When I confronted him, he denied he’d ever said it. “James, really? You think I’d do something like that?” I wanted to believe him, I really did. But something was putting me off.
It was as if he’d managed to shrink into himself. He kept looking around, warily, as if somebody was going to jump out at him. His hat was gripped in fingers turning white as bone and he’d occasionally shudder as if someone had walked over his grave. “Alfie, what did you tell them?”
“Nothing! I just needed them to leave me alone so…”
“I… I said that we had the statuette.”
I couldn’t have heard him right. “I’m sorry, what?”
“I said that we had the statuette.”
“You told the Chronomatics that we had the statuette.”
“The same Chronomatics that chased us halfway around the world because they thought the we had the statuette.”
“The ones that once threatened to eat our livers if we didn’t hand it over and we only just escaped with our lives?”
“Those ones, yes.”
I stood still. Thought to myself for a moment. Then I punched him in the face.
It may not have been the best thing I could have done at that moment, but God, it felt good.
The Idiot in Tin Foil