Wolsingham nodded to the bartender. A file rose in the air from behind the bar. It flew through the air and dropped on the table in front of Hoyer.
“What is this?” Hoyer asked – without touching it.
“A retired detective who was asking a lot of questions.”
“About your people or mine?”
“Mine. They took care of him before he could cause any lasting damage. But there are rumours.”
“A file of evidence that he collected before his death. It has never been found. It is said to contain proof of my organisation’s activities and an accurate assessment of our goals.” “This sounds like your problem,” Hoyer shrugged.
“If what I have heard is correct, it also contains evidence supporting his theory of an underground criminal organisation, which employs professionally trained teenagers.”
Hoyer’s expression changed. He flicked through the file, then cleared his throat. “I’ll look into it.”
“You should,” Wolsingham stated. “Jason Rybak is. And you do not want him locating the file before you do.” He moved towards a door behind him, then turned. “You can tell your snipers and armed response unit to stand down. Not that they would have been much use here anyway.”
I slammed my laptop shut and bowed over in my chair, trying to suppress the urge to vomit. Two of the most dangerous men in the world, never mind just the UK, and I was their next topic of discussion.
I took a deep breath and read on.
“Jason Rybak,” Wolsingham said. “The second people start taking the content of his work more seriously, we will both be in trouble.”
“I attempted to have him killed,” Hoyer replied. “As I know you did.”
“But he has help,” Hoyer continued. “I know nothing about this helper. None of my people have even seen his face. But their accounts suggest he belongs more to your world than mine.”
My eyes flitted from the road to the young woman in my mirror. She had shoulder-length auburn hair. She wore a colourless black leather jacket and jeans. Her handgun was aimed casually at the floor.
“Who is she?” I said.
“I’ve no idea,” Six replied. “No one can do what I saw her do. The others – they were from my old employers.”
“They keep finding me.”
“They have people everywhere – and more kids like me. They have money and resources to throw at any problem in their way.” Six looked at me. “You’ve written about them. It shouldn’t be a surprise. It’s why they want you dead. Welcome to life as a spy.”
I drove slowly out of the town centre. There was no sign of the woman with the gun. But the same car had been right behind me for a few minutes now. As I stayed on the main road, which was well-lit, but really quiet, it stayed right behind me.