Having searched the apartment all over again, Sam rationalised her sense of unease down to everything that had happened to her over the last few days. She had to do that in order to be able to sleep that night.
It didn’t work! Sam was unable to sleep at all. So many things were happening around her and she was unable to make sense of any of it. She had a row with her husband; he travelled to Edinburgh, or wherever; he called her on Skype to carry on with the row before shooting himself, or his phone; the police were unable to help, except to prove to her he never travelled to Edinburgh and no one was admitted to any hospital with gunshot wounds, alive or dead; she then learnt David had lost his job 3 moths earlier; she found a missed call from David’s phone, so the phone was still working; she visited a private investigator who was murdered soon after that; finally she discovered her husband’s current passport was missing and unbeknown to her, she had almost £20 million worth of Global Software shares, the very company that fired David.
Sam hardly had any avenues to go down to help her unravel the mess she found herself in. David was missing, presumed dead. The private detective who seemed to have a fresh perspective on things was dead without being presumed, the police suspected her of some tawdry scheme, her lawyer, Richard Hall just wanted her to keep quiet and stay out of trouble, both her and David’s families and friends were beginning to wonder where David was and so far, she had been able to answer their questions by saying he was traveling abroad on business but sooner or later, this line would not be sustainable.
She was certain now that she needed to deal with the matter without the help of the police or private investigators. Sam had one possible line of investigation to pursue;
Get in touch with Global Software, or to be more precise, Steve McGill, the CEO of the company.
Being well after midnight, she had no choice but to leave matters until the morning. With that final thought, coupled with an extremely tense and exhausting day, Sam finally drifted off to sleep.
Seven miles away, Chief Inspector Hilary Jones was preoccupied with the case from her own perspective. She felt completely bereft at the loss of her friend and ex-lover through mainly her own actions by putting him in harms way and sending Samantha Conway to see him. She was determined to make every effort to find his killers irrespective of the circumstances but, with a large dose of guilt on her part, she was doubly motivated to get to the bottom of this particular case.
Hilary had a glass of red wine in her hand when she heard a booming noise in the distance which made her wonder if the weather had suddenly turned and waited for the sound of the rain to “tap, tap, tap” against her kitchen window.
She sat at the kitchen table and reviewed the facts as she knew them. A woman, Samantha Conway reported her husband had committed suicide; she then returned to the police station claiming her husband had been fired by the company he was supposed to be on business for in Edinburgh, Hilary put her in touch with Rob Daley who shortly after that was shot with a single bullet by an apparent professional assassin. Finally Mrs Conway disclosed that her husband attempted to contact her.
That last piece of information was very interesting to C.I Hilary Jones because it was interesting to Rob Daley when he interviewed Mrs Conway. Hilary had a great deal of admiration for Rob’s detective mind and she was certain that he was on to something.
Hilary got up to refill her glass of wine and looked out of the kitchen window of her 12th floor apartment and saw there was no sign of rain yet. However, she could hear multiple sirens noise and London being London, ambulance, police or fire engine sirens were always going off. With a third glass of wine in hand, she sat down at her kitchen table again and wrote on her personal notebook:
- Form an investigation team including Inspector Rigsby
- Check Rob’s mobile phone
- Contact David Conway’s company (She read the name in Inspector Rigsby’s report)
- Try ALL UK constabulary forces to check for possible suicide cases in their jurisdictions
- Bring in Samantha Conway for further questioning
She sat back and sipped her wine slowly when from the corner of her eye, she noticed her work Blackberry phone coming to life by lighting up then making the special ding-a-ling noise which she programmed to alert her the incoming call was from one of the 7 in the chain of command above her from Superintendent, Chief Superintendent, Commander, Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Assistant Commissioner, Deputy Commissioner and finally the Metropolitan Commissioner. In the majority of cases, it would be her boss, Superintendent Taylor and only occasionally she may get a call from the Chief Superintendent or the Commander.
When Hilary looked at the screen and read the name: Sir Derek Dedman she spat her wine back in the glass and stood up before she pressed the answer button. The London Metropolitan Commissioner called her only once before, to congratulate her on her promotion to Chief Inspector and to tell her he had his eye on her and expected her to “work your arse off after this promotion otherwise I will have egg on my face with the Home Secretary.”
Sir Derek Dedman was not a man who took kindly to being let down; they don’t call him “Deadly Derek” for nothing. He was the most senior police officer in the United Kingdom and had a reputation for being brilliant, ruthless, and very clean in equal measures. Hilary met him for the first time when her father was alive and he introduced her to him at his own retirement party, saying that he expected Commander Derek Dedman to make it to the top before he was 55 years of age.
Hilary: Good evening Sir Derek
Sir Derek: Jones, I want you to come to my office straight away
Hilary: Yes sir, may I ask why?
Sir Derek: Don’t you live in London? Have you not heard the explosion 45 minutes ago?
Hilary: Well, I heard a clap of thunder
Sir Derek: That was no thunder Chief Inspector; that was a bloody massive explosion
Hilary: Where, government offices?
Sir Derek: Never mind the chitchat Jones, get over to my office and then we will talk
Hilary: Yes sir, I will be there as soon as possible
“Dam, damn, damn!” thought Hilary Jones, “Of all nights! I get the call from Deadly Derek on the night when I am pissed out of my head, why did I have to have 3 glasses of wine, I can’t even drive myself over to his office.”
Hilary made herself a strong black coffee, took it to the bedroom. She then called a taxi company she always used and asked for Ali. Ali was a political asylum seeker from Algeria who was granted “indefinite stay” in the UK and Hilary’s department helped settle him in London. Although he was a university graduate, there was not much call for Arab poets in England so he was given a grant to buy a second hand car and a satellite navigation system so he could earn his living working as a registered mini cab driver. Hilary trusted Ali and whenever she needed a taxi or a cab, she always asked for Ali, who was extremely loyal and grateful enough to refuse payment but Hilary always insisted on paying her fare, threatening not to use him ever again if he kept on refusing payment. It was a ritual they always had, she offered money, he refused it, money was pressed backwards and forwards, before Ali finally relented and took the money.
Gulping her hot coffee, Hilary wondered what to wear. She had no compulsion to wear a uniform and decided not to do so. She found a sober grey suit and a blue blouse and put those on, brushed her hair, wondered about make up and decided not to bother, gathered her handbag and two mobile phones, switched the lights off and left the apartment down to the main entrance.
Ali was waiting outside in his 7-year old grey Mercedes 250 Diesel. He greeted her in his usual: “Hello Madam Chief Inspector” and closed the car door behind her.
Sir Derek: I had the Home Secretary on the phone and he wants answers by tomorrow
morning, he has to make a Commons statement. Ah Jones, come in; take a seat. Deputy Brown, please give us the latest update
Deputy Brown: At this stage, no one claimed responsibility Sir Derek. The 15-storey building is a right off. Being so late at night, the building was virtually empty save for a couple of executives and three security staff, all five remain missing
Sir Derek: C.I Jones, drop all other work, I want you to lead the investigation, is that understood?
Jones: Of course Sir Derek. Can someone tell me what happened please?
Deputy Brown: There was a major explosion in the new Global Tower in Fenchurch Street, completely wrecked the building with at least 5 people missing, presumed dead. None of the usual terrorist groups claimed responsibility but the explosion appeared to be professionally done because the building collapsed on itself as though it were brought down by demolition experts
Jones: Who were the occupants of the building Sir?
Deputy Brown: A specialist software company
Jones: Just the one company?
Deputy Brown: We believe so. It is a British company that had a spectacular success in the last three years.
Jones: What is the name of the company Sir?
Deputy Brown: Global Software, I believe
Sir Derek: Chief Inspector Jones, we don’t have time to waste, form a team, anyone or anything you want you have my approval in advance, is that clear Deputy Chief?
Deputy Brown: Crystal clear Sir Derek
Sir Derek: Good luck Hilary; I am counting on you
It was 10:15 pm when C.I Jones called Inspector Rigsby and asked him to meet her in her office in 30 minutes. Inspector Rigsby promised to be as quick as he could. Hilary walked into her office and went straight to her desk to look for the Conway File, which was initially created by Inspector Rigsby. She could not find the report, which made her swear out loud. She switched on her computer and using her pseudonym, she logged on to LinkedIn and searched for David Conway, Dave Conway, and D. Conway. There were dozens of men of that name but none of them worked for a software company in the UK. She even tried Facebook with a similar dead end.
Rigsby: Good evening Ma’am
Jones: Ah Inspector Rigsby, where is the Conway File?
Rigsby: It is in my office Ma’am
Jones: Can you go fetch it please? Oh wait a minute, do you happen to know the name of the company Samantha Conway’s husband David worked for?
Rigsby: As it happens, I do. He worked for Global Software, where the explosion took place tonight
Jones: How did you know about that Rigsby?
Rigsby: I am a police officer and I have mates who keep me up to date. I was about to call you when you called me tonight
Jones: Is that why you did not ask me why I wanted you in my office tonight?
Rigsby: That and the fact that you would only do it when you had a damn good reason to do it Ma’am
Jones: Inspector Rigsby, you are a credit to the force
Rigsby: Thank you Ma’am. So, how do you want to handle this case Ma’am?
Jones: My instinct tells me the Conway case is related to the death of Rob and tonight’s explosion. The common denominator is Samantha Conway so; we need to bring her in.
Rigsby: You want me to bring her in right away Ma’am?
Jones: Not just yet Inspector. I want to know what Rob Daley had in mind when he asked Mrs Conway about the mobile service provider
Rigsby: That’s easy Ma’am. I already followed that one up. Rob was a clever fox, that’s for sure. He had a contact at Vodafone, a chap called Tom Wetherby and he asked him to find out the activities of David Conway’s mobile phone for the previous week
Jones: Excellent, you should bring this Tom Wetherby and question him too
Rigsby: I already did Ma’am. He was a little hesitant to begin with as he was afraid of a disciplinary action for breaking company regulations doing Rob favours.
Jones: Well, what’s his story?
Rigsby: He said that he found out very interesting stuff about David Conway but when he called Rob to tell him, Rob asked him to hang on for a second while he fetched some paper to write on, Tom could hear Rob talking briefly to another man in the room then the line went dead. Tom called again but Rob never answered him. He was telling the truth because we could see the missed calls on Rob’s phone Ma’am.
Jones: Jesus, he actually witnessed Rob’s murder without knowing it. Anyway, what interesting stuff did he find out about David Conway?
To be continued…