Ah Jack, my old friend…
I pour the nectar into a cold glass and watch condensation form on the outside. I never use ice; dilutes it too much. A glass from the freezer gives it a nice cold bite on the tongue. Yes, even a simple shot of whiskey has a well thought out scientific process behind it. What’s not scientific is knowing exactly when I will need one of these cool compresses for the mouth and soul, so I always keep a couple of short glasses in the freezer, just in case.
I leave the glass on the side to let the booze cool, feed the cat and smile at the appreciative rumbles, then put some Mike Oldfield on. Usually when I’m stressed I like to sing but tonight, although I’m tense, I just want to sit, sip and let the music roll over me in waves. I wonder if they can wash away this gritty sand of uncertainty. I know I am doing the right thing. I just don’t know if I’m doing it for the right reasons. I want to help Moriarty. I also very much want to keep my job. I can do both. I’m sure of it. But every little victory for Moriarty just leaves me wanting more. Not that I’ve managed much. If James is as much of a blabber mouth as I remember, no one will be “borrowing” the “ABP” for a while. Though James won’t implicate himself he won’t pass up on a juicy story about the power hungry Reen. I giggle to myself as I flop into my recliner, narrowly avoiding sloshing bourbon over myself.
I close my eyes as the story of the music unfolds. I’ve gone for tubular bells, the original. It’s part of my universal melody list; the songs I return to again and again when I am faced with confusion or uncertainty. I am sure they all have a connection, some quality that has an actual harmonic resonance with the human soul, that connects us to the rest of the universe. How amazing, to think that part of you is vibrating at the same frequency as part of the centre of the sun. Or could be, if manipulated by the same sound waves.
This is soothing, this train of thought. My musical pseudo science, something I would never dare send to funding application. Behavioural sciences would probably snap it up but I’m too proud: it’s not simply about how humans react to the music, but about how music is at the heart of everything. If I’m right. I wonder what Moriarty would make of my bizarre hypothesis. I wonder why I care. I wonder if I should tell him. I need another drink.
Later I jerk awake after a sickening feeling of falling. At first I don’t know where I am and I start to panic. Shit, I haven’t felt like this since I was a kid. I recognise my apartment and calm down. Right, yes, fell asleep in the chair. Idiot. How many did I have? The bottle is on the side, lid next to it, but surprisingly still fairly full. Maybe three glasses. No damp patch on my waist where the glass was resting so I obviously didn’t waste any. I need to get to bed. The cat is pawing at the window so I let her out; it’s an apartment but it’s on the ground floor. I spent a whole bonus cheque soundproofing the place so I don’t get bothered by the neighbours. By them complaining about my loud music that is.
I’m not drunk, just foul mouthed and exhausted, but the bourbon has done its job; my mind has quieted and I am focused on simple things like “brush teeth”, “clean face” and “flush loo”. As I slip between cool, flat sheets and close my tired eyes, another pair seems to appear for a second on the inside of my eyelids. I’m already falling back to sleep though, and the silvery orbs melt in to my dreams, as I murmur my way to oblivion.