Quadrivial Quandary:  Logophiles, Rejoice!  Each day we give you four unusual words.  Can you fit them all in one illustrative sentence?

Quandary Resolutions by MissTeriWoman

  • #6114 submitted 10/21/2015: poppycock, hoverboard, nocebo, kakistocracy

    There are people who talk, I know, I've overheard them, and caught their look from the corner of my eye – the one that's specially trained to spot lurkers or corner-johnnies who'd slash the shoulder-strap and make a getaway with your bag, containing your medication, your week's wages, your hoose keys, a letter wi yer address (jist tae lettim ken whaur tae gaun wi yer keys) and the only snaps ye've got o wee Gregor who died o' the croup at thirteen weeks an' a lock o' yer mammie's hair, a pack o' fags wi yer last three in it, yer only lighter, a wee bag o' soor plooms, and whit turns oot tae be a winnin' Lotto ticket fer a Dubble Rollover totallin' 32 Million Squid and there's only THAT YIN; oops, I've become rather gallus there, it shows how much I'm affected by 'them'; the people, usually women, but the odd wee 'sweetie-wifie' among them, who whisper behind your back, give sly nudges in the queue at the Baker's, or a sleekit keek in the Newsagent & Tobacconist's; I hear mentions of 'decadent bohemians' and 'impecunious so-called writers' or 'women of a certain age with no visible means of support (husband)' and 'drug dealing, or using or such' and the most recent, 'some of her visitors have the look of asylum seekers and self-styled refugees, they've got turbans and Western Isles accents, obviously affected, they're certainly not Wee Free!' this last said with such conviction that it rattled the glass security screens in the Bank and even brought the Manager's head around the door of his office to assess the situation - but seeing only a 'woman of a certain age' and twa auld biddies, he withdrew it like a tortoise; but I rather like Mr MacGregor, the Bank Manager, he's always been very fair, though I sometimes wonder about the business sense in allowing an impecunious writer with no means of support, visible or otherwise to run up such a high-octane overdraft – he dismisses the rumour-mill as poppycock and obviously believes in my Art and looks forward to announcing that the Best New Young(ish) Edinburgh-based Scottish Writer to Sweep the Best-seller Charts from Niddrie to Portobello had her Personal Account in his Branch and her talent was spotted at a very early stage and nurtured by him and that he owes the success and guaranteed permanence of his Branch solely and exclusively to my Patronage; but it's clear that I am not welcomed by all of my neighbours – Ramsay Gardens was always regarded as having a very select bunch of residents, there was a certain cachet about this address which made it Highly Coveted – until I pitched up; I think I'm viewed as a nocebo, and just a glimpse of me turns some susceptible people quite puce and running for the lava-tory, as the loo is still (officially) referred to here; there is no doubt that looks were exchanged, eyebrows arched and my belonging scrutinised in microscopic detail (no SOCO is a patch on an Edinburgh Housewife in her traditional garb: Fur Coat and Felt Hat - and Nae Knickers, as they jibe from Glasgow) for she scrutinises every item with a subject knowledge accumulated over 80 years of study and can identify a Jenners China Teacup from one you got from a Charity Shop, blindfold and with their hands tied behind her back – and in a sense they are right; I fell off the back of a Hoverboard and you would think the place had been turned into a kakistocracy when I moved in! clearly I 'lowered the tone'; the previous Tenant of my flat was my Great-Aunt Jasmine (better known as Lottie Lawless for her 75 novels of derring do and armed robbery on the King's Highway, featuring Lucy Bustles and Dick Hardman, she was only an Innkeeper’s Daughter but she could certainly Pull Your Pint, and he a Highwayman (I know it's obvious, but so was Great-Aunt Lottie) and the plots rather repetitious, but that's what people want, and Lottie gave them everything, with every story including as scene where Rampant Dick plunges himself deep into Lucy's Bustles, to giggles and shrieks, squeals and grunts; but that is all by-the-by; it was only on his death, that her neighbours discovered that Jasmine was not, in fact, married to the Vice-Admiral RN (Rtd) who had shared her flat (and her bed) for the past 30 years – his wife and Family were out in Colinton – and it was only when she realised that in her single state she really required a carer (or Lady's Maid to her generation) but could not afford one and on discovering that were she to move in to a residential home for Retired Members of the Society of Authors in the vicinity of Duddingston Loch and close by the village pub, not having any Heritable Property which could be sold to cover her costs, the Local Authority would meet the expenses, that she flitted quite happily and the Family Trust which owns and administers or in Scotland Factors, the property, decided that I was next on the List of Future Tenants, and so found myself ensconced in one of the Most Desirable of Edinburgh Lodgings, with a fine view across The Nor' Loch, now drained and neatly kept by the Council as Princes Street Gardens, the ridge of George Street and beyond to the Hills of Fife – and it is here that I entertain my ne'er dae weel relations and friends, along with my delightful Aunts, Daphne and Maude et al, and my many merry Cousins, all of whom appear as balls do on a Snooker table – I'm crap at games of skill, so when I aim the white towards a red and they shoot off in different directions and one pots a pink and the other nudges a black into a corner pocket and the white scoots across to the opposite corner and plop through the hole: that is how I write, and all my Family and Friends are not as Players on Shakespeare's Stage, but wee roon' baws on ma Pal Airchie's Snooker Table an' am pushin' them aboot and jist recordin whit happens, as they ricochet hither an' thither an' rattle doon the cludgie o' life an' Oops – Gallus Alice again, that means it's time tae pack it in and tak a break, afore Aw the Baws is Oan The Slates!

  • #6111 submitted 10/20/2015: toenadering, atrabilious, capitulate, dithyramb

    Elginbrod suddenly looked at the facsimile headstone in the corner of his Private Office: “look!” he screamed, vehemently atrabilious: “we can nail them!” and Rankine was suddenly off-balance, what on earth was his employer raving about, but he didn't need to ask, as Elginbrod continued, spitting out his words on a shower of saliva: “those fucking twats, or whatever they're called, we must own it somewhere, find it, establish it and we'll screw those fuckers to the face of Salisbury Crags and fling shit at them – they'll capitulate, just to get us to stop with the keech – there'll be no toenadering on this one!” and Riddle Rankine was truly amazed at the Advocate's ability to dithyramb as the manic hysteria of his words filled the Chambers and spilled out onto Parliament Square and caused not a few passers by to think an old Testament Prophet, or even John Knox himself had been raised from the dead at this early hour on an otherwise Tuneless Tuesday! “the first Twat! he writ it, we own it, we'll take them for every pfennig they've got: 'Here lies Martin Elginbrod, hae pity on my soul Lord God, as I would yours if I were God, and you were Martin Elginbrod' I'll teach those Fuckers no' tae Meddle wi' GOD!!

  • #6108 submitted 10/19/2015: hogen-mogen, cacoethes, oldster, mawkish

    Compared with the youngsters he liked to employ, Martin Elginbrod may have been an oldster, but he was no mawkish 'golden oldie', for his cacoethes, his compulsion to amass money by whatever jiggery-pokery necessary, justified his image as the Hogen-Mogen, the Chief Honcho, the Genghis Khan of the Edinburgh Bar, and when he saw the picture which had been re-tweeted 7,528 times, he was “a bit like Krakatoa, East of Java,” as his Chief Clerk Riddle Rankine reported to the other members of The Justice League of Auld Reekie, and Sayid passed on in a kik to Dixie O'Hooligan as “he was blooming berserk,” with a smiley face attached, and that was when Dr Montgomery answered a call from His Man who simply said: “Gill's only gone fucking missing!”

  • #6107 submitted 10/18/2015: olio, haecceity, blithesome, haplography

    And Sayid, AKA The Economic Migrant, giggled at Elginbrod's cries of “Olio, Olio,” and was overcome with blithesome chortles at this aural distillation of his Target's haecceity and the sheer abundant haplography exposed by the speech-to-print sheets issuing from his Dell All-In-One and rolled about with a twelve-year-old's natural glee when he opened his laptop and saw the eminent Edinburgh Advocate's contorted crimson features illuminating his surroundings with the incandescence of his infernal, internal combustion meltdown; and he sent stills to an anonymously untraceable Twitter Account #elginbreed's-deid which he was sure would be brought to the lawyer's attention on his arrival in Chambers at about the same time Sayid and his Posse would be having a kick-a-boot in the Playground of Drumchapel High!

  • #6106 submitted 10/17/2015: olio, volute, jurisprudence, oneiric

    “Olio, Olio, wherefore art thou, Olio? hush, what light through yonder window keeks? is she alive or is she dead, that damned elusive Ginger Bread? a hearse, a hearse, my Kingdom for a hearse, to bear my dear, sweet Volute thus to Good Queen Bess! the Juri's prudence may not sound thy Death, Nell, not while one stone stands upon another, or while one Iric remains upon this Land - come stand firm, the Captain's dead, the Gatling's jammed, but say ' Play up, Play up and Play the Game' for Scotland, Harry and Saint George!” cried Martin Elginbrod, storm-tossed in his restless sleep, and his voice echoed through the rain-swept streets of Morningside as dawn, in the Bowl of Night, o'er silvered shingles crept, to herald in another fucking day at the Office!

  • #6105 submitted 10/16/2015: olio, aureate, tremulous, shirk

    And that was when the most unexpected thing happened – for while She Bear was intently focussed on The Hunter's revelation that he too had come to the Cavern of the Cave Folk as had both she and now Tavish, the friend of her lover Tammy's mother Tabby (she did not know what we have only recently discovered, that he was in fact Tammy's Father)  - they simultaneously heard a groan from the far side of the Cavern and when they turned towards it, they saw the figure of another man, naked as was Tavish, but struggling for breath; She Bear reached him first and, scared by his condition, for he appeared to be dying, at first tremulous, but now motionless and his breathing had stopped, his face ashen; She Bear recalled all that she had learned in First Aid and began CPR: she checked for his pulse, none; she checked his airway, clear; she leaned over his face, applied her lips to his open mouth and gave a deep exhalation, and repeated this twice more; then she linked her hands and, placing the heel of the lower hand in the place she had learned, began compressions; counting as she did so, up to thirty, paused and checked to see if he was breathing, no, and resumed the compressions; she repeated this process three times and was rewarded by a cough that came from the man, whose chest began to rise and fall on it's own; She Bear sat back, then fell back, to be caught by The Hunter, her face and arms aureate with the sheen of sweat from her exertions, and he complimented her on her work; “you're certainly no shirker, are you a Nurse?” he asked; “no,” she replied, shaking all over from the exertion and stress, “just a viewer addicted to '24 hours in A&E',” The Hunter laughed and asked her if she knew the man whose life she had saved, “never seen him in my life,” she laughed, verging on the hysterical; “what is going on?” she asked him, “are we dead? are we in Limbo? is this where we are assessed for Heaven or Hell? or is it some kind of Variety Show the Gods have set up, like an olio, one new turn after another, I don't know enough about Religion, though I did once see Harold Pinter in a TV drama based on a play by Sartre about people who find themselves in some kind of Waiting Room, I think it was called 'In Camera' – this cave is beginning to feel like that,” but the Hunter shook his head: “I don't know how or why we are here, but most of the Cave Folk have been here for generations – every one of the children was born here while I have been in this place,” and She Bear had to ask him: “Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?”

  • #6104 submitted 10/15/2015: uberous, belly-timber, miasma, ides

    The Hunter drew Bear Woman – or, as he corrected her interpretation, She Bear, because the Cave Folk only have one-sound-words, which can make for fun – and said she should tell him what she saw: “I thought I saw a man,” she said, “you did,” said he, “good,” said she, “did you see what happened to him?” this time it was he who nodded, saying “he faded away,” and she stared at him, her eyes imploring him to explain further, but he patted her on the shoulder and turned away, leading her past the uberous stores, for it was a Season of Plenty, and there was much 'Belly Timber' for the Cave Folk, towards the sleeping chambers; after a slight hesitation, She Bear followed him and went with him to his bed-space: that night she dreamt that she was a celestial body, floating in a foggy miasma of sifting atoms and molecules, too small to see, but forming a density like water (without being wet) and fixed in an orbit around the Sun; she revolved on her own axis, so that half of her was facing the Sun, to a greater or lesser extent; and the rest faced away; she had a  Moon, a lustrous pewter sphere, that encircled her (Tammy, she whispered) and all the while she travelled on a continuous circuit of the Sun, as did a string of other orbs, on the same plane, but at greater or lesser distances from the Sun, Bringer of Life; when she felt her steady spinning through space disturbed, she was confused and it took a few moments to realise that someone was shaking her, gently, not roughly, and she began to wake; there was a dim glow in that part of the sleeping cavern where she lay, and by it she could see that her disturber was The Hunter, on his feet; she felt with her hand for the flint dagger she was never without, but it was gone, and she suddenly remembered she had come to his sleeping place that night; and when he said “come,” she slipped from under the furs and tip-toed after him – he moved silent as a cat along the tunnels which led to the Main Cavern, and she gasped – for there lay Tavish, near the spot where she had found him yesterday; she ran to his side – he seemed to be unconscious, but his breathing was regular; “can you fetch a covering?” she asked The Hunter and when he did not move, she remembered that here, Men said and Women did; so, simply asking The Hunter to wait there, she hurried back and retrieved the large Bear Fur from her own sleeping space and took it back to the Cavern; gently she placed it over the sleeping figure and then sat back on her heels; which was when she looked up at The Hunter and asked him: “have others come this way before?” and he simply nodded; and that was when she saw the pattern and she felt that her dream had spoken to her - “the Moon,” she cried, and ran outside: the velvet darkness covered the world and above, like jewels studding the firmament, the swirl of stars she half-remembered from Guides – The Moon, that sliver of a Crescent, two nights ago there was no Moon, called the New Moon, and she knew that this was the Ides, of what Month she could not guess, but definitely The Ides, and so it had been a Month since she arrived, though whether a Month from whence she'd come, she had no idea, but definitely a month here, and she looked at The Hunter, “are there others?” she asked, and he considered, before nodding, “yes, a few,” and again she held his eyes: “you?” and again he hesitated before saying: “yes, me.”

  • #6103 submitted 10/14/2015: resumptive, dude-bro, affluent, obstreperous

    Fortunately for George Gill, or perhaps unfortunately would be the more appropriate term, given those events which were destined to follow, but here I must restrain myself from flying too far ahead, and be diligently resumptive, for his devoted and deluded wife, Sandra Gill, a woman gifted with no intelligence but a natural flair with needle and thread – or, more usually - silk, which she used to great effect, not only in continually repairing, restoring and keeping in pristine condition his Masonic Regalia, but also in creating little miniature masterpieces, copies of notable works of art, which sold like hot cakes in the Charity Shops of Morningside, particularly those devoted to the temporal and spiritual needs of children in the Capital's less salubrious neighbourhoods, a number of which hem the Morningside enclave in on all sides, and where George and a number of his like minded fellow philanthropists might be regularly seen on Summer evenings, when the warmth brought children away from their Play Stations or Lap Tops, to cavort in the skimpiest of raiment in their front gardens, or 'dumps', as George and his chums thought them, as they strolled and occasionally paused to chat with any parents who lounged on a west-facing doorstep to catch the last rays of north-western sun, or, better still, with the less-nourished children themselves, often disbursing a handful of coppers, a can of Irn Bru or a Tunnock's Tea Cake to a particularly coy or even, utter the word quietly, cute, individual, particularly those neglected by even the standards of their neighbours, whose parents have taken themselves out “fer a swally, mister,” as one sweet waif might say, on which occasions it might be that, having ascertained no elder siblings remain within, but are, rather, further afield engaged in nefarious activities of their own, and so, an upstanding and affluent gentleman of substance, clearly not a fly-by-nighter, shift-lifter, or, in the common parlance, 'Pedo', finding himself “caught short,” and without a public convenience within the square mile, might, not unnaturally, enquire of the child if he might avail himself of a visit to the, “bog?” enquires one child, “loo?” another and, while his back is covered as the military might say, by a Man in Size 13 Boots who positions himself nearby on the pavement, a man who, at just the barest sight of such a dude-bro, many adults of the street will have found themselves reminded that a certain show is about to start on their Plasma, or phone call must be urgently made to Cousin Billy, advising him not to pop round for a bit, as “The Pigs are Aboot” and who, even the most obstreperous, wants their collar felt on such a balmy evening? and so it was that, on this particular morning, while one of that close group of Friends of Neglected Children lay a-dying on top of his expensive book of photographs, Sandra Gill suddenly remembered that she had not taken her dear husband his morning coffee, put aside her vacuum cleaner, which she had been using so diligently to remove any loose ends of threads and silks from the carpet of her workroom at the top of their comfortable residence, and hurried down the two flights of stairs to the kitchen, assembled what was necessary, and after only a very few minutes, took the mug and hot buttered toasted teacake to his study, where she found him prostrate on the floor, still in his pyjamas, with a cardigan over his shirt top; the tray fell to the floor – silently, for the thick pile prevented any breakages, and absorbed most of the coffee - and fell to her knees beside him: now, bright, Mrs Sandra Gill was not, but she was instinctive, and her first and overriding instinct was self-preservation; this instinct applied to herself and consequently, as there was no concept of her own individuality within her consciousness, even more so to He Who Must Be Obeyed, her Lord and Master; she snatched up the telephone, called 999 and summoned an ambulance, for she had no idea what George might be suffering and realised that only Medical intervention could save him; and a scant five minutes later two Paramedics arrived with their ambulance and took over the task of resuscitating and maintaining the life of this most distinguished citizen, for the benefit of his Family and the City of Edinburgh, and, had they only been aware, the despair of it's deprived children!

  • #6101 submitted 10/13/2015: peculate, cenote, proclivity, cognoscenti

    George Gill sighed, and laid aside his book on the cenotes of the Mayans of Central America – the Specialist Subject he was revising for his upcoming appearance on Mastermind and, being one of the few cognoscenti, for which, under the guise of Lemuel Prendergast, he was preparing the Questions which would be put to him and therefore had every expectation of being able to answer; “Morning, Martin,” he hadn't required to check the caller display, for his prodigious memory enabled him to instantly identify every one of the 200 numbers stored, by the different music played (for Martin Elginbrod it was, appropriately, considering the Advocate's proclivities, 'The Hall of The Mountain King' as whistled by the Peter Lorre, playing the child murderer in Fritz Lang's 'M') “what can I do you for?” the little jocular remark which had worn thin 25 or 30 years ago; “have you been peculating again? some of your clients' ill gotten gains gone ill-gotten again?” he chuckled, for the seven hundred and twenty-first time, by Elginbrod's count; “someone's been sniffing,” hissed Elginbrod. “I don't know who – he's left no tracks, but my security's been well and turly broached, the fucker's been into my files, the secret ones, the Fucking Top Secret ones, even uploaded a photo of me and My Man, I don't know how he got it – I've had my whole office swept and practically dismantled, but haven't found the camera – you'd better warn the others!” and George stared at the phone in his hand, as if he didn't quite know what it was, he felt as though a sink-hole had just opened beneath his Morningside house and he was falling into it, like the title sequence for 'Mad Men' though it was the music from 'Vertigo' that swelled and died in his head; “who,” he asked, though he knew exactly who; “the others from Shangri La, don't come the Dummy with me, George, there isn't time; meet tonight at The Canny Mans, 8pm, tell them all they have to be there,” and with a click the phone went dead, and with a click, George Gill switched off, fell to his knees and vomited all over his book of superb colour photographs, some taken inside the amazing sink-holes, and his bookmark, “a rather indiscreet one”, he thought as his face turned puce, of himself with a tasty little girl he'd enjoyed on his last visit to The Yucatan Peninsula, “I mustn't let Sandra find that,” and his face splashed into his vomit as he sprawled on the thick-piled carpet and in the distance, far off, faintly, he could hear the vacuum cleaner his wife was using up in the Gable Room where she liked to spend her afternoons, repairing the embroidery on his Masonic Regalia, and sewing little cross-stitch vignettes to sell through one of the Charity Shops George supported; she wouldn't be down for a couple of hours and he might be dead by then – “what a way to go,” he thought, “not with a whimper but a squelch!”

  • #6100 submitted 10/12/2015: ambit, umami, delve, bromide

    As Sayid continued to delve into the business, political, personal and secret affairs of Mt George Gill, prominent businessman. Social climber, Grand Master of his local Lodge, benefactor of local and national Charities for the Aid and Comfort of Destitute Children (and a very hands-on Patron indeed always happy to do backstage work at kids Fashion Shows, helping in the dressing rooms and changing areas, perennial Father Christmas at a host of Bazaars and Children's Christmas Parties, never tired of having sticky-faced youngsters sitting in his lap and telling them what they hoped for, and he always promised to fill their stockings with goodies) and staunch supporter of a particular Football Club which is presently in a bit of a fix, but where he manfully helps out with the youth teams and is an exemplary Physio – having his Certificate of Excellence from an on-line Training Programme – with the Boys and Girls Primary Squads, never misses a Match and makes sure all the players are well warmed-up before, and cooled-down after every game, he began to see a pattern emerging which both widened and narrowed the ambit of his searches, he could bypass the bromides extolling Gill's self-sacrifices, exemplary character and indefatigable championing of Good Causes, and focus on the special umami of his tastes, they being particularly salty, and home in on the kernel of his debauchery – a fascination with, melting into an obsession for, girls on the cusp of puberty, having an uncanny sixth sense which could pick out twenty individuals from a hall full of 200 hundred, with ages ranging from 10-16, and he could point directly at those girls who have not yet menstruated, but for whom that is imminent; of course, he didn't trumpet that gift, merely used it for his own benefit, quietly, unobtrusively, and to the full extent of his considerable imagination and abilities!

  • #6098 submitted 10/11/2015: dotterel, alnage, luminary, divulgate

    The Economic Migrant – that anonymous luminary of the net - never needed to watch his fingers as they flew across the keyboard; whether it was a real one, or an image on a touch screen, he knew where every character, shift key and command was; his eyes were always on the screen, as he scrolled down for what he sought, filtering and burrowing deeper, slipping through Firewalls, eluding password traps and seeking out the fundamental essential, the very alnage at the core – BINGO! and he giggled – these people were so stupid, absolute dotterels, they were begging to be hacked, for all their naughty little secrets and lies to be brought out into the open, to be shared and poured over and laughed at, total divulgate, why else would they store all that stuff so conveniently, so insecurely, so unprotected, so that he could, with just a few taps of his finger, enter into the little dungeons of their minds, discover the darkest and deepest depravity of their souls; if you are really evil, why don't you bury the bodies where no one will ever stumble across them, he wondered, this is so easy, even a baby can do it!

  • #6097 submitted 10/10/2015: dotterel, yonic, wooden, jejune

    And Teri relaxed, for the first time since she'd seen George Gill's gloating face in the group of fat and contented Senior Councillors representing COSLA (The Convention of Scottish Local Authorities) in their conclave with her darling cousin, Ginger Goldfish, Scotland's Nationalist First Minister: and next to The Queen, the most important and powerful Woman in Scotland; “should I tell Ginger about George Gill?” she asked the empty room; “no,” came back the silent answer, “she'll only think you a dotterel,  such a jejune twat, to make such a yonic sacrifice to Gill and his Cronies, when you were only 13, a child, a baby, when to them you were nothing more than a wooden doll, a sex toy, a puppet on a string, gyrating to their tune while all the while they were laughing at your pathetic gullability and thinking to themselve – 'we've got a right one here!'”

  • #6095 submitted 10/09/2015: dotterel, fictionary, incidence, tumescent

    Having already written elsewhere of Big George's tumescence, and remarking that a chaperone with two pees reminded her of someone, Theresa turned her thoughts to one of her Heroes, the late great Patrick Campbell, stammering Irish Peer, Lord Glenavy, who found television fame as a regular panellist on “Call My Bluff” a game of fictionary on BBC in which the incidence of stuttering as he played the dotterel so added to the confusion of the other team that he was rarely seen through – a master of obfuscation in-d-d-d-d-deed!

  • #6093 submitted 10/08/2015: magpie, memoriter, manqué, parvenu

    As Teri reflected on her teenage years, collected by the Magpies of Shangri La, to be one of their performing Dolls, a memoriter who mouthed the pornographic litany for their arousal, struts and pirouettes, a Porn Star manqué (but, please, never manky, for, much used and abused, by these parvenu De Sades, she still has an innocence they never possessed, a spirit and a soul they never sullied) and Teri tries to tell the tale from her younger self's point of view: always under and looking up at a Man, her Master, or his friends who smell of money and power, but Teri knows her younger self did truly believe that her adoration for George Gill was reciprocated and it is only with the hindsight that years apart have given her, that the Teri of today can see the damage that was done and sheds a tear for lost innocence and youth.

  • #6092 submitted 10/07/2015: dodo, flack, reprise, alexithymia

    It was only two rings before the sweet-natured WPC Isa Urquhart answered the telephone: “hi, Teri, what can I do for you?” so, excusing myself for not being able to explain my reasons (a case of alexithymia, and she sympathised – for she is extremely astute – but I explained that I needed to find out about someone I had known years ago – a lifetime, you might say, but I didn't want to make it official; and I could picture her nodding sincerely; “well, you know The Economic Migrant, don't you?” and of course I did – why hadn't I thought of him? probably because I had only used his services for the present, never the past, so far; and Isa continued: “he's been able to turn up deep background on people we are investigating – I don't know what his sources are, but it's incredible how much he can find out; even if someone's past seems to be as Dead as a Dodo, he can deliver chapter and verse on where they were on a wet Thursday in 1974, and we never get any flack; that horrible QC Martin Elginbrod is the only one who challenges our information and snorts about privacy and the rights of the individual, but if the judge is Lord Linkumdoddie or Lady Marion Boyars-Romanov or someone else with integrity, that kind of bluster gets him nowhere! he's absolutely the first person you should ask,” so I thanked her and promised to meet her for coffee tomorrow afternoon; and dialled the secure number for Sayid, which bounces the call around the world several times and off half a dozen satellites, in an instant before reaching his under-stair cupboard/bedroom/Command and Control Centre, in Drumchapel:”hiya, Miss Teri, said a sleepy voice; I apologised for waking him but he said that was okay - “anything for you, Miss, you are my bestest client in the whole wide world,” so I reprised my call to Isa, told him what I knew, gave him the address of his old Greengrocers from way back; that I knew he'd moved into Minimarts and now has a chain across Scotland, and a couple of Hypermarkets (Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen) and was a Senior Councillor, but I wasn't sure where, and had been part of a COSLA delegation who met with Ginger Goldfish a couple of days ago,” and Sayid whistled, softly: “brillo Madam, I can probably tell you what he had for breakfast and the colour of his underpants!” I laughed, thanks, my Friend, you are an Angel,” and he mumbled a few caveats about miracles and the impossible, before we agreed his usual terms – a donation to the Refugee Charity he supported, for families and children worldwide, and the requisite case of Irn Bru and a gross of Mars Bars, before hanging up; I grinned – we're on your trail, Georgie Porgie, and there isn't a stone you can hide under!

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