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Kai Diamonde adopted the swagger of a man at ease in his domain.

‘What’s different about this game at Wimbledon?’ He asked.

‘The English guy’s winning!’ Glen volleyed back with a hint of facetious spin.

‘Take a closer look,’ Diamonde responded with a straight racket.

There didn’t appear to be anything out of the ordinary. The white clad players were engaged in battle. The centre-court grass was its usual vibrant green except for the bare, activity laden patches and Hawk-Eye was tracking balls with its trusted precision. The line judges were occupying their positions and as would be expected on such a hot day the crowd sported a plethora of summer hats and short sleeved garments.

‘Well it’s sunny,’ Mower pathetically offered. The glare he received coaxed another attempt at hitting the bull. It then struck him like a stray racket to the back of the head. ‘The players wait ages to receive balls between points,’ he observed. ‘The ball boys and girls are taking longer to…in fact, there’s only one ball boy and girl. There’s usually a whole bloody team of them!’

‘Game, set and match to Hover.’

‘Where are they, the rest of them?’

‘Isaac Newton,’ Diamonde replied.

‘Isaac Newton?’

‘Route 1066 have alerted the All England Club at Wimbledon that the law of gravity might soon no longer apply. You see, one of our time-travellers has persuaded Isaac Newton that he has Malus Domesticaphobia, the fear of apples, so there’s every possibility that he will no longer discover the theory of gravity if visiting orchards is off his bucket list. Mind you, we had the same fear a couple of years ago that came to nothing. We alerted Rochdale football club that they might need to position ball boys outside as well as inside their stadium. They told us that they’d had to do that anyway since they’d bought their new striker from Darlington.’

At that moment the Brit won his service game and pictures switched from centre-court to the large, patriotic crowd assembled in party mode on the hill just outside the tennis complex. Amongst the throng was someone in the distinctive navy, green and purple uniform of a Wimbledon ballgirl.

‘They’re all over the place,’ Kai explained. ‘They have to be as at any moment gravity could be undiscovered. Nobody could then be certain of where any ball will land once struck or even if it would land at all.’

‘But, surely, if Newton failed to discover gravity someone else would later have done that?’

‘Oh,’ Diamonde replied contemptuously. ‘I honestly don’t know why historical figures bother, when someone else would’ve come along soon after to do the same thing. Thank God we don’t all think that way. The statue makers would be out of work.’

Just then, Glen Mower looked through his living room window and seen a Wimbledon ballboy perched on the wall of his neighbour opposite.

‘Christ,’ he exclaimed, ‘in Maidstone, too!’

‘The influence and power of Route 1066 is everywhere,’ Kai Diamonde explained. ‘From their HQ in New York City they serve the world’s financial and political elite. It’s an exclusive club that the likes of us only get a sniff of when we are enlisted to clear up the mess they cause. They want the status quo maintained as it’s essential to their continued prosperity that history doesn’t change. Yet, paradoxically, they mess with it. Because they’re wealthy enough to do so.’

”We?’ Glen asked tremulously, as if not really wanting the answer. ‘You seem to keep including me in this?’

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