Chapter Six – McBiscuit makes an arrest
DI McBiscuit’s cunning plan to have his constable infiltrate Shelbourne Football Club disguised as Neil Dubble, a recent signing from St. Albans, seemed to be bearing, not only fruit, but some vegetables and dairy products too.
McBiscuit had been afraid that the constable, the possessor of two size thirteen left feet, might not have pulled it off as a semi-professional footballer, but he slotted into the back four quite nicely and even made the sub’s bench on a couple of occasions.
Inside the dressing room, the constable kept his ear to the ground until people told him to get up. He would pretend to be tying his bootlace when other people were talking on the phone. Sometimes, for a bit of variation, he would pretend to be talking on the phone when other people were tying their bootlaces.
“I want you to watch everyone like a hawk,” McBiscuit had instructed him and the constable took him at his word, sitting on the lampshade for hours with a mouse between his toes.
Naturally, talk of the two murders at the club was rife with many of the players speculating as to the murderer’s identity. For some reason, goalkeeper Dean Delaney had been singled out as the most likely suspect, after Mark O’Brien had commented on his “big strangling hands.”
During training one morning, the constable suddenly clutched his calf muscle in apparent agony and limped off painfully in the direction of the dressing rooms.
“Brilliant ruse,” thought McBiscuit, watching from Section E through a pair of binoculars. “That boy’s going to go far.”
Once inside the dressing room, the constable’s limp miraculously disappeared and he felt under the bench for Dean Delaney’s kit bag. Hurriedly, he pulled open the zip, took one look at the contents and closed it up again.
“I think you’d better come and have a look at this, sir,” he said through the tiny microphone strapped to his left nipple. “And bring some back up.”
Seconds later, seventeen combat vehicles burst through the Tolka Park gates, discharging almost two hundred highly-trained marines onto the playing surface. As the players made a run for the tunnel, the sky grew black with paratroopers descending from unseen aircraft and an aircraft carrier positioned itself behind the Riverside Stand to cut off any means of escape.
“Would you mind opening your kitbag, sir?” McBiscuit asked the tall goalkeeper in the comparative quiet of the dressing room. There was a quiet menace in his eyes and a definite sense of threat in his left ear.
Dean Delaney bit his lip nervously. Then he chewed his nose. Suddenly, and with a sense of defiance, he strode over to his kit bag, yanked open the zip and stood back.
Like a cat circling a trapped mouse, McBiscuit slowly meandered over to the kit bag, thrust his hand inside and pulled out a potted geranium. There were loud gasps of astonishment from all present and even from some who weren’t.
“It’s a plant, I tell you!” the goalkeeper yelled. He tried to make a run for it but Daisy Hedderman slid in recklessly and sent him flying. The constable whipped out some thread and a needle and meticulously sewed the keeper’s arms behind his back.
“You’ve stitched me up good and proper,” snarled the net minder savagely.
“Take him away,” said McBiscuit, almost purring. Then he lifted up his leg and licked himself gratifyingly.
“I don’t get it sir,” said the constable afterwards over a large blackcurrant on the rocks. “What was his motive?”
“What’s a motive?” asked McBiscuit cautiously.
“The reason why he did it, sir. You need to prove he had a motive.”
“I do?” said McBiscuit blankly. “When did that rule come in? Surely the geranium is all the proof we need?”
“Don’t think so, sir. How exactly does the geranium prove his guilt anyway?”
“Oh, I suppose we need to prove his guilt now?” shot back the DI. “Take my word; he’s as guilty as hell. But just to be on the safe side, you’d better get back inside the dressing room and see if you can get me the proof.”
“Sorry, sir. Can’t do that, sir,” said the constable. “The manager’s after transferring me to Bray Wanderers.”