Berenice Stories

Short Stories by John Oakes

The Englishman’s Trousers

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There was a terrace cafe outside the main bar of the Berenice Hotel in Benghazi. It was on the right hand side of the great marble steps and from it drinkers could see across the cornich to the harbour mole. It was at its most popular in the summer evenings when the notables from the town sat with the oil folk and the airline crews and talked.

One night they heard a taxi coming too quickly from the sailing club. Some saw two men walking from the basement laundry around the casino towards the steps. Most heard the thump and saw a dead body fly through the air from the taxi’s bonnet into the sunflower garden.

News passed up and down the terrace amongst the drinkers. The dead man was a worker from the hotel laundry. It was the best laundry in town and many people had known the man by sight. The police came and did their work and an ambulance took the body away.

The next day an Englishman was arrested and questioned for some time in connection with the case. The dead man had been wearing his trousers which had been at the laundry for dry cleaning.
The Englishman remembered to be calm about the event. Many clients wondered what adventures their own trousers had seen whilst they were at the dry-cleaners.

Written by johnoakes

July 11, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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