An Interview With Grampy
From the files of Mr. Samuels, Echo editor
Interview Transcript with reporter’s notes: Subject – Aylmer Hill
Samuels: Morning, Aylmer. Been a long time.
Hill: Since when?
Samuels: Why, uh, since we had a sitdown together, you and I.
Hill: When did that ever happen?
Samuels: Well, perhaps not formally – maybe making this a little more special, if you see what I mean. (Note: AH says nothing. Describe his gaze, clear and icy. Omit or at least tone down its disquieting effect.) Care for a Danish?
Samuels: Must be why you stay so trim. If you don’t mind my asking, how’s your health these days?
Hill: Tip top.
Samuels: Probably feeling especially good right now, I’d imagine.
Samuels: What with your recent exoneration in the Thatcher murder and all. (Note: no reply, just the gaze again) Um, a splash more coffee?
Samuels: How do you feel about the way the case was handled?
Hill: Been around the block.
Samuels: You’re saying you’ve been around the block?
Hill: What I said.
Samuels: Meaning, ah, in terms of the case, that …
Hill: Been in worse situations.
Samuels: Ah, let’s get into that. I take it you’re referring to your experiences in World War Two. (Note: again no reply, but possibly a slight nod) I’m sure The Echo’s readers would be interested in your account of those adventures.
Samuels: Ordeal might be a better word.
Hill: Think so?
Samuels: What word would you choose?
Hill: (Note: long silence during which AH’s eyes seem to cloud over) Long time ago.
Samuels: Meaning the memories have faded?
Hill: Nothing wrong with my memory.
Samuels: So when you think of the Bataan Death March –
Hill: I don’t.
Samuels: But if you did, right now, for example, as a matter of historical record for Echo readers, what would your thoughts be? For example, do you feel bitterness toward the Japanese?
Hill: (Note: an even longer silence) Only some of them.
Samuels: What’s your reaction to those who say that once the dogs of war are unleashed anything goes?
Hill: (Note: the disquieting look) Then we’re just beasts.
Samuels: So there should be restraint even in war?
Hill: (Note: perhaps another slight nod)
Samuels: Changing subjects a little bit, did you happen to catch your granddaughter Ingrid’s performance in the Prescott Players’s recent production of Hansel and Gretel?
Hill: Yeah. (Note: a sudden laugh) I snuck in the back.
Samuels: You snuck in the back?
Hill: Got a problem with that?
Samuels: Well, why not just take a normal seat, like anyone else? (Note: an icy look that goes on and on) Moving on to the play itself, what did you think of Ingrid’s performance?
Hill: (Note: After a sudden quick smile that changes his whole face) My family is a private matter.
Hill: None of your damn business.
Samuels: So you’d like me to keep the Ingrid part off the record?
Hill: All of it.
Samuels: I’m sorry?
Hill: (Note: covers the mike with his hand) All of it. It’s all off the record. Every single word.
Samuels: But I don’t understand. You said that – (Note: subject has risen and is leaving the room.)
From the extras to the paperback edition of Into the Dark.
Tags: Echo Falls Series
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