Siobhan’s room was on the ground floor; not directly below Rob’s, but close enough that wireless connections for video worked between them.
She stayed in persona once we were back in the room. I had a harder time with the clothes than the hair; blonde was gonna suit her long before a leather mini would.
After assuring me that Mossie was now officially taking notes, she had me go over what had happened after they chose not to follow us from Castlemaine over to Farranfore. She’d known that Dubin was heading for the airport, and decided to outguess him rather than outrun him. Apparently there was an observer watching the house on the Inverin beach as we spoke; no one still knew whether Dubin had any connection to the publishing house, but Rob had known about my connection to them and Siobhan had made it a priority for the N.B.C.I. folks to track us down. They’d already been watching when I left, so Siobhan had gotten herself ready to retrieve me, if necessary. Fortunately, Dubin seemed to have genuinely accepted the role I was supposed to play in his plot.
We went carefully over the scene at the church, twice, since they’d waited outside in the dark (and had indeed attached a tracking device to the car since Dubin seemed more concerned with what I might have been carrying myself.) She had me close my eyes and try to recall everything I’d seen, with an opinion about what was real and what wasn’t, but I’m afraid I wasn’t much help. There’d just been too much, and I was focused on pretending to be an actor pretending I wanted to work with Dubin. I gave her what I could, though.
She seemed very interested in Feany and Lizzy; apparently no one had a record of either of those names, or the ‘Morrison’ bit, but they’d check into it.
“So, do you think Dubin expects you to go home and wait in the States?”
I thought back over events. “No, I had a more urgent feeling about the whole thing, as if I were the last piece of a puzzle he thought he’d already finished. That is, until they killed poor Simon.”
“Tell me about that: gut-level, don’t think—did Dubin have him killed, or did he do it himself.”
“Dubin did it.” Why did I think that. “I’m certain of it; something about the pleased look on his face. He took personal pride in the fact that Dr. Thursgood had been eliminated unobtrusively. If he’d just had someone else do it, he’d have had the same distance between himself and the crime. He talked about events away from himself, the activities of others in his employ or control, but Thursgood’s death was different. He was making a personal statement there.”
“Sorry, I know it’s just my feeling, but—”
“No, that’s what I was looking for. You were there. We can only interpret the words, but you had the ambient experience; tone of voice, facial expression, body language; Mossie’s talked a lot about his ‘gift’ and some of the bits he’s aware of. He told me he’d trust your judgment on this question implicitly, so I do, too. And that brings me to phase two.”
Ah, good ol’ phase two. Phase II: Lamb Puts Head in Lion’s Mouth, Then Kicks it in the Shins. Story at Eleven (no film being available.)
“So, how do I confront Dubin, without him wondering why I could find him, and without him finding the wire?”
“From what you’ve told me so far, audacity seems to work with him. You pushed a bit here and there, and instead of slapping you down or whacking you on the spot, he respected your, what was it, ‘chutzpah’ ? So, we go for audacity, in a big way.”
“We? I like that. You’re coming too?”
She put on her ‘teaching a backward child’ look again. “Right; he’d never notice me. No, dolt, I’m not coming. ‘We’, as in, the S.D.U. and N.B.C.I. want Dubin badly enough to work with the Church of Ireland and the Catholic church to arrange for a fairly thorough audiovisual config at St. Nicholas.”
“And what if the map’s not there any more?”
She pulled her cell phone out of her coat pocket, flipped it open, and punched buttons for a minute. She handed it to me with a childish grin.
“Of course, this is nothing to what we will have, since that’ll all have to be admissible in court, but this lets us keep an eye on the cookie jar.”
Her phone was connected to a webcam pointed at the table I’d seen. And the map was still on it.
I giggled. No, really, I did. Siobhan giggled. Rob told me in a disgusted tone later that Mossie giggled. Rob needs to lighten up.
“Glad you’re enjoying the prospect. Because we’re doing it tonight.”
It sounded a little forced, but she giggled again.
I didn’t see the humor at all.