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Episode Nine

Suddenly, a dark figure appeared in the doorway. There was a flash of metal and the throwing knife thudded into the lone author's back. The writer groaned and slumped forward onto the recently completed manuscript. The figure silently glided up to the desk and pushed the cooling corpse to the floor. A leather gloved hand picked up the dropped pen and rapidly began to fill page after page with long, scratchy strokes...

Chief Superintendent Charlie Ragen of Scotland Yard's Literary Crime Squad (known as -The Laurey- from their cockney rhyming slang name of - The D. H. Laurence and Todd- for about as much reason as the rest of cockney slang) threw down the manuscript in disgust. He had read it dozens of times, but it was meaningless. And yet it had left a string of mysterious murders and split infinitives in it's wake as it had made its apparently random journeys around southern England.

Just then, cheery, cockney Lower Lackey Ordinarytendant Barrow kicked the door open. He brought his truncheon down on the head of the W.P.C.making the tea and viciously kicked ageing Sgt. Dixon in the private parts.

"Morning Guv," he cried, wiping the blood from his brass knuckleduster, as Superintendant Barlow (who'd come in to complain about Barrows name being too like his) writhed on the floor.

"Don't give me none of your lip this morning, son," rapped Ragen brusquely.

"Wot's up Guv? You have to pay for it agen this Saturday night? I sed you shouldda tried Helga in the Stump and Wombat!"

In a fit of rage, Ragen leapt at Barrow and effortlessly tossed him through the office window. "Cheeky bugger," he muttered. Ragen picked up the tattered manuscript and began to read that final puzzling episode ...

Later that after noon, as Ragen staggered back from the Polic e and Old Scrubonians Club pissed out of his brain, he fell over. At 9.30 that night he fell over again. However, it wasn't until 1:30 that night, when he fell over into the yielding warmth of Helga from the Stump and Wombat, that it came to him.

Unfortunately, when he woke up the next morning he couldn't remember a bloody thing (least of all Helga, who had left at 7:15 with the contents of his wallet and two slice of lightly buttered toast). So, as he wandered off to the police alsation pound for a hair of the dog, he reviewed the situation ...

Five, maybe more, mad authors had got together to produce the worlds worst detective story. They had apparently no motive for this act, but slowly each one of them had been murdered in cold blood. The unknown murderer had then cunningly changed the plot of the story to meet his own evil ends - whatever these may be - and passed the story on to the next victim, who was done away with as soon as he had completed his section (only to have it carefully changed so as to produce extremely long and totally unreadable sentences, with lots of commas, in, them,) The other writers were then completely oblivious of the fate of the others, until they had managed to add another chapter to the increasingly convoluted story, when they too could expect to be struck down. Ragen had stumbled on a copy of the manuscript, but luckily didn't hurt himself very much, only bruising his knees a little. Nevertheless, he examined it and not finding it to be a copy of PlayWPC International, had stuffed it into the pocket of his greasy raincoat. But then things started happening, until he finally realised he was being written into the story and there was nothing he could do about it! The fiendish plotter had struck again, another innocent author had perished and the moving finger had written, and having writ, had moved on (what a wrotten writing finger) - leaving no'one with any idea of what the fickle finger was up to (except Page 3 of this of course) and what his evil plans were for Ragen, Gilbert, Petal, Ginsberg, Yuw, Spot the Dog, the Sex pistols or West Ham United (who were in even more desperate trouble).

TO BE CONT ...

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