Ashes To Ashes : Marriages and Deaths Part 3
Paint Me Down plays over the soundtrack
Gene entered the interview room and stoically surveyed the surroundings. By now he had taken off his overcoat and gloves and was wearing a dark grey suit, black shirt and grey tie with white and red stripes. He breathed in deeply and took a seat opposite Palmer, just as Alex came through.
Paint Me Down fades out
"Look" Palmer began "Before you say anything, our Joe has always been a hothead. I ain't apologising for him, but I ain't saying he's done wrong either"
Gene snorted "Big of you"
Alex pulled her chair in a little closer to the desk and placed her hands within touching distance in a subconcious effort to suggest they wanted to meet halfway; police and criminal family to resolve the situation as safely and succesfully as possible. She could almost hear Gene sneer inside her head at her body language, knowing full well that the only connection he wanted to make was with his fists and Nick Palmer's face several times over.
"Um, look Nick...perhaps you might be able to think of somewhere Joe may have taken himself and our officer of to? Was there a place he likes to frequent or hide things? Perhaps it's a special place from your childhood? Somewhere secret that only you and he shared?"
"Bloody hell Bolls" Gene huffed, crossing his legs to suggest he was growing weary "We're looking for a viscious little toerag who has one of our finest kidnapped, we're not gonna find him looking behind the wardrobe for bloody Narnia!"
Palmer sighed and ran a hand over his face "If I knew, if I had any clue as to where he might be now, I'd tell you....honest, on my eyes....I want this resolved as much as you, I'm supposed to be getting married today"
"What about your guests today?" Alex persisted "Might anyone of them know?"
Just then there was a swift knock on the door and Viv's head poked around it. "Guv, uniform are just back from Temple Street. They've found the limo abandoned and Chris's radio on the backseat. We've also got a report of a stolen Mini Metro in that street too"
"A Mini Metro?" Gene scoffed, pushing away from the desk with the heel of his boot and folding his arms "Well, little Joe's hardly riding off into the sunset in style"
"I've just put an all car alert out for it Guv" Viv nodded.
"Thanks Skip...oh and bring in the reception guests" Gene asked "DI Drake here thinks we might find a clue to the whereabouts from them"
Alex smiled softly "Thank you Guv"
"I'm not doing it for you Bollykecks. A Palmer wedding? Probably filled to the bloomin' rafters with southern cockney scumbags...chances are we can nail half a dozen unsolved crimes out of them by tea time without the need for a warrant" and with that he strolled out of the interview room to follow Viv.
Geno by Dexy's Midnight Runners fades in
Alex placed her head in her hands "Of course" and smiling apologetically to Palmer she said "Don't worry, it's nothing personal about your guests, he's like that about anyone south of Crewe" and got up to leave.
"Guv! Guv!" Ray called chasing down the corridor after Gene and Alex, who both turned to see what could have excited the DS so.
"That was the local rag on the phone....Little Joe Palmer has rang them"
Gene and Alex shared a look. "Well come on Raymondo spit it out!" Gene demanded.
"He says he wants Nick out of here by midnight tonight, only then will he let Chris go free. Oh and he wants a free and uninterrupted flight to the Irish Republic and £5k in cash"
Gene blew out his cheeks and snorted "Well I want Janet Ellis to tuck me up at night, but it's not going to happen"
"It seems we've underestimated this 'Little' Joe" Alex observed "He's clever enough to inform his demands via an intermediary"
"A what?" Gene snapped "Talk English woman"
Alex sighed "An intermediary Guv, he's using the local newspaper as a go between to communicate his demands. Perhaps he's cleverer than you've given him credit for?"
"Little Joe Palmer is about as clever as a flid trying to use a pocket calculator. If you ask me, he may as well have told his demands to Jim'll Fix It for all the good it'll do"
"But Guv" Alex persisted "We have to keep a clear line of communication open"
"A no is a no from The Gene Genie, DI Drake, that clear enough?" and with that he stalked off down the corridor.
"How's about that then" Ray said imitating Jimmy Saville with a lairy smile aimed at Alex.
Alex took a step closer to Ray "It's not your fault you know, about Chris" she whispered "But the sooner you realise that and stop the bravado act the better"
Ray tutted, creasing his eyes at Drake's suggestion with disgust as he turned on his heel "Shut up"
Geno fades out
Joe Palmer stepped back into the car and placed the key in the ignition but decided against turning it. He needed time to think. In the back seat, Chris shuffled a little closer and cleared his throat "What, um what just happened?"
"I'm trying to think!" Joe snapped, staring straight ahead"
Joe sighed and relented "I've just rang in with my demands, I'll let you go if they release Nick before midnight, give us five grand and a plane out of here ok?"
"Oh...anywhere nice?" Chris asked dumbly
"The plane, off to the Costa Fortune eh?" he said, trying to remain cheery
Joe turned sharply in his seat to face Chris "You think I should have demanded Spain instead?"
"Well" Chris shrugged "Not for me to say, I mean, it's the same as Ireland, no extradition, but well, like, better weather"
Joe sweared softly but pasionately "I always get it wrong" he said finally.
"Yeah, don't worry mate...I'm like that too"
"I just wanna do right by my brother see?" Joe explained
Chris nodded "Like me, I wanna do right by the Guv, make him proud like...and Shaz...of course....Ray too I suppose....oh and DI Drake"
But Joe was no longer listening "We need to get out of here" he looked up and down the street and then started the car.
"Um...where we going?" Chris asked
"Somewhere we can sit tight until your mates see sense and release Nick" Joe explained.
"And um, what...what if they don't?"
Joe braked at the junction waiting to turn left out of the street. He glanced at Chris in the mirror, a tight smile on his features "Well there'll be one less copper in the world won't there?"
Chris's face turned ashen and his stomach turned upside down "Roger that" he managed to say finally, hoping against hope the Guv would save him.
Back in Fenchurch East, Gene and Alex were heading uop the corridor back to the office to interview the wedding guests or as Gene put it as he hungrily rubbed his hands together;
"Right, let's go and get some truth out of some southern scum shall we?"
Heaven 17's Let's All Make a Bomb fades in
They walked into the office and immediately faced down in excess of over twenty wedding guests, all shouting, arguing, and above all pleading innocence and ignorance as the DC's and uniforms interviewed them. In the corner, the bride continued to weep uncontrollably and one look from the father and motther of the bride who desperately tried to console her suggested to Alex that she had not had a dry eye since Gene stormed into the church that day.
"My God Bolls" Gene said surveying the chaos "You know it's bad when the criminal classes have become yuppified"
Although it was no laughing matter, if Alex were being honest she found it hard to stifle a small chuckle, for he was right; the entire office was wall to wall with pinstripe suits, red braces, sloane ranger outfits and Princess Di hairdo's.
"If this really is my sub conscious" Alex murmured to herself as Gene stepped into the fray "Then I'm a lot more satirical than I give myself credit for"
Heaven 17's Let's All Make a Bomb fades out
Gene was heading straight for a particularly loud pony tailed guest with an Estuary accent and overly large bright blue framed glasses who was shouting at a bravely struggling Shaz "And I've already told you sweetheart...look let me explain it again yeah? I-Don't-Know-Where-He-Might-Be-comprende? Sorry and all that but I don't speak pig!"
The man was about to laugh, his mouth was open and ready, but the laugh stifled in the throat and wouldn't budge, for it was immeditaly replaced by a wail and whimper, for Gene had come up behind him and grabbed at his short little pony tail, stretching his head back far over the chair where he could stare down at him.
"Now you listen to me blondie" Gene snarled, and the man could feel the DCI's hot whisky breath all over his face, "This WPC here is worth ten of you, in fact you're not fit to shine her shoes. So when she asks you a question you bloody well answer it with a civil tongue, because that scum Joe Palmer has her boyfriend hostage somewhere out there. Now do you comprende that sunshine?"
The man wincing with pain under Gene's grasp of his hair managed to say "You're...hurting...me"
Gene breathed in deep, flaring his nostrils "Not the answer to my question!" and with force slammed the man's head into the desk.
"Guv!" Alex gasped, taking steps towards him. All around several cops including Viv and Ray halted their questions and winced, whilst horrified guests stared on open mouthed.
Just then a voice called out from the door "DCI Hunt!"
Gene turned "Ah Chief Super" he said, trying to compose himself.
"I would be grateful if you could give me a progress report on the situation at hand?" The Chief Super asked politely but with a hint of steel to his tones.
"With repect sir," Gene replied looking around the room "I'm a little bit busy right now"
"How busy?" The Super snapped
"Busier than a one armed juggler with crabs sir..I am trying to save the life of my officer so can't it wait?!"
The Super's face turned puce "Now, DCI Hunt!"
Gene sighed and gazed round the room one final time, before his eyes set on Alex "Find something out for me Bolls" he said firmly but quietly as he left.
To Be Continued...
(C) Mark Cunliffe 2010