Chapter 14

“You outrageous thieving bastards!” yelled Inspector Pigshit as Sergeant Morrison dragged him out of the mortuary building and back to the car. “I’m going to call Watchdog! I’ll get Nicky Campbell onto you!”

Just a few minutes previously, Pigshit had borrowed a pound off Morrison for a cup of coffee out of the vending machine. As he put the coin in, he noticed a little sign with ‘allergy advice’ on it:

White coffee contains MILK
White tea contains MILK
Cappuccino contains MILK
Café Latte contains MILK
Hot Chocolate contains MILK SOYA

… And so on. Of course white coffee contains MILK, thought Pigshit. What kind of fuckwit would need to be told that? There was, he thought, something mildly ironic about the coffee machine in the foyer of a mortuary having such detailed allergy advice. It was the kind of irony Alanis Morissette could write a song about. At the end of the list it said that Bovril contained celery. Now that was proper information, not the Earth-shattering revelation that white coffee has milk in it.

Pigshit studied the options on the high-tech touch screen interface. He could have an Americano (£1) or, on the next page, a ‘fresh Americano’ (also £1). This seemed genuinely odd. Why was one ‘fresh’ and the other not? If you didn’t order the fresh one, would you get a coffee that had been brewed yesterday or the day before? But of course, it was a vending machine and the coffee would be awful no matter which option you selected. Pigshit hit the button for a fresh Americano and waited for his drink.

The machine made a couple of spontaneous splutters and farts, then a brown disposable plastic cup dropped down into the little tray bit at the front. It was exactly the same type of brown disposable plastic cup that the machine at the station had. Some dark steamy liquid filled the cup. The words ‘Enjoy your quality coffee’ appeared on the screen in front of a stock image of coffee beans and a large, indulgent latte with a swirly pattern in the foam.

Pigshit sipped his coffee. It was the same bloody stuff they had at the station, only five times more expensive. That’s when he lost it.

When he calmed down, Pigshit scowled at the teenage goths who were still huddled outside the mortuary. He knew he and Morrison had a job to be getting on with. But then, a red mini pulled up. It was Maggie Watson, that annoying investigative journalist from the Scotsman.

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