‘Good night, madam. Good night, sir. Merry Christmas.’ Andrew Lee’s voice still manages to sound cheerful and infinitely courteous even though the cold seems to add a slight metallic resonance to it.
Madam pulls her coat more tightly around her, and tucks her arm inside that of sir. They make their way over to their Rover, its maroon shape lit by the flood-lighting reflecting off the creamy white front of the restaurant.
Andrew Lee doesn’t wait for them to drive away. He still has to total up the evening’s takings, make sure the team of Colin Shepherd, Michael Curry, James Garth and Chris Oliver, and Paul Wilshire, the sommelier, have laid up the tables for the next day, check the security, switch the lights off, and finally lock up. He won’t be getting away much before 1.30 a.m. Still, that’s what he’s there for, isn’t it?