Jasfoup stood on the pavement and lit a cheroot while Harold said goodbye to Ada and Lucy, currently held safely in her grandmother's arms. As far as he could make out, goodbye to a child consisted of multiple run-throughs of finger waves and arm waves, kisses and 'bye-bye-I-love-you's. When all that was finished, Harold then had to say goodbye to Lucy. By the time he'd finished, Jasfoup had reduced the first cigar to ash and was contemplating a second, purely because it annoyed Harold.
“I don't know why you smoke. You don't even have lungs.”
“It's a filthy habit, and one I have pleasure inflicting on others in public places.” Jasfoup smiled. “Besides, I have a long-standing contract with someone who already has lung cancer. I inhale and his lungs fill up with smoke. The perfect solution.”
“Why am I not surprised you agree?”
“Why wouldn't I? I'm a demon. The chap with the cancer should have died three years ago but thanks to the contract, he's hanging on. His doctors are baffled.”
“I bet they are!”
“Still. It takes all sorts.”
“I suppose.” Harold looked back at the house. “Oh! They've gone in.”
Jasfoup glanced back. “Of course they have. Right. Shall we take the van or walk?”
“Where are we going?”
“To the shop. We need to talk to Legion. I want to know why she needs Manoarch's demons back so suddenly.”
“Suddenly? It's been two thousand years.”
“Exactly. So why now?”
“That's what we're going to ask Legion.” Jasfoup pulled open the van door. “And the quickest way to do that is to use your possessed kitchen furniture.”
“Right.” Harold crossed to the driver's door and got in. He hadn't locked the van. Never did. Sometimes he wondered what would happen to someone who tried to steal it. Not that anyone would try today, with a police car parked twenty feet away, its occupants trying to act as is they weren't watching.
“We're going up to the shop,” Jasfoup called to them. “Dark Passage at the top of the market.” He gave them a thumbs-up and climbed in.