when the rain comes it's a slow drudge, it don't really fall out the sky but kinda just hovers around above the ground. i wander around like a strange beast out of luck and out of coconuts. my skin clammy, made of seaweed, stinking of sweat and slimy translucent oils, i get myself under the fan, it feels like 1950's burma, some half smoked joint and some water with lemon.
i pick up the only paperback in the room, it's an airport thriller by some guy called greg iles, it's called 'the quiet game' and i start to read it. completely different from any novel i would chose to read under normal circumstances but i can't leave the room until my package arrives.
hours must pass, the sun must be in a completely different spot i can tell by the way the shimmering haze in the black clouded sky hovers, just penetrating enough in diffuse obscurity, everything fuzzy and smeared by watercolours.
i'm half way through the novel, it's brilliantly written and i'm surprised at the quality of narrative. i stretch my legs, pace up and down like an english assassin. for a while i leer at the window and can make out the street scene below as a cart pulled by an elephant passes. a few figures in white on an otherwise empty street, the water now a river flowing down the road. under a lone palm tree stands a tall man in what seems to be a white singapore suit.
it's him, he's smoking a cigarette like a spy from 1954, faux coolness trying not to stand out while standing out. i put out my joint and put on my sunglasses, locking the door behind me.
he spots me immediately, after all only an english man would be wearing sunglasses in the rain.
we meet one another in the road, a cart manoeuvres its way around us effortlessly. a small wave of water washes over our shoes.
'let's get out of the rain mr. mission. there's a cafe just here.'
he leads, i follow.
inside i shake myself dry, take off my jacket and empty my shoes. i even squeeze out my socks and hang them over a chair. they will all be dry soon, the heat is outrageous, even the fan makes no difference it struggles slowly to rotate through the thick atmosphere only churning around hot stinking air.
we order teas and he flicks through a newspaper, folding it carefully in half and half again like some origami, he pulls out a pen and circles something and shows me.
it's my advertisement.
'so mr. mission how would i engage your services.'
'you must be under some misunderstanding, the moment you engaged my services is the moment you receive them it is not my job to take orders on targets but to target the order givers.'
the look he gives me is not quite confusion, more denial as the truth slips through his mind.
'the tea your drinking will take effect in a few seconds, it acts as a paralysing agent initially, after which you sink into a coma. chances are the hospital will terminate you. there won't be any traceable evidence, only that you died quite naturally.
the look of horror that crossed his face was familiar, i'd seen it many times.
i stood up to leave, returning to finish 'the quiet game.'