Extract from Chapter 35
“Nice pizza Derek. Don’t you think you overdid it a bit though?” Red sauce dribbled from the right side of his lips while he spoke through a pepperoni filled mouth.
“I was having one of those moments.”
Derek didn’t see why he should even begin to explain himself to such a worthless
“What are we going to do with him, Derek?” Vicky sounded more than worried.
They were in a small interview room with basic furnishings and grubby decor. Ignoring his wife, Derek said to Rathbone, “The MOD want you. I’ve got a choice: I can either give you to them or I can lock you up myself. Which would you prefer?”
Rathbone swallowed hard and raised another slice of the pizza to his lips. “Why ask me? Out of all those present, who has had the least say in his own future, so far?” He chomped on.
“Rathbone! I can’t believe you. He’s threatening to have you locked-
“Well some bloody choice he’s given me. If the MOD want me I suppose it’ll be for more than just a casual chat. If they were completely innocent then he’d just give me to them, as you said earlier. What y'thinking of doing, Del, nicking me for murder? You can’t make it stick y’know.”
“I was rather hoping that you’d volunteer to be kept in here for your own safe keeping.”
“What? And have you hassling my poor old widowed mother, just so you can drum up some evidence? Not a hope. Turn me over and spare her the shit.”
“I don’t think I want to do that. If these MOD people were on the level then they should have liaised with me. It would have been a simple case of handing over the pair of you to them. Frankly, I’m insulted by the way they’ve done it.”
“And that’s it, is it? You’re insulted. I don’t suppose my welfare comes into this
at all then. Oh man, this is all you-
The pizza slice impacted with his chin. It was ground into his flesh by Derek’s right
fist. Red sauce and red blood mingled around his lips. He sat there, stock-
Derek was half standing. In a cold and threatening tone he said, “Keep your slimy little nose out of my marriage.” He sat down again.
Vicky had covered her mouth in shock. She remained still, as if frozen and unable to speak.
Rathbone separated the sticky mess of food from his skin and placed it onto the open lid of the pizza box. He used one of the complimentary Luigi’s Pizzeria serviettes to wipe the food and blood from his face before picking up another slice and cautiously biting into it. “So what y'gonna do with me, then?”
Derek, surprisingly relaxed, replied, “If you won’t be locked-
“Shit man! You can guard me. Maybe they’ll negotiate with you. That way you can make them promise to look after me. I might be known as Rats, but I’d hate to end up being dissected like one.”
Derek agreed. In reality, though, the thought of a Rathbone dissected was pleasing.