He passed it from hand to hand, enjoying the chilly, smooth feel of the rook against his palms. He loved playing in the park at this time of year, his set always felt like they were carved out of ice during the clear winter days.
His opponent was following his hands while he considered his move, as if trying to understand his thinking. He knew that his opponents were often distracted by this habit, but it was not calculated to throw players off their game. In truth he did not know why he did it, and more importantly he rarely noticed that he was doing it until he saw the person opposite’s eyes moving from side to side.
The game was six moves from mate in his favour; this guy was not any kind of challenge. They never were all that tough any more in the mornings; it was as if the real players were sleeping in during the cold weather. The game wrapped, exactly as he expected, and he took the money, shook the guy’s hand and started to reset the board.
He looked up; this new guy was not there to play.