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CHAPTER ELEVEN – THE QUESTION IS, HOW MUCH DO YOU TRUST ME AND HOW MUCH DO YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON?
Looking out of the car window Liam realised that Sully was right, they were going in a different direction from the local police station.
In the front of the car the two coppers chatting away about everyday things seemingly almost ignoring the two lads in the back. So much so that had you been a casual observer of the scene you would be forgiven for thinking the lads were simply taking a taxi ride. Except, of course, for the bright flourescent stickers and police decals all over the sides of the car, the blue & white lights on top of it and the thick wire mesh separating the back seats from the front.
Every now and then the sergeant would ask the lads if they were alright, but other than that he kept conversation to a complete minimum. Probably to avoid having to confront any awkward question. And throughout the journey Liam and Sully continued their conversation by typing and then deleting sentences on their phones after having shared them with each other.
“Just where are you taking us?” Liam finally asked the cops in the front, as the car went through the centre of Belfast and two or three out further .
“Not long now, nearly there.” Was all the sergeant offered. And he was right as within minutes the car pulled up to a side entrance of the George Best Airport. Confused and wondering what the heck was going on Liam and Sully both looked at each other. Sully’s anxiety levels were going through the roof and Liam knew it.
Once the security guard had let the car through, it pulled forward and slowly made its way to the side of a hangar where it came to a stop. Outside the hangar a Lea Legacy Jet – lit by lights on the side of the hangar – stood waiting with its boarding steps down and a large man, leaning on a walking stick and dressed in a full length sheepskin coat was waiting in front of them.
“It can’t be!” Liam audibly expressed his surprise, peering out of the front windscreen and trying – despite the dark evening sky – to make out the figure of the large man. “That’s Kevin.”
Sully leaned forward in his seat and peered between the head rests of the front seats and out of the front windscreen.
“It is him.” Sully confirmed. “I recognise him from his pictures on Facebook.”
Both of the lads watched intensely as the sergeant got out of the car walked over to the man, and reported that there had been no trouble and that Liam and Sully had come quietly. Adding that one of the lads did seem a little anxious. And after this very brief conversation, the man and the sergeant walked over to the car and the sergeant opened the back door of the police car.
“Hi Liam.” Kevin – the man in the sheep skin coat – smiled, holding out his hand to greet him as he got out of the car. “Good to finally meet you.” He smiled. “I did warn you that we would meet up one day.
“Yeah, but I didn’t expect it to be like this.” Liam replied, shaking Kevin’s hand.
“What about ye Sully?” Kevin added in a loud and friendly greeting as Sully also got out of the police car via the same door.
“What the feck is going on, Kevin?” Sully asked, taking Kevin’s offered hand and shaking it. It wasn’t a question asked in any aggressive manner, but more in confusion than anything.
“I promise I’ll explain everything.” Kevin assured them both as he led them away from the sergeant and the police car. “Well as much as I am able to.” He added honestly. “And I am sorry for all the cloak and dagger stuff. But trust me this is very important and I really do need your help. Look, we can’t talk here. Let’s go on board and talk.”
“On board!” Sully exclaimed.
“So basically, what you are asking,” Liam interjected, “is for us to come with you and get on board a jet without any markings or id tags and without even knowing what is going on or what you are up to, or, for that matter, where we could end up.”
Kevin smiled. “Yep, that’s exactly what I am asking. And I am hoping that you trust me enough to do so.” He looked both of them in the eyes. “But if you don’t want to, then I will understand and the cops there will take you straight back to where they picked you up. If that’s what you really want.” He paused for a moment or two and looked at them, waiting for their response.
The two lads, Liam and Sully, looked at each other and it was obvious from the expression on Sully’s face that he was the one who was far less uncomfortable with the proposition.
“I’ll leave you lads to talk it over.” Kevin told them. “The question is,” he added, “how much do you trust me, and how much do you want to know what is going on?”
And with that Kevin walked away from Sully and Liam and over to the PSNI sergeant.