Anthony snapped awake, going from the empty and peaceful blankness of sleep to Fuck. in an instant, immediately sitting straight up and looking around frantically, ignoring the minor heart-attack he'd given to elderly lady sitting beside him. He dropped a twenty on the empty side plate and left. Hoping he hadn't made a fool of himself and ended up burning some bridges with that sloppiness. For God's sake, he was surprised he hadn't had a "kick me" sign put on his back or pornographic images drawn on him, falling asleep in public like that. What he'd been thinking before he fell asleep, while a little too self-absorbed, had been essentially right. He needed a new drive, the goal would still be the same, but maybe he should travel down a different path, take a few detours, but what other way was available to him? His past was for too sordid for entry into politics, and if he couldn't rule in name, than the only other option he could take was to rule through the shadow kingdom of shady backroom deals and business. Balancing industry in one hand and the ordinary lives of thousands in the other, offering to keep stability in order to stop the whole game from falling apart and the blood of civilisation from rising up and frothing out of society's body in a gruesome depiction of frenzied maggots tearing apart a helpless host's body and then all perishing alone against the harshness of the outside world.
He straightened his tie, pulled down his sleeves and buttoned up his blazer. One hand flicked his black scarf around his neck whilst the other pulled out a set of black gloves which were quickly slid over a set of of long and delicate fingers. Perfect. though Anthony as he finished a few seconds worth of checking his hair a window's reflection. He then strode towards the light, pushed the button, and waited patiently for the lights to turn green as he looked ahead at the little group across the road. If Anthony's life were to be compared to a galaxy, he, of course, would be the sun, although he would prefer to be a white dwarf if possible, so much more elegant. Those who featured heavily in his life would be the planets. Jessica would be the Venus-like planet, all gas and heat and energy, so very alive. Clerica would be Saturn, surrounded by hundreds of little asteroids, each of them orbiting around her as she affected each and every one of them, although perhaps she would be better compared to Uranus due to the complexity of her affections and manipulations. He supposed Edgar could be Pluto while Mister Millions would have to be Neptune. Far away from Anthony but a large and important figure nonetheless. Neptune of course was also the name of the god of the sea, ruler over a vast, powerful and chaotic empire of wind and water, fitting perhaps for a winter district, after all, snow was simply cold water so Neptune should have control over it too. He wondered for a moment if when the land was covered with snow, which of the three gods ruled the land. Jupiter, Neptune, or even Hades in that time of stillness, stasis and a silent simplicity.
That led him to thinking about the Romans as the lights flicked green and he began to cross, not bothering to look left and right. There weren't any cars at this time anyway. Such a great empire they'd had, but in the end spread too thin. Even with their culture and acquired wisdom from across the globe, they had still fallen like the titular Icarus as his ambitions took him too close to the sun and he'd fallen back to the land of mortals and mere men. Even if he'd survived, it would have felt like dying, to be that close to heaven and then to fall back to earth. Anthony would not make those mistakes. He would not let ambition or greed or pride come before his fall because he would not. He would build a tower out of business and cold, hard, cash. The greatest building block of the modern, civilised metropolis that was the 21st century.
Black shoes snapped against the curb, ignoring and brushing through the thin film of pure white snow, smashing and grinding it into the pavement, just like the steps of giants through a world of men like ants. Anyway, it seemed that, in a callback to an earlier metaphor, Henry had picked up a few asteroids that were now circling around him, Anthony wondered how many of them would be sent tumbling our of his galaxy into the unknown regions of space, and who would become new moons around the titular Neptune that would have to be studied and remembered and, if necessary, directed just a little off course. As he got closer he discovered that some of them seemed to already possess their own, hopefully unique, atmosphere. He resisted the urge to cover his mouth with a hankerchief, instead smiling calmly at them and making sure not to get too close to them as he steeped towards Henry. Mr Millions, a pleasant night indeed, is it not?. He asked. Well rounded vowels and clean crisp consonants clipping off his silver tongue, years of elocution lessons, listening to plays and speeches and the world of subtle stabs and honeyed homages had turned his, originally, course and rough voice into a tool that with the precision and beauty as a scalpel cutting through air. A beautiful final touch to an enjoyable, if a tad unoriginal, evening. He added clearly and soundly. Alas, I missed young Mr Hanover's saga of the subsistence of the subjects on the streets. A tiredness swept over me when I closed my eyes for a moment and when I awoke, I found I'd been stolen away from the waking realm. Did I miss a tale I may have one day spoke of to my children?
-"I'm sophisticated, charming, suave, and debonair, Professor. But I have never claimed to be civilized."