AT THE OFFICE of Eddie Lowlife, Private Investigator, Eddie is making the place tidy for his expected visitor. Of course, 'tidy' is a relative term: others might say "slightly less of a cess-pit".
Unfortunately, Eddie's office is the least salubrious office in the least salubrious building in the least salubrious street, in the least salubrious part of town. In fact, you could say that it wasn't salubrious.
Not that this has ever bothered Eddie.
He clears a chair for his guest to sit on, by tipping it up so that the pile of papers on it falls to the floor. As he does so, his doorbell rings.
The visitor is Mike McCheap, come to discover what Eddie has found out about Venal & Grabbit (Eddie has told him to come to his office, as it may be dangerous to speak on the phone).
"Come in, take a seat." Says Eddie.
McCheap initially doesn't think there is a seat to 'take', but then spots the one that Eddie has just cleared, amongst the rubbish. He picks his way across the rubbish, and sits down, a look of disdain on his face.
"What have you got for me?" He asks.
"I'll get straight to the point." Replies Eddie. "The word is that your friend Hugo's death was not an accident."
McCheap can't stop himself from letting out a gasp. "Is your information reliable?" He asks.
"One hundred and ten percent." Replies Eddie. "In fact, it seems that he's not the first lawyer at Venal & Grabbit to come to a sticky end."
McCheap can't stop himself from letting out another gasp. "But why... and who is behind it?" He asks.
"I don't know for sure yet, but my guess is that your boss Edgar Venal may be behind it." Says Eddie.
McCheap can't stop himself from letting out yet another gasp.
* * *
McCheap leaves Eddie's office in a daze. As he walks down the dingy stairs he does not notice the group of three men standing in the stairwell, just as he had not noticed the same men following him to Eddie's office earlier.
As McCheap disappears out the front door, the three men make their way up to Eddie's office. One of the men is Bill Devastator, Head of Security at Venal & Grabbit. He turns to the others.
"Right, gentlemen." He says. "Let's make sure Mr Lowlife does not continue with his little investigation."