Dora had just left the office and decided to walk home. It was a nice enough evening, if a little bit cool. She’d had one of those rare good days and was feeling cheerful. Drifting off into her own thoughts, she rounded the corner and walked down the side of her building. The narrow side street contained only a handful of other people and they were dashing in either direction, which would lead them out into the more popular streets.
Unhurried, Dora walked downwards, ahead she could see the pavement merging into a larger one and people passing by the opening. To Dora they all seemed like young business people rushing to meetings or other places. A taxi zoomed by with a loud horn blast and a voice rose up in an angry shout after it. Typical city life, Dora thought.
A phone started ringing somewhere then stopped, presumably answered. She gave it no thought, like the rest of the phones in the office, it wasn’t her job to answer them. She walked under a half opened window and thought how nice the breeze was on her face.
She turned, expecting someone from the office to be behind her, but no one was there. Confused, she looked harder and saw receptionist Jen hanging out of the window with a telephone.
‘What are you doing, Jen?’ Dora called.
‘There’s a phone call for you.’
‘But no one ever calls me!’
Jen shrugged and held the phone out to her. Dora walked back and reached up for the phone, taking it she put it to her ear. The phone’s cord pressed tight against the brick wall and Jen tried to place the other half of the phone on the window sill without listening into the conversation.
‘Hello? Yes, it is. Who? Oh? How unusual. Are you sure it’s me you want, dear?’ Dora paused, then turned away to whisper into the phone.
Jen closed the window, but continued to stare to Dora. She had no idea what was going on, but the man’s voice on the other end had seemed polite and she was already imagining him in her mind. He was probably tall, dark haired and smartly dressed. Jen sighed and lent on the sill, a dreamy look on her face.
‘I see,’ Dora was saying, ‘well, if that’s how it is. Tomorrow should be fine. Thank you.’
She turned back as the phone went dead in her hand. Glancing at it, she then had to tap it on the window to get Jen’s attention. Smiling, she handed the phone back as Jen swung open the frame.
‘Who was it? What’s happened?’ Jen asked in a rush of words.
‘Nothing really,’ Dora replied.
‘Please?’ Jen begged, clutching the phone tightly.
‘I’ve been called in by the secret service,’ Dora hissed and then walked away, leaving Jen hanging out of the window after her.