.

The rain continued to fall.

The large black car nearly made it across the interchange. The driver of the number 32 bus, passing the green light saw the limousine too late. His brakes locked immediately in the foul conditions and whilst he managed to swerve slightly to his right the left side of the bus ploughed into the back of the car.

The hooded figure surveyed the resulting chaos closely to make sure that the one, intended, human had been terminated in the incident. It crossed over to the shop doorway, where the neon still flashed red, picked up its scythe and departed whence it had come.

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Distant Fells
Inspiration from this glorious world.