A man in a long coat wearing fingerless gloves.
I drew him up a plastic seat on one side of a metal operating table, the best I could do under these circumstances. Honestly, I was not expecting to see him here, exactly, and said so.
Meeting him was an... experience. He can be infuriating like no one else, and has a particular fondness for half answers. After a while I became sure he was simply needling at my curiosity for the fun of it, so I kept on calling him 'fairy boy'.
After the exchange of pleasantries we got down to business, negotiating and haggling back and forth. Anything I could give was theoretically on the table, up to, and including, my life. I'm not sure how long this went on: it could have been hours but it felt like days, and scraps of balled up paper began to surround the table. Eventually I carefully went through the written contract for the last time, methodically locating and excising any remaining ambiguities of language I could find; I'm aware the bargain needn't have taken this form but I was determined to do this properly.
"Let's do this one last time," I said, picking it up. "If the terms of this contract are breached by one of its signing individuals, full and permanent ownership of all items of collateral is to be transferred to the nonbreaching signing individual."
"Yes." The grin hadn't left his face this entire time.
"If the first recipient dies or rejects the bought protection either verbally or in writing, that protection is removed from them. If the second recipient voluntarily disbands by majority vote or there are no longer any living members, that protection is removed from them. If both recipients meet one or more of their respective conditions written above, the contract is then considered inactive and the items of collateral will be returned to their rightful owners. If I, the buyer, should die, then protection is removed from both recipients regardless of their condition and the items of collateral transfer into your full and permanent ownership, with the exception of if my death is a direct or indirect result of any attempts or plans on your part to bring about my death while this contract is active. These attempts or plans will then be considered a breach of contract, with the aforementioned results."
"Yes." If anything, it had gotten wider.
There were other clauses. Precise definitions of the terms used, closing of loopholes, certain specialised confidentiality agreements. Finally, we both signed on the dotted lines. I gave him the original and kept the carbon copy. He was more amused by it then anything else. We shook hands.
"Thank you for your time," he said cheerfully. "I haven't had this much fun in years."
And then he left, and I wondered if perhaps I'd made the wrong decision.
In other news, I no longer have an eye.