Tammy:Deathtrap - Part 16 "Riddles"

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Sunday 4th December 2016 (Continued)

Jeremiah Smith was waiting for Tammy in the foyer, talking to a police officer she didn't recognise.

"Ah, Miss Smart, this is Inspector Sutherland. He's handling the follow-up interviews."

"Sutherland? Any relation to the pharmacy here in Thurso?"

He laughed, "I've been asked that a few times but I'm normally based in Inverness and I'm originally from Dundee."

"Good, will you be interviewing me?"

"No, I brought a team with me, I understand from various sources that you are familiar with the local officers?"

"I've been involved with a few incidents, plus Chief Inspector Iain Davison was the main director in this very theatre before I was asked to take over."

"Well, we'll conduct these interviews using officers you won't know, so you may be asked to explain some things in more detail than if it were a local officer."

"I see, Jeremiah did you bring my earlier reports?"

He patted his briefcase, "I did, plus a few notarised copies."

"How long do I have before we start?"

"About half an hour, any chance of a coffee?"

"For you, Jeremiah, of course."

Tammy checked with Steven, who was slowly switching the theatre equipment back on. "I take it we're go for this afternoon?"

"Yes, Tammy, please inform the cast. One question, do you think the other cast would be available for an additional show this evening?"


"I think we owe it to our patrons to put a show on."

"For the money?"

"We're talking to our insurance company but I doubt if we'll be compensated for this."

"I guess there's no point suing the estate of James Dougall?"

"It normally wouldn't do any harm but might be seen locally as a unfriendly act?"

"What he did wasn't friendly!"

"Even so, we'll offer seats to anyone holding Saturday night tickets, can you put a cast together?"

"I'll try."

Tammy went to the Green Room to sit whilst making all the calls. Lucy put her head around the door just before Tammy was going to call her.

"Ah, good, are you available?"

"Yes, I'm being interviewed shortly but I'll stay for the play."

"I've been asked to put a show on this evening."

"Is everyone available?"

"I haven't called them yet."

"Okay, I'm just going to get a drink."

Tammy worked through the five cast members, and at first attempt managed to confirm four of the five, but she couldn't raise the other actress playing Helga. She tried the understudy a few times before getting through to her.

"Sorry, I've just left Edinburgh and I won't be home before eight."

Tammy was interrupted by a fresh faced pollice constable.

"Miss Smart?"


"We're ready to interview you, we're using the manager's office."

Tammy sat next to Jeremiah Smith, of Smith, Smith and Smith, Solicitors and faced the PC. Inspector Sutherland sat away from the desk but said nothing.

"Now, Miss Smart, I'd like to record your statement concerning the events over the past few days. I must caution you that ...."

"Stop! Why is my client being cautioned?"

"There's been an allegation."

"Really? My client attended here at her own free will and has, over the past few weeks, catalogued a litany of bullying, harassment and a concerted effort to disrupt this theatre. Last night's events were only the latest chapter and my client was in the audience at the time!"

Tammy silently thanked her father for insisting she had legal representation.

The Inspector stood and opened the office door, calling the PC to follow him.

"What was all that about?"

"I'm uncertain, Miss Smart, but you are here as a witness and nothing more. Please don't get into an argument with the police, let me do that."


The officers re-entered the room and resumed their seats.

"My apologies, there is no need to caution you, Miss Smart. Now, let me take you back to last night."

Tammy nodded, she had a feeling that they would be in that room for some time, regardless.


It was gone midday when she finally emerged into the foyer, having taken her time to fully read the satement before signing it, after her solicitor had also read and accepted it.

"Thank you Jeremiah, I didn't take a copy of last night's statement so you might want to obtain one?"

"Indeed, goodbye Miss Smart and please don't hesitate to call me. I strongly advise you don't attend any interviews without representation."

"Quite, thank you again."

Tammy made another attempt to get hold of the actress who would be playing Helga that evening and finally the call was answered.

"She's got the flu and needs peace and quiet! Stop calling!"

Lucy wasn't accommodating, "sorry Tammy, but I'm not free this evening."

"What am I going to do?"

"You must know the part?"

"Sure, but I haven't rehearsed."

"We have a bit of time, I'll go through the script with you."

Monday 5th December 2016

It was a real bind to get into the university, Tammy was quite tired. She'd also stumbled through her lines, although Steven had thanked her from the stage for standing in. His added comment was "not that I would have offered myself!"

She had one lecture and one seminar today but naturally the chatter was about Lucas' non-appearance and it was clear to Tammy that there was anger directed at her. The tutor giving the lecture was also becoming irritated with the attitude of a small group. Tammy had sat near the front this time so she wouldn't see the Tom and Lucas fan club in operation. The tutor decided to act.

"What's going on Tammy?"

"Did you see the news about the theatre?"


"Apparently, I'm to blame?"


"Would you mind if I addressed them?"

The tutor stood aside and Tammy stepped up to the dais.

"Pointing fingers and making accusations is a very dangerous approach, and I would have thought that criminology students would realise that? Let me spell this out: Tom tried to disrupt the play that I was directing, firstly from the stage and then by bullying and finally by apparent criminal activity. he drove Lucas and his uncle to the theatre where they went to shut off the power, there is CCTV of him dropping them off. Lucas suffered burns and is under arrest, his uncle sadly died.

"My crime, according to the court of public opinion, was apparently to want to put on a play, protect the cast from bullies and do the best I could. If you think that, somehow, I am responsible for any criminal actions then you are deluded and clearly on the wrong course."

A few of the group applauded and a few jeered at her. The tutor made one more attempt to quieten the room.

"Very well spoken, Tammy, I take it that you've been interviewed?"

"Yes, for over an hour, I then put on two shows and took to the stage to fill in for a missing actress."

"I was there."

The tutor was keeping an eye on two boys and one girl who were still making comments. He noted their names.

"Tammy mentioned CCTV at the theatre, well, we have CCTV in this room and I'll let the Principal know about what went on this morning, as it happens he was also in the theatre last night. Any continued disruption could lead to suspension, you have been warned."

Tammy took a minute during the mid morning break to call her solicitors, John answered.

"Looks like the Tom and Lucas fan club is still active." She passed him the names of the three miscreants.

"Okay, I'll let Mr Smith know. We've been told that all of those arrested have been bailed."

"Great, who let them out?"

"The Sheriff in Wick this morning, they're effectively under house arrest and only allowed out between nine and twelve each day plus they are not allowed near the university, the theatre or your home."

"Do you really think they'll abide by those restrictions?"

"Sorry Tammy, I'm just reporting the court's decision."

"Cheers John."

"Take care."

She decided to cry off from the seminar and took herself home, after sending Donald Templeton an email summarising that morning.

When she'd left the stage the previous evening Tammy had been on a high and there was a bouquet in her bedroom, all the female actors had received one from Steven. Today she felt down, and she now couldn't motivate herself.

A coffee helped pass some time and she went in search of newspaper articles about the weekend but they were too depressing.

Her phone rang.

"Miss Smart, it's Jeremiah."

"What can I do for you?"

"Mr Hibbert has passed your information onto me and I believe we have a problem."

"Go on?"

"You said the girl causing trouble in the classroom this morning was Lorna Kirk?"


"Her older brother is Jimmy Kirk and he is the officer who interviewed you."

"Damn, I have a feeling she's Lucas' girlfriend."

"Indeed, that would be a complication."

"Is there a risk that he'll leak information about me?"

"I wouldn't have thought that would be accessible by low-ranking officers?"

"It might be worth suggesting it to the Chief Inspector?"

"I'm afraid that you cannot simply accuse a police officer of being corrupt."

"So, Jeremiah, what is our best option?"

"Note everything and let me have a daily log of anything that appears relevant. I will date and notarise it, as before, so it can be produced as evidence if necessary. I have a feeling that the legal process in this case will not be quick and it's important that we have a good and true record."

"So I should sit back, let things happen and then report it?"

"Exactly, that way you cannot be accused of starting an incident."

"Well, there was this speech I gave in the university today?"

"You didn't mention that to Mr Hibbert?"

"It didn't seem relevant at the time." Tammy recounted her words, as best she could. "There is CCTV, should anyone argue I said something different."

"I doubt the University would give me access to video, although the police would be able to request it. Do you have any idea how long they keep video for?"

"No, sorry."

"I hope that it won't be necessary."

"So do I."

Tammy wrote up that morning's events and then checked her emails, Donald Templeton had replied stating that he had watched the recording and understood her reason for leaving, he'd attached the work she'd missed.

It was still an hour before lunch so she decided to clear up some of the coursework, she'd been at it for fifteen minutes when her phone rang.

"Hi James."

"Where are you? I looked at break time and then I heard you had been seen in the carpark?"

"I didn't have a good morning, I'm at home."

"Did you want to meet later?"

"I don't know, I have a meeting this afternoon and I don't know how it'll go."


"Sorry, it's confidential and even I don't know what the meeting is all about."

"Hey, that doesn't sound safe?"

"I know the place and I know the people, so I'll be fine."

"Look, Tammy, if you need a hug, let me know."

"Will do, bye."

She finished her coursework, at least the amount she was content doing, and wandered down to find some lunch. Someone had obviously known she was indoors as there was a covered plate of sandwiches, next to a note with her name.

Tammy, I had some smoked salmon and avocado left over, thought you might like it? Zara

It was close to three when Tammy parked outside St Andrews School. The bell for the last period had just gone and there was the usual melée of boys, and a few girls, in the main hallway. Most didn't notice her as she slipped into the secretary's office.

"Hi Janet, is he in?"

"Oh, hello Tammy, I wasn't expecting you for another hour?"

"I wasn't told a time?"

"Well, he's watching the Year Eleven first fifteen play."

"I can think of better things to do than stand by a rugby pitch in December!"

"I'm sure you can, I think they finish in about fifteen minutes, they're playing a team from Wick."

"Oh, a local grudge match?"

"Indeed, that's why the Head is watching from the touchline."

"Thankfully I only qualified for the third fifteen so we didn't play many matches against other schools."

"So rugby wasn't your game?"

"I'm not into sports, really, but I can run and I can swim. We also have a gym at home, not that I use it much."

"So long as you stay fit, Tammy."

"True, is my mum free?"

"She has no-one booked to see her, you know the way?"

It was only across the hall and up a corridor to reach the welfare office.

"What are you doing here?"

"Mike called me last week and asked that I saw him."

"Oh, he never said anything?"

"I'm just waiting for him to get back from the match, is your kettle warm?"

"Do I get the feeling you're not here to kill time?"

"No, mum, it's just that I've barely seen you since last week."

Joan reached over and hit the button to heat the necessary water.

"Your father keeps me up to date, how did it go last night?"

"The show was fine, although I had to play one of the parts as no-one else was available."

"It was awful news, wasn't it, about Saturday?"

"He was trying to get the show stopped, thankfully Lucy and James had finished their lines when the lights went out but that was only because the cast were a bit ahead of time."

"But ....."

"No mum, this was the same person who assaulted Angela and me two years ago."

"I didn't realise, Tammy?"

"He was also suspected of attacking Michael, in the disco, last year. He got to know John McPherson when they were in prison together."

"So not a nice man."

"Even so, mum, I could have done without the hassle."

I'm sure no-one will blame you for what happened?"

"I hope not." Tammy really didn't want to open that particular can of worms, in any case she was saved by a knock on the door. Tammy stood to open it.

"Hello aunt Tammy."

"Hello Daisy, how are you?"

"Hmmm, can I talk to Mrs Smart, it's private?"

"Of course."

Tammy walked out and closed the office door just as the 'Busy' light came on.

The Headmaster was walking back into the warm school as Tammy reached the hall, he signalled fr her to follow him as he unwound a heavy scarf.

"Good of you to come here, Tammy, but I must say I'm a little perplexed."

"Why? Who was this call from?"

"Dave Brown."


"His message was simple but he insisted it couldn't be written down, emailed or given to you any way other than face to face."

"So what was his message?"

"Visit your grandmother in Saigon on Thursday at 5.30pm."

"That was it?"

"Yes, although I have no idea what it really means."

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