Ginny. ( Part 3)

green eyes

It was 2.30pm, and on a Friday I knew exactly where Uncle Ted would be. The Stanley Arms in Bermondsey. It was a tradition. The pub put on food and live music from 2.00pm every Friday and all pensioners drank for free. All paid for by Uncle Ted and his mates, who were the local “faces”.

The journey took forty five minutes and as I drove through the Rotherhithe Tunnel I couldn’t help but wonder if Uncle Ted knew anything about Ginny Nolan. If he did he would surely also know about Bobby. Ted was dads’ younger brother by four years. They were close. But close enough for dad to confide in him about his secret? I wasn’t sure.

I parked the car outside one of Uncle Teds “lock ups” and walked the short distance to the pub. I could hear a piano playing and people singing well before I got there. I opened the door and at 3.15 on a Friday afternoon the pub was heaving. On stage was a pianist and a drummer playing “It had to be you” a particular favourite of dads. At least eight old couples were dancing and singing at the same time. Then I heard a familiar voice.

“Well, well, well. Here he is! The pride of the east end. My favourite nephew!”

Uncle Ted was standing at the bar looking immaculate in his dark grey suit. His thick silver hair was slicked back. He had on a blue shirt and red tie and the shiniest black shoes I’d ever seen.  His arms were outstretched and his smile was as wide as the Thames itself. I walked over and hugged him. Although he was seventy nine years of age his arms held me in a vice like grip for a full thirty seconds.

He let me go, took a step back and looked me up and down.

“Look at you. The spitting image of your old man. Good to see you Tommy.”

Uncle Ted introduced me to his mates. All in their seventies, all dressed as though they were going to a posh wedding.

“This is my brothers’ boy, Tommy. He’s from the other side. But he’s okay apart from the fact he supports West Ham.”

There was a chorus of boos and jeers. This was a staunch Millwall area and The Stanley Arms was a Millwall pub. I just shrugged my shoulders and laughed. So did everyone else. The ice was broken. I offered to buy a round of drinks. The group fell silent. Uncle Ted put his arm around me.

“Don’t embarrass yourself son. You’re in my manor and we have to abide by the Bermondsey Rules. We buy the drinks. When we come to your manor…you buy the drinks. Them’s the rules.”

Uncle Ted said it with a smile on his face. But I knew he was serious. These men lived by certain rules.

“So what you having?”

I was tempted but I’d already had two gin and tonics and I had to drive home.

“Just a coke. I’ve got the car with me.”

Uncle Ted shook his head.

“Fuck that. Leave the car here. I’ll get you a cab home and get one of the boys to drop your car off in the morning. Deal?”

I loved my Uncle Ted. Whatever the problem, he always seemed to have the solution.


No one was drinking beer. It was all top shelf and all doubles. I ordered a scotch, Uncle Ted led me to a quiet part of the pub.

“So come on then. Why you here? You in trouble? Need a bit of money to tide you over?”

That was typical Uncle Ted. Always the first to put his hand in his pocket. Always the first to step up.

“No. Nothing like that. I was hoping you could help me get some information. Do you remember a Ginny Nolan?”

Uncle Ted frowned. It was obvious he knew the name but I could tell by his face that he wasn’t sure where from. Then he clicked his fingers.

“Nice girl. Green eyes. Worked with your dad. I think he might have had a soft spot for her if you know what I mean. I met her a couple of times when I was out with your dad at some of his work dos. Why?”

He was sincere. He obviously didn’t know the full story. I quickly made up a story.

“I bumped into her today. Got talking about dad and the old days. Seems she’s not well. Might not have long, maybe a few months that’s all. But she’s got a son and she hasn’t seen him in years. She’d really like to see him before she pops her clogs and has asked me to help if I can. I’ve got all his details. Seems he’s been a bit of a rascal. Done a bit of time so he should be easy to track down. I wondered if you knew anyone who might be able to help?”

I took a piece of paper out of my pocket and gave it to Uncle Ted. It had on it everything Ginny had told me about Bobby. He looked at it, turned and gestured over to one of his mates.

“Jack. Come here. Need your help with something.”

I recognised Jack Simpson. He’d done more time inside prison than out. In the mid seventies he was on the front page of every daily newspaper.  His nickname was slasher and not because he pissed a lot! Now he was an elderly gentleman and lived off his reputation. But…you still wouldn’t want to be on the wrong side of him. Just like Uncle Ted he was dressed smartly in a dark suit, white shirt and blue tie. I noticed his hands. He had a gold ring on every finger including two big chunky sovereigns. Uncle Ted gave him the paper.

“Can you find out where this kid is Jack?”

He looked at it for a few seconds then put it in his pocket.

“Easy Ted. Might take a couple of hours but I’ll make some calls. Always easier if they’ve done a bit of time. He’d have had to have an address to go to before being released. Then they’ll be a probation officer who he’ll have to report to on a regular basis. I’ll sort it.”

Uncle Ted shook his hand.

“Thanks Jack.”

Slasher turned and walked away. But then he stopped and looked back at us and casually asked.

“Do you want him hurt?”

Ted smiled.

“No Jack, nothing like that. Just doing someone a favour.”

Jack Simpson shrugged his shoulders and walked back to the bar.


Ginny. ( Part 2)

green eyes

I heard her say the words but I found it difficult to comprehend them. For some reason I took my hand away from hers.

“Sorry Ginny. Did you say you and Dad have a son?”

She put her hand to her mouth. I could see her green eyes begin to water.

“I’m sorry Tommy. I shouldn’t have said anything. I know it’s a shock. Perhaps I should leave.”

She stood up and started to button up her coat. I didn’t want her to go. Not yet.

“Sit down Ginny. I’m fine, really. Just shocked that’s all. You sit down and I’ll get us another couple of drinks.”

She sat back down and I went to the bar. I returned with two more G&T’s.  I could see she was apprehensive so I decided to break the ice once more.

“You really are one for surprises Ginny. I think we deserve these drinks so take a sip and then tell me all about your son Bobby. My brother.”

She did as I asked. She took a large swig of her Gin and Tonic and then told me the story.

“Bobby was born in 1979. Let me tell you straightaway Tommy it wasn’t my idea. As soon as I knew I was pregnant I was adamant that I’d have an abortion but your dad was having none of it. He really wanted the baby. You were all grown up by then, getting married if I remember correctly?”

She was right. I got married in 1979 at the age of twenty one. Only lasted a few years, no kids, thank god. I nodded and gestured for her to carry on.

“It was difficult, what with me having a full time job and your dad only being able to visit a couple of times a week. But somehow we got through it.”

It was all coming back to me. Back in 1979 Dad started doing long haulage. He kept saying they could do with the extra money. But he’d be away two or three nights per week. Mum hated him being away but he did it for six or seven years then went back to local jobs. Ginny was still talking and I heard her say something about prison.

“Sorry Ginny what was that last bit?”

She stopped in mid sentence then repeated.

“Bobby went to prison in 2006. Broke your Dads heart it did.”

Just when I thought things couldn’t get any weirder they just did.

“What did he go to prison for?”

She seemed a little embarrassed to tell me. Her voice trembled as she said the words.

“He got involved with a bad crowd. They held up a Building Society in Walthamstow. Used replica guns. They got caught and all sentenced to ten years.”

I was doing the sums in my head. Bobby gets done for armed robbery in 2006, the same year Dad had a heart attack and died. When she said it broke his heart she was right. It did. There was one thing I desperately needed to know.

“When did Bobby get sentenced exactly in 2006?”

I could see Ginny thinking. She spoke softly, it was as if she didn’t want me to know.

“March, the twenty sixth.”

Fuck me. Everything was now falling into place. My dad was the fittest, strongest man I’d ever known. Never a day sick in his life. Looked twenty years younger than his age. Yet at the start of 2006 he changed. He suddenly looked old. In April of that year he had a massive heart attack and was dead before he hit the ground. Just seventy three years of age. Know I knew why.  Because of this fucker Bobby. My half brother.  Ginny could see I was angry.

“Don’t blame Bobby. Your Dad was already complaining of chest pains a year before he died. I tried to get him to go to the doctors but he just wouldn’t. Kept saying it was just indigestion.”

I played it down.

“I know Ginny. No one is to blame. That’s life, as Dad would say. So where is Bobby now? Not still locked up?”

I could see that Ginny was relieved.

“No, he was released four years ago in 2013. Served seven years out of his ten. I visited him regularly while he was away. Wandsworth then Bedford then Peterborough. I went as often as I could. But one day I turned up and they said he had been released. I haven’t seen him in five years now.”

Now she cried. All the talk about Dad and never a tear. But talking about Bobby made her tearful. My mind was racing. I knew what I had to do.

“So you’ve no idea of where he is now? Where he’s living? What he’s doing?”

She was wiping her eyes with a tissue as she spoke.

“No. Nothing. Not a word since that day. I miss him so much.”

I put my arm around her and she cried into my shoulder. We stayed like that for a few minutes before she broke away and finished her drink. Her green eyes not so green anymore.

“Look Ginny. Maybe I can help. I have a mate. A good mate who’s quite senior in the Police. I’ll get him to do some digging. Maybe I can find out where Bobby is. Help him out if he’s in any trouble. I mean…I have to…he’s my brother after all.”

It was a lie, but she beleived me and threw her arms aroung my neck.

“Oh thank you Tommy. I’d love that. You really are a good boy. Just like your dad always said you were.”

We talked for another fifteen minutes. Ginny told me everything she could about Bobby. She even had his National Insurance number written down in a small notebook that she kept in her bag. I offered to give her a lift home but she wanted to take the bus and do some shopping at Asda on her way back. I collected my car and drove home. Just one thought on my mind.

I needed to find this fucker. This scum bag Bobby. This thirty eight year old bastard who’d been the cause of my father’s death.

I needed to see Uncle Ted from “the other side”.  Uncle Ted was a “face” in South London and if anyone would know how to find Bobby he ‘d be the man.


Ginny. ( Part 1)

green eyes

My mother and father were married for almost sixty years. He’s been gone now since 2006 and Mum in 2010. Here’s the strange part. Though they were together in life for all that time, in death they are miles apart. Let me explain.

Dad wanted to be buried with his family. By his family I mean his mum and dad and his brother, all in the same plot. Mum on the other hand wanted to be cremated. She couldn’t bear the thought of her body rotting away in the ground. The Cemetery and the Crematorium are fifteen miles apart.

I’m not one for visiting graves. My thoughts are straightforward. When you’re gone, you’re gone.  No point in standing and looking at a piece of marble. But this day was different.

The MOT on my car was due and I took it to a local garage to get it done. The mechanic said I could wait but he had a couple of cars to do before mine, so he’d be an hour or so.  I decided to have a “wander”. The Cemetery was only a few minutes walk away and I thought I’d go and see Dads grave. I hadn’t been there since the day we put him in the ground.

It took me about twenty minutes before I found him. As I approached the family plot I noticed an old lady laying flowers beside the headstone. She was smartly dressed for an old girl. I was guessing she was around eighty. Silver hair, bobbed and well cut, not the blue rinse brigade.  She had on a long navy blue coat with a fur collar. I was guessing that back in the day she was a real stunner. I had to ask the question.

“Excuse me, did you know any of my family?”

I startled her. She took two steps back. I felt guilty so I apologised.

“Sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you. It’s just that I saw you laying flowers.”

She stood back and looked me up and down.


I smiled at her. She knew my name. Obviously she was some kind of distant Aunt. Dad was one of six and Nan and granddad had more brothers and sisters between them than the Waltons. I don’t have enough fingers and toes to count how many cousins I have.  I nodded and smiled.

“Yeh. You one of dad’s cousins from the other side?”

“The other side” was an expression all the family used when referring to someone from the other side of the Thames. Dad’s family were originally from Bermondsey which is south of the Thames. When he met Mum they moved to East London, which is north of the Thames, where they lived for the rest of their lives. That’s where I was born. So we were a very large family split by a stretch of water. The lady grinned.

“I haven’t heard that expression for a very long time. I was just a friend of your Dads.”

The way she said the word “friend” had a slight sarcasm to it. Just as my brain began to absorb the information she continued.

“He spoke of you a lot. He was very proud of you.”

That stunned me. Dad never showed me any real affection when he was alive. He wasn’t that sort of man. He was more of the strong, silent type. Yeh, I knew he loved me but the words were never said. I stepped forward and shook her hand.

“Nice to meet you. Well, you have the advantage. You know my name. You are?”

For some reason she said the words slowly.

“Virginia Nolan. But everyone knows me as Ginny.”

I knew the name. When I was about eight or nine, I sat at the top of the stairs and listened to Mum and Dad having one of their “ding dongs”. I heard mum shout “I bet you’ve been with that fucking slut Ginny Nolan again.”

Now things fell into place. This old lady was Dads girlfriend.

I wasn’t sure how I should react. Should I be angry? To be honest I’ve not been too great in the faithful marriage department myself, so I politely smiled.

“Nice to meet you Ginny.”

We both stood there in silence for a few minutes just staring at the headstone. Neither of us really sure what to say next. I decided to break the silence.

“Do you live local Ginny?”

“East Ham. Just a short Bus ride away. Only takes about half an hour.”

“How often do you visit?”

“Once a month. Usually on a Friday.”

I felt a bit guilty. He was my Dad, my flesh and blood and this was the only time I’d been here in eleven years. This old girl made the journey every four weeks. They’d obviously been VERY close. I wanted to know more but didn’t want to make it too obvious.

“Did you work with Dad?”

She nodded and looked at me. It was then that I noticed her eyes. They were a bright vibrant green and in the mid afternoon sunlight they seemed to sparkle and shine. I’d never seen eyes that colour before.

“Yes, we worked together at Ludlows Haulage. I used to do all the wages for the Drivers. I was still there when your dad retired in 1998. The whole company clubbed together and bought him a gold watch.”

I pulled up the sleeve of my shirt and showed it to her.

“I know. I wear it every day.”

For a brief moment I thought she was going to cry. But within a few seconds she composed herself.

“That’s nice. He would have liked the fact that you’re wearing it. He always referred to you as My Tommy.”

Now it was my turn to have a lump in my throat. I pulled down the sleeve of my shirt and took a big breath.

“Look Ginny, there’s a pub across the road. Fancy a tea? Or coffee?”

Those big green eyes once again stared at me.

“Sod that Tommy. I’d love a gin and tonic.”

She held my arm as we walked to the pub. For some reason it didn’t feel strange. It felt natural. I sat her at a table by the window and went to get the drinks. I returned a few minutes later with two large Gin and Tonics. She took a sip and once again those green eyes seem to come alive.

“One of lifes great pleasures. A good G&T with lots of ice and a slice of lemon.”

I couldn’t disagree. Dad used to say the same thing. He was never a big drinker, but on special occasions he did love a gin and tonic.

I could sense that she was waiting for me to ask the questions so I took the lead.

“Tell me about you and Dad. Look, I know this may be awkward but I’m a big boy now, you can tell me. I loved Mum but I also loved my Dad and I knew that he had…a thing…with someone called Ginny. I’m guessing that was you?”

I smiled as I said the words, trying to make the situation more comfortable.

She took a big gulp of her G&T and then sat back in her chair. She seemed more relaxed than before.

“Oh Tommy. I’m so glad that you understand. I never meant to come between your Mum and Dad. It just sort of happened.”

I shrugged my shoulders.

“That’s life.”

She laughed.

“Another one of your Dad’s sayings.  I remember the time when we went to the pictures together to see a James Bond film. We were both really looking forward to it and the bloody projectionist was taken ill half way through and we all had to leave. I was livid, but your Dad just looked at me and said those exact same words.”

We both laughed and drank our G&T’s. Both comfortable in our own company. I had a million questions that I wanted to ask but decided to take my time. But there was one question I just had to know the answer to.

“How long were you and Dad…together?”

She went silent for a few seconds, I could see that she was working something out in her head.

“Well, we met in 1968 and we were…together, until the day he died. So thirty eight years.”

I was taken aback at this revelation. I thought she’d been a fling, a sort of romance for a few years, maybe on and off, but thirty eight years? That was a life time. I tried to hide my surprise and carried on.

“How did you meet?”

Once again those big green eyes came alive. It was obvious she wanted to tell me her story.

“I worked in the cafe on the old London Road. Your dad used to stop there and have his breakfast most days on his way out to Southend. We got talking, as you do, and pretty soon we became mates. Nothing more back them. Just mates.”

She emphasised the works JUST MATES. It was as if she was trying to tell me that it was a gradual thing. I was eager for more information.

“So how did you end up working with him at Ludlows?”

This eighty year old lady suddenly became like a school girl. Eager to tell me.

“I was studying book keeping at night school.  I told your dad all about it. He said that Ludlows were looking for someone in their accounts department and he’d put in a good word for me. He took my name and address and the next thing I know I’ve got an interview. I got the job!”

There was one more question that I just had to know the answer to.

“And you Ginny? Were you ever married?”

She shook her head and for a second her smiled disappeared.

“No Tommy. Your dad was the only man ever in my life.”

She paused for a few seconds and stared at me. It was as if she was wondering whether to tell me something else. Then she continued.

“Well, apart from Bobby.”

I was intrigued. Maybe Dad wasn’t the only affair that Ginny had. I didn’t want to pry but I wanted to know the answer.

“And who’s Bobby?”

She put down her Gin and Tonic, leaned over and took my hand.

“Bobby is your brother. Well, your half brother. Me and your Dad had a son.”


Missing Years. ( Part 37) Final.


Before James Conroy could say another word he heard the sound of a door opening behind him, it was Eddie. He was looking down at Ray’s body. James put his arm around him.

“It’s for the best Eddie, he never was your Ray. You do know that don’t you?”

Eddie was shaking but still holding his beloved Bible.

“Yes, I know, but I so wanted it to be, I missed him so much.”

Eddie knelt down beside Ray and made the sign of the cross on his forehead. He said a prayer.

“Please God, take this young man into your care, cherish him just as I have and keep him safe until we can all be re-united again. Rest in peace son.”

Eddie stood up, then went to the kitchen to get a bandage for James’s hand.

When he was out of sight, Spencer looked at James.

“What the fuck happened here? One minute I was with you, Eddie and Stacey, the next I was kneeling beside the body of Ray Samuels.”

James Conroy put his hand on Spencer’s shoulder.

“Believe it or not, that was five hours ago.”

Before Spencer could say another word, Eddie reappeared with the bandage. He gave it to James who wrapped it tightly around his hand. Spencer dialled 999 and requested an ambulance. As soon as this was done he spoke to James and Eddie.

“Okay. Let’s get our story straight. We were here to talk to Ray about the thirty minute strike. We were in the kitchen when we heard a noise from the living room, when we came in Ray was on the floor. If you think about it, it’s not that far from the truth.”

They agreed, while they waited Eddie replaced the light bulbs that had shattered earlier, the house looked back to normal. The ambulance arrived and took Ray’s body away. Spencer went back to the station to write up his report exactly as they’d agreed. He quickly made arrangements for a press conference at nine o’clock that morning.

At exactly eight fifty five, DCI Spencer walked into the packed press room and took his seat. Next to him were Eddie and Stacey Samuels. He stood up and started to read from the notes in front of him.

“I will now read out a short statement regarding Ray Samuels, after which I will take one or two questions.”

He cleared his throat and continued.

“At approximately three forty five this morning Ray Samuels suffered a major heart attack. Both I and his father Eddie tried to resuscitate him but sadly Ray passed away. We had been discussing the thirty minute peaceful protest at the time and Ray had agreed to take a different course of action. Instead of stopping work for thirty minutes he had decided that it would be much more beneficial if people donated thirty minutes of their hourly wage to the new Ray Samuels Foundation for the homeless. The family of Ray Samuels have asked for privacy at this time so that they can come to terms with their loss. As soon as the funeral arrangements are made we will let everyone know. I will now take just a few questions.”

A reporter from a national daily newspaper was the first to shout out.

“Is there anything more known about where Mister Samuels had been and why he hadn’t aged?”

Spencer spoke slowly and calmly.

“Yes, Mister Samuels had recently been through some Hypnotherapy, it appears that he had suffered some kind of trauma back in 1982, work related we believe, the stress of his highly complex job,  had caused him to have a complete breakdown, his brain simply shut down his memory making him believe that he had no past, we also know now that Ray was suffering from a form of reverse progeria, where the inner body ages as normal but the outer body, such as his appearance stays the same or slows right down, obviously we are hoping that the autopsy will give us more information about his rare condition.”

Another reporter shouted out.

“So where has he been for twenty two years?”

“Unfortunately we never got that far with the Hypnotherapy, we were so close to finding out, I can only hope that as time goes by people will come forward and remember Ray being at a certain place at a certain time. Now thank you all for coming, we will give more information out as it becomes available.”

Spencer closed his folder, people were still shouting out questions, but Spencer ignored them and walked out of the press room.

Over the next few days, details were given out for the Ray Samuels Foundation. It raised over six million pounds in seventy two hours.

The funeral was held the following Friday in Upminster, Ray would be cremated.

In the front row of the small chapel were Eddie, Laura and Stacey Samuels along with James Conroy and DCI Spencer. The chapel was full, outside hundreds more had gathered to hear the service. After the Vicar had said a few kind words about Ray, Eddie Samuels stood up and began his speech.

“My son Ray was special, very special. He was a kind and considerate man and we all loved him, but he was not the new Christ as I have read lately in some newspapers. The Bible tells us in Revelations, Behold he cometh with Clouds and every eye shall see him, Ray did not come from out of the sky and not everyone witnessed his return, Matthew twenty four tells us quite clearly about false Christ’s, If any man shall say unto you, look there is Christ, believe him not, for there shall arise false Christ’s and false prophets who will show great signs of wonder, they shall deceive the very elect. No, Ray was just a man, but a very special man.”

Eddie sat down; Stacey put her arm around him and held him close.

James Conroy knew exactly what Eddie was talking about, but he’d also done his homework, the Bible also said that false gods will appear just before the arrival of the new true God, James couldn’t help but wonder if something amazing was about to happen.

The funeral ended and people drifted off. Spencer walked with Stacey and Eddie to their car.

“Don’t be strangers okay?”

Stacey laughed.

“You have become like a part of the family now, you and James, I’ll call you in a couple of weeks and perhaps we can all go out for a meal or something?”

Spencer smiled.

“I’d like that.”

His phone rang, he looked embarrassed, he thought he’d turned it off. Stacey just smiled and she and Eddie got into the car and drove away. Spencer answered the call. It was his new boss.

“Yes Sir?”

“Has it all finished Spencer?”

“Yes Sir.”

“Good, get back to the station now, bring Conroy with you.”

“Yes Sir.”

Spencer found James and the two of them drove back to Romford Police Station, both wondering what was so urgent. Spencer entered his new boss’s office. Ron Chandler was the new man in charge.

“Sit down the two of you.”

He had an abrupt voice, obviously ex-military.

“What I am going to tell you, only five other people know and one of those is the Home Secretary, it goes no further than this room, understand?”

They both agreed.

“Certain people higher up the food chain than me didn’t want you to be involved, but I know that you’ve both been extremely close to this case and I believe we can trust you. Ray Samuels body was taken first to the hospital then to the coroner’s office just down the road, because of the sensitive nature of this case, we had two people outside the room at all times.”

He paused for a few seconds then continued.

“Ray Samuels’s body went missing two days ago.”

Spencer looked at James in disbelief, then back to Ron Chandler.

“But what about the funeral, who have we just buried?”

“No one Spencer, the coffin was full of sand!”


Eddie Samuels died in 2012, he was eighty two. Both Laura and Stacey were at his side when he passed.

Stacey Samuels married in 2010. Her husband was a good looking, blonde haired man called Roy. They now have two children. The eldest is a boy. She called him Ray.

James Conroy retired to Berkshire in 2014. He bought an old Mill House in Hungerford complete with its own Trout Stream. He can be seen fishing most days.

Albert Spencer is still working. He gained promotion after the Ray Samuels case and is now Chief Superintendent for the Metropolitan Police.


April 27th 2017. James Conroy is fishing on his own private trout stream when his mobile rings. He answers it. He recognised the voice straightaway.

“James, it’s happening again. Elyas Ramus was just born in Syria. It appears that his father had some kind of vision!”

Before Spencer could say another word James Conroy had packed up his rod and line. He knew retirement was over. He simply said. “I’m on my way.”





Missing Years. ( Part 36)


James Conroy and Eddie Samuels were getting ready to return to Eddie’s house. James knew it was important to prepare Eddie for the confrontation that was ahead of them.

“We must be prepared for everything Eddie, remember, deception will be their biggest weapon, they will make you doubt your actions, but you must be strong, when you speak it has to be a command, just as you did when they came to the house earlier.”

“I’m fine James. I just want all this to be over, what started out as a celebration has quickly turned into a nightmare.”

James Conroy put his arm around Eddie.

“I understand Eddie, not long now.”

Eddie grabbed his beloved Bible and kissed it before putting it into his inside pocket. Stacey gave him a hug, then looked at James, she gave him a kiss on the cheek and whispered in his ear.

“Please bring him back safe Mr Conroy.”

James smiled and whispered back “I will, don’t worry Stacey, he’s stronger than you think.”

The short journey back to Eddie’s house was spent in silence. Both men apprehensive about what would confront them when they returned. As they pulled in to the turning, all was quiet. It was three fifteen in the morning. The journalists outside were asleep in their cars and the house was in darkness. James parked his car well away from the house and walked with Eddie up the pathway. Eddie turned the key in the lock and they both walked into the dark and silence. The damp smell was still there, James could see there was a small light on in the kitchen. Eddie took a deep breath and pushed open the kitchen door, closely followed by James.

There, sitting at the kitchen table was Ray Samuels, a cup of coffee in his hand and a warm smile upon his face.

“Hello Dad, wasn’t sure if you were coming back tonight. Is Stacey okay?”

Eddie was taken aback, this was his old Ray, the son he dearly loved, gone was the monster that he’d seen earlier in the day, that had frightened him to the core.

Eddie and James sat down at the table.

“Yeh, she’s fine Ray, you all alone, where’s the others?”

“Oh, Mr Garner, the Policeman, left some time ago and Trevor’s in the spare room. I hope that’s okay Dad? I felt a bit sorry for him, he said he had nowhere else to go.”

“That’s fine Ray. Just remind me… how do you know Trevor?”

Ray shrugged his shoulders.

“If I’m honest Dad I’m not sure, I just do, maybe I met him while I was away, whatever it was, I feel close to him, like a brother, doesn’t really make much sense does it?”

Eddie was starting to relax, this was his Ray again, softly spoken, kind, considerate, polite, all the things that Eddie recognised. Maybe, just maybe, he and James had got this whole situation completely wrong.

“Lots of things don’t make sense anymore Ray, that’s why I think it’s important that we talk. That’s why I’ve brought along my friend James Conroy. He’s sort of a specialist in this kind of thing. I thought he might be able to understand what’s going on. Is that okay Ray?”

Ray smiled and gently squeezed his fathers hand.

“Nice to meet you Mister Conroy, although I’m not too sure if I can help. But I’ll try.”

Eddie took the Bible out of his pocket and placed it on the table. Ray sat back in his chair, he suddenly looked uncomfortable.

“Still carrying that old thing about then Dad?”

James and Eddie noticed a change in Ray’s voice, the tone was different, the words he spoke were full of sarcasm. Eddie didn’t react he just continued to speak in his usual soft manner.

“You know me Ray, it’s never far from my side. You should never be too far away from the word of God.”

Ray’s face became a rich red colour, it was if a great rage was building inside him. His words were mocking his father.

“Oh yes, your beloved God, the thing that you’ve spent your whole life worshipping. Was it all worth it Dad? He took Mum away from you before her time didn’t he, yet you still pray to him? You should have gotten rid of him when she went, you loved her Dad didn’t you, yet he still took her, took her away for no reason, maybe he’s not so good after all?”

Eddie was surprised at the words that were coming out of Ray’s mouth. In seconds he’d changed from the softly spoken boy that he loved so much to a person full of venomous hatred. A person he no longer recognised. Eddie looked at him, it was as if he was now speaking to a stranger.

“Why do you hate him so much? You weren’t even here when she passed. Why are you so angry at him?”

Ray stood up from the table and looked at the ceiling.

“Because he’s a liar, a thief that comes in the night and takes people away yet you all still follow him, you’re all being betrayed but none of you can see it, what do they call it Blind Faith?”

Rays voice was getting louder and taking a lower pitch. Conroy wanted to keep the momentum going.

“Yes Ray that’s what it’s called and your Dad has it, he has complete and utter faith in his god and God’s love, he is protected by the blood of the lamb.”

Rays eyes started to bulge in his head, he banged the table hard with his fists.

“He is a weak old man, that’s all. He is no match for us!”

The light in the kitchen went out and the room was plunged into darkness, both Eddie and James were aware of shapes within the room. Eddie stood up, took hold of his bible and shouted at the top of his voice.

“Show yourselves, I command you, show yourselves or are you too scared of this old man and his love of Christ?”

The room became light again and there in front of Eddie were three figures, Ray Samuels, Trevor Wilson and Colin Garner, their faces distorted in anger, their jaws protruded and madness in their eyes. They seemed to have grown taller than they were before. The damp smell was now so strong that James eyes started to water and sting. The three of them looked like a pack of wolves that were about to pounce on their prey.

James Conroy took a step back, he feared for his life, he picked up a carving knife from the draining board and held it out like a weapon for protection.

Garner threw back his head and started to laugh, it was a horrible sound like someone scraping their nails down a blackboard, the screech became a wail.

“Your weapon will do you no good here Conroy.”

As he said these words, the knife slipped out of James’s hand backwards, gouging a deep cut into his palm, blood begun to pour from the wound.

This time the other two joined in the screaming laugh. Eddie shouted.

“It is he that commands you, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, be gone, I command you in the name of Jesus, it is he that commands you, it is he that wants you gone, now go.”

The three demons stood their ground but the wailing had stopped and there was silence.

Eddie kept on, saying the words over and over again.

“I command you in the name of Jesus Christ, be gone, leave this place.”


Eddie said the same thing for over five minutes, until he ran out of breath, his chest felt heavy, he was exhausted. Then there was a sound, a woman’s voice softly speaking from behind him.

“It’s okay darling, it’s fine, Rays back now, he loves you, just as I do, I miss you Ted.”

The only person that ever called him Ted was his late wife Edith. He recognised the voice.

“Edith, is that you?”

Eddie was staring at the kitchen door.

“Of course Ted, take my hand, come with me, we’ll be together again for always, you me and Ray just like old times.”

Conroy grabbed Eddie’s arm.

“It’s not her Eddie, it’s just deception, like we talked about.”

Eddie wasn’t convinced.

“But I can see her, it’s my Edith, it’s definitely her.”

Conroy was shouting.

“No Eddie it’s not, it’s them they’re trying to confuse you, you must carry on, come on Eddie we’re so close!”

Eddie had tears rolling down his face, he missed his wife so much and had dreamed of being re-united with her, but he knew James was right he had to continue. Once again he raised his Bible.

“It is the power of Christ that commands you, the power of his love and the faith that we have in him as our redeemer, it is in his name that we command you, be gone.”

He said it loud, over and over again. Every light bulb in the house exploded at the same time, the windows began to shake, the whole house seemed to vibrate. James held on tightly to the table until he could stand no more, he felt as though he was on a roller coaster. Eddie fell to the floor totally exhausted.

James was the first to gather himself, Eddie was lying a few feet away, lifeless, but still holding his beloved Bible tightly to his chest. James crawled over to Eddie.

“Eddie, Eddie can you hear me, come on Eddie, keep with me, please keep with me.”

Eddie Samuels was on his side, he eyes were closed and his head was bleeding from the fall.

“Come on Eddie, I made Stacey a promise, come on, please Eddie.”

James Conroy was covered in blood, he wasn’t sure if it was his or Eddies. He gently shook him. Very slowly Eddie opened his eyes.

“What’s….what’s…happened… it over?”

“I think so Eddie, for now anyway.”

James heard a noise coming from the room next door; he picked up the carving knife and moved slowly. Eddie was weak, too weak to stand.

“Be careful James, there’s a torch in the cupboard behind you.”

James grabbed the torch from the cupboard then opened the kitchen door, moved slowly in the blackness along the hallway and entered the living room. He was aware of someone crouching by the fireplace.  He shone the torch.

“Who’s there?”

A voice answered.

“James? It’s Spencer.”


“Yes, Ray Samuels is dead.”

James Conroy could see Spencer in the light of the torch, he was crouching beside the body of a man, he recognised the body…it was Ray Samuels.


Missing Years. ( Part 35)


Eddie looked surprised, he understood what James Conroy was saying about The Blood of the Lamb, but it still didn’t make sense.

“But how can we get holy blood, it doesn’t exist… does it?”

“No Eddie, once again it’s not meant literally. Have a look at the book of John chapter one what does John call Jesus?”

Eddie didn’t need to look in his Bible he knew this off by heart.

“In verse twenty nine it says, John seeth Jesus coming unto him and saith behold the Lamb of God who hath taken away the sins of the world.”

Conroy nodded.

“Correct, so we know that Jesus is the Lamb of God because it’s written in the scriptures. So the Blood of the Lamb must be the blood of Jesus, correct?

Eddie agreed.

“Yes, without doubt.”

“So we can defeat demons with the blood of the lamb, which means the blood of Jesus.”

Eddie was still confused.

“But once again I have to say where do we get the blood of Jesus?”

James Conroy was keen for Eddie to find the answer himself.

“Eddie, it’s not meant literally, have you heard the expression of Being Under The Blood?”

Eddie nodded.

“Yes of course it means being under gods care and protection.”

“Exactly, it comes from being under the sign of the blood. Which was the blood of a Lamb that was painted on certain doors to stop the plague from killing the firstborn, if you were under the sign of the blood then the angel of death wouldn’t get you, you were protected because you believed in God. So the Blood of the Lamb is Jesus’ blood and if you are under his blood you are protected and can defeat evil. It’s what the Bible tells us time and time again. You Eddie, are under the blood, not me, not Stacey, but you!”

Eddie thought long and hard then it was if a light bulb had been switched on in his head.

“So the word Blood could be replaced with…FAITH?”

Conroy was excited. Eddie Samuels now began to see the answers. But before he could continue Eddie began to doubt.

“But why me, why not any religious man?”

James Conroy had been waiting for this question and was glad that Eddie had asked it.

“Because you’re closest Eddie, tell me what it says in the book of Luke about father and son.”

Eddie didn’t hesitate.

“In Luke, ten, verse twenty two it says, no one knoweth who the son is, but the father, and to him the son will reveal himself.”

James didn’t let Eddie say anymore, he wanted to make a point.

“Think about it Eddie, the Bible is telling us that no one really knows who the son is but the father, then it goes on to say that the father will reveal who the son REALLY is!”

Eddie fell silent while he took in all the information. He’d never thought of that verse in that way, but James was right, it all made sense now.

Stacey had been sitting with them the whole time listening intently, but now she couldn’t stop herself from asking the question.

“James, can you please tell me what the hell you two are talking about?”

“Look Stacey, the Bible is telling us exactly what to do here. We know that the Blood of the Lamb defeats demons both in Heaven and here on earth, the Blood of the Lamb is just a figure of speech, it literally means FAITH in the belief of God, but it has to be total belief and that’s what Eddie has. It also tells us that only the father can truly reveal the son. Add all that up and it’s simple, Eddie has to be the one that confronts the demons.”

She still wasn’t convinced.

“James you say that as if it’s no big deal, exactly HOW do we do it?”

“Eddie has to go back to the house and confront them.”

Stacey was shocked.

“No way James, he’s seventy four, let me do it, I’ve always had faith!”

Conroy shook his head.

“But not total faith Stacey, when your Dad was missing, I bet there were times that you doubted, wondered why God had taken him, questioned if there was a god at all. I guarantee it. But Eddie never did, he always believed that God had taken him for a purpose and he never questioned it, because it was Gods will, he’s always had total faith.”

Stacey went quiet, James was right, there had been times when she’d hated God for taking her Dad, questioned her faith.  Eddie looked up and smiled.

“It’s okay sweetheart, James is right, only I can do this. The Bible tells me so. Tell me what to do James and I’ll do it but I have a feeling we have to be quick.”

Stacey moved over to her granddad and gave him a hug.

“I love you granddad, please be careful, come back to me…… please.”

Stacey left the two of them and went into the kitchen, where she dropped to her knees sobbing and praying all at the same time.

James went over and sat next to Eddie.

“There are certain words and phrases that you need to say Eddie, these may or may not be familiar to you but when you say them you must say them with complete authority.”

“Okay James, let’s get on with it and then I’ll leave. Perhaps there’s still time to help the Inspector.”

James smiled at Eddie and put his arm around him.

“Don’t think you’re getting all the fun on your own Eddie, I’m coming with you!”

Eddie was surprised, but also relieved.

“Thanks James.”

A few miles away, behind closed curtains, a very low voice was heard to say.

“We have to be prepared, they will be coming soon, but he’s old, he’ll be no match for our power!”



Missing Years. ( Part 34)


The three of them frantically searched the house for Spencer. But he was nowhere to be found. His car was still outside, his keys were on the table along with his phone. But he was gone.

Stacey was shaking.

“Mister Conroy, what do you think has happened to him?”

“I’m not sure Stacey, but I do think he’s alive…somewhere. If they’d wanted to kill him they would have done so here and now.”

“But why him, why Spencer?”

“My guess is that he was the weakest of the four of us, your dad’s faith was too strong, that protected him and you. I had on a crucifix that my mother gave me, I suppose that protected me, which just left Spencer, by his own admission he had no faith.”

Eddie Samuels was eager to know how they should proceed.

“So Mr Conroy how do we do this?”

James Conroy had his own thoughts but wanted Eddie to come to the same conclusion. He knew it would be important that Eddie had total belief in what he would be asked to do. He picked up a copy of an early eighteenth century Bible. He started flicking through the pages. He looked at Eddie Samuels.

“I know quite a lot about Exorcism Eddie but this is a bit different. We aren’t talking about possession of living people here, we’re dealing with demons that have entered lifeless bodies, so we need to approach it in a different way. I’m convinced that we’ll find the answer somewhere in the Bible, it may not be straight forward but I’m sure it’s there somewhere. You Eddie, know the Bible better than anyone I’ve ever met before.”

“I’ll do my best Mr Conroy but I can’t think of anything in the great book that tells you how to get rid of the kind of demons that we’re talking about.”

“That’s where I come in Eddie, my job is to interpret the Bible differently than the written word. Let me give you an example, Genesis, chapter six, one of the most misunderstood chapters in the Bible. You know it Eddie?”

“Of course, it’s the chapter where God tells Noah to build an Ark.”

“That’s right Eddie but do you know why?”

Eddie was confident he knew the answer.

“That’s easy, because man had become corrupt and sinned.”

Conroy agreed.

“You’re right Eddie but in verse four the Bible says that there were GIANTS that roamed the earth in those days and daughters of men bore them children, agreed?”

Eddie wasn’t sure about the word GIANTS. He quickly flicked through his beloved Polyglott Bible, he read and looked surprised.

“You’re right. I’d never noticed that before!”

Conroy smiled.

“Not many people do Eddie, we now believe that when the Bible talks of giants they mean Demons, so Demons were among men even in the earliest days, they bred with human women and because of this the world became corrupted, that’s why god demanded that everyone who was not part of Noah’s family blood line be killed in the floods.”

Eddie smiled, he had never thought of that chapter in that way before.

James Conroy continued.

“That’s not all Eddie, also in verse four it says that Giants roamed the earth in those days and ALSO AFTER THAT. That last bit is just as important, it implies that the floods didn’t kill the demons after all, it implies that they were still around afterwards as well. Which means that they have always been amongst us, do you now see what I mean about interpretation?”

Eddie was impressed with James Conroy, he’d read the Bible more times than he cared to remember but this was something else, something really clever.

“Mr Conroy you have just opened up a whole new world for me.”

James was eager to carry on.

“Eddie what do you know about the book of Revelations.”

“It’s the final book of the New Testament, it should be called The Revelation of St. John the Divine, it is the revelation of Jesus Christ and was written to show future events, paths to heaven, overall to give followers an insight into God and Jesus.”

James Conroy smiled and nodded his head.

“Sort of, it mentions The Blood of the Lamb many times, what do you make of that?”

“Well the Lamb is obviously Christ and people can be cleansed by drinking his blood as Catholics do when they drink wine, which is a symbol of Christ’s blood, during Holy Communion.”

“All correct, but it goes much deeper than that. It was Lambs blood that was painted on Jews doors to stop the last plague from killing their first born. It is known as the Passover. The plague literally passed over the doors that had Lambs blood on them. In pagan times Lambs were sacrificed to god to save the people from any harm coming to them. In a similar way Jesus’ blood was spilt when he was crucified, like a sacrificial lamb, and the blood that was spilled was to clean us of our sins.”

Once again Eddie was impressed, then he remembered something.

“Mr Conroy, it is mentioned again in Revelations Chapter Twelve.”

Eddie quickly flicked through his Bible, found the page and read aloud.

“There was war in Heaven, and the great Dragon was cast out, and the serpent, called the Devil and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world was cast out unto the earth and his angels were cast out with him. And they overcame him with The Blood of the Lamb!”

James Conroy smiled, it was exactly what he wanted Eddie to find.

“Do you know what Eddie, we’re almost there.”


Missing Years. ( Part 33)


From a safe distance Spencer watched the Samuels house. It was in total darkness. He thought it strange. Colin Garner had just entered and now all lights are turned off. Why would they do that? What the hell was going on in there? He called James Conroy.

“James it’s Spencer, I’m not sure if this is important or not but I’ve just dropped someone off at the Samuels house, it’s a guy called Colin Garner, he’s Commander Swans replacement. Whoever opened the door to him didn’t seem to ask any questions, he just walked straight in. It was if they were expecting him. And now they’ve turned all the lights off in the house. Oh and one other thing about Garner…he’s got a strange smell about him.”

There was silence on the other end of the phone.

“James, are you still there?”

“Yes sorry Inspector, I was just thinking.”

Spencer wanted to know more.

“And? What do you think?”

“I think that our third person has now arrived.”

Spencer blurted out the words.

“Garner is Pyro?”

Conroy confirmed.

“Yes, I’m sure of it. The group is now complete and we’ll need to act fast. Where are you now?”

“Sitting outside the house, what do you want to do?”

“Go to Stacey and Eddie, give me their address and I’ll meet you there. I have some suggestions but I need to make sure that everyone agrees.”

Spencer gave Conroy the address and headed there himself. Conroy got together a number of books, locked his hotel room door and made his way to the car. Once again he had the feeling he was being watched. He touched the silver crucifix that he wore on a chain around his neck, a gift from his late mother, and for the first time in twenty years he said the Lord’s Prayer.

The Samuels house was in darkness, but there was movement in the large kitchen at the back of the house. Three shapes sat around the table, speaking quietly but in deep low voices.

“There are four of them, they must be taken before we continue, we have come too far to allow anything to stop us now. This is our time, the old season has passed, this is our time now.”

Spencer arrived at Stacey’s house just a few minutes before Conroy. They walked up the long path together. Spencer knocked on the door and Stacey opened it. She was stunned to see them standing there so late at night.

“What? What’s happened?”

The words seemed to tumble out of her mouth, she was nervous and scared. Conroy spoke first.

“I need to speak with you and Eddie, I need to tell you all something. Everything will be fine Stacey, trust me, but we need to act fast!”

Conroy’s voice was forceful yet reassuring. Stacey led them both into the front room where Eddie was sitting down. Conroy took charge.

“Okay, everyone sit down and listen carefully. I believe the third Demon is now at the house, he’s in the guise of an NCIS man called Colin Garner. This means that they’ll be planning for tomorrow, but before they do, I believe they know about us, the four of us, that means that we’re in danger, I’ve had a really bad feeling since we left the pub earlier, almost as though I’m being continually watched.”

Stacey looked at Eddie Samuels.

“That’s what I’ve been saying to Granddad. I feel exactly the same.”

Eddie put his arm around Stacey.

“No harm will come to you Stacey, not while I’m here.”

Conroy Continued.

“I was doing some research tonight, looking through some old religious books and I came across a Catholic book on demonic possession, I know this is not the same as what I witnessed all those years ago and of course none of us are Catholics, but the principle must be the same.”

Spencer interrupted.

“You can say that again, I’ve never been to church in my life, not a religious bone in my body. Up until a few days ago I would have laughed at all of this. I’d have had you all committed.”

Conroy smiled then continued.

“That’s the problem Inspector, in the Demons eyes we are weak, easy prey, apart from Eddie none of us are really god fearing people are we. This could be our downfall, we need someone to take the lead, protect us, and overcome the demons with the one thing they loathe, FAITH!”

Before anyone else could speak, the house fell into darkness, every light that was on in the building suddenly went out. An icy breeze seemed to come into the room from nowhere, as though someone had just opened up a door or a window, then came the smell.

Stacey put her hand over her mouth and nose not wanting to breathe in the foul stench. Dark shapes seemed to fill the room, strange shadows appeared on the walls and ceiling.

Conroy clutched his silver crucifix, stood up, and closed his eyes, expecting the worst. Then he heard a voice, a very loud voice.

“You will not take her tonight, the power of Christ is with me this night in this room, you will not take her, it is in the name of Jesus that’s my salvation, it is in the name of Jesus that gives me this authority, be gone!”

The lights came back on and the shadows disappeared. Conroy opened his eyes. He saw Eddie Samuels with one arm around Stacey and the other holding aloft his beloved Polyglott Bible. There was a look of pure rage in his eyes. He shouted aloud again.

“They may take me but I won’t allow them to take my angel, my Stacey, not while I still have breath left in my body!”

Conroy sat down, he smiled at Eddie.

“You’ve just answered a question I was about to ask, whether you will lead us against them and were you strong enough. From what I just witnessed you’re the man for the job.”

Stacey looked around the room, she was frantic. Eddie held her close.

“What’s the matter love, it’s all okay now, whatever was here has gone.”

“No Granddad, there’s only three of us in the room, the Inspector has gone!”

They all suddenly realised that she was right, Spencer was gone. Taken.


Missing Years. ( Part 32)


Just a few miles away in Eddie Samuels’s house, Ray and Trevor were sitting quietly staring at the TV. The late news was on and they were talking about the next day’s protests set for two o’clock. It was estimated that more than five million people around the world would stop working for thirty minutes.

They smiled. Trevor went over to the window and looked outside. There were still journalists and a few film crews working late so they could get everything in place for the forthcoming events.

“It’s working, the plan is set, it’s almost time.”

But Ray was frowning and looking up at the ceiling as though he could see something.


He said it over and over again.


Spencer returned to Romford Police Station and sat at his desk awaiting the arrival of Commander Swan’s replacement. While he was with James Conroy earlier that evening he’d received a message to say that Colin Garner was taking over the Samuels case. He knew nothing else apart from that. He didn’t know his rank or position within the force just his name. His desk phone rang.

“Sir, there’s a Mr Colin Garner at reception for you.”

“Thank you sergeant. I’ll be right there.”

Spencer left his office and walked along the corridor to reception. When he got there he was surprised by the look of the person that greeted him, he was expecting someone like Swan, a larger than life character, full of importance, ex-military. What he actually saw in front of him was quite the opposite. Garner was short, no taller than 5ft 9inches, about 60, overweight, scruffy, his grey hair could do with a cut, there was ugliness about him as well, his nose was far too big for his round fat face, in fact this guy had nothing going for him at all.

Spencer held out his hand.

“Mr Garner welcome to Romford Police station, follow me to my office and I’ll bring you up to speed.”

“Thank you Inspector”

He followed Spencer back along the corridor.

“Sorry about the smell sir, I think the drains may be blocked up.”

Garner didn’t reply.

They sat in the small office, Spencer began to speak.

“I’ll tell you everything I know Sir, about Ray Samuels, he…”

Garner interrupted.

“Look Inspector. I know everything already, I’ve read everything that Swan had on file about Ray Samuels, in fact I probably know more than you do. The most important thing is that I get to see him as soon as possible, tonight would be good. We’re running out of time.”

“Well Sir, he’s at his father’s home at the moment and he’s not alone, he seems to have found a friend, a bit of a down and out called Trevor Wilson.”

Spencer noticed the smirk that appeared just for a moment on Garners face.

“Do you know anything about Trevor Wilson Sir?”

“No more than you do Inspector, now if you wouldn’t mind, I’d like to get over to the Samuels house right away, can you take me?”

“Of course Sir, we can be there in fifteen minutes.”

The two of them got up and left the office.


Back at the Coach House in Romford, James Conroy had surrounded himself with books. He’d collected his car from the local car park and driven it to the parking spot behind the hotel. All the time he kept looking behind him, he was sure that someone or something was following him. There was also a smell in the air. It reminded him of rotting garbage.

Now safely in his room it was time for research. He always carried a number of reference books, but since his meeting with Swan, his car had become his library. He’d stayed at the travel lodge in London for the past four days and now he was in another hotel. Two days ago he’d ordered a courier to bring him another 20 or so books from his home in Oxford. He was sure that somewhere in this massive pile of knowledge he would find the answer. He had everything from various Bibles, to writings by Aleister Crowley.

One thought kept running through his mind, it was from an Old Catholic Book on demonic possession. It was something that he’d remembered from a long time ago.

“A spiritual battle must be fought with spiritual weapons.”

He hunted for the book amongst the mass of literature on his bed, he found it and read the page out loud.

“A spiritual battle must be fought with spiritual weapons, the devil does not make peace treaties, he knows only war. We must fight the good fight; we cannot run away, surrender is not an option.”

These words came from a Catholic Priest called Father Corrami, in 1764. He went on to say.

“A man that has total faith in God is in a state of holy grace and has nothing to fear from the Devil, constant prayer is important and gives you strength.”

James Conroy thought long and hard, who was the most religious man he knew, who prayed constantly, who carried a Bible with him wherever he went, who had total belief in God. There was only one man AND he could get close to Ray.

It was Eddie Samuels.


Spencer pulled up outside the Samuels house. Garner got out of the car.

“Do you want me to come with you Sir or wait outside?”

Garner dismissed him.

“I’ll take it from here Inspector, you run along. I may be some time.”

Spencer watched as Garner walked through the crowds of people outside the Samuels home. He saw him knock on the door and then go inside. He thought it odd. It was almost as though the occupants were expecting him.

Missing Years. ( Part 31)


At 8.00pm Eddie and Stacey decided to leave the pub and head home. Stacey put her arm around Eddie.

“Granddad I think it’s best if you come home with me.”

Eddie looked relieved.

“Thanks love, I never thought I’d say this but I don’t feel safe in my own home anymore.”

Stacey took out her mobile and made a call. She tried to speak as naturally as possible.

“Hi Ray, it’s Stacey, Granddads going to stay with me tonight. We’ve just left mum at the hospital and it’s getting a bit late. I’ll take him home and give him some dinner, we’ll see you tomorrow. Big day tomorrow!”

There was silence on the other end for a few seconds then she heard Ray’s voice. It was deep and he spoke very slowly.

“Is everything….. okay.……. Stacey?”

Once again Stacey was calm.

“Yeh, everything’s fine Ray, he’s getting old and he gets a bit tired that’s all, so best he comes home with me.”

Stacey didn’t have a chance to say anything else, Ray put the phone down.

Spencer stood up and shook Eddie’s hand.

“I think it’s important that we all keep in touch over the next twenty four hours, I’ll call you in the morning.”

“Sure Inspector, thank you.”

Eddie and Stacey said goodbye to Spencer and James Conroy and left the pub. Spencer went to the bar and bought two more pints. When he returned he looked anxious, it was obvious to James that he wanted to ask more questions.

“Look James, you mentioned earlier about the exorcism you were involved in, now the other two have gone, can you tell me more about it?”

Conroy took a mouthful of his beer, sat back in his chair and began.

“It was a seventeen year old boy. I attended with a catholic priest and I was there simply to document what went on. I was convinced that the boy was in some way mentally disturbed, but then something happened that changed my mind. The priest was going through his ritual when the boy turned to me and asked me if I missed Stephanie. He laughed as he said it. Then he looked straight at me and said YOU WILL. Stephanie was a girl I went out with at University, we were together for about a year and then we broke up. I was devastated for a while because I really liked her. She moved away and I never heard from her again. I always wondered what happened to her. There was no way the boy could have possibly known that. I showed no emotion just let the priest get on with the ritual. The boy looked at me again and told me that my mother screamed in pain when she died and that she hated me because I wasn’t with her at the end. I lost my temper, jumped up and went for him, as I did so I knocked over a candle on the bedside table, the sheets caught fire and the demon, not the boy, started to scream, within a second the priest and I witnessed a ball of flame appear above the bed, then it simply vanished. We put out the fire and the boy was unmarked, not a burn on him. The possession was over and the boy was back to his normal self.”

Spencer couldn’t believe what he was hearing.

“And was he right about your Mum?”

Conroy nodded.

“Yes. I always regretted that I wasn’t there when she died, I got a call from the hospital saying she’d taken a turn for the worst, I was about thirty minutes away by car, but by the time I got there she’d already gone. It’s something that I’ll never forgive myself for, I should have been there.”

Spencer was intrigued.

“So you’re saying that the fire got rid of the demon, I don’t see how that helps us, I mean we can’t just go round there and set them all on fire, can we?”

Conroy smiled.

“If I’m honest, I don’t know myself yet. This was a minor demon that had taken over a young boy. We’re dealing with much more powerful forces here. I’ll do some more research tonight and then we’ll meet again in the morning. Listen, I’d like to keep close by if that’s all right with you Inspector, I checked out of the Travel Lodge on the A40 earlier today, is there somewhere round here you could recommend?”

Spencer pointed in the direction of the town centre.

“The Coach House is just a five minute walk from here. I stay there a lot these days, just say you’re a friend of mine, they’ll sort you out a good room at a reasonable rate. I’ll meet you there in the morning for breakfast about 8.30?”

Conroy thanked him and they shook hands. Just as he was about to walk to his car Spencer spoke.

“Did you ever find out what happened to Stephanie?”

Conroy turned and nodded.

“Yes. She died in a car crash on the very day I was attending the exorcism.”

Spencer shook his head in disbelief.