Chapter forty six
Chained to Wainy
-´free the child in your head´–
‘Finally they’re not letting anyone out at all. It’s not just your friend.’- said Bruno to Damo, with a glance and a shrug at Macker’s support group.
Damo and Duna were still waiting at the prisoners’ center for Macker to be freed, but it was looking less likely by the minute. By now every prisoner had a desk and support group, logistics, infiltration, supplies, coordination…They’d been planning this for months and they had too many volunteers.
-‘He’s my brother not my friend.’- said Damo -‘They’ve been torturing him. His girlfriend is lost and had an abortion..’-
-‘A miscarriage.’- said Duna. -‘But why not let them out? They announce to the whole world they’ll let them free and then…’-
-‘They request verifiable ID.’- said Jennifer. -‘They need written proof of regular residence. They require guarantees and bail bonds. They insist on medical certificates in triplicate.’-
-‘Medical certificates! Why the hell do they need medical certificates in triplicate?’-
-‘It doesn’t matter. Let’s just go in and get him out!.’- said Damo, suddenly militant.
-‘Do we dress up as soldiers?’- Duna pointed to a passing group of Clanners in PIF army uniforms.
-‘No no that’s something else. Wait for the briefing okay in a few minutes. This is a rolling takeover. It’s not just tonight.’- And Bruno turned back to the computer, shaking his head.
-‘There’s no doors in the cell-blocks. No windows. No window or door frames even. They do have electricity, and drains. But the prisoners are luckier than the squaddies. In the barracks we’ve taken out the toilets and the wiring.’-
One way or another…The prisoners were coming out.
-‘Five minutes! Five minutes to go!’-
A manic old man was shouting, gesticulating at the line of food and drink trolleys that were stopping in the central aisle and still being loaded up. Then he was dancing round a computer, switching his headphones.
-‘We need a medical group in four fifteen immediately.’- he barked into a cellphone.
-‘He’s a darts fanatic…That’s right. Darts in cell twenty two.’-
-‘Cheese, salad, veggie rolls, magazines, marijuana, ice cream, condoms, plasters, mosquito repellent, cellphones, stretchers, handcuffs, skeleton keys, rubbish bins, music six four three…’- chanted skinny Lizzie from a check list.
-‘Candles… I know but they trade them. As many as you can get.’-
-‘Mosquito balm, massage oil.’-
The PIF forces had occupied the former police and army barracks, as expected, and set up a Holding Center in the former prison, but the anti invasion groups had spent months preparing the place for them.
And it seems there were multiple tunnels. Mount Venus Prison and Barracks were as permeable as a wormery, and the new Zoo Pools Leisure Center and soldier’s entertainment complex were right next door.
The army had decided to keep their hostages.
But one way or another…The prisoners were coming out.
-‘Two of those arrested in Hurndon have come out already, still handcuffed to their guard. They’re having breakfast.’-
-‘They kidnapped the soldier?’-
-‘No no. He turned out to be a rapper, into the Eagles and a fan of Clanners Way.’-
-‘They’re treating him like it’s his birthday.’-
-‘Are we really going in there?’- asked Damo. Getting nervous. -‘Won’t they just arrest us as well?’-
-‘They’re tolerating vendors, their Caterers had to pull out. They got no water. No power. No doors. No drains…’-
-‘And far too much hashish!’-
-‘Okay here’s the info on the guy guarding Macker. Name of Wain from Kentucky .Has contributed to the Gay Rescue show on, er, Indy-TV, married with one child.’-
-‘Gay Rescue?’- Damien exclaimed. -‘But Jerry from our house is in Gay Rescue, isn’t he?’-
-‘It’s TV as well. Some online help and advice shows they have, like, family stuff. They take our shows now.. Chain Reaction and Clanners Way.’-
-‘He’s gay, did you say. Is he gay? I can’t seduce a gay fella.. Damo you’ll have to try.’- Duna complained, pouting. see glossary.. gay rescue
-‘Me? No way. And you’re not seducing nobody.-‘ said Damo hotly, -‘That’s not the idea.’-
-‘Well, that is one important tactic, but you’re too young to qualify.’- Jennifer explained, -‘We are actively supported by the Prostitutes Collectives.’- And she nodded towards an uproarious table, further down the hall.
-‘Will there be prostitutes, when we’re all ‘money-free’?’-
-‘Let’s get Jerry he’ll help!’- Duna exclaimed. -‘I’m phoning Jerry now.’-
-‘It’s the middle of the night. We don’t know this guy is gay, he is married..’-
-‘It’s ringing. Hello Jerry.. James, hello. Is Jerry with you?.. Hello Jerry hi…Good morning this is Duna speaking! It’s me Duna. Yes. Sorry to wake you but…Listen we need your help, they still won’t let Macker out….’-
-‘Jahzus it stinks in here. Oh hello.’-
-‘Don’t they have a real prison?’-
Still stuck in the van. Two more prisoners were herded up into the back with me. My wrists were still hurting like hell and I was glad of the company.
-‘Hi there I’m, er, Yoo Wan, surname, Kerr.’-
-‘A Chinese name. I’m officially Mucker Durutti.’-
-‘Cool name. This is Suhkia..’-
-‘Maybe I can guess you surname. Would it be Mr. Willy?’-
-‘Nothing so common. My family name is Dykk. With a ‘y’.’-
-‘What are you in for, Mister Kerr?’-
-‘A Coca Cola machine that only took dollars. But Suhkia here is accused of Conspiracy to cause Actual Bodily Harm.’-
-‘You punched a soldier?’-.
-‘He called me a pathetic little faggot. I happen to be homosexual.’-
-‘He’s a political prisoner of conscience.’-
-‘Well I never wanted to be.’-
-‘With any luck we’ll be out tonight. They’re doing an enormous demo for us.’-
-‘We know. And what did they get you for?’-
I put a finger to my lips. -‘I’ll tell you later okay.’-
We were classed as a Holding Center in a Staging Area. Translated that meant eleven hours cooking slowly in a metal van. My wrists were all cut up and I still couldn’t feel two fingers properly.
But we had some fun as well, Yoo Wan’s sister Emma and his girlfriend Anna Key were held in the next Armoured Oven. In fact I composed a dreadful One Act Drama which we later performed in the cell. It started like this.
-‘My name is Mucker I’m a clever little f……….,
Though I never went to school.
I’m chained to a thick Called Suhkia Dykk
And a chap called Yoo Wan Kerr…’-
Meanwhile, outside the oven, a magnificent Revolutionary Action Machine was whirring into motion, on our behalf.
The Staging Center was already infiltrated.
Local fruit smoothies were being subversively sucked up straws.
Security was fatally compromised.
Cherry ice cream and veggie hot dogs with spicy ketchup were being openly distributed.
The tattoo stall was swinging into action.
Mosquito Balm and massage oil were being freely applied by sympathetic women.
Someone heard us banging and located the hole. The hole we had enlarged very slightly. The bottom corner of a rusting back door.
That was the end of my theatrical efforts. That’s when they slid us through some mobile phones.
And the end of my peace of mind.
With a telephone I found out in five minutes. I found out that Maxie was missing, and that my potential kid, name of Kazoo, was gone forever.
I needed to get out of there immediately, I had to find her fast as she might be suicidal, I was getting contacts and forgetting them and getting wrong numbers, half crying, kneeling in the corner, upset and confused.
Then I got through to Lucia, who was with Barney, she implied that they were hiding from the police. She told me Maxie had escaped in a boat, and had left a message.
I felt much calmer, they had a lot of people looking for her, and Barney said that if she were going to kill herself she’d hardly bother escaping in a boat.
We spent three hours on the road to travel maybe fifty kilometers, due partly to demonstrations for our release, but that didn’t stop us complaining.
I was hanging onto a bar, feeling nauseous as the metal box swayed and braked and endlessly lurched about. What a stupid egoistic bastard I had been, why the hell had I let Maxie go on patrol?
I was wearing earphones and listening to book summaries by phone for my Free-Uni course. -‘Nietzsche and the Atheist Psyche’-.
But I could only think of how I’d failed Maxie. I’d just gone along weakly with her..Why? Why? Why? Because I was selfishly afraid of losing her love. My cowardly ego had let her take a risk, when she needed someone to say -‘No Way. You mustn’t go.’-
We arrived eventually to Mount Venus Prison, back in the city. I’d spent some weeks there before in the Youth Section under the Old Regime. We expected immediate release, having heard all about the Ultimatum victory by phone on the way.
Suhkia and Yoo-Wan were in high spirits, we were about to become celebrities. I was still sulking myself, but at least we had arrived.
Our visit to Mount Venus Prison, Barracks and Police Station was short, and weirder than the weirdest black comedy you could ever imagine.
They had tunnels already constructed to the Zoo-Pools Leisure Center, right next door.
The van door swung open at last, on the wet cobbled courtyard, behind high stone walls. Where generations of ‘terrorist’ anti-colonial leaders had been executed.
But their ghosts didn’t materialize, instead we saw two Orca Clanners, staggering under a pile of thin foam mattresses. They were ignored by the soldiers, letting them fall on the wet cobbles, and making a bee line straight for us.
-‘What colour mattress would we prefer?’- They began. And soon found out who we were and what cell we were headed for.
Then the second APC opened and Yoo Wan’s girlfriend Anna and her friend Emma jumped shakily down.
We were handcuffed to soldiers who were to be our guards.
No way they were letting us go, we were led by an officer to the west wing cells, followed by the mattress boys, and a mobile soup stall, which joined the cavalcade and smelt fantastic.
Our cell had no door. It had no frame to hang a door on. It had no windows, nor bars, nor window frames, At least they’d left the cellblock with water, lights and toilets.
We were all handcuffed to each other, with a light chain to our minder, whose name was Wain.
In fact Anna and Emma were chained to a guard called Myra, in the next cell, but they later came and joined with us.
I talked to Bernie on the phone. She’d been left minding Moonbeam and Josie and the house, again. She was angry about that, and she admitted that Maxie still hadn’t called.
Something even worse must have happened to her. I needed to find her. I needed to be out of that prison immediately.
Our minder, Wain, was chained to me, and I was cuffed to Yoo-Wan and Suhkia. He seemed strict, grasping his gun, and didn’t answer or smile at our jokes.. But I soon found out he wasn’t bad or angry. Our guard, like me, was hurting and confused.
I told Wain about myself, simply, because he couldn’t catch our accents. It came out both our fathers were recently dead. And I told him Maxie, or Paxie as I called her, was missing and had lost our baby.
-‘Oh my gawd Mucker how terrible. I can check if she’s arrested if you like. Would she give her real name?’-
-‘She would not.’-
-‘You’re not Mucker Durutti either, are you?’-
I shook my head.
-‘And I’m not Suhkia Dykk, and he’s not Yoo Wan Kerr either.’-
Wain broke into a long throaty laugh, rattling our chain. Only now he’d got our schoolboy humour.
-‘Tell me exactly where and when she disappeared.’- he said. -‘We’ll see if she’s detained.’-
Soon we were slurping our soup. Supper from the soup group, who were also coordinating support. We were sat on an ancient blue tiled stone bench, etched with the names of long dead and forgotten prisoners, and all listening to the Pools Radio they’d given us.
The radio was pre-tuned to the Forces Network, the ‘Gay Rescue’ program, which was hardly a coincidence.
-‘..Gay Rescue is a planet web supporting Gay people with problems, giving advice and support personally or secretly in many cases, as well as publicly on Net TV and cell-phone shows. We have a mushrooming list of local groups and can sometimes give legal and physical help…’-
-‘Hey Gay Rescue how cool.’- said Suhkia.
-‘How strange.’- said Wain. ‘I helped on those shows.’-
-‘Really! But we know them. Maybe you know Jerry, he lives with us. Well next door but we eat together..’-
-‘Jerry? Sure, must be him. I’ve sent him messages.’-
-‘How grand! ‘You’re practically family!. Jerry’s a very nice fella. Still pretty spooked and serious.’-
-‘What happened to him?’-
-‘His family happened. His dad used to beat him for being gay, um. He was in a rehab center, a shrink bin. He escaped to, er, our friend’s, and joined Clan Earth.. but that was a few years ago He’s much better now. ‘-
-‘They tried to force cure him from being gay!-‘
-‘Well..I’ll give him a buzz, sure we’ll meet him later on.’-
-‘Not unless he comes in here, but I’d like to see him. I got a problem with my kid..’-
-‘I’ll ring him now. What happened..’-
Wain was in the throes of a painful divorce, and his ex, Trixie, didn’t let him speak with his three year old kid. When I phoned Jerry I told him this, and I told him Wain was helping me look for Maxie. Maybe someone could help him, and us.
Next thing Suhkia had to piss. So we all had to stand up, shuffle in with him and watch him squirt. He had a nice little circumcised pinky. Then back beside the missing window. So that You-Wan could reach out and hold hands with Anna in the next cell.
We heard angry shouts approaching. Strong torch beams probing about…
-‘We’re here to escort the undressed girls. Where are they?’-
Three drunken looking Military Police had arrived with orders to escort all undressed girls from our cell to the Officers Quarters, in the Henry Pogrom Building.
-‘This is cell B stroke X seven.’-
-‘No it isn’t.’-
-‘Yes it is……..’-
They were aggressive, swearing to discipline Wain for not producing girls. Fortunately they were called to a barracks dispute and rushed off.
Meanwhile Yoo-Wan had whispered a warning via the window. Anna and her friend and minder were hiding as best they could in the next toilet.
After that they came and stayed in our cell. Myra, their guard is a good head, despite her military family. We all shared a big joint of Yeti Gold that she’d just scored for free. Wain didn’t smoke but he did loosen up. Maybe he got a passive hit.
-‘Of course this stuff isn’t authentic, the only thing really Yeti is the name.’- said Emma knowledgeably.
-‘They extract chemicals they say cause paranoia and memory loss. This is just light and floaty.’- said Anna Key, blowing up a smoke ring and passing it to me.
-‘Suits me fine.’- says I, inhaling a little.
-‘Orca, Yeti, Earth, Coppice, Warrior or Sunshine.’- came a sing song shout from the corridors.
Another big supermarket trolley came trundling in. This time with dramatic posters of stick-on tattoos. A portable computer and various electronic boxes on top. Steered by two women in overalls and mili-caps. Clipboards in their hands.
-‘Orca, Yeti, Earth, Coppice ,Warrior or Sunshine?’-
-‘Earth. Earth and Orca. What’ve you got?’-
-‘New tattoos.’- She was opening a big file. -‘Have a look at these. You must be Mucker, Suhkia and Yoo-Wan.’-
-‘I’m impressed. We’re not forgotten, how did you know?’-
-‘I’ve seen your photos, and real names. You have a lot of supporters out here already…Good, and you women? Anna and Emma, we saw you earlier but you’ve changed cell. So then you’re Myra and you’re Wain.’- She was tapping at a keyboard.
-‘I need water and a cloth.’- said Suhkia.
He had selected a line drawing, of a kid with a catapult, squeezing out a barred window. Designed to go on the forehead. Titled -‘Free the child in your head’-.
They had a whole series of new forehead stick-ons. Little kids, ogres, elves, fairies and leprechauns. -‘Kill the killer, or rapist, or soldier, or free the slave.. in your head.’-
-‘So can you all just be patient while we get things organized okay? I imagine you’ll be out for breakfast. But they’ve been going back on their Amnesty promises. Wain and Myra. Here are your local cell-phones. They’re a present, we have a shipload of them. No, the blue one is yours.’-
-‘Hey great just what I need.’- said Myra. Fingering it eagerly, while Wain looked dubious.
-‘And here are your credit cards. Everyone here has free credit cards and we hope you will be coming out and, er, integrating okay?.’-
-‘Now I seen everything.’- said Suhkia Dykk. -‘They’re giving them fucking credit cards!’-
There were loud echoing voices outside. And the stick-on women made a quick exit. Anna had chosen little animals, which she peeled off and began sticking on us and herself. The way we were sweating you didn’t need water, and with so few clothes our bodies were an open canvas for artistic talents.
I liked the series of little fellows in your head and I’d selected a wizard throwing stars. You-Wan helped me put it on. I was inspired…
-‘It’s time boys and girls, for me to present our Revolutionary One Act Drama, entitled ‘I Just Done Pissed in the Prison Van.’-
That lasted about half an hour. They started cheering, which attracted the soup group, the CLAN Boutique, the Eagle prisoners from cell B stroke six and their guard. Plus the beer and marijuana trolley, as our audience swelled and we repeated the whole thing.
Finally some Military Police herded everyone back laughing to their cells.
– My name is Mucker I’m a clever little f………..,
Though I never went to school.
I’m chained to a hick Called Suckia Dykk
Time slowed down. We were all half dozed off by the time Duna and Damo showed up. Ostensibly delivering sweet and salty popcorn.
I was really surprised. What next! My little brother was hugging me, half awake, in the cell, giving out bags of popcorn in the middle of the night in the middle of Mount Venus Prison.
I asked them to just get me out but they shushed me up.
-‘Great stuff Damo you found me. Thanks for coming in.’-
He was trying to distribute midnight popcorn to our sleepy cell-mates, explaining that Barney was in hospital and Lucia was looking after him. How the Specials had tried to nick them both but they both got away. While Duna shoved me over and sat beside Wain, our guard, who was still curled up, asleep or pretending, on the cold stone bench.
She brushes his hair back from his face. Lightly with her fingertips. His eyes flicker open but she goes on stroking his locks.
-‘Hello Wain, dearest.’-
-‘Who the hell are you?’-
He lifts his head, groaning, and she moves closer smartly, so it rests on her leg.
-‘I am Duna. Daughter of Lucia. The Women’s Rescue healer.’-
-‘Lucia Perez?’- see glossary Womens Rescue
-‘You know my mom!’- She bends and kisses his cheek.
-‘Just the name.’- He raises himself and finds he’s leaning on her.
-‘So I came to fix things for you. You’re Wain right. Macker said you’re missing your kid Cherry, right.’-
-‘Well yes but..How did you know that?’-
-‘You’re entitled to online interviews with neutral supervision. Your sister Babs has agreed to do it.’-
She is staring into his eyes, close up. Tracing a face-line with her index fingertip.
-‘Babs, you know Babs?’-
-‘Your lawyer spoke several times to Babs.’-
-‘But, my wife won’t..we can’t.’-
-‘Your ex-wife Trixie. She has agreed to immediate access in return for non prosecution. Saved herself a big potential fine. Your attorney…’-
-‘Attorney? I have no attorney….’-
-‘From Womens Rescue, silly.’-
-‘But, er, but I’m not a woman.’-
She giggles and whispers in his ear.
-‘But maybe a little bit gay. Yes or no?’-
She squeezes his hands. But he slyly doesn’t confirm yes or no.
-‘Anyway, Cherry is a girl.’-
Damo is chatting with me and I’m yawning and flexing my wrists. I see he’s simmering with jealousy, as Duna makes friends with sleepy Wain beside us. Next thing she’s swapping his army cap for her Earth shades.
-‘If you want to confirm the interview you can chat with your daughter this morning.’-
-‘What? But I can’t leave here.’-
-‘Course you can, it’s here as well. All the persons are going to the Welcome Bar. It’s allowed to go with a big amnesty.’- She’s throwing shapes, playing with the cap.-‘And no one will care anyway. Your friend Jerry is coming to meet us there and we’ll eat something okay?.’-
Wain says no. Under no circumstances would he leave the prison premises while on guard duty.
But Suhkia has recruited Myra straight away, and the girls are keen to go.
Soon Wain is explaining his misfortunes to Duna, like they were lifelong friends. She whispers in his ear, rolling her eyes at us, and they laugh together, while her fingers get frisky with his shirt buttons, and squeeze his aching neck.
She wants to swap more clothes, she wants his mili-shirt. She acts the soldier in his cap and makes us laugh. She’s wearing a peep-top, flashing her teenage breasts, and swishing silver tassels on her gold black skin..
-‘Come on Wainy, let’s go. You’re only young once.’-
-‘Well maybe I…’-
Duna has closed his lips with her small fingers, then slips her tongue through them to kiss him.
-‘Just come!.’- she says urgently. -‘If they call you just say -‘All is good Sir.’- okay? Do it for me Wain, for me and Cherry.’-
-‘Oh all right, Okay but only if I can really speak to my daughter.’- he says, giving in.
Duna tugs the chain as she claps, jerking all our hands together. Kissing his cheeks.
-‘We’re going out for breakfast!’-
Daring herself to squeeze him, surreptitiously where she shouldn’t. .
-‘Now honey! This is only if you behave yourself, right. I don’t want you messing with me in front of your mama.’-
-‘Can I just try on your shirt a minute? Oh please Wainy please..’-
-‘Wakey wakey Mr. Wan Kerrr.-‘ I growled, shaking him gently. -‘Get up now Suhkia, Anna, Emma, Myra. Who’s coming for some breakfast now? Come on now let’s go, I need something soft to sit on.’-
None of us were really sleeping anyway. We were all propped on sharp tiles, ancient etched out names on prison stone. Impotently swatting at the agile mosquitoes.
And because we were chained together, with every movement really annoying everyone else.
The Great Escape. We poke our heads out of the absent cell door, shushing each other loudly, and all tip toe noisily along to the wash rooms, where our ‘stick-on distributor’ unlocks an ordinary brown door.
Glancing guiltily behind us, getting tangled up in brushes and mops, shouting at each other to keep quiet.
Still handcuffed together, and all chained to Wainy and Myra, like a gang of disobedient dogs.
Trying but failing to stop laughing.
One dramatic thing does happen. The chain falls off the boys. It clatters on the chipboard walkway in the passage, we are still cuffed together but no longer attached to Wain, our fateful minder. Could be the lads have been tampering with it, maybe it’s badly made, as if it knows we’re just some steps from freedom.
We walk down an ordinary well-lit corridor and through another door, pushing back a normal mosquito screen.
Out into the big cool carpeted Welcome Bar, empty up this end, with a few people dancing Salsa, but lazily, under a spotlight below. It’s much too early in the morning.
A sleepy looking Orca is waving and calling, but we flop together on a ring of leather sofas, I see that the bar is open, and serving hot food..
So ends the Great Escape. Bye bye Mount Venus.
I didn’t expect to spend more than one day in hospital, I’d lost blood, my leg muscle was cut and the tendons were damaged, but it wasn’t infected.
I was feeling optimistic, after being reunited with Lucia and Moonbeam. I would get out in the morning and I should heal fine.
Then I went down with a fierce stomach bug, hospitals are dangerous places, and they kept me in, on the drip.
I took the opportunity to catch up on a few years of lost sleep.
But that same morning the doctor told me that, exceptionally, I’d have visitors, James and Jerry and some others.
I felt sure it was some more terribly spooky espionage stuff, but I couldn’t see why they had to consult with me about it.
Especially when I was all drugged up and ill.
I was right about the spooky bit. They were setting a trap for the new leader of the right wing vigilantes now being groomed for power by our glorious Invaders.
Young and brilliant, Killian Bate had proven to be the most vicious and manipulative, and his sponsors had made him cock of the walk.
I knew this kid personally, his dad had trained him as a bullying thug and he was good at it. His sadistic obsessions added a special shiver, and his sexual predilections were pretty horrific.
Maxie and Jerry knew him even better than me of course, having humiliated and deposed him as the Adolf Hitler of their school, when the Clanners took over.
I woke to find three people round my bed, a guard at the door. James and Jerry were standing, with a masked and hooded somebody sat in the chair.
I was feeling weak and queasy, Jerry was patting my head.
Soon they were talking about Killy, that guy we love to hate.
-‘Suddenly he’s a respected representative.’- James was saying. –‘They’re all queued up to back and give him cash. He was featured in Time magazine, flashing that charismatic grimace.’-
Somehow his boasts were chic and daring, his wild threats were somehow sexy. Who else would offer to cut up gays, brand lesbians and execute aliens on Pools TV?
-‘Maybe it’s a good thing that he’s their leader.’- I observed. -‘I mean, the guy is actually a maniac, in my definition.’-
-‘No no, we’re promoting an internal power struggle, if he goes now they’ll be inoperative for months, just at this key point…’-
It was my incognito visitor, a deep gurgly woman’s voice, I felt I knew her but…
-‘Sorry I wasn’t introduced.’- I said, curiously.
-‘It’s not that I don’t trust you, er, Mr. Brown.’- and she giggled.
-‘You’re right, one day our dear Brothers might torture me for your name.’-
-‘They’re well capable, it’s all that Killian enjoys.’-
I knew her voice, I was nearly sure of it, nodding and chuckling under her hood.
-‘So what’s the plan, and how can I help?- I offered.
-‘Well first, thanks for seeing us when you’re ill.’-
They hadn’t actually given me a choice, and I badly needed to squirt diarroea in the bed pan.
-‘We need to take out Killian Bate. He hates Jerry, and all gays with a vengeance, but he’s pathological about Maxie, since she did that interview denouncing him.’-
-‘She really got to him, saying how he pissed in his pants and ran away.’-
Our guard was shushing and pulling the door handle, as footsteps approached and faded in the corridor.
-‘Now you’re all evacuated from Little Agnes Street, we thought of setting him a trap, using his knee jerk psychosis. We’re wondering how you feel about that, or Maxie if she were here.’-
-‘No problem with me.’- I said. -‘It’s time we moved house anyway, and I know Maxie would be
all in favour.’-
-‘But we thought of using another of her interviews, of her goading him.’-
-‘Yes yes, we worked as a team, and she asked me to act for her if she were killed, um, I know the tape you mean, see she was waiting for proof that, um, that someone died under torture.’-
-‘We know, we have that now, a recording of his boasting and threats. Her name was Laura, she was gay, and she died of complications next day.’-
-‘What a bastard. Maxie would have been mad keen to trap him.’-
-‘But Maxie is alive, At least let’s hope she’s alive.’-
-‘Of course she’s alive. Let’s hope she turns up today.’-
-‘So anyway, all this will happen tonight, or tomorrow, if it happens, it’s all set up and Hil.. I mean we..’-
Of course, he’d almost said her name. I’d actually once shared a squat with this brave infiltrating lady.
-‘Hilda Curbin!’- I interrupted in a whisper, reaching out for her hands.