Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A Payment From Heaven, David Snowdon continues

You Don' want to miss what happens next:

“That’s the reason why we shouldn’t go to the police,” said Dangerfield, as his mobile phone started to ring.
He removed his mobile from his inner jacket pocket, glanced at it and swiftly answered the call.
“John Dangerfield, speaking.”

There was a pause. Then someone started to speak.
“Have you got the money?”

Dangerfield recognised the harsh, working class, London accent. He pictured the guy to be in his 40’s.

“Unmarked, fifties?”

“That’s right,” said Dangerfield.

“Lovely,” said the guy. “Start driving down the A3 towards Central London at eight. You’ll get further instructions from there.”

“I want to speak to my son,” said Dangerfield, as Suzi stared at him, an anxious expression on her face.

“Hold the line, mate.”

There was a brief delay, then someone started to speak.
“Dad? It’s me.”

Dangerfield recognised the voice.
“Hello, Chris. Are you all right?”
There was a note of concern in his voice.

“I’m fine, dad. Please pay the ransom. They won’t hurt me if you pay.”

“No problem, son,” said Dangerfield, seething with anger. “I’m going to pay the ransom tonight.”

“Is mum there?”

“Yes,” said Dangerfield, glancing at his wife. “We’re here together.”

“We’ll speak to you at eight,” said the kidnapper, suddenly interfering. “And remember, no cops and no tricks or your son is going to die.”
He ended the call.

“What did they say?” said Suzi, looking very concerned.

“They want me to pay the ransom tonight,” said Dangerfield, as he put his phone back into his inner jacket pocket.

“Is Chris all right?”

Dangerfield hesitated as he stared at her.
“He sounded all right. They won’t hurt him unless we call the cops.”

“If anything happens to that boy, I’ll kill myself,” snapped Suzi, as tears began to stream down her face.

“Don’t talk like that, darling,” said Dangerfield, moving away from her, and heading towards the liquor cabinet.
He urgently needed a drink.

Detective Chief Inspector Sean Rigby was tall, dark and handsome with dark brown hair and in his late 40’s. Today he wore an immaculate, dark brown suit with a white shirt and a dark brown tie.

As he sat behind his desk in the Epsom police station, working on his computer, he heard a knock on the door.
“Come in,” he said, looking up from his computer.

The door to his office slid open and Detective Sergeant Cliff Wheeldon walked into his office.
“Hello, Cliff,” said Rigby, as Wheeldon walked into his office.

“Hello, sir,” said Wheeldon, walking towards his desk.

“How did it go?” asked Rigby, as Wheeldon got to his desk and paused. He spoke with a home county accent.

“He said he needed the money for a business deal,” said Wheeldon. “But when Jefferies enquired about the business deal, he became aggressive and asked us to leave.”
Rigby stared at him.

“When a man as important as John Dangerfield, suddenly withdraws a hundred thousand in cash on two hours notice, I smell a rat. Being the CEO of a major food processing firm with an annual revenue of £2.2 billion makes him a prime target for blackmail. But if he said he isn’t being blackmailed, we’ll just have to leave him alone.”
“I think he’s hiding something,” said Wheeldon. “I think he is being blackmailed and we should keep an eye on him.”

“Maybe he is,” said Rigby. “But if he said he’s all right, we’ll just have to leave him alone.”

Wheeldon looked very disappointed.

“I still think we should keep an eye on him, sir.”

“Let’s leave it at that,” said Rigby, cutting him short. “It’s his money and we’ll just have to wait until he comes to us.”

“Okay, sir,” said Wheeldon, turning around and heading towards the door.

Dangerfield drove the Bentley along the A3 motorway towards Central London at 20.02pm. Daylight had come to an end and darkness had slowly arrived. There wasn’t a lot of traffic on the A3 and as he drove, a thoughtful expression on his face, his mind was busy.

He was thinking about his son. He loved his son very much and he couldn’t wait to have him back. The £100,000 that he was about to part with meant nothing to him. Money was immaterial when it came to his son. And all he could think about was his son’s safety. His thoughts shifted to his wife. She had suddenly become a nervous wreck and it broke his heart to see her like that.

As he continued to drive, his mobile phone started to ring, and Dangerfield, who had connected his mobile to his Navman for hands-free access, answered the call immediately.

“John Dangerfield, speaking.”

“Are you alone?”

Dangerfield recognised the kidnapper’s voice as it came through the speakers.

“Head towards Twickenham. When you get there, stay in the car and you’ll get further instructions.”

“Okay,” said Dangerfield, as he continued to drive.

“And remember, no cops and no tricks or you’ll never see your son alive again.”

“Do you have to keep repeating that?” snapped Dangerfield, suddenly losing his temper.

The kidnapper ended the call.

Dangerfield continued to drive towards Central London at 50 miles an hour. He was heading in the right direction and he was glad that he didn’t have to make a detour. But why had they asked him to go to Twickenham? He was expecting to leave the ransom near the A3.

As he drove, he glanced into his rear-view mirror to see if he was being followed, but all he could see was the distant headlights of a few approaching vehicles, and they were too far away to be following him.

His mind suddenly drifted to Klawitter. That idiot could have had his son killed, he thought.

Thirty minutes later, he got to Twickenham, and as he approached the station, his mobile started to ring.

“John Dangerfield,” he said, answering the phone immediately.

“Are you there?”
The kidnapper’s voice came clearly through the speakers.

“Yes,” said Dangerfield, as he pulled up outside the station.

“Good man.”
There was a pause. Then the kidnapper continued to talk.
“Head towards Hampton Court pier. When you get there, stay in the car and you’ll get further instructions.”

“Okay,” said Dangerfield, as he drove away from the station.
The kidnapper ended the call.

Twenty-three minutes later, he arrived at Hampton Court pier, parked near the waterfront and stopped the engine.

Dangerfield glanced around as he killed the engine. There wasn’t a soul in sight. And there was an eerie kind of atmosphere that made him feel very uneasy.
(to be continued)


Anonymous said...

So far - so good. I have my suspicions. We will see.

misterreereeder said...

Each day reminds me of those old shows that ended with a stay tuned tomorrow.

Word Crafter said...

David has a way - almost Dashell Hammitt doesn't he? I just finished reading Maltese Falcon and his style is so similar - Good story!

David Snowdon said...

Thanks for the comments, Friends of Sachse Library, Misterreereeder and Billie.