Jasfoup glanced at the time. "I'll have to go soon. This was supposed to be a quickie."
"Wham, bam, you're dead, Ma'am?" Amanda turned away and began making snuffly noises. "Go if you must. I'll be fine here."
"That trick may well have worked on mortal men but I know you're not crying because you're no longer capable of it. It requires both emotion and viable tear ducts." Jasfoup pulled out his Bloodberry again. I have another appointment in half an hour."
"What does it matter?" Jasfoup logged into his account and checked. "Oh! Actually, it's in the vicinity. Where's Vernon Court?"
"Outside." Amanda went to the sitting room window and pointed to the ring of road around the battered grass. That's the Vernon Court bus stop."
"How odd." Jasfoup checked his calendar again, tapping through the on-screen menu with an elongated fingerclaw. "That's exactly where I'm due to collect the soul."
"Perhaps it's that bloke in an overcoat waiting for the bus. He looks a bit creepy, actually, as if he's smoking."
"Lots of people smoke." Jasfoup didn't even look up. "it's an acceptable way of atoning for sin by dying a long, lingering death by emphysema and cancer." He looked up and gave her a bright smile. "The beauty of Creation, eh? That's God for you. Always one step ahead."
"I don't mean he's smoking a cigarette. I mean he's smoking. Like he's on fire or something." Amanda pointed down then backed away from the window. "I think he's looking up here."
Jasfoup looked out. "That's no ordinary bloke," he said. "It's a collection of demons."