Chapter 68 – Paddington Green
At the same time as Ellen and Keith were driving to Ellen’s house in Fleet, about 30 miles away, the King and Eustace were sleeping in separate cells at Paddington Green high security Police station in London.
While Keith’s questioning had been relatively routine, the interrogation of the King and Eustace was much more complex. The start of the process at Basingstoke Police station should have been routine enough, but it began badly with a simple form to register the prisoners, where the first questions were name, address and date of birth.
Eustace answered first for the King, giving his name as His Royal Highness King Stephen of Blois. The Arresting Officer ignored the King name, assuming Eustace was taking the piss, but began by asking, ‘is it Stephen with a v or a ph?’ It went downhill from there.
Eustace was illiterate, so the King answered, ‘ph.’
‘Sir, how do you spell Blois?’
‘b l o i s’
‘Are you French?’
‘No I’m English, but my mother was French.’
‘What is your date of birth?’
’11th September 1096’
The Arresting Officer wrote down 11th September 1966.
The King said, ‘I do not understand the question?’
‘Where do you live?’
‘In one of my palaces, but usually at Winchester’.
The Arresting Officer gave up with the King, and instead turned to Eustace.
‘Sir Eustace of Ypres’.
The other Police officers around the desk couldn’t help but snigger. They were all reminded of the famous Monty Python sketch from the film the Holy Grail when the actor with a French accent hurls insults at the King and his followers standing below the castle walls. Thinly disguised whispered French accents, could be heard talking of hamsters and elderberries.
The Arresting Officer said sarcastically, ‘Alright, alright, any of you know how to spell Ypres.’
One of the junior officers said, ‘French p r i c k’.
That is when Eustace threw the first punch. The Arresting Officer pressed an Alarm button under the desk and the area was soon full of writhing struggling officers, who managed to get handcuffs on both the King and Eustace. After the scuffle had been calmed, Eustace and the King were taken to separate cells.
What was obvious to the Police team was that these men had been sleeping rough for some time and needed a hot shower and a change of clothes. The clothes looked as though they had come from a fancy dress shop. The priority though was to search the prisoners thoroughly for any concealed weapons, and remove anything they may use to self-harm themselves.
They had set procedures to deal with drunks and all sorts of violent detainees, so they assembled the required team and set about their tasks.
The King thought it beneath his dignity to protest and did what the four burly Police officers wanted. He removed his tunic and outer garments and stood only in his breaches. It was obvious that his bruises needed some medical attention, and a doctor was summoned. They could hear Eustace violently resisting in the next cell, and the yelps of pain as he struggled with the Police officers. Most of the yelps were from the Police officers.
In the end, the Police gave up trying to get either prisoner to remove their breaches and forced them into the hot shower with them on. At first the King and Eustace resisted but like Greta, they soon got the hang of the pleasure of hot soapy water from above and came out if not sparkling, a lot cleaner than when they went in.
The Doctor arrived and treated the cuts and bruises on Eustace and the Police officers. He examined the King and said he should have a chest x-ray in case of fractured ribs. But otherwise, considered both prisoners to be in good health. He was particularly fascinated by their teeth. He gave the Arresting Officer some pain killers for the King to take, and a look that said much about his suspicions of Police brutality.
The Police supplied the King and Eustace with a change of clothes. This consisted of prison grey tracksuits, underpants, socks, a grey t-shirt and a pair of slip on plimsolls that needed no laces. Wet breaches were finally removed and they emerged in their new grey attire.
Beans on toast was interesting. The Police had never seen anyone eat quite like these two. They were glad when the unmarked van arrived to take them to Paddington Green. They were glad to pass the responsibility to their Metropolitan Police colleagues.
On arrival at Paddington Green, the King and Eustace were taken directly to the well-equipped medical centre inside the high security Police station. They had slept most of the way on the 90 minute journey in the closed Police van. Both were very tired after their week long excursion on Hazeley Common and Fleet Pond.
Charles, Sir Geoffrey Milton’s assistant, had spoken directly to the Arresting Officer at Basingstoke, and received a somewhat coy account of the prisoners’ injuries. He had also spoken to the doctor who had examined them. Charles had noted the point about the chest x-ray.
The Met had handed the operation over to MI6, and MI6 was working inside Paddington Green in close co-operation with the American CIA in London. Both MI6 and the CIA had been sent copies of Keith’s comprehensive statement at Basingstoke Police Station, and it was clear that this eminent and rational scientist believed that the other two prisoners, who he called Eustace and the King, were from a different time. This seemed incredulous, but also explained a lot. However, Eustace and the King were also accused of multiple murder and an unreported rape.
The medical centre at Paddington Green was well equipped because it had been set up to deal with any major terrorist incident in the capital. The medical staff, as instructed, examined both Eustace and the King thoroughly. They both made amorous and outrageous advances to the female staff in their crisp white medical uniforms. In the end, Milt agreed they could be sedated so the medical examination could proceed without further sexual harassment.
After an hour or so, the Medical Doctor in charge came into the room where Milt, Charles and Wayne DiBello the Head of the CIA in London waited. She carried two clip boards, where the medical papers of each prisoner were secured by a crocodile clip at the top.
She sat down and began her report.
She was Dame Ann Brightwell MD, who was Head of the Medical School at University College London, but also assisted MI6 whenever it was necessary. She was a handsome well-built woman in her early sixties with bushy grey hair and red half-moon spectacles. She was known for her quick wit.
She and Milt were good friends. Charles had briefed her on the unusual nature of this one, and asked if she could examine them to see if they were truly from another time.
The first thing Ann said was, ‘there is no DNA, finger print or retina match on the database, so whoever they are, nobody knows them.’ She looked at Frank as she said this, so the meaning was clear that they had also be allowed access to the CIA database to conduct this search as well as the usual Interpol and MI6.
‘I’ll say one thing though about these two, being groped at my age is quite flattering.’ The men laughed.
She began flicking through the pages on one of the clip boards.
‘The one called Stephen is probably in his 40’s, he has bruised ribs consistent with a fall a week or so ago, but they are not broken.’ Ann held an X-ray image up to the light, which she had just unclipped from the sheath of papers.
‘He will feel better in a few days. He has several old injuries and scars to his body, consistent with knife injuries.’ She clipped the X-ray back to Stephen’s board, and began flicking through Eustace’s bundle of papers on the second clip board.
‘The one called Eustace is probably a little younger, in his mid-30s. He has suffered several injuries in his time, again consistent with knife, puncture or fracture wounds. Some have been crudely stitched, possibly by himself. We have treated an infection in one, and re-stitched it.’
She paused for effect, and then went on.
‘We found a number of characteristics of each subject that may be consistent with your theory of time travel. First is their teeth. Don’t get me wrong, their teeth are not great, but they don’t have any evidence of sugar decay or modern dentistry. They both have worms, which we have treated. This is consistent with a primitive diet. They both have lice in their hair, which we will treat with appropriate shampoo when they wake up. I would like to examine the clothes that they were found in?’
Charles said, ‘already sorted Dame Ann, on the way courtesy of Basingstoke’s finest, together with weapons found when they were arrested. Be here in 30.’
Ann looked at Milt for some clarification, ‘he means in 30 minutes.’
Ann covered a smile, and looked back down at the notes.
There was a knock at the door, and a young Doctor came in and handed Ann another piece of paper. Somewhat excited he said, ‘Mam, it is as you suspected.’ The young Doctor smiled, nodded and left. Shutting the door behind him.
‘Yes’, she said, ’scanning the notes on the paper in front of her, ‘this is very interesting. Both subjects have the clap’.
Wayne DiBello looked at her confused.
‘They both have gonorrhoea, a common sexually transmitted infection caused by a nasty bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoea. It is easily treated with anti-biotics, but we had the particular strain analysed and consulted a group at St Mary’s who specialise in historical medicine.’
Again the distinguished medical practitioner paused for effect. ‘It appears to be a strain that was eradicated more than 700 years ago. Except for one case a few days ago in a woman aged 35, from Fleet in Hampshire’.