Mad Dog, page 2
-Okay Mark, I’ll pick you up tomorrow morning at five thirty, remember we want to get an early start so try to get an early night. -said Alan as he parked in front of the hotel.
-Don’t worry Jay, I’ll be ready; I’m tired already so I’m going to get something to eat and get off to my bed as soon as possible. Good luck with your meeting with Jock, I’ll see you in the morning. -replied Wakefield as he climbed out of the car.
Neither turned to wave farewell, one wanting to get out of the biting cold and the other anxious to meet an old friend.
The hotel had been an ideal choice for Alan. It was situated on Interstate 35 which was the Interstate he needed to take the following morning and was the same Interstate that passed through Lakeville which was where the Wolf Haven was situated.
Alan drove up to the darkened and virtually deserted entrance of the Wolf Haven just before nine. The only signs of life being the solitary vehicle parked in the car park and the light emitted by the window of the upper floor of the administrative building. The car he assumed, correctly, to be Jocks and the office he knew to be so. He strode as purposefully as he could with his injured leg, to the entrance of the building and discovered, as he suspected, that the doors were open. There was little sense in locking the doors, after all what was anyone going to steal? Slowly he climbed the stairs towards Jocks office, apprehensive yet quietly confident that he would find Jock in an advanced state of inebriation. He was not disappointed; Jock was as pissed as a fart. He was only half way up the stairs when he heard Jock’s raucous snoring. He quickened his step and burst into Jock’s office hunting knife in hand. The hunting knife that he had bought at the same time that he had acquired the coat and boots for Wakefield, the same knife that he had bought for Wakefield.
-GOOD EVENING JOCK! -blasted Alan.
-Eh, what, eh! Jay? You’re here already? What time is it? - mumbled Jock, slowly recovering consciousness.
-No Jock, it’s not Jay, he couldn’t make it, he was too busy dying. NO JOCK, IT’S ME ALAN!, REMEMBER ME? YOU’RE FRIEND! THE ONE YOU BETRAYED! -barked Alan increasingly agitated.
-ALAN? But you can’t be, you’re dead, I got a message from ……-
-NO YOU DIDN’T, YOU GOT A MESSAGE FROM ME, ALAN! -
-So you’ve killed Jay and the twins as well? For fuck sake Alan are you mad? When are you going to stop? Don’t you realise what you’re doing? -
-Soon Jock, soon,-replied Alan regaining control of his temper and smoothing his tone,-and then I’ll be going, you’ll never see me again, but first I need to know something. Does anyone else know about TOG´Z or did you betray me on that as well? -
-No Alan, No, no one knows about TOG´Z, but what does that matter? Don’t you see? I can’t let you go, you can’t just disappear. What about all those poor women? What about Jay and the Twins? I mean you’ve killed Jay and the Twins, you’ve killed them, your own flesh and blood?-
-NO JOCK, NO! YOU KILLED THEM! YOU SENT THAT DAMN FOOL JAY OVER, YOU SENT HIM, IF IT HADN’T BEEN FOR HIM WE COULD HAVE ALL ESCAPED, ALL ESCAPED TO OUR NEW LIFE WITH THE WOLVES BY THE LAKE! -
Jock was about to reply when Alan yanked him out of his seat and started to drag him out of his office and down the stairs.
-And you Jock, you’re wrong, I can disappear and I will, just as soon as I’ve cleared up a few loose ends, the first of which IS YOU!-
-YOU’RE MAD ALAN, YOU’RE MAD,-screeched Jock as he struggled to make any resistance to Alan, shock and fear had an amazingly sobering effect but did nothing to improve the damage to coordination that alcohol caused, -Let go of me, let go! -
- Oh I will Jock, I will, just as soon as I get you to our friends. Look here they are now. -
Alan reached the gates to the wolf den and quickly unlatched the gate. The wolves yapped, whined and prowled around the entrance nervous and curious, nervous about the fear that they could sense and curious about the presence that they felt, the commanding presence that was Alan. With a powerful thrust Jock was launched into the middle of the pack, dispersing it briefly but far too briefly for him to even consider a form of escape. The leader of the pack attacked his throat before he could even get back to his feet and his gargling struggle was soon joined by the rest of the pack shortening both his resistance and his blood drenched screaming.
Alan turned, closed the gate and returned to Jocks office. It took him almost three hours to remove all trace of TOG´Z, Warmth Mark Jackets and Josie’s Rest Farm. By the time he had cleared the computer and assured himself that his cleaning of the computer was also undetectable he went in search of the keys to the store room which were exactly where Jock had always guarded them, in the top door of the reception desk. It took him a little while to extract the inflatable canoe that he and Jock had used when he was employed at the Haven without making it obvious that he had been in the store or that there was anything missing. By 02.30am he had finished loading the canoe into the Dodge and after returning the keys and turning off the lights in Jocks office he left without a trace of him having been there.
Alan was waiting for Wakefield when he emerged from the hotel at 05.25am.
-Good morning. -they greeted each other as they shook hands, Alan helping Wakefield to load his luggage next to the canoe.
-How was Jock? -asked Wakefield.
-Well to tell the truth, -replied Alan, -he was as drunk as a skunk and got extremely emotional, but then that was only to be expected. Anyway we said all that we needed to and I just sort of thought that it would be best to leave him alone to feed the wolves. -
-Yeah, -said Wakefield, not really knowing what to say and having no real interest in the well being of Jock or the sentimentality of their reunion. -Where we going then? –
-Well we’re going straight up 35 to Duluth and from there we’ll head up to Ely on route 53. It’ll take us about four hours but the scenery is quite good so maybe you won’t get too bored. Were you a good boy last night? Get to bed early?-
Alan needed to know whether or not Wakefield had spoken to anyone about their planned journey.
-You’re too right I did! -Exclaimed Wakefield, -I thought our fake English Pub’s were bad enough but you’re mock western saloons are really something else, -he added laughing. -I took one look inside and went straight up to my room, ordered room service, booked my early morning call and went to bed. -
-Yeah, don’t blame you, -added Alan -they’re like your pubs but without the smoke stains. -
-Touché. -laughed Wakefield.
The conversation soon died off as Alan drove north and Wakefield took his silence as a natural reaction to his emotional meeting with Jock. Alan on the other hand was being sullen in the hope that Wakefield would shut up and through a mix of boredom and their early start, fall asleep.
Wakefield held on until they had passed Duluth but once they started up route 53 and the scenery became more or less constant he fell asleep. He was therefore unaware of the fact when Alan drove straight passed the signs that indicated the Ely exit as they continued north almost as far as Fort Francis.
Wakefield woke as they left route 53 at the sign for Voyageurs National Park Headquarters and was about to ask whether they were going to visit the centre when Alan swung north onto county road 98 which he followed for about 600 meters before turning right onto utility road 443 which took them down virtually to the banks of the small but fast flowing river that fed Rat Root Lake.
-Are we there? - asked Wakefield confused.
Alan’s response was short and swift as he ran his hunting knife across Wakefield’s throat. He smiling face was the last thing that Wakefield’s desperately searching and confused eyes were to see.
-You may be a good political journalist, -whispered Alan as he lent nearer, -but you’re a piss poor investigator. I’m Alan not Jay, he’s dead just like you and like you no one will be looking for him either, welcome to my world! -
Understanding briefly lit up Wakefield’s face as he tried desperately to reply, but it was no use
He unloaded the canoe and hid it in undergrowth at the rivers edge before driving the Dodge high into the nearby wooded hills where he abandoned it leaving the body of Wakefield to attract the inevitable attention of the local wildlife. It was to be months before the vehicle was found and if it hadn’t been for the fact that the CIA had advised the police of the possibility that he could encounter a violent death they would have believed the death of the savagely destroyed remains to be typical of a bear attack on yet another stupid tourist who had wandered too far into the hills without even carrying a weapon.
It was to Josie’s Rest Farm that Alan was now headed. Firstly canoeing up the river to Rat Root Lake he then headed north to Black Bay which in turn lead to Rainy Lake and freedom as he canoed across the inexistent line that separated Canada from the United States. Once on dry land on the Canadian side of Rainy Lake he disposed of the canoe and started the fifty mile trek north east through the woods and mountains to Entrut Lake, some fifteen miles south of Farrington.
-FOWLER! -said DCI Harris, when DS Mann informed him of Jocks death.
His four colleagues stared silently at him; there was nothing they could say. They knew that Alan was dead or at least they believed that they knew so but nonetheless they had no doubt that DCI Harris was right.
-It could be a coincidence, -said DS Mann, lamely, not convincing even himself.
-Wait a moment, lets not jump to conclusions, -interrupted Harvey- let me ring Wakefield and see what he has to say. -Bollocks! -exclaimed Harvey, -there’s no signal. Now that could be because there is no signal where they were going or it could be something far more sinister. -
-What the fuck are you talking about? - blurted DSI Harris, -Who or what the hell is Wakefield and what’s he or it got to do with Fowler? -
-Wakefield is a particularly unpleasant piece of shit that works as a freelance reporter when he’s not in bed with the leader of the Liberal Party, he happened to be at Ringway Airport when Jay arrived and he asked my help to get him on the same flight as him and seated next to him. Well he phoned me last night to keep me informed of his movements. He was in a hotel where he was to be collected by Jay at 05.30 in the morning, they were intending to go up to Ely today, Jay had gone off to see Jock, - Harvey paused as he watch the gloom settle on all but DCI Harris´ face, -so I’m afraid it looks like our friend here may well be right. It appears that it was Alan that flew out of Ringway yesterday and Jay that burnt in the fire. How, I have no idea, but nonetheless it seems the most likely conclusion. -
-I knew it! -beamed DCI Harris, -I knew it! I could feel it. We can still get the bastard, get me some clothes I’m going for him! -
-You don’t change do you? -reprimanded Harvey, -You don’t care if Wakefield has been killed, you haven’t even asked about Janice, she was saved not that you’re bothered, and you cant even understand that you are in no condition to go anywhere, neither now nor in the near future, all you want is blood, Fowlers blood, and you don’t care who suffers for you to get it, so just shut up and lets think a moment. –No-one, not even DCI Harris had the courage to interrupt the silence -Right! - said Harvey, -Charlie, close the door and keep it closed. What we are going to do here today must not leave this room. Only the PM himself will be informed of this, NO ONE and I repeat NO ONE must find out. We are going to keep this to ourselves, there will be no publicity, the press and the public can carry on believing that Fowler has died and we will track the bastard down on our own. DS Clarke, DS Mann, Agent Evans, I will have you all transferred to a special unit with immediate effect, as for you Harris there will be no need to transfer you, you are being retired off the force but don’t worry you will be fully involved with the investigation, after all I don’t think that, short of strapping you permanently to this bed, I could keep you off the case anyway. -
-Too fuckin right you couldn’t, -barked DCI Harris, - and its DCI Harris if you don’t mind. -
-Oh no it’s not-replied Harvey forcefully, -you’re not listening, as usual. You are being retired off the force. The public wouldn’t accept anything else although going and getting yourself half burnt to death seems to have placated them a little. You are therefore no longer DCI you are just plain old Harris or Martin if you would prefer. -
-Harris will be fine thank you, -replied Harris tersely.
-Right, well I’m going to get off to see the P.M. and to organise this thing, I want you all here at the same time tomorrow and I’ll run you through the logistics of it. DS Mann, ring back the Wolf Haven and briefly explain to the leading officer the whys of our suspicions. Ask him to find out what vehicle either Wakefield or Jay hired and see if he can put out an all points bulletin, although I imagine that it will be a waste of time, Fowler will have taken that into account and will have disposed of both Wakefield and the vehicle by now if I’m not very much mistaken, that’s why he wanted to get such an early start. If they give you any trouble let me know, I’ll be in contact with the senior CIA officer in the area shortly, after all there is a British citizen involved. Strange isn’t it? never thought that I’d ever find Wakefield useful. See you tomorrow, -he muttered more as an order than a farewell, and he was gone, leaving DS Charlie Clarke, Agent Paul Evans, DS Mann and Harris looking blankly at the door he had just passed through.
-Well what do we call you sir? - asked DS Mann cheekily.
-SIR! - barked Harris grumpily.
Charlie didn’t sleep that evening, mainly because Harris did. Harris slept heavily sedated but nonetheless nervously, muttering and fidgeting all night as again and again he was tormented by the fiery vision of Alf Fowler laughing at him.“ I WIN...I WIN...I WIN…” until finally in the early hours of the morning Harris sprang back into consciousness with a shout -NOOOOO! NOT YET YOU DON´T YOU BASTARD! -
-Good morning Sir, -chirped Charlie with more than a little sarcasm.
-Charlie, we need to talk, -started Harris as though he hadn’t been asleep at all and he was merely continuing a conversation-
-Yes Sir -replied Charlie warily, as he hadn’t been asleep at all.
-Harvey’s going to want to exclude us from this. He’s going to make all the right noises about keeping us informed etc... etc... etc but he’s going to want to run this from MI5 and that means we’ll be out of the frame. What we need to do is to convince him that we should run it from here, that you and I can coordinate it from here. You need to get Agent Evans on our side; he’ll have an idea of how to convince Harvey. -
-Yeah, you’re right Sir, I’ve been thinking about it all night. -
-Not been able to sleep hey? -asked Harris -I know how you feel. -
-Well sort of, -replied Charlie trying desperately to disguise the exasperation in his voice. -Anyway he’s going to try to keep us or if you don’t mind me saying so, YOU, out of this and I think he’d be wrong to do so. I genuinely think we can help and I think we could organise it from here. What’s more I think it would be to his benefit. Where better to keep a lid on this than in a burns unit where no visitors are allowed? No one knows this investigation better than us and no one knows the mistakes we made better than us. I think we can convince him and I’m sure I can convince Agent Evans. -
-Good man -laughed Harris, a sound that Charlie couldn’t recall having heard before.
-Sir, do you mind if I doze off for a couple of hours? They don’t serve breakfast until after nine and it’s only six thirty-.
-No problem, but try not to snore I need to do some thinking. -
No sooner had Harvey entered the room that Friday afternoon on 17th of March than they were aware that their worrying and planning had both been in vane. Unusually for Harvey, he burst straight into the room without calling and immediately started to give instructions omitting the usual pleasantries that marked his character. Neither detail evaded the occupants of the room, even DS Ma
-Right Gentlemen there are several things that I need to explain to you and I have little time in which to do so, as you will soon understand. Firstly, I have spoken at length with the PM and although he has his reservations regarding certain aspects of this, he has agreed to give me his full support. I have explained to him our suspicions, which by the way would appear to be founded, our American cousins have examined the tapes from the arrivals lounge at Atlanta Airport and have compared them to those of Jays departure and have concluded that they are not one and the same person, therefore unless any of you can suggest another possibility then the person that arrived in Atlanta would appear to be Alf Fowler or more correctly Alan Jacks, and he naturally concludes that this information should not be extended to anyone outside of these four walls.
The PM has authorised the creation of a joint investigation team, formed by those here present. We have an open authority to take this investigation wherever we believe necessary, always remembering the need for discretion and tact. He, to this end, has insisted that the operation be organised from here, by you Harris, with the assistance of you Charlie and that you Harris, and he made a special point of this, should be restricted to organising the investigation from here and that you should under no circumstances be allowed into the field. Personally, I was surprised that he allowed your involvement specially taking into account your newly acquired civilian status. The rest of you will follow Harris´orders. I will be otherwise occupied for the time being as I will now explain.