Gregson watched the setting sun doing somersaults up and down the hills of Chessfield like a child touching the earth with her magic until she found the perfect hiding spot. He smiled a thin smile of memory, poking a pall-mall between his lips.

“There’s no smoking on this aircraft,” a skinny flight attendant hissed through made-up lips. Gregson looked at her bent body that had pushed too many trollies. Her eyes were glazed-over, like they never slept.

“Too many sleeping pills,” he mumbled.


“I’m sorry, could you just bring me the alcohol?”

She thought of not serving him, and a smile, like a scar, appeared on her grim face. He was fat and happy. Why was he happy? She thought.

“I solve crime,” Gregson said.

“Pardon me?”

“Pardon you? I don’t think so; it’ll be a life sentence.

“Just drink up. What will it be?”

“Whiskey…Rocks.” Gregson took his glass from her vice-like grip, twirling the cubes with his red straw, like a carousel. The problem was, when he drank, he heard their voices, so loud he couldn’t hear his own. They were all trying to get somewhere. He just watched those cubes spinning, until all their conversations jumbled together, clink, clink, “ahhh.”

And he pulled his Stetson over his eyes and enjoyed the long sigh, goodbye.

Space and Time passed like a dream until…

“We here.” Gregson looked at her Japanese face. Her dark eyes smiled at his. He got up, and a crane fell to his feet.


“Do you speak Japanese?” She asked.

Gregson smiled. “Not quite.” He unfolded the note.

Watch your step!

Gregson looked down at his blue running shoes. “That’s going to be impossible,” he said while stepping off the plane.

The winter wind blew up his wide cargo shorts. “Do they make espresso in Japan?” Gregson asked.

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