The Revenge of Chris Richards

The car speeds along. You sit in silence. The man chasing you has apparently given up.

A car appears in front of you on a narrow bit of a lane. It slows down to a crawl. You have to slow down too. There is the haunting sound of a familiar whistle. It's that man in that four-centuries-out-of-date coat again. His face is as red as ever as he leans out of the window, looks back and blows his head off on that whistle, signalling the monkey to pull over.

"I suspected Chris Richards," sighs your companion. You wonder if whoever taught him to speak hadn't told him that humans usually have quite a variety of phrases.

The monkey bumps the car in front, pushing it over to the side. Your car is once again alone on the road.

You enter a big town. Cars are coming from every angle as there are no road signs at the busy crossroads where you are. The monkey signals for you to stay put and gets out to direct the traffic. You are glad that the door is open for a while. It lets out some of the stink of mouldy fruit and rotting vegetables.

He gets back in.

"I've directed Chris Richards," says your simian friend before starting the car up again.

You ask if you might ring up your wife. He agrees and hands you the 'phone.

"I've connected Chris Richards," he says as he hands the device over. You explain to your wife that you're not going to be home tonight as you've missed your flight.

You ask the monkey if you might put some music on. Your new friend nods. You switch the radio on. "Congratulations" is just finishing. "I'll Love You Forever Today" starts up. The monkey frowns.

"I've detected Cliff Richard," he complains, switching the radio off again.

You have just crossed the border with Bulgaria. The monkey looks tired. You spot a restaurant and suggest stopping there. You each look at the menu. You see words like "lukanka", "sujuk" and "bahur" and have no idea what they are.

"I've inspected Chris Richards," says the monkey, looking up from the menu.

"Well, now you've inspected it, what'll you have? It's my treat," you say.

"I think I'll have... all of it," says your friend. You're so impressed that he's actually learnt some new words - well done! - that you say, "Do you know? I think I'll have the same".

You summon the waiter and ask him if you might both have a bit of everything on the menu. Luckily he speaks perfect English. He returns to the kitchen which now becomes a hive of activity.

An hour or so later the food arrives. It is a veritable feast! Several tables are brought together to accommodate it.

"No mouldy fruit, I'm afraid," you say, smiling at your friend.

"I've bisected Chris Richards," he shrugs as he eyes up the amazing meal and cuts a piece of it in two with his knife.

Suddenly a car pulls up outside. A door slams. A man comes out of it and walks slowly towards the restaurant. His face is as red as ever as he glares in.

"I expected Chris Richards," sighs the monkey as you both slide away from the table leaving a door ajar and an untouched meal and an overtoppled chair.

The End

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