Thursday, April 17, 2008

Blasted Past: Part Nine

A decade ago, the town of Aberystwyth possessed a slightly down-at-heel appearance, large areas of waste ground reminding the visitor of coal yards and railways that had long ago vanished. Today much of that is gone, and the town wears a decidedly gentified aspect, although a few dilapidated buidlings seem to survive here and there. As Ms. Madison stood in a smart flat by the Marina, she wondered just what the Green Man would have seen when he came here with Sparrowhawk so long ago. And just when the man she was speaking to would actually get to the point. He had told her that he had been a stident there a decade ago, staying in digs in Powell Street, opposite the Tabernacle Chapel, where Sparrowhawk had been assaulted, now a mental health officer with the local council, he had apparently seen Sparrowhawk the day before she had been abducted.

"She was the same as ever," he told Ms. Madison, as he made coffee, "perfectly sweet, but incomplete, traumatised by the experience. I have to amit that I was a little surprised, after what she apparently was..."

"Why?" Ms. Madison smiled innocently. "She used to dress up and fight crime - don't you think that anyone who does that is a bit strange to begin with?"
"Fair point," the man nodded. "But still, I don't think I've ever seen a worse case of that nature. I'm shocked anyone could have thought of kidnapping her. She's just a child, mentally, I mean. The woman is gone, maybe forever."
"So, do you know anything else?" Ms. Madison took the coffee he offered her. "I mean, if you'd kidnapped a girl like that, what would you do with her?"
"Honestly?" the man sighed deeply. "I wouldn't have taken her. "It 'ld be a waste of time. In her condition, she couldn't say anything worth knowing. Nothing that could be relied on."

"So what would you do?" Ms. Madison drained her coffee.

"Use her as a decoy," the man smiled. "Use her disappearance to draw in her protectors. That way I might be able to get one of them at my mercy."
"Hence the mickey finn in the coffee," Ms. Madison smiled.
The man started violently, drawing a smile from the lovely blonde. She shook her head, swaying a little.
"And you'll have to ponder that one. bucko," she laughed. "'Cause right now, I'm about to pass out without telling you anything. Tell you boss that the Green Man doesn't send his people into traps without knowing everything."

No comments: