The Tale of Johnny Amberthy

'Where do I begin with Johnny Amberthy? Where do I begin with a tempter of fate?'


2. Chapter One

'But sir - I've explained this to you before, our firm is fast running out of the available money in the bank and our employees refuse to donate any from their own pocket -'

'I as well have explained this before -  we are money lenders. It is a successful and very much serious business, and therefore not a charity.'

'I implore you, sir -'

'And I understand your pleas, Percival, but your own business is costing us more money then it is making!'

The blathering fool presses a wrinkled hand to his forehead. I realise it's a hand which has worked. The man's had a tough life. But even so...

'Just give me one last chance, just one small loan and I promise I will pay it back as soon as my next pay cheque comes in...'

I sigh heavily and pass a large brown envelope underneath the glass pane that separates the employees from the clients.

'I am afraid that this is the last memorandum before we will have to possess your house.'

He looks up to me, his big, fat chin wobbling like a jelly. His eyes are the picture of desperation. I look away.

'What ever happened to our friendship, Johnny? What went wrong?' 

For a moment I grit my teeth and shut my eyes. When I open them again, Percival is staring at me with his little doe eyes that were probably sweet when he was about five, but just grow tiring at fourty.

'Nothing went wrong, Percival, and this loan has nothing to do with friendship. Why have you become so touchy - feely lately anyway, Percy?'

He sighs and his shoulders droop. He turns away, defeated, and opens the swinging glass door. 

'Oh, Johnny, you never get it, do you?'

I don't make him stay to tell me what he means, and so I turn my attention to the family of four in front of me and shut out any thoughts at all that may lead to the matter of Percival Wakefield. 


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