I’m back…

… on line after all, as you probably all guessed I would be. This morning, I packed a few things and my laptop, and turned up at the ferry just as it arrived. I can see it coming miles away, so I was able to time it perfectly.

The Town

I was hoping to scuttle below to the canteen and nurse a cup of coffee in obscurity. To no avail. The Police, in the person of a very dangerous-looking uniformed fellow, armed to the teeth, stopped me, instructed the ferry master to wait (I had visions of being shipped off to Athens in manacles) and marched me, courteously enough, the few yards to the police station, where a senior clerical type confiscated my passport, which, of necessity, I was carrying, and disappeared into the back shop. I looked around for an escape route, but my captor smiled benignly from the doorway. Five tense minutes later, the clerk returned and displayed my passport with a new stamp in it and a scribble overlaying the stamp. Then I was escorted back to the ferry, and allowed to board.

By the time I had my cup of coffee, the ferry was under way, and I’d realised what was going on. The new stamp in my passport was the temporary residence permit I’d applied for in December, on the advice of my lawyer. The wheels of bureaucracy had finally yielded it up, long after I’d forgotten it.

Needless to say, I was constrained to travel to Athens. There was no point in getting off at the next stop and waiting for the next ferry home, as that would not be today or tomorrow. I decided to make the best of it, so here I am, feeling a bit of an idiot.

You see, it doesn’t really matter how easy it is to find ‘Carfilhiot’ on Google. No-one’s looking for Carfilhiot, unless they have Vance’s Lyonesse in mind. And how likely is it that the British police could put out an APB in Greece? And how likely is it that Greece would spring into action on every single island? After all, the trial will come and go, probably be cancelled by the CPS for lack of evidence from me. No one will blame me for going missing after what happened to Melancthe. Eventually, if I care to, I’ll be able to go back to England, without threat from Shimrod and his cohorts, as I’ll have done exactly as he hoped. It’s just a question of staying unfindable until after July.

Anyway, I signed some papers today and had a nice meeting with my lawyer, so the trip isn’t entirely wasted.

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