Beetroot & I #10

April 7, 2011

This evening I board a flight bound for London. I have managed to blag myself a meeting with a leading* UK publishing house. I’m very excited about this opportunity by I can’t help but feel slightly torn. I can’t quite feel at ease about my impending adventure. I’m worried about Beetroot. I asked him if he’d like to come with me. I could go to my meeting, he could do his own thing, see the sights and then we could meet up afterwards or something. I just wanted him to be there, with me.

He refused to give me a straight answer at first, constantly putting off booking his flight and changing the subject whenever I brought it up. Finally he told me that he wasn’t coming, that he had lost his passport and that he had too much work to do anyway.

But I now know this to be untrue. While doing the dishes I found his passport tucked away behind the cups, carefully hidden. And I know that he doesn’t have too much work to do because he’s a cat and doesn’t have a job. What has he got planned for while I’m away? Anyway, the reason that I’m going over is because this particular publishing house are very keen on getting some Christmas titles together for the festive market. As soon as I heard about this, I stopped all work on Tainted Milk and began work on Tainted Nog. It’s a thriller about a journalist who uncovers a terrorist plot to take over a sky scraper on Christmas eve 1988. Here’s what I’ve got so far…

Garrison removed his vest and fashioned a makeshift bra for Sandra.
“Here” he said fastening and tightening it with the skilled light touch of a well seasoned seamstress or lover. “This will keep your breasts warm.” His blood-stained torso glistened under the Christmas lights. The upper reaches of the forty-foot Christmas tree provided amble cover while also affording Garrison a bird’s eye view of the entire Karamushi Plaza building’s lobby. From this vantage point, John Garrison could see all three hundred and forty terrorists and the eight hostages they held captive.
“I’ll be back in a second.” He reassured Sandra with the warmth of a well-seasoned doctor or lover. Swinging gracefully from branch to branch, giant bauble to bauble, he settled just out of ear shot of Sandra.
“You still there buddy?” he whispered hopefully into his stolen police radio.
“You bet I am!” came back the comforting voice of Lieutenant Brown. “You think I’d miss this firework display?”
“Heh heh heh” chuckled Garrison, genuinely enjoying the banter. “I don’t have much time – I’m holed up here on top of the lobby Christmas tree”
“Sounds good” interrupted Brown, keen to remain involved in the conversation.
“I don’t want to worry her, but Sandra’s having a semi-serious allergic reaction to the pine needles of the tree. She’s swelling up like a stuffed turkey on Christmas day, which is tomorrow. If I don’t get her to a GP within the next few hours or so, she may be left with permanent scarring.” Garrison didn’t mention it to Brown, but it was this swelling that had led to Sandra’s bra not fitting her anymore.
“You know when all this is over John Garrison, I wanna buy you a beer.” said Lieutenant Brown earnestly, but manly.
“No way!” said Garrison curtly, in a way that shocked Brown. Had he done something to offend him? “I gave up drinkin’ a long time ago. How about a coffee instead?”
The sound of Garrison and Brown chuckling at this gag must have been enough to alert the terrorists to his location.
“Merry Christmas, John Garrison” rasped the familiar voice of Fritz Heidrichson and Garrison felt a gun nozzle digging into his neck.
“This is turning out to be one of the best Christmas Eve’s ever!” growled Garrison defiantly. He was being sarcastic though, it was almost certainly one of the worst.

Wish me luck.
Shane

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