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“I’m afraid not, sir,” said Bill, “In the event of an emergency we need to keep the reception as clear as possible.”

The tramp looked down at the small puddle spreading from his boots across the linoleum,
“Yes,” he said, “Quite right... I... it’s just that... Well, I was... Well, couldn’t I stay just a little while?”
“Sorry sir,” said Bill, “Regulations.”

The tramp nodded solemnly, his hand heavy on the doorknob, his breath steaming the glass. Oh go on, thought Bill, spin me a yarn; you’re not going to give up that easily are you?
“It’s just that,” started the tramp, “...I... No...”
“Yes?” smiled Bill.
“Well...” mumbled the old man, “...Oh, who’d believe an old soldier anyway...”

Right again Billy-boy, thought Bill; the old magic was still there,
“You can trust me,” he smiled, “I’m a policeman.”

The tramp scratched his head, as if the thought hadn’t entered it before, and started pacing the room, mumbling under his breath,
“...Trust.... hmmm.... I suppose...But then it’s never that simple, is it?”
“What isn’t?” smiled Bill.
“No,” said the tramp, holding up a callused palm, “It’s safer you don't know.”

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