The Blank Incident

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The Transcript of the First Interrogation Interview: Nathan Barley

[This transcript details the particulars of the FBI's interview with the first person interviewed by the subject. Nathan Barley is being interviewed by Agent Philip Stanton of the FBI. The interview is taking place in a secure room at the FBI headquarters.]

Agent Philip Stanton: ''This interview is being conducted by the FBI, subject to article 4 of the Wright Act, granted by the permission of the government of the United States of America. The interviee in question is Nathan Franklin Barley of Boston, Massachusetts. I, Agent Philip Stanton, will be conducting this interview. The time is now [he looks at his phone on the table] 11:25 on the 11th of October, 7 days after the incident.''

[He pulls up his chair rather noisily to the table directly oppsite Nathan Barley.]

''Now, Mr Barley, this is just standard procedure with all criminal investigations; we have to interview all people who were present at the event as well as those who came into contact with the prime suspect, Harrison Jepp.''

Nathan Barley: [Slightly angry] ''Excuse me? Prime suspect? How-how do you know he's the prime suspect? How could he have possibly carried out the attack?''

PS: ''Please, sir, for your own good, answer only when I have asked you a question. OK?''

NB: [Looking down, mumbles a barely audible ''Alright''.]

PS: ''Alright then. So, Mr Barley [he opens up a black file in front of him which contains many documents. He pulls one out and places it atop of the file. Nathan Barley watches him cautiously] is it true you have had no prior contact with the subject, Harrison Jepp?''

NB: [Warily] ''True. I had never met the guy until the 2nd of October, at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles.''

PS: ''OK. Have you any knowlegde of any of your relatives or friends being in contact with him previously?''

NB: [Scoffs] ''No, of course not. [Leaning in suddenly] Look, he's just a guy who interviewed me, that's all. There's nothing sinister about an interview, is there?''

PS: ''I don't know, it depends on the interview.''

[Nathan Barley looks at Agent Stanton with a slightly puzzled face, then shakes his head and folds his arms.]

NB: [Sighs loudly] ''How long is this going to take?''

PS: ''Depends on your cooperation.''

NB: ''I am cooperating.''

PS: ''That you are. [Clears his throat] On the 2nd of October, did you recall anything unusual or out of character with Jepp?''

NB: ''No, nothing seemed unusual with him.''

PS: ''Did you notice anything on his person that seemed strange to you?''

NB: ''No, other than his microphone, his phone, wallet and other personal effects, no, he looked clean to me.''

PS: [He pulls out another piece of paper from the file] ''Was your invention...[he reads of the paper he is holding up] 'Intra Media Mobile'...was this within your sight at all times on the day?''

NB: ''Yes, it never left my side, unless I was giving it to the companies I wanted to sell it to on the day. But I was always present with it. Why are you asking?''

PS: ''I need to ask. In case it got into the wrong hands.''

NB: ''You mean in case it got into Harrison Jepp's hands.''

[Barley and Stanton look each other squarely in the eye.]

PS: ''You seem very trusting of Jepp, Mr Barley. Are you sure you two haven't met before?''

NB: [Looking bemused] ''What? Trusting? He's a good guy! It doesn't have to mean that we have to have known each other for ages. Sometimes you meet people and they are nice and you get on really well with them. It's how you make friends. But I can tell you probably have had rough experiences in the past with people, Agent Stanton. You must not trust anyone!''

[Agent Stanton looks up at Nathan Barley slowly in silence.]

PS: ''You're right, I don't trust anyone. And I especially don't trust you.''

NB: ''Why? I've told you the truth! How can you sit there and blame an innocent man for those deaths? He didn't do it!''

PS: ''Did you see who did? Hmm? Because when the attack occurs, everyone can clearly see Harrison Jepp in the middle of all of it.''

NB: ''But it doesn't mean he caused it.''

PS: ''How can you be so sure?''

NB: [Looking down] ''I'm...I'm not. [Looking at Agent Stanton] But how can you be so sure that he did? Is him being in the same place and time of the attack the only evidence you have?''

PS: ''No, it's the only proof we have. And that proof leads me and everyone one here to the conclusion that Harrison Jepp is the perpetrator who ended the lives of 287 people, 7 days ago.''

[Nathan Barley begins to slowly shake his head and look down.]

NB: ''It can't be true. It just can't.

PS: ''I'm sorry, but...with some's impossible to tell what they are really thinking. Sometimes it's the innocent ones. Those we think, 'Nah, they would never do something like that.' And then they surprise you.

NB: ''It just doesn't make sense. If he did do it...why would he?''

PS: ''I don't know. [He looks down in a pondering manner.] You can't judge a book by it's cover, I guess.''

[Agent Stanton looks up at Barley, then begins to put the documents back into the black file in front of him.]

NB: ''So...are we done?''

PS: [Looking at him] ''Yeah, we're done. Interview terminated at 11:43.''


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