Harris could see what Parsons meant. The distance between them and Baker was still substantial enough that if he considered making a run for it, they’d be hard pressed to catch up before he disappeared into the wild and overgrown woodland and meadow that ran alongside the river. Harris turned to the rest of the team, mostly uniformed officers now, who tried to loiter causally by their patrol cars.

   ‘Get the rest of the team out of here,’ he ordered. ‘We don’t want Baker clocking our reception committee.’

   Parsons barked some clipped orders and the officers clambered into their cars. In a moment, the engines roared into life and the cars disappeared up the lane towards the centre of town. Giles and Harris were still a fair distance away when Parsons returned.

   ‘How long has Giles got?’

   Harris seemed to ignore the question. The footballers were making their preparations to leave the pitch, chanting and singing, clapping and excitedly recalling their own personal highlights.

   But, for Harris, the game wasn’t over yet. 



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© 2017 Nick R B Tingley