Thursday, February 2, 2012

Dead Rite chapter 96.06

“Har-de-har” Harold counted out two pounds in silver. “There. I've added eleven percent.”

“You're six hundred and ninety-eight short.” The cook looked at the two police officers. “This man's trying to short change me.”

“Come on, Mr Waterman. Pay the man or we'll have to take you in.” Mike Brandsford winked at his partner. “That'd be at least an hour of paperwork in a warm office building.”

“That's right.” The other officer nodded. “Come on, sir.”

“This is ridiculous. I'm not paying seven hundred quid for a cup of shabby, weak tea.”

“Oh-ho! Disparaging my goods and services now, are you? That's slander, that is.”

“Don't be ridiculous. I have every right to complain to the provider of my dissatisfaction with their product.”

“Not if it's a ruse to get away with not paying.”

“How can it be? I've not even tasted it.”

“My point exactly.”

“Come on, Mr Waterman. It's not like your short of a few readies, is it? Not with owning the Manor and all.”

“I inherited that. Anyway, have you seen it? I'm a small shopkeeper. We pretty much live in the kitchen, the house is so draughty and unheated.”

“Be that as it may, sir, there's still the matter of your bill.”

“Don't be ridiculous.” Harold pointed to a chalkboard over the cook's head. “It says a cup of tea is one-sixty, right there on the price board.”

“So it does.” Mike turned to the cook. “You did say the surcharge was voluntary.”

“So I did.” He scraped the money from the counter to his palm and rang it up on the ancient till. “Thank you for your custom, sir. Please come again.”

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