Dialogue Extract Number Ten (Downing Street)

by Robin Hawdon


PAUL sits in an interview room, CRICK in attendance. The door opens and RUPERT CRESWELL, Head of the anti-terrorist unit, and GEORGE CHANDLER, the Number 10 security chief, enter.

CRESWELL We met earlier at Number Ten, Mr Gunter. And George Chandler of course, you know well.
  They sit opposite. Pause. PAUL waits.
  Let us assume a hypothetical situation. Let us assume that someone such as yourself, in a privileged position within Ten Downing Street, is feeding information to organisations who wished to do damage to the state. What possible motive could that person have?
  PAUL waits in total incomprehension.
  He would appear to have nothing to gain. Bright, up-and-coming, public school, Cambridge honours, Whitehall high flyer… What conceivable reason would someone like that have to do such a thing?
  PAUL looks at CRESWELL, who stares back expressionless.
  You, for instance, are not a Muslim. You have no trace of middle east blood or connections. I can only think of two other possible motives a person such as yourself might have. Political extremism – of which again, there is no trace in your background… or money. Which would seem unlikely, given your family origins and reasonable salary.
PAUL Precisely.
CRESWELL I’ve known a number of spies. I’m always amazed at people’s motives.
PAUL (to CHANDLER) George, you know me. What the fuck is this?
  CHANDLER just stares back, solemn.
CRESWELL A mobile phone was found hidden behind one of your desk drawers – holding a series of unusual numbers, and with your finger prints all over it.
  PAUL stares, then takes out his mobile.
PAUL I have my mobile here.
  CRESWELL holds out a hand.
CRESWELL Thank you, I’ll have that one too.
PAUL Is that it?
CHANDLER Copies of several crucial documents were downloaded on your computer, Paul. They’d been attached and sent on at some stage, but the email files were deleted.
PAUL (bewildered) What?
CRESWELL A bank account in your name in the Caymans has been traced – into which a large sum of money was recently paid.
PAUL Oh, don’t be ridiculous!
  They just stare.
  I’ve been set up. It’s a set-up!
CRESWELL Pretty damned good one. (Sighs) It’s very late. I’m sending you to Scotland Yard for the night. We… or they, will talk to you in the morning.
  PAUL is being driven in an anonymous CAR through the city. Two MI5 OFFICERS accompany him, and a POLICE CAR follows behind. It is very late, and the streets are almost empty as the two CARS wend their way towards New Scotland Yard.
  At a specific point the CARS meet road barriers across the road, and are diverted up a side street. The MI5 MEN glance at each other, slightly perturbed, but say nothing. Then one notices that a large blacked-out 4X4 has backed across the lane behind them and cut off the police car.
OFFICER What the…?
  He screeches to a halt half way across an intersection, stopped by another barrier.
  Look out!
  A huge TRUCK suddenly roars at full speed out of the intersecting side-street and rams the car sideways on, sending it hurtling into a parked VAN at the side of the road. Terrific crash and grinding metal. All the occupants of the car are flung sideways and battered against the walls of the vehicle. A moment’s silence.
  PAUL, sitting in the most protected seat but still bloodied and dazed, gathers his senses and realises that his escorts are out for the count. He looks up and, through the shattered side window, sees hooded FIGURES approaching round the sides of the truck, guns at the ready.  One of them yanks open his door and gestures for him to get out.  Then shots ring out from back up the lane. The man grabs Paul, pulls him from the car and pushes him away up the street. Paul staggers off as the men fire back at the POLICEMEN from the stranded police car.
  They retreat and the TRUCK reverses back up the side street and away from the scene. Whilst the POLICE are occupied with the MEN, PAUL fades away in the darkness.