The Hollow Crown
The Little Golden Idol
Theres a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Kathmandu,
Theres a little marble cross below the town;
Theres a broken-hearted woman tends the grave of Mad Carew,
And the Yellow God forever gazes down.
The Green Eye of the Little God
Fuck it, why did it always fucking rain when he did this. The smoke drifted up from his lifeless mouth, cigarette drooping down. His portable CD player dropped into a new song, ‘The Long Black Veil’ by Nick Cave.
The rain never relented. It simply kept coming down, he waited at the cross roads, sheltering in the ample portico of a lawyers office. Fucking Ventrue, willing to pay, willing to offer a favour or acquire a book on his behalf, never fucking willing to let you sit in the warm if you worked for a living. Aristo fucking snobs, worse than being back in the fucking Raj, a shitehole which in his opinion had simply shat out the bloody climate, culture and the East India Company, all in all an entire continent he wished he had never visited.
The music moved onto ‘Tupelpo’ – suitable for the downpour coming down. Then he noticed it, the snow, not unusual this close to Christmas, but still. Snowflakes began, they got heavier,he could see it coming towards him, a rogue strand in the storm. It traced a slashed smile through the dark lights of the financial district. He dropped his cigarette to the ground, an irony there that he amongst his kind continued to breathe.
He unfurls his umbrella, walks forward into the snow storm, illuminated in the lights of the on coming vehicle. He alights onto the back step, tips his hat at the conductor.
“Your dead, but not properly. YOu aren’t allowed on here.”
“You are being seen Charlie, you need to stop.”
“You threatening me Soul Eater?”
“Only if I need to”, he lights up a cigarette as he sits down. “I’d rather you continue on your old route, just avoid here. I know why your appearing, I can sort the problem. But you are freaking out a pawn of one of my kind.”
“Maybe good for the pawn?”
“Is that for you to decide? You help those on their way, you help judge those who do wrong. The girl in this case is seeing you because she drank from one of us. She may be good, she may be bad, but I’ve checked she has done nothing wrong.” He tips the ash into the tray of the tram car.
“I will detour.”
“Amusing leech. No you have new kindred there. They have done wrong.”
“Oh come on, the invitations weren’t that bad?” he tips another end of ash. “Besides we agreed a long time back. Birds gotta fly, fish gotta swim, Kindred gotta eat.”
“No- they are in danger. From something far worse. Help them Soul Eater.”
“Huh…” he didn’t finish his sentence before landing on his arse in a muddy puddle outside some miserable English theme pub. Looking up he saw that the storm grew worse, and the snow grew heavier around him. Shaking himself off, he stood up, lit another cigarette and entered the pub.