“Well,” said Felicity, “it’s like this…”
The words hung in the air, for what seemed to Snakebite like just short of a week.
“Like what,” he said.
“I don’t know… I don’t know how to say it.”
“Well just speak, you know, in English. I’m sure I’ll understand.”
“I’m trying to, Mr McMuffin… Snakebite. I’m trying, but it’s hard. Haven’t you had anything that you’ve found hard to say?”
“Yeah, sure, for a while I found it hard to admit that I was addicted to eating terrapins”.
“That’s awful. How did your family react?”
“It was a turtle disaster. My sister’s still shell shocked. See sometimes something sacred seems strange. Secret’s so seriously secret. So she seemed strange. Sis sensed some sincerity somewhere surrounding Snakebite. Snakebite seemed sound so suddenly she suggested some strawberry sundae.”
“Yeah, it was a bit weird. But it is something I find hard to say.”
McMuffin looked her up, and to a certain extent down, and noticed something on her leg.
“Is that,” he asked, “a tattoo?”
There was a small tattoo nestling on her right ankle. Snakebite admonished himself for not having spotted it earlier.
“No.” Felicity moved her leg backwards as though that would stop Snakebite from being able to see it.
“Yes it is,” Snakebite moved forward as thought that would help.
“It’s not a tattoo it’s a birthmark.”
“But it can’t be a birthmark. Are you sure it’s not a tattoo or mud or something.”
“Mr McMuffin, I do not have mud on my leg.”
“But… But… It simply can’t be a birthmark.”
“Why ever not?”
“Because I was at your birth and you didn’t have one then.”
“What? You were at my birth? My father must have trusted you!”
“Well, actually you were born in a pizza restaurant. You were very early. I just happened to be another customer. But I drove you and your family to the hospital. I remember what your father said, ‘For a large man you were surprisingly willing to give up the rest of your pizza’. I never had the heart to tell him that I was planning on sending back that pizza anyway, they’d put anchovies on it when I’d expressly said, ‘no fish’ when ordering. But I think it made your father trust me.”
“Well that’s quite a story.”
“Yes it is, but it isn’t as fascinating as the story I now want to find out. I need to know how you got that birthmark. That’s what I must find out. I’m sorry I must know this before I accept your case.”
“Don’t worry Mr McMuffin, we’re investigating the same thing. That was what I was hear to find out as well.”
And with that McMuffin and Trousers shook hands and walked off to get a coffee to celebrate the beginning of a rather unusual friendship.
[Snakebite McMuffin will return… At some point.]