Todd kept his foot down, the Jag twitching at every bend and bump in the road. Taking the back roads through Sussex he made his way through the sleepy countryside, the raucous notes of the exhaust and the squeal from the complaining tires waking the inhabitants or each village they passed through. JW gripped the edge of his seat praying to God that they’d make it in one piece back to London and the safety of the MI5 building where Wendy was waiting.
His head still reeling from the events of last night, having to go back to the room and once again meet up with his other self, he could still feel the memories of the touch of the other’s hand in his, the smell of the woods, the sound of the stream that he’d played in as a child, so much longing to be one again, drained, JW found himself closing the various compartments in his mind, Wendy called it “emotional blunting”, it’s what he did to survive.
Wendy paced back and forth across her office waiting for news on JW and Todd, she’d alerted the local police in Sussex and asked them to provide support, the helicopter was in the air searching for them, but for some reason there was a radio blackout on communications. She hesitated in taking the next step of alerting the special forces, surely things can be this bad? Reaching for the phone she called her contact, “Wendy, so good to hear from you” said the voice on the other end of the line, “What can I do for you?”. Major Jim Fellows-Milne was an old friend, blunt and to the point, his direct and straight talking had upset a number of people. There was a rumour that he’d once told the Queen to “stop those bloody corgis urinating on my car tires or I’ll stop them myself with my boot”, he got on famously with Prince Philip. “It’s Todd and JW, there was an incident back at the house and I need your assistance, can you mobilize special forces to assist them in getting back to HQ here?”. Wendy explained about the attack at home, the communications blackout and then passed the co-ordinates to Jim. Hanging up she began pacing the room again, a concerned look on her face.
Todd had been aware that they were being followed for a few miles now, he pushed on even harder, the Jag complaining at every corner and bump in the road. He was a good driver and in his pre-service days had considered taking racing up professionally, the danger appealed to his earlier self destructive personality. He couldn’t understand how the people following him were getting closer, however, being a pragmatist he put it to one side and concentrated on the road and getting every ounce of speed from the car.
With a lurch the engine let go, scattering parts in a trail of sparks, the oil from the sump making the tires slick, with a sickening slide the Jag hurtled towards the edge of the road, and beyond that the river Arun running at high tide. Fighting the wheel Todd desperately tried to aim for the bridge but knew from the outset that it wasn’t to be. Warning JW with seconds to spare, what was left of the Jag hurtled through the fence and plummeted into the dark grey depths of the seething waters. The last thing that JW felt was the shock of the icy waters flooding the Jag.
A car pulled up next to the road that moments earlier had seen Todd and JW disappear into the depths of the river. The driver walked slowly down to the waters following the skid marks, silence followed him, it seemed that even the animals had lost their collective voices, his shadow sucking away what little light was cast by the moon from the countryside. Smiling to himself the driver waited until he was sure that there was no survivors, and then walked slowly back to the car savouring the moment, chuckling to himself he drove off.