“There’s a man in the courtyard, standing by one of the big stone planters, and he’d been there for over an hour.”

“So?. I mean I know it’s a locked courtyard, but people lock their appartments as well, and he might be a new tenant or anything. What if he’s having a cigarette?”

She raised one eyebrow, a feat that I was genuinely jealous of at the best of times;

“For over and hour? That’s one hell of a cigarette. Come on, if he has a real reason for being here, looking up at our hallway, on a night where the temperature outside procludes the excuse ‘I like being outdoors’, then he won’t mind a resident asking him his business.”

I shrugged, and headed for the door. As I descended the three flights of stairs I smiled to myself at how easily Jess had got me off the sofa; any excuse to be the ‘man’ of the house. Still my ego seemed to like this way of showing me that I was needed.

I pulled the heavy outer door open and looked out into the courtyard; a weasley looking chap was there by the planter, fag in his mouth.