Sûrah LXVI
"Strive against the disbelievers and the hypocrites, and be stern with them."


Pistol's revelation shifts the roommates' hot debate—their opinions reconsidered, their attitudes revised, their options reappraised to fit the altered situation (oblivious to its being misreported).

Call the cops:




discredited by Greer, whose gripe, though somewhat shrill, was nonetheless convincing; nobody actually saw the captured villain commit a crime; his objective was inferred, his intended victim safe, making evidence circumstantial; the police would surely scoff, or, worse yet, turn the tables and charge them with kidnapping; nix the cops.

Call CIS or ICE:



more feasible; same objection: credibility; it could not even be established Ahmed was the one who slew the fowl, suspicion hardly grounds for the culprit's deportation; again, the only provable crime was theirs; nix Immigration.


was a laugh; by whom? By what means of dispatchment? The condemned, awaiting sentence, gave his hanging-judges pause; even drawing lots was a tact that won no takers; best rethink.
Delay release:


provide the prey, thereby, with a running (flying) start, then free the predator, once the plane was bound for Istanbul; this ploy workable... if, and only if:
they could scrape together sufficient funds for the fare,
book passage speedily,
maintain Ahmed in his holding tank,
and sell the scheme to Zahra.
Or do zilch:


bow out, abstain, allow 'whatever' to takes its course; let the inmate croak; wait a week; wait a month; then deal with the corpse—a damn sight easier to dispose of than a pissed-off human being who, like as not, would take his anger out on them.

And so it went—plus variations on these ruminated themes—until, like gum, they lost their flavor, and tired the jaws of all who idly chewed.