Exsanguination is the taking out of the blood from a body. Vampires do this. I suppose some serial killers do this too, but only in books and movies; I’ve never heard of it being done in real life. If I were a stone and you took the blood out of me, that would be a miracle. Can you perform miracles? I can’t.
Harry was a miracle worker. It was official. He’d had cards made up and everything. When I met him, he looked like he’d had a few drinks and was meandering down Clapham Common, after an unaccustomed rainstorm, getting mud on his shoes and the trouser legs of his nice suit. I thought to ask him if he was alright; mainly because he looked lost and I could see that he was about to get mugged by the two lads standing under a tree waiting for him to get in range of the knives that I could see they were playing with in the dim light of the not quite dark evening.
“You alright, mate?” I said.
“You going to mug me?” he said genially.
“Nah, but they was!” I fell in beside Harry and pointed out the two lads to him. He squinted vaguely in their direction. So far as I could see, they didn’t seem quite as interested in Harry’s wallet and phone now and, as we watched, they slipped their blades away and themselves into the trees. I’m a big bloke what treads lightly so that probably had something to do with it.
“So what you want then? A miracle?”
I looked at him puzzled-like. I mean, you would, wouldn’t you? It’s not something you hear every wet, July evening in London. At least, not in my experience, broad though it is.
“Go on then,” I says. I was joking more than anything. Humouring him.
“What do you want?” he says, and I could see, even in the twinkling of the starlight and the far-off lights of the car park, that he was serious.
‘Money,’ I thought. ‘If you don’t ask him for money then Carrie’ll kill yah for passing it up.’
“World peace,” I said.
“Done,” he said.
We walked on until we got to the car park and then he gave me his card, wished me a good night and got in a Jag; a big old Mk2. I would have stopped him, seeing as he was obviously three sheets to the wind, but he actually got into the back and a hefty bloke with a peaked cap and a smart uniform started up the engine. I would have asked him for a drop home but, so far as I reckoned, I was out of miracles and so I walked on to the tube station.
That was last night and this is this morning. Carrie’s still upstairs in bed. I’m just about to put the radio on to listen to the news.
Fingers crossed, eh!