Bring Out Your Dead - Part 30
Continued from Part 29
“Just a coffee, dear, that’s all” Lawrence pleaded.
“No!” Amber marched briskly across the car park toward their vehicle with Lawrence hurrying after her.
“Absolutely not. I’m not stopping at every urinal between here and Bilbao just to satisfy your cravings”
They climbed into the car and Amber sped off toward the Autopista.
“I think you’re being very unfair, dear” Lawrence grumbled.
“Unfair? UNFAIR? Who dragged me on this damned holiday in the first place, that’s what I want to know? That’s what’s unfair. I could be relaxing right now in a deckchair in Sandown…”
“I don’t think you would, dear, it is the early hours of the morning, even there”
“That’s right, quibble! Pick me up on every little thing, like you always do!” Amber fumed.
“I’m just pointing out…”
“Well, you can stop it. I’ve heard enough from you to last me a lifetime. My mother warned me about you…”
“Oh no, not this again” Lawrence said, mournfully.
“She said you would lead me a merry dance and she was right! You and your ‘thirst for adventure’! Just look where it’s landed us”
“Do you two always go on like this?” A deep voice from the back seats asked.
“Yes, I’m rather afraid…” Lawrence began, then looked at Amber who looked quizzically at him.
“Well, would you mind putting a sock in it? Some of us are trying to sleep” Frankie Knight heaved himself upright from the pile of luggage and appeared, menacingly, in the rear view mirror directly in Amber’s line of sight. Amber screamed.
“Gawd help us, did you have to do that?” Frankie asked, irritably.
“Who are you?” Amber shrieked.
“Not really important, right now” Frankie replied, sleepily, “Just need a lift, that’s all. Shouldn’t be any trouble”
Amber brought the car to a violent halt on the side of the road.
“I want you out of this car, right now!” She said, firmly.
“Oh dear” Frankie said, wearily, “I hoped it wouldn’t come to this”
“Is that a gun sticking in my back?” Lawrence asked, nervously.
“You win tonight’s star prize, young man” Frankie chuckled.
“In some ways, that’s a comfort to know” Lawrence responded, miserably.
D.I. Wood was humming something that bore no resemblance whatsoever to any known piece of music, but he was doing so with gusto.
“You sound happy” D.S. Stone, who found the noise not exactly conducive to relaxed driving, remarked irritably.
“So I should be, Stoney, so I should be! We’ve got that shower back in our sights, thanks to my quick thinking. Now all we’ve got to do is to make sure we don’t lose them again”
“I’m not really sure what you’re hoping to achieve by this. I mean, what do you think they’re up to?”
“Who knows, sunshine? Could be anything. It’s got to be something to do with that ruddy coffin they’re toting about”
“You think they’ve got something in it?”
“Well, they reckon they’ve got that toff in there but I’ll believe it when I see it”
“Sir Lewisham” D.S. Stone supplied.
“Sir Lewisham Carnock. That’s who they said they were collecting”
“Was it? Right, well I knew he was a nob of some sort.” D.I. Wood said with some annoyance, “Course, we don’t know whether that’s really what they’re here to do, or even if he’s in there, if they are, if you get my drift?”
“What’s your best guess, then?”
“Dunno. Could be drugs, although that’s not Frankie’s MO normally. Could be shooters, that would definitely be his barrow. Could be Frankie, I suppose?”
“You think he might be dead?”
“Who knows? The whole thing’s a mystery wrapped in an enema”
“That quote you were using, it’s from Winston Churchill, he said it was ‘a mystery wrapped in an enigma’” D.S. Stone explained.
“Yeah, that’s what I said.” D. I. Wood replied, huffily, “it’s not University Challenge you know. It could, of course, be stuffed with dosh. We still don’t know what he did with all of the moolah he got from his last job”
“Have you heard anything more from the Alicante police?”
“Not since we’ve been on the road. Mind you, when you’re at the arse-end of god knows where, I don’t suppose there’s a signal”
D.S. Stone glanced at his phone.
“Mine’s got a signal” He announced, proudly.
“’Mine’s got a signal’” D.I. Wood mimicked, “well, bloody good for you, well mine hasn…” His voice trailed off as he looked at his phone. He cleared his throat a couple of times and then stuffed it back in his pocket.
“Problems, sir?” D. S. Stone asked, innocently.
“Seems to be out of charge” D.I. Wood muttered.
“Well, you can plug it in to the car, sir. Have you got your in-car charger with you?”
“Don’t be so wet, Sergeant, course I haven’t. It’s back in the car in the U.K. innit? I suppose you’ve got yours, have you?”
“Of course, sir” D.S. Stone said, proudly.
“Well, there you go, problem solved. Bung it over and I can check my phone”
“It won’t fit yours, sir”
“What do you mean, why not?”
“Mine is quite up to date, sir, whereas yours…”
“What’s wrong with mine?”
“You have had it a few years, sir. Things have moved on in the meantime” D.S. Stone said, smugly, and then, under his breath "they've removed the Morse key since then"
“So I’m up a gum tree with this, is that what you’re saying? Alicante or the gaffer could be ringing me about all sorts and we wouldn’t be any the wiser, is that it?”
“That’s about the size of it, yes sir” D.S. Stone said with a certain degree of satisfaction.
“Stone the flaming crows!”
Now read Part 31