The Green Flash
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First published in 1986 by Collins
A life of crime can be very alluring, especially to one who falls between law-abiding respectability and the underworld.
For David Abden, a baronet's nephew who loves fast cars and women, illegitimate opportunities present more than mere temptation, and when the glamour of risk begins to consume his life, Abden is presented with few easy ways out.
Packages, boxes, empty bottles. In the basement were large vats with hundreds of gallons of fake perfume. This was good, but though Chalmers was willing and anxious to sort out the perfumery forgeries, he was more interested in the other stuff. My guesses had been spot on. God knows what had come out of the Far East destined to be sold as genuine, but word processors, brake linings and helicopter parts were among them. He explained patiently that legally he was on much firmer ground with these
the big event of last year, of course, and she’d written a couple of fairly pathetic letters when I was inside, but I think she’d persuaded herself that I was coming to a bad end anyhow and there was nothing much she could do about it. In one letter she said: ‘You should have told us about it when you were first charged; Kenneth might have been able to do something to help you.’ Privately I thought Kenneth had written me off more comprehensively than she had. And why not? They had two kids of
deeper channel. You cannot say it had no effect upon you!’ ‘It went too deep for my petrified emotional life.’ ‘If that is a joke then let it stay as a joke … Will you promise me one thing?’ ‘What?’ ‘Let this tragedy distance itself from you for a few months before you make any rash decision or wanton move. You have always hated yourself. Now you hate yourself more than ever. But it will pass – some of it will pass. I want you to promise to do nothing – irrevocable before you have given
to complain of. On the face of it we should all have lost the same amount. It was not an ambitious plan either. They expected to relieve him of about �15,000. Divided among four, it was not exactly El Dorado, but it was quite a lot for those days, and it would certainly solve the problem of furnishing the flat. Worth the risk? If anything went wrong I’d be out of Shona and Co. on my backside without a penny. Worth the risk? ‘No,’ I said. ‘Why not?’ ‘God wouldn’t like it.’ ‘Seriously. It’s
magic. Go on; be a sport. Take a chance.’ III In the end Shona bought my company. It seemed to be the only way she could save her face, so I let it go. She bought it for �20,000, got rid of Derek Jones – at a handsome profit to him – and allowed me to retain 15 per cent of the shares. ‘ Van’ Morris remained as a minority shareholder too. The company, she declared, was not to be operative. It was a big price for a frugal lady like her to pay for a company that was to bring no return, so I