‘Here’s your paper, Mr Hudson.’
Dominic gulped his coffee before glancing up at his secretary. She stood poised, arm outstretched with the London Evening Standard. He took it from her and tossed it on his desk before turning his attention to an email.
He sensed her continuing presence. ‘That will be all.’
On hearing the door shut behind her he grabbed the newspaper and opened it with a flourish.
‘Crippling Tube Strikes Planned’…’Peadophiles to be Given the Right to Appeal for Removal From Sex Offenders Register’ he turned a page with a grunt of disgust. ‘Woman Drowned in Thames.’ He stiffened, frowning as he read the article.
‘A woman’s body was found in the Thames last night. Police believe that the woman, aged 41, had thrown herself into the river to take her own life. She has been identified as Melissa Burns, a telesales advisor at Thomson Reuters. A friend and colleague described her as being “a bit down lately”.’
Dominic felt very cold all of a sudden. His breathing rasped in his dry mouth.
‘”Sometimes we get a bit of abuse from the people we call. I think her last call was just too much for her.”‘
Dominic dropped the paper like it had caught fire. He dragged his sweaty palms over his face.
‘”She was such a warm, loving, sensitive woman. We all miss her.”‘
His secretary stepped into his office. ‘Yes, Mr Hudson?’
‘Would you mind explaining to me how the fuck that woman got through last night? Your job is to screen my calls. To stop me having to talk to these fucking telesales people. Are you incapable of that?’
‘No, sir. I’m really sorry about -‘
‘Oh go jump out the window and do us all a favour.’