God’s Janitor

Cardinal Spencer brushed cigarette ash off his sleeve; another stain removed. He watched the police hold back the crowds, while the paramedics worked futilely to punch life into the Pope’s chest. The white choir dress began to stain red, this taint beyond his powers. Forty years serving five Popes and it had come this.

The shadows from the Coliseum gave him both shade and brief anonymity. Working in the background was his real skill. Cleaning up the Papal messes: the high profile –the collapse of Banco Ambrosiano and Calvi’s suicide; the abuse of children and the subsequent cover ups – and the mundane. God’s Janitor. But now the dirt was too ingrained.

He tapped the nearest policeman on the sleeve. The officer stepped back to let the Cardinal through. He moved confidently to the man clearly in charge. “I think you will want this.” He held out the handgun.

He looked at the dead Pontiff’s unseeing eyes and prayed. He had willingly dirtied his hands. He had done all that they asked; every crisis, every problem he had been there to cauterise, sanitise, pacify. But not this, this treachery, this undermining of everything Holy. He knew he had to act when they had come and said, ‘We want to modernise’.


About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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20 Responses to God’s Janitor

  1. Enjoyed this Geoff.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. willowdot21 says:

    When he returned to his room he sat down and tried to relax. His phone buzzed , a message. It read for God’s sake sort Brexit ! No! He thought that’s not my jib, that’s work for the devil.
    Great post Geoff 💜

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Well done Geoff!! Spot onI thought….

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Very chilling tale, Geoff.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. AJ.Dixon says:

    This is great, Geoff. I love the idea of the diligent Cardinal being ‘God’s Janitor’. A dirty job, indeed!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Elizabeth says:

    I think I might know the name of the Cardinal!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. An interesting concept

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Impactful story, Geoff. Only so much cleaning up for one person before he reached the breaking point.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Love the twist at the end. I can see the value in being God’s janitor. I wonder how far that power could reach? 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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