Wednesday, 27 July 2011


"The most frightening experience I ever had", said Nigel, "was when I was a student, living in lodgings in a scruffy part of town. I woke up in the middle of the night and found a man sitting on the end of my bed. It was too dark to see clearly, but it looked like he had a knife. He asked me, "Where's the drugs, then?" I was terrified"
"Did you think he was a burglar or a policeman?" asked Martin. "Because if you thought it was the police, you should have demanded to see his search-warrant".
"I don't know what I thought. I was trembling all over and I couldn't even think straight, let alone talk coherently".
Martin said, "If I was sure it was a burglar, I'd have said the drugs were hidden in the kitchen, and I've have taken him there. Then I'd have grabbed the big kitchen knife, and I've had said, "I'm a trained fencer, so now I've got the advantage over you!", though I suppose that legally I should have told him to clear out rather than just go for him".
"It's all very well for you to talk! You weren't there! I bet you'd have been every bit as scared as I was! In the end he went away, but by that time I was a gibbering wreck! I couldn't sleep the rest of that night, and I couldn't face staying in those lodgings any longer. I went and dossed down with a friend until I found somewhere else to live. I still have nightmares about it".
"So this intruder: he didn't find the drugs, then?" But Martin hardly bothered to listen to Nigel's reply. He was running through in his own mind how he would have seen off the intruder, or, if the man did after all prove to be a policeman, the sensation he would create in court with his brilliant orations in his own defence.

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