Archie grabbed his coat. Ollie was right. It was flipping cold out there and what could they do meeting at the corner of Canal Street? He’d better get a move on if he was going to get there in twenty minutes. There were two main roads to cross. You always had to wait for the green man. He’d better step on it.
It was even colder than he thought. A couple of times he slipped on the ice.
“You want to take more water with it,” shouted Foxy Burnett as he came out of the betting shop of the corner of Glastonbury Road and Bristol Avenue. “You going to your Grandma’s?”
Archie had just almost crashed into a car half parked on the pavement. Sneaky old pervert, he thought as he saw Foxy’s eyes lit up. “She’s probably gone shopping,” he said.
“Oh, well give her my regards when you see her,” said Foxy. “And tell her me offer still stands. If she’ll have me.”
Gross, thought Archie. He fancies her. Archie felt slightly sick. Foxy was a dirty old beggar and he smelt awful. No chance for him with Grandma. She was much too particular. Thank goodness.
“Well, you will, won’t you?” said Foxy.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” said Archie. “Get out of my way, will you? I’m in a hurry.”
“Where’ve you got to get to then? In such a tearing hurry? ”
“Corner of Canal Street. Move, then.”
Ah. Foxy had a point. Red had not said which corner. And Canal Street was half a mile long. The nearest bit was at least twenty minutes away. Now Foxy had held him up. He’d never make it.
Archie found Red’s number in his phone. Darn! It was engaged. But at last Foxy had moved out of the way now.
Archie tried Ollie.
Ollie answered. “Hiya. What’s keeping you?”
“Bottom Row. Where do you think? Durr! You wouldn’t imagine he’d want to move far from home, would you?”
“Okay. See you soon.”
“Move it, man. He’s nearly finished talking to his new girlfriend. He’ll get stroppy if you’re not here in five.”
“I’m doing my best, man.”
Ollie finished the call.
Red had a girlfriend. When did that happen?