As soon as the show was over the room rose as one and began to applaud. Looking around, he could see all the delegates were smiling. He was smiling too, though his thoughts needed to settle. It had been a highly charged drama but worth it.
At the end, when their time was up, they stood wearily and, not knowing what should be done, began a slow handclap. All the delegates were fixing their grins. He knew they would come to pay for all the drama. Nothing whatsoever had been settled – but the show was over.
He lit a cigarette, pressed up against the wall, sheltering from the freezing air. The cigarette would warm him. Taxis and buses clattered along the street, which was still wet from the rain. There were voices and laughter from inside the pub. It was packed. Always was at this time of year. So tiring. So much food and drinking.
Aeroplane lights crossed the starless sky. Where were they flying to? In the future no one would fly any more. And no one would eat or drink. People were scared. They talked fearfully as if it all, soon, had to end.