ZDNet Australia is proud to bring you a serialised version of Phil Dobbie's novel The Incumbent. A new chapter will be published here as part of his blog each week on Tuesday. You can also buy the entire book by clicking here.
'You're not coming in,' the security guard said to Musson, at the doors of Radio 2IQ. He was proud with how he managed to string the words together. He had said it many times before but it never seemed to come out in the right order.
'It's alright, he's with me,' said Whimplestein, arriving at Musson's side.
'And who are you?'
'I'm his psychiatrist.'
'Well you are definitely not coming in. No psychiatrists, it's the rules.' That was 12 words in succession, the guard's personal best.
'But this man is a guest on the Adam Willis breakfast program,' Whimplestein explained.
The guard asked them to stand aside while he spoke into his walkie talkie. He listened intently to someone and didn't seem happy with what he heard.
'Okay, you can come in,' he said begrudgingly, motioning Musson through the door.
'And you,' he stabbed his finger into Whimplestein's chest, 'you are permitted in so long as you try not to psycho ... psycho...'
'Psychoanalyse?' offered Whimplestein.
'Yeh. So long as you don't do that to any of the presenters.'
The bouncer was correct with his initial observation that Musson seemed more mentally unbalanced than the average visitor. He had definitely taken a step backwards, but it was only in part Whimplestein's doing. On that cold night after the consultation he had followed the psychiatrist's directions to Woodburner's house, intent on murder. Except, of course, he'd started off in totally the wrong direction and arrived, by sheer coincidence, at the home of notorious underworld identity, Spicer the Slicer.
Spicer opened the door to a man practically foaming at the mouth, his saliva filled with venom and hatred. He wondered whether he was campaigning for the Liberal Party.
'Woodburner?' He spat the word out, some spittle landing on Spicer's neatly pressed shirt.
'No. You must have the wrong house. Are you selling something?'
Musson was taken aback. He was sure he had followed the directions carefully, but this man clearly wasn't the 'face of VastTel'.