فصل 07

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فصل 07

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Chapter seven

Here’s something for you

‘Is that Chapman?’ Blom asked. ‘Blom here. Listen, there’s something I want to tell you and a question I want to ask you.’

Monika watched Blom’s face as he talked to Chapman. Blom told him about Monika’s visit to Millham United, and the meeting she had seen. But he didn’t say that she had taken photographs. He also didn’t say that they knew who the people at the meeting were.

Then Blom said, ‘And my question is: what were you doing there?’ Blom was silent and listened. From time to time he nodded and said, ‘Yes, I see.’

Then Blom said, ‘No, she couldn’t hear what the people in the room were saying. And no…’ Blom raised his voice and sat forward in his wheelchair, ‘… she wasn’t spying on you. How could she know you would be there?’ Blom was silent again, then said thank you and put the phone down. He sat silently for a moment and thought. Then he looked at Monika.

‘Well,’ Blom said, ‘our friend Mr Chapman says he went to Millham United’s stadium to help us. He was trying to find out about the football club for us. He says that he was at the meeting to ask questions. He says the other people at the meeting were football fans. They were discussing the team’s next visit to Sweden. He’s very angry that we didn’t tell him you were in London,’ Blom continued. ‘He thinks you were spying on him.’

‘Do you believe him?’ Monika asked.

‘I don’t know. Maybe it’s just a misunderstanding,’ said Blom.

‘Did he have any new information?’

‘No.’

‘So what do we do now?’ asked Monika.

‘I want you to go to South Africa. We need to know more about Vitjord.’

Monika looked at Blom in surprise. ‘But he’s in London,’ she said.

‘Vitjord was in London yesterday,’ Blom said. ‘But he’ll return to South Africa. Go and wait for him. Try and find out why he’s so interested in Millham United football team. Talk to him if you can.’

‘But I can’t say I’m from the SMI,’ Monika said.

Blom smiled. ‘I’m sure you’ll think of something to say,’ he said. ‘Now you’d better go and pack some clothes. Be back here at five. We’ll book you on a plane to South Africa tonight.’

Monika left the SMI offices and walked back to her flat. Half of her felt great: Blom trusted her and she was going on an important trip. The other half wasn’t so sure: she had never been to South Africa and she hadn’t liked what she had seen of Vitjord. ‘And what has all this got to do with the shooting of Carlsson?’ she asked herself.

An hour later Monika was back in Blom’s office.

‘You’re booked on this evening’s SAS flight to Johannesburg from Copenhagen,’ Blom said with a quick smile. ‘Your flight to Copenhagen leaves in two hours. We haven’t got much time.

Here’s a copy of the fax booking your hotel - you’re staying at the Carlton Hotel in the centre of Johannesburg. Stay there until you hear from me. One of our agents, Joseph, works at the hotel. He will help you if necessary, and will also give you my messages. OK?’

‘Yes,’ Monika replied.

‘Very well, then,’ Blom said, and took two small bags from his jacket pocket. ‘Here’s something for you.’

‘What are they?’ Monika asked.

‘Presents,’ Blom replied with a laugh.

Monika opened the first bag. It felt hard. It was a Walkman - quite an expensive one.

‘Well,’ Monika said. ‘Thank you!’

The second bag was softer and Monika opened it carefully. It felt like something to wear. Monika took the present out. It was a blue bikini. Monika looked at the bikini in surprise. She laughed.

Blom took the bikini from her and held up the top half.

‘Do you see this?’ he asked.

‘Yes,’ replied Monika. ‘It’s a bikini top.’

‘Yes, but it is also a radio,’ said Blom. ‘There are very small wires in the top which catch sounds. The sounds are sent to the Walkman. When you wear the bikini and listen to the Walkman you can hear people’s conversations from twenty metres away.’

‘Well,’ Monika said, ‘of course I’ll take it, but I’m going to work, not lie on the beach!’

‘Take it with you anyway,’ Blom said. ‘We know Vitjord stays at the Carlton Hotel sometimes. And there is a swimming pool at the hotel.’

‘All right,’ she said and put the Walkman and bikini in her bag. She looked at her watch. ‘I must go.’

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