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“Don’t worry about me,” said Bill, “If you’re in danger, it’s my duty to help.”
“Yes,...Yes, I suppose. But if anything happened to you, I don’t think I could live with myself... Besides, you wouldn’t believe me anyway......”

The tramp shrugged his bony shoulders and turned toward the door. This is it, thought Bill, he’s relying on me to take the bait... OK, he thought, all right you sly old dog, let’s play your game; let’s see what you've got,
“Why don’t you sit down and tell me.”

The old man let go of the door handle and turned to look at Bill,
“You know, I’ve already risked your life coming here?”

The concern in his face was convincing; no doubt, thought Bill, from years of practice blagging on the street. Even so, his performance was first-rate and Bill was in need of entertainment,
“Believe me,” smiled Bill, “In my many years on the force, I’ve come across things your average pervert couldn’t even imagine. I’m used to danger, it’s what I’m paid for.”

The tramp’s marbled eyes scanned the floor as if consulting an invisible rulebook, a single, gnarled, brown tooth biting into his lower lip. Twice he grabbed the doorknob, and twice he decided against it.
“How about I make us a nice, hot cup of tea,” said Bill, finally, “And once you’ve warmed up, you can tell me all about it.”


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