A door opened and gravel turned to worn industrial grade carpet. Jagged gray to fuzzy gray.
Fingers grabbed his hair from behind and pulled his head up until he saw a small man with a mean face in a gray sweatshirt under a leather vest. He recognized the smooth wood of a small fishing club in the man's hand a moment before it came up to crack him across the face.
"Who do you think you are, Hislop?"
Another crack from the club.
"What were you thinking?"
"Yes. I'm sorry. Please don't hit me anymore."
Though his eyes were still bleary from the gray daylight and teary from the beating, the Detective felt sure he saw the meanness in the small man's face drain away. Blank eyes stared back at him. Then the mean came back. Then the club came back. Then darkness again.