Inspector Huizen: "So, what have we got?"
"It's a mixed bag, Sir" said the Constable, holding the file. "I'm not sure what to make of it."
"Data" said the Inspector, "that's important thing, though it's rare in eyewitness accounts. We need data, the rest will solve itself."
The Constable seemed unsure.
"Examples, Constable, please..."
"OK..." He opened the file, flicked through a few pages, picked out a transcript from the folder and began to read.
Witness: There was three of them. I saw it. I saw most of it anyway. I didn't see the start of it though but I was standing outside of the garage, having a quick puff before my shift, you get me? Anyway, like, I heard this shouting and I looked over, yeah? There was this guy he was fighting with a woman on a bike, trying to grab a bag off her I think.
Interviewer: What did the man look like?
W: I couldn't see his face.
I: Could you describe him.
W: Well [pause] I mean I [pause] I don't know to...
I: Age, height, build, ethnicity...?
W: It's difficult to say. I was a bit of a blur, see? I guess he was white.
W: No, I mean white, like, really white. I don't know [pause]. He was sort of average height. He seemed slim. He was dressed in [pause] it's hard to say.
I: As best you can, Sir.
W: You're going to think this is [pause]. I'm not crazy or nothing. It...
I: Please, Sir, just say what you saw. Let us do this thinking.
W: He looked like [pause]. He looked like a mannequin, you know those things in shops that they hang clothes on.
I: I understand. [Pause] What happened after that?
W: Well, then this other guy appeared out of nowhere and he looked a lot like the first one, I mean a lot. He was, like, running down the hill. The Woman on the Bike had got away from the First Man, started peddling, and the Second One he got out a hand gun and started shooting.
I: How many shots were there?
W: Two, I think. I hit the deck. I think everyone did. There was screaming and shouting all over the place. I was crouching. I looked up again and the other two men had gone.
I: What happened then, did you hear any more shots?
W: No, it was like everything had [pause]. It was like it had gone back to normal.
"That's interesting" said Inspector Huizen, "any more?"
I: What did you see?
W: I didn't see much. I was just was going to the tube station, by the entrance, when I heard a lot of noise and there was this woman, crazy looking, riding her bike along the pavement. There was people shouting at her.
I: At her?
W: Yeah, for riding on the pavement. [Pause] That's what it seemed like, anyway but there was this thing following her.
I: A thing?
W: Like a wind or a black cloud. The Woman, she jumped back on the road. The cloud was following her. It was growing as well. I saw it. I don't know what it was but I saw it. [Pause] I swallowed the Woman whole like a [pause] pair of jaws.
I: Did you hear any gunshots?
"I think I know where this is going" said the Inspector. "One more, if you may?"
The Constable searched for one more interview.
W: I don't know what I saw but I never want to see anything like that again.
I: I understand [pause]. Please can you...
W: It was unholy, oh Lord, what is the world coming to? I...
I: Please, Madam, if you could describe it.
W: I'm so sorry, I am very shaken. [Pause] I was sitting in me car at the light when I heard this awful, awful screeching sound, very loud it was, unnatural. Then I saw this figure running toward me. It was on fire. I thought my time had come. My life flashed before me, I thought of my children, I thought of me Mother and Father. Then these men came out of nowhere, I don't know, perhaps they weren't men, but they were three of them, carrying these cloaks. They wrestled the burning figure to the ground, right before me. There was sparks and ash flying everywhere and the screeching got louder and louder and then [pause] there was nothing. Gone. What do you think it could have been?
I: We're trying to find out, Madam.
"I know who we need to speak to next" said Inspector Huizen.
"Yes" said the Inspector. "Let's be off."