The former solicitor ordered us to take stock of his goods.
Elsewhere, the brewer poured hot water on those crumbs.
The populace was outraged at direction
That seemed boneless and less likely painted on.
New crumbs were on display
Not far from incorporated. The musicians' platform
Discoursed on stars. The sleuth surmised as much.
Up and down the street the early warning system
Got itself 86'd. The faulty carburetor...
The plaster plantations were churning along
At 70% productivity. A glossy medium
Filed a complaint for the publisher
Against jacket flakes. It was alleged
That the smaller barrel shapes were taking bribes.
You'd have to ask the comptroller - I'm as much in the dark as anyone.
In the dark, I alphabetized the remaining goods, arrogantly
The thermostat chases the blanket around the room.
And out. It has had it with unwanted feedback.
The skylight remembered the monarchs
Now nesting near Arizona, enjoying
The temptation of temporary
You can't deny that this point A steady to steady point B stuff is -
Outmoded. The packing material, winged, has gone astray
Somewhere, or on hiatus, and 40-watt bulbs
Cascade on down the treadmill, trailing
Filament, the oldest knees around. The relevant box of threads
Creaked but refused entry.
"Good afternoon, madam. How may I help you?"
"Good afternoon. I'd like a FrintArms HandCannon, please."
"A--? Oh, now, that's an awfully big gun for such a lovely lady. I
mean, not everybody thinks ladies should carry guns at all, though I
say they have a right to. But I think... I might... Let's have a look
down here. I might have just the thing for you. Yes, here we are!
Look at that, isn't it neat? Now that is a FrintArms product as well,
but it's what's called a laser -- a light-pistol some people call
them. Very small, as you see; fits easily into a pocket or bag; won't
spoil the line of a jacket; and you won't feel you're lugging half a
tonne of iron around with you. We do a range of matching accessories,
including -- if I may say so -- a rather saucy garter holster. Wish I
got to do the fitting for that! Ha -- just my little joke. And
there's *even*... here we are -- this special presentation pack: gun,
charged battery, charging unit, beautiful glider-hide shoulder holster
with adjustable fitting and contrast stitching, and a discount on your
next battery. Full instructions, of course, and a voucher for free
lessons at your local gun club or range. Or there's the *special*
presentation pack; it has all the other one's got but with *two*
charged batteries and a night-sight, too. Here, feel that -- don't
worry, it's a dummy battery -- isn't it neat? Feel how light it is?
Smooth, see? No bits to stick out and catch on your clothes, *and*
beautifully balanced. And of course the beauty of a laser is, there's
no recoil. Because it's shooting light, you see? Beautiful gun,
beautiful gun; my wife has one. Really. That's not a line, she
really has. Now, I can do you that one -- with a battery and a free
charge -- for ninety-five; or the presentation pack on a special
offer for one-nineteen; or this, the special presentation pack, for
"I'll take the special."
"Sound choice, madam, *sound* choice. Now, do--?"
"And a HandCannon, with the eighty-mill silencer, five GP clips, three
six-five AP/wire-fl'echettes clips, two bipropellant HE clips, and a
Special Projectile Pack if you have one -- the one with the embedding
rounds, not the signalers. I assume the night-sight on this toy is
"Aah... yes, And how does madam wish to pay?"
She slapped her credit card on the counter. "Eventually."
-- Iain M. Banks, "Against a Dark Background"
This page was last modified on 2011 December 20. "A Filthy Impression, and Nothing Else" by John Sullivan is Copyright ©2003 - 2011, and licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.