OK people: here is the gripping fifth part of this sci-fi mystery:
"THE WEDDING OF BEN CHATHAM" Part 5
Later that day Ben returned to his Cambridge apartment brimming with excitement. He had drawn up an initial tracklist for the album and a few quick phone calls had ensured that work could begin at the studios the next day. However as Ben drove into his street he noticed something was wrong. A large group of youths were standing in the street hurling chunks of brick and other objects as the apartment windows as a line of riot police tried to hold them back .Ben drove down a side street and switched his mobile on. He had recieved several texts while driving which warned him not to go home. He immediately rang Katie:
"Katie what the hell is going on?" Katie sounded agitated:
"Ben why the hell has your phone been off? Have you seen the news?"
"I've been driving obviously. I am a highly responsible individual. Now that are you babbling about Katie?"
"This is really ¤¤¤¤ing serious Ben . The police have arrested Kyle again. Its all over the internet that he's the Cambridge Nightstalker!"
Ben remembered that several months ago four bodies of teenage girls had been found around Cambridge with their throats cut having been interfered with. It had been all over the media however the attention had started to die down. He quickly went onto the BBC news website on his cutting edge I -Phone:
Police have today arrested a new suspect in the ongoing hunt for the so-called Cambridge Nightstalker, suspected of the murder of four teenagers. The suspect is Kyle Barry Scott who has been living in an exclusive penthouse apartment in Rushmere Street Cambridge. The detective leading the investigation, Steve Jackson, has gone on record as saying:
"Scott has been living with discredited self-appointed alien investigator Ben Chatham who has made every effort to harbour him. We have found material on several laptops siezed from the apartment in another investigation which link Scott to the killings. It is the worst visual evidence I have ever had to view in 25 years on the force......"
Ben throws down his phone in a shocked state as his car is surrounded by police officers. He hears the window smash on his right side then everything goes blank...............
The dim sense of perception slowly filtered into Ben's mind as he slowly drifted back into consciousness. He gradually focused on the familiar decor of Katie Ryan's flat and felt pain all over his chest and a stabbing sensation in his head. He realised he was lying on her leather sofa and saw Corinne Shaw, Paul Farraday and Katie herself.
"Whaaa What happened?" he mumbled. Katie knelt by him:
"The police beat you up and then drove you here and dumped you on the pavement outside."
"None of this.... It just doesn't make sense. Why not arrest me if they think I've been sheltering a killer?" Corinne approached:
"Ben what is going on here has to be more than just an attempt to destroy Operation Delta. Otherwise they could indeed have just charged you with being an accessory to murder and have done with it. Its like you are being played with. Whoever is behind this wants you to suffer in some drawn out process. And they've clearly got it in for Kyle bigtime. Can you think of any case that you and Kyle have personally led which might have given someone or something a desire for revenge?"
Ben stares angrily at her:
"What kind of a stupid question is that? I can think of an endless lot of cases like that. Where the hell do we start with this? I can't go on."
Ben sinks back in a despondent state and shuts his eyes. His body is shaking. Paul lights a cigarette and approaches:
"Ben you have to try and think. Whoever is behind this is capable of controlling enough people in power to allow the police to operate outside the law and to control the main media outlets. Try to give us something. Has any specific threat of vengeance been made against you and Kyle?" Ben opens his eyes again and tries to think back:
"A year or so ago there was that incident when we helped Torchwood unearth a Slitheen plot to infiltrate the Ministry of Defence. They were killed and one of them said before he died that the rest of his family would come and seek me out ....."
"Thats a start. Any more?"
"I remember Kyle and I being threatened by that corrupt scientist who was using technology from a Kronan warship that crashed in Scotland to try and create duplicates of himself and his family that were incapeable of aging. Torchwood destroyed the duplicates and he vowed revenge. But he's in prison."
"Hmmm. Plots can be hatched from prison. That it Ben?"
"I think so... apart from that business over Limetree Grange".
"We were investigating the disappearance of some children at a home in Oxfordshire. Some woman came to us claiming that the kids were being used in experiments to do with the military and that aliens were involved. We didn't take it seriously and when Kyle and I visited the place the kids seemed happy. She turned nasty and said that we were involved in the plot. She was the mum of one of the kids that had been taken into care. You could see why by the look of her; she was on heroin and I dread to think what else. Paid for by prostitution. She threatened to kill me and Kyle. Kyle wanted to investigate further but I said no. The woman was an obvious fantasist."
Paul thought carefully:
"Well at least thats three possible leads. How long ago was the last case?"
"Oh only a few months. I should remember the woman's name ..... Baldwin... Lisa Baldwin."
"Well we'll try to look into these cases and see what we can unearth. You get some rest Ben."
Ben sank back on the sofa and let sleep engulf him."
A few hours later Ben awoke to the sound of voices in the next room.
".....but I must see him. I simply must...."
"Look you idiot Ben is too unwell. ¤¤¤¤ off" Ben heard Katie shout.
"Miss Ryan, I have the greatest admiration for you but please don't instruct me to ¤¤¤¤ off....."
"Who is it Katie?" Ben shouted. The door flew open and in strode......................
"Ben I simply had to see you. I've written some new lyrics for your up and coming album. I have followed all of your adventures and have built up an extensive personal collection of memorabilia . It is because of me that the glass that you sipped absinthe from on your last night in Italy was saved from being thrown away after the waiter cracked it. I am solely responsible for saving it and paid £500 to get it." Ben sighed and his dark eyes filled with tears:
"Why bother? My life is ruined. Its all over. Everyone thinks I harbour child killers and Kyle.... why didn't I treat him better? He's probably being beaten to death in some cell. I'm finished."
"I don't care what anyone thinks. I believe in you Ben. When my good friend Keith Smith told me you were recording an album I just knew I had to be involved. I have in my hand the lyrics to side one track one: "Operation Delta in Distress".
Ian sings the lyrics to Ben while Katie laughs in the background. Ben sits up:
"I'm pleased that someone out there still believes in me and in Operation Delta. Maybe there is a point in going on........................"
.................. to be continued.