“What the fuck is going on?”
“We didn’t expect this to happen.” Mr Green spoke quietly, he looked in to the dark depths of the espresso.
“It has turned into a fucking blood bath, your so called asset is a fucking liability”. Mr White was calm, his eyes showed the extreme anger that he felt.
“I want them neutralising.” White continued.
“Can I come in on that?” It was the first time Mr Black had spoken during the meeting.
“Yes, please tell me something I want to hear.” Mr White focussed his inescapable fury on the junior agent in the meeting.
“I am sorry, Mr White, I have nothing positive I can give you. I need to show you a video that I have been given by Hicks. He gave it to me when we cleaned up Quereshi’s car.”
Black placed his lap top on the table. No one spoke as he opened the lap top and started to open the programs. Green was pleased that the ice cold, hard glare of White was falling upon someone else.
The video was the confessions of Ranjit Quereshi. The post script by Hicks explained how the video was lodged on various servers on the net and should he fail to log in to the server then the video would arrive in influential inboxes around the globe.
“Fuck. Can we find the video online?” White asked Black.
“It will be very difficult, we have people on it, but this guy Hicks is pretty smart. We are on it.” Black replied.
“How long?” White demanded.
“Difficult to say, an hour, a month or a year.” Black replied.
White leaned back in his chair. He puffed out his cheeks as exhaled. “Ok, the important thing is to get him off the streets and get rid of him somewhere far away and dangerous. I will talk to the agency and we can send him abroad.”
“Ok, as soon as we hear from the agency I will see him. I will stay in the area.” Agreed Black.
“Yeah, I will email you as soon as I know, probably before the end of the day. I want him gone in two days”.
“The more difficult one is the police sergeant”. Green observed.
“Yeah, what do you know about him?” White asked.
Green continued, “He is waiting for an operation on his ankle. We could get that done this week for him and then get him pensioned out of the police as soon as possible afterwards?”
White looked interested “Ok, that sounds promising. Can we do it?”
“Yes but I will need to have the spend on the private health care authorised by the department.”
“Yes, that is no problem. I will authorise that now. Will he stay in the area?” White was far calmer now.
“I doubt it, he holidays in North Wales and he is from that area, I think he will go there.”
“Ok, I want you both to keep me posted.”
Fleur picked up the post from the doormat, as she did every other morning. Pol was at work he was on days again this week. He left the house at seven, just after delivering her a mug of tea and a kiss to keep her going through the day. She had done her chores and sat at the table enjoying a coffee and checking the mail. She quiet liked Monday morning. She loved Pol but also liked to be able to crack on in the house on her own. A bank statement, a few pieces of junk mail and a letter from Sheffield hospital addressed to Pol.
Fleur: Hey sexy. Letter from hospital shall I open it? Xxx
Pol: Yes please xxxx
Fleur: Ankle op day after tomorrow it’s a cancellation xxxx
Pol sat in his office chair. He had been waiting for the operation for months. Now he had it with two days’ notice. He walked up stairs and spoke to his boss.
“Morning Pol, how are you doing?”
“Yeah, I am ok” they looked at each other with the tired acknowledgement of their shared secrets.
“Boss, I am having my ankle op in two days”.
“Hell’s bells. That’s quick.”
“Yeah it is a cancellation” Pol placed a mug of tea in front of the Inspector.
“Well I guess that you will be off for a while then?” The Inspector felt a sympathetic relief for Pol and even a spark of envy at his friend being away from the world of hypocrisy.
Neither of them knew that it had already been decided that Pol would not be returning he would be pensioned out of the force.
At the same time the conversation was happening between Pol Winchester and Phil Robinson another conversation was occurring between. Mr Black and Stuart Hicks.
Hicks had been handed an envelope by Black. He had examined the contents.
“So you want me to go back to Guatemala?”
“Yes, the drugs trafficking has really taken off again in the last twelve months. We want you to go in there and get embedded. Report intelligence to us.” Black replied.
“Your wife and the girl, her niece, will be moved to a house on the edge of Dartmoor, near Oakhampton.” Black continued.
“I have been to Oakhampton, back in the day.” Hicks paused. “What sort of money?”
“We will put fifty grand in your account if you agree today, then in a fortnight when you leave, another fifty grand. Then subsequently another twenty grand a month.”
“Maybe two years, then you can retire, we will ensure there is a sufficient lump sum in your account so you can be comfortable”.
“Ok, I am in”. Hicks stood and shook Black’s hand.
Black smiled “Good, now we no longer meet your new handler’s details are in the papers”.
Black knew that as soon as the electronic security experts had tracked down the video of Quereshi on the internet then Hicks would be neutralised.
Stu Hicks and Pol Winchester’s paths had crossed and now had diverged again. Neither man knew but they would cross one more time.
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