Roberto stepped off the tube at Covent Garden. A familiar poster confronted him, “go to work on an egg”, an egg in a cup with buttered soldiers. As he walked past he smiled as he thought of the breakfast he had enjoyed that morning. Ham, melon, toast, fresh orange juice and champagne. Since he had run out on Siobhan, he had been living a playboy life in London, crashing at the Belgravia flat of a rich Brazilian business man, who’s son was a fellow musician, gigging around town and seeing girls.
He had slept with 3 in a month, he wasn’t keeping count but compared to his life in Birmingham he felt like Mick Jagger. Two ‘debby’ british models and a French heiress who had made him breakfast after a busy night.
He sighed and started to climb the stairs. He felt a tug on his arm.
Roberto looked back to see two men in grey macs and heavy shoes.
‘yeah, what do you want man’
‘ I’m arresting you on suspicion of being an illegal immigrant, you don’t have to say anything but anything you do say will be taken down and may be used in evidence’
Roberto slumped in the metal chair in the dingy office on the first floor at Bow St police station. Opposite him sat a man in an impeccably cut navy blue blazer, a menacingly thin set of lips held a black cigarette holder, a lazy curl of smoke gently circled up towards the grimy ceiling. Roberto looked closely at him and wondered. He had been questioned by police before but this one was new, elegant and intelligent.
Commander Morrel removed the cigarette and cleared his throat.
‘ Where did you get these, Mr Sanchez’?
he pushed the bag of weed and the envelope with the acid tabs towards Roberto. Roberto shrugged
‘ On the street, man. Look I’m not a dealer, man I just like to relax and I trip sometimes, you know’ he smiled at Morrel ‘ you never wanna relax man’?.
Morrel sighed impatiently
‘ You realize LSD is a class A drug, you are looking at 7 years and deportation', he paused and sighed 'also...my colleagues in France want to talk to you’
Morrel waived magnanimously and gave Roberto a reassuring smile.
‘ It’s your lucky day son’ he paused then went on’ I can make all this’, he pointed to the drugs ‘ go away’
Roberto raised an eyebrow, Morrel explained
‘ There’s a meeting taking place later this week at London University students union…..’ Morrel quickly glanced at his notes ‘Mallet St…Friends of Cuba society, I was wondering if you might pop along there for me’
Roberto let out a defiant gasp ‘ you want me to be a spy?
‘ You can call it what you like sonny jim, situation is you help me or the only french queen you'll be shagging is the
one in the overhead bunk at pentonville'
Morrell turned and beckoned to the uniformed officer who had been standing behind his chair.
‘ Sergeant would you be good enough to take my friend Mr Sanchez back to his cell’ he tuned back and whispered to Roberto,
‘ think about it Roberto, we’ll talk again tomorrow’.