The pub door creaks inwards, a man crosses the floor to the bar slowly but deliberately. He would be described as weirdly dressed if this wasn’t Soho.
“5 double vodkas please mate.” He says to the barman, who glances pointlessly at the neon hands of the clock above the door, he knows he's only just opened up.
“Bit early for that kind of order isn’t it?” But he knew that with those kind of orders, it was never too early. He didn’t even bother waiting for a response before pouring out the drinks.
The man knocked back three of the drinks quickly, and paused to contemplate the last two. For the first time the barman got a look at his face, his miserable face.
“Cheer up mate, it might never happen.” He offered, in the well practiced fake cheerfulness of experienced English barmen everywhere. The tone of a man who's long made peace with the fact that he makes his most reliable money from people who will die young because of what he's selling them.
“I can assure you...” He raised the fourth vodka, or possibly the seventh and eighth vodkas, depending on how you're counting, to his lips and it too disappeared "...it will."
“You can’t know that, not if it hasn’t happened yet.”
“But I’ve seen it, well, the start of it.” A look passed over his face, a look that made his previously depressed demeanour seem chirpy in comparison. He grabbed the last vodka and threw it down his throat as if it had in some way angered him.
“What, time traveler are we?” The barman joked, although the false cheer in his tone had started to wane, he was starting feeling a little uneasy.
This kind of claim should invite ridicule, especially after four doubles, but he didn’t sound boastful or proud, but ashamed. The barman put down the glass he was drying and leaned towards his customer, lowering his voice.