Throw Him Away and Get a New One

A great wracking sob was the answer. The man started blubbered shamelessly. “Everything was great. I was paying my mortgage, playing squash, vying for promotion, getting my children’s teeth straight and going on holiday twice a year. I was living the middle class dream. Doing everything right. And then one morning I came downstairs and there was a stranger at my table.

“His name was Gordon. I’d never seen him before but my wife treated him like an old friend. She got angry when I asked him who he was and what he was doing in my house. Said I shouldn’t interrogate guests that way.

“Later that day, two men came to my office and handed me a court order. It said I was to keep away from my wife and kids. Did you ever hear of such a thing?”

“No,” said Angus. He lay back down and closed his eyes. “I didn’t.”


In the morning, Angus had a shower and noted with disgust that his room mate declined to do the same. He found the thought of going to work in yesterday’s shirt, socks and underpants abhorrent but he had no choice. What little money he’d had on him – including the gift from Marcus Canning – had been reduced to a handful of change. And there was still the question of how he was going to get to the office.

In the dining room, he piled his plate with bread, ham and cheese, poured a himself mug of coffee and sat at an empty table.

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