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two. internees and standard operating procedure

Continued from here:

January 1949

Francis didn’t like policemen, he suspected they were always on the job, looking for a minor infringements: a stained tie, unkempt nails, hair a little too long. Guilty on that Francis thought, his hair curled over his shirt collar.

10 am.

DS Leane knocked on his oak door.


‘Why did you wait three days before getting into contact with my department?’

Leane sighed and sat back in his chair, no offer of tea or coffee and now a question without a please.

‘I’ll have it investigated.’

Francis held his hand out.

‘Give it to me.’

Francis took the Rubaiyat and looked at both front and back covers, then riffled through the pages until he reached the last. Closed the book and placed it on the desk in front of him. Front cover uppermost.

‘Standing orders are, DS Leane, that whenever there is a death concerning an internee in this city my department is the one you ring first. NOT BLOODY LAST!!’


Leane closed the door quietly as Francis lifted his phone.

‘The Somerton body, where are his clothes?’


‘Can somebody get to them?’

‘Only if you decide to get along with the DS, the bloke is highly regulated, if you know what I mean.’

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