Prosper could tell something was going on in Nevin's mind. They were on the tube, and Nevin was glancing out of the window as they approached Turnham Green.
Without warning Nevin sprang out of his seat.
"Here," said Nevin.
"Why here?" Thought Prosper. He neurotically looked at his watch. It was 10:14pm and tomorrow's violent hangover was already rolling its sleeves up. The train slid into the station and soon they were walking unsteadily down the platform.
Nevin began to sniff the air like some sort of animal.
"Kebab," said Nevin.
"What about them?" Said Prosper, slurring.
Nevin glared at him.
"Kebab," said Nevin again, this time more urgently, and suddenly he sped up. Prosper hurried after him as Nevin shouldered his way downstairs towards the ticket office. He turned right out of the station, and equally abruptly stopped dead in his tracks. Prosper's heart sank. Nevin had been stopped by Andy's kebabs.
Intently Nevin watched the grease ooze out of the reconstituted lamb in the window. Prosper looked at the big slab of meat as it revolved slowly on the spit, and his bowels felt strangely loose.
"Kebab?" Said Nevin.
"No. I hate them. Look at that," said Prosper pointing at the meat, "it's got to be Alsatian dog...
"Kebab," said Nevin firmly. He took hold of Prosper's arm. Prosper could feel the strong sausagey fingers clamp around him, and he was powerless to stop Nevin from dragging him into the shop.
The man behind the counter appeared to know Nevin.
Nevin lifted up two fingers.
"Two large donners?" Said the kebab man.
Nevin nodded again.
Minutes later, they say in the park opposite. Prosper took the pitta bread full of chillies and unidentified animal and lifted it to his lips. He couldn't. Grease drizzled out of the bag onto Prosper's coat.
Nevin's eyes took on a burning, frightening quality.
"Eat," he ordered.
Prosper closed his eyes and sank his teeth into the slimy burning gorgeousness. When he opened them again, Nevin was looking at him.
"Eh?" Said Nevin, half-approvingly this time.
"Kebab," said Prosper biting again.
(c) AnotherSun 2001