Thursday, 13 September 2012

Debt to be discharged

Billie ran along the street, as fast as he could manage, with his hurt knee. He had fallen down the stairs, when he left his flat on Brickroad 17. He had got a call from an old friend with an urgent request for help. He owed to him, and since the incident, about which Billie preferred not to talk, the two of them had hardly seen each other. Years had passed. But now it was time for him to redress for his friend’s help. And though he was worried, he felt a kind of glow inside, he was thankful to whomever, God? – Billie had never really believed in God, maybe fate? – Yes, he would say, fate had given him the chance, to compensate for the trouble he had caused his friend.

Billie came to a halt and looked around. Maybe there was somebody skulking at a window. He was a bit nervous still, when he walked about alone at night.
Now was not the time to think much, anyway. He was in a hurry. At the bus stop he came to a halt, coughing, and then taking in deep breaths. He was in a bad shape, due to his current occupation, which held him at his writing desk. A few people were waiting too. A young couple was snogging behind the bus shelter. The girl started giggling, when she noticed Billie, but he just turned away. Long ago he had decided, not to get inflamed about peoples’ reaction, when they lay eyes on him. By the way, most people just seemed not to see him at all. Bus nr. 277 was arriving, and he stood first in line now, eager to get on the bus and reach the spot of appointment. They had talked about meeting at his friend’s place, but the address was too elaborate and they didn’t want any sneaking and poking neighbours around. The bus had taken a few bends before it stopped again, three times the bus stopped, before a man in a grey coat and a cap with an emblem of the local football team jumped on. Billie tried to catch his eyes, but the man wore mirrored sunglasses. He was quite sure, that it would be his friend and waited for him to join him on the backseat. The man sat down a few rows in front of Billie, and when the bus came to a halt again, he got up, thrust a package into Billie’s lap and left the bus. Before Billie knew of it, the bus had taken up speed again. Billie got up from his seat; the package was in his left hand. He stood looking out of the window. The man was walking speedily through a gate and was out of sight.
Billie looked down at the parcel and wondered, what this was all about. He pushed the signal button, and the bus stopped some hundred yards from, where the man had left the bus. Billie felt uncomfortable, disappointed.

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