Mr Hinds turned to Mr Pears. “What time is it, Mr Pears?”
Mr Pears said nothing, but suddenly the lenses of his spectacles changed from translucent to opaque as each one displayed a clock face, with the hands pointed at ten minutes past ten.
Mr Hinds turned away to face the station platform, placing his hands at the small of his back as the lenses of the spectacles flashed back into transparency. “It is nearly time, Mr Pears.”
Mr Pears stayed silent, implacable as always, his face expressionless, eyes staring out into the middle distance, focussing on nothing at all.