Tuesday, 5 March 2013

MI Fanfiction: The Minister - Ch 9


‘We need to mobilise,’ Jim said tersely.

It was well past one a.m. There was no point in waking Barney and Willy. There was nothing they could do at this time. They needed to be fresh to continue their efforts to reach Bauer’s safe in the morning. But Cinnamon was in danger. Liesl was in danger. She might already be dead. But he couldn’t go to her. That would be running straight into their hands. No matter how much guilt Jim felt welling inside him, he couldn’t compromise the mission any further to go after a girl he had formed an attachment to.

‘You want me to signal Cinnamon?’ Rollin asked, glancing at the little radio that was sitting on the table near Jim’s hand.

Jim shook his head, rubbing his thumb over his lip.

‘Too risky. She might be with him right now. If he already suspects, that would confirm everything for him.’

‘Then how are we going to get her out?’

Jim sighed. ‘Unless she calls us, we don’t. Not right now – not unless we know she’s in danger. There’s no excuse for turning up at Bauer’s house in the middle of the night to get her out. Did she give you a film tonight, Rollin?’

Rollin nodded concisely. ‘I developed it just an hour ago. Plenty of evidence there. All we need, in fact. There are some perfect images I can run with the Berlin Daily, and other more – explicit – ones we can hold back as evidence for any indictment.’

‘So she doesn’t need to be there any longer.’

‘Well, she still might get a chance to take some snaps of his records,’ Rollin shrugged, ‘but no, it’s not vital any more. Not now we have this.’

Jim nodded and looked up, fixing his eyes on Rollin’s face. He felt exhausted, but so wide awake he couldn’t conceive of sleeping.

‘You think you can get in there in the daytime, in your cover as the reporter? She won’t be out at the club again until the evening. That may be too late.’

Rollin nodded. ‘I can do my best,’ he said openly. ‘Jim – what about Liesl Weismuller?’ he asked gravely.

‘What about her?’ Jim asked tersely, rolling up his sleeves and casting about for another cigarette.

‘You’re not going to just leave her.’

‘No,’ Jim said heavily. ‘No, I can’t just leave her.’

‘Don’t get yourself killed,’ Rollin said seriously. ‘Not for something like this.’

‘I never have any intention of getting myself killed,’ Jim replied. ‘Never.’

He sat in the chair, smoking cigarette after cigarette, drinking coffee and then drinking scotch, and then coffee again. After a time Rollin pleaded exhaustion and retired to his room, and Jim sat alone, in the light of one small table lamp, a cigarette between his lips and his eyes focussed on middle distance, thinking. It didn’t matter how long he sat. He needed to work something out. Tomorrow he could run on coffee and adrenaline. It wasn’t as if he hadn’t pulled a few all-nighters before.


In the end he did sleep, just for a few hours, with his mind so wired with coffee and inter-meshing thoughts that his dreams were almost constant. He woke with a start, finding himself still in the armchair in the main room, a blanket over his knees and a glimmer of light just starting up through the window opposite.

He unfolded himself from the chair, instantly alert, and stalked through into his bedroom to look through the curtains at the windows opposite. Liesl’s apartment was dark, the curtains closed. There was no sign of movement. No sign of life.

He stood there and stared at the glass panes, sometimes focussing on the windows across the street, sometimes focussing on the dirty pane just a few inches from his eyes. There had to be a way to get Liesl out – if she was still there. And Cinnamon. Cinnamon had to be the priority. She was trusting her team to get her out safely. There had to be some way of ensuring the safety of both women.

He stood looking down into the snowy street, watching as the first few pedestrians of the day tried their luck on the treacherous sidewalks. A woman came out of a doorway with a brush and started to sweep away snow. A couple of state police walked with confidence across the road in their heavy boots. A van drew to a halt and a man came out with what looked like a tray of loaves, heading for a store just a few doors down from the apartment building.

And then it clicked in his mind. It was so brash and so outrageous that it would work. It would have to work.

He turned and went through into Rollin’s room. He was sprawled asleep in his bed, the blankets and sheets pulled up over his shoulders against the chill in the room.

‘Rollin,’ he said in a low voice. ‘Rollin.’

Rollin turned and muttered, and then sat upright, his eyes wide open. ‘What is it, Jim? What time is it?’

‘Half past six. Rollin, I’ve got a plan,’ he said. ‘A way to get Cinnamon out, and a way to get Liesl out too, if I can.’

‘Tell me what you need, Jim,’ Rollin said, swinging his legs over the side of the bed.

Jim pursed his lips together. ‘I need a uniform for an officer ranked Polizeidirektor or higher, and a uniform for his subordinate, and I need them within the hour. I need them to fit you and me. I’m ditching the plan for you to go in as the reporter. You’re coming with me as my backup. Can you get them?’

‘I can get them,’ Rollin said.

Jim half smiled. There was no moment of hesitation, no look of shock at what was expected of him. Just, I can get them.

‘What are you going to do?’ Rollin asked.

‘I’m going to walk right into Bauer’s house, and I’m going to take Cinnamon out of there,’ he said. ‘And when you go over the border to Berlin to pass on your article about Bauer’s brothels to the Berlin Daily, you’re going to take Liesl Weismuller with you.’

Rollin nodded. Again, there was no moment of doubt, no questions. Just the nod.

‘I’ll go put the coffee and some toast on for you,’ Jim said, as Rollin swung his legs out of bed.

Jim went back into the main room and set the water to boiling and slipped a few slices of bread under the grill, then he went into his room and opened his suitcase. Inside the lining of the lid was a concealed pocket, and in the pocket, flush against the hard outer shell of the case, were a number of passports and identify cards all made up by Barney before they had left New York. He pulled them out and flicked through them. There were a couple of varying ranks for the Barnstadt police department. Which one he chose would depend on the uniform that Rollin could acquire.

He slipped the papers back into the lid of the case, and went out into the corridor and down to Willy and Barney’s room. He knocked discreetly on the door, and it was opened almost instantly by Willy.

Jim slipped into the room without speaking. Barney was there sitting at the table drinking coffee. Willy was half-dressed in his workman’s clothes, buttoning up his overalls over a clean white undershirt.

‘We’ll be out in a few minutes, Jim,’ Barney said to him, then paused. ‘Trouble?’

‘Could be,’ Jim nodded. ‘Cinnamon’s cover may be compromised. Barney, can you print me up a warrant for entry to Bauer’s house, and an arrest warrant for Cinnamon?’

Barney’s eyes widened momentarily, then he nodded. ‘Can do. I’ve got the equipment in the other room. How soon do you want them?’

‘Now,’ Jim said concisely.

Barney looked at him, blowing his breath out through his lips, but said nothing.

‘Jim, what happened?’ Willy asked in concern.

Jim hesitated. He wasn’t eager to talk about what had gone on last night, about how he had let his feelings possibly bring the whole mission down, but the team deserved to know.

‘Have you eaten?’ Barney asked him, and as Jim shook his head Barney tossed over a buttered roll. ‘Eat that. I’ll get working on the warrants.’

Jim nodded, biting into the fresh roll. Until he swallowed he didn’t realise how hungry he had been. As Barney went to get his equipment he explained quickly and quietly something of what had happened the night before.

‘Are we all right to continue tunnelling?’ Willy asked in concern.

‘No problem there,’ Jim nodded. ‘If anything, this will distract him from the club. You’ll get to the safe today?’

‘We should get close,’ Willy told him. ‘But it’s a lot of dirt. Won’t be able to get into it until tomorrow, probably.’

Jim nodded again. ‘On schedule. Well, I’ve got to go get a car,’ he said, pushing the rest of the roll into his mouth and brushing the crumbs from his lips. ‘Barney, leave those documents in my apartment. I’ll pick them up when I get back. ASAP, right?’

‘ASAP,’ Barney nodded. ‘You’ll have them, Jim.’


Out on the streets the air was so cold that it seemed to burn Jim’s tired eyes. It pushed into his hands and feet and threatened to steal all his energy. But he didn’t have a lot to do – not like Rollin. Rollin was tracking down uniforms, and whether he did that by stealing them from a closet or taking them directly from someone wearing them, it was going to be a risky business.

It was no trouble to rent a car at such short notice – not with the amount of money Jim could flash at the man in the rental office. He found himself in charge of a big black saloon Mercedes, that looked polished and expensive enough to belong to an important officer. He drove back to the apartment with great care on the treacherous roads, and found the warrant papers neatly placed in the centre of the table by Barney. They looked perfect.

When Rollin came in a few minutes later he was holding a bag in one hand, and smiling broadly.

‘Who did you have to knock out for those?’ Jim asked, taking the bag from him and looking inside.

‘A couple of officers in the Police Headquarters,’ Rollin told him, hurriedly pulling the uniforms out of the bag. ‘We’ll have to move fast, Jim, and change fast after we’ve got the girls out. The men I drugged will be safe until at least this evening – they won’t wake up – but someone will be sure to miss them, and when Bauer calls in to complain about the warrants they won’t take long putting two and two together.’

‘All right,’ Jim nodded, sorting out the higher ranking uniform from the other. It looked just about the right size, and he had an identity card that would match the rank. He started to strip off his suit and shirt and pulled on the dark uniform as Rollin did the same.

‘Let’s go,’ he said, slipping his identity card into his wallet and patting Rollin on the shoulder. ‘Liesl first.’

‘You’re going to explain on the way, huh?’ Rollin asked him.

‘Not much to explain,’ Jim said with a grin. ‘We’re arresting Liesl Weismuller for acting as a prostitute. Same with Cinnamon. If we’re not attacking Bauer directly, he’s going to be a lot easier to handle.’

‘And if Fraulein Weismuller’s not there?’ Rollin asked meaningfully.

‘Then I’m going to be asking Bauer some questions,’ Jim replied grimly.


  1. I neeeed! You to finish this!,

    1. I know. I'm sorry :-( I seem to have more block on this story than anything else. But I am doing my best. I want to write a good chapter, not a forced one :-)