Coming spring 2021
It starts when Agent Smith and a colleague impersonate two minor members of the British Royal Family at a celebration banquet. Unfortunately, what begins as one simple engagement proved so successful that the couple is forced to continue carrying out further royal duties. Posing as the Duke and Duchess of Lincoln they embark on a number of engagements, but Sam finds that someone is out to kill the woman she is replacing. With the assistance of an inept trainee agent and a car thief, she uncovers a web of blackmail and murder. To add to her troubles there is friction at home with her lover, the pianist, Christopher Deschamps. Meanwhile the undercover department is under attack from a pernicious, new enemy: the civil service accounts department.
Below is a short preview
In the French Fantasy nightclub in London’s West End, a young woman sat on a hard bench in a narrow corridor behind the stage area that served both as a dressing room for the pole dancers and a cloakroom for the female staff. As one of the hostesses, she wore the French maid’s uniform which had become the club’s trademark. The outfit bore little resemblance to the genuine article and was designed to reveal as much flesh as possible while making a token attempt to remain within the bounds of common decency. The strapless, low-cut top precluded the wearing of a bra, and when she leant forward to serve drinks, it was even more revealing. The short skirt would have barely covered her knickers had she had any on. As the wearing of thongs without tights was considered de rigueur, little was left to the imagination.
Totty, as undercover agent Sam Smith was calling herself, took from her bag a small pouch and selected a hypodermic. Placing one foot on the bench, she pulled up the short skirt and plunged the needle into her thigh in the area specified by the Secret Service’s medical expert. None of the girls around her in various states of undress took any notice: “shooting up” was an everyday occurrence. They were unaware that the syringe contained a harmless saline solution and that Sam’s next move, in the privacy of the toilet, would be to place a couple of drops in her eyes, dilating her pupils, to complete the illusion of being hooked on drugs.
Initially, Sam had been surprised at how widespread and open the taking of drugs was among the staff, but she had used this to her advantage. Appearing to be a user herself, over the past month, she had learned much about the role the club played in the drug trade.
‘Hey sweetheart, we’ve got some far better stuff than that just come in.’
Sam finished her “fix” and looked up at the speaker who had walked into the girls’ domain without knocking. Markstein, the club’s owner was a repulsive individual. The expensive dinner suit did little to hide the gorilla within. His belly bulged over the top of his trousers, and his shirt gaped, revealing his flabby, hairy chest. The Albanian was reputed to be the lynchpin in British drug distribution. She knew he was also behind a chain of prostitution rackets, using girls, some barely in their teens, illegally smuggled in from all over the world. He had reached this dominant position by personally eliminating his rivals in a variety of gruesome and well-publicised murders, intended to deter possible opponents. Of course, nothing could ever be proved; a highly paid legal team ensured he remained “Mr Clean”.
‘You can have a free sample if you play your cards right.’ he leered, running his fingers through her hair, his clammy hand coming to rest on her bare shoulder.
Sam, using every bit of her training as an actress, smiled alluringly. ‘Oh, that sounds nice,’ she lied. ‘Ow about if you an’ me spend some quality time together in the private room and I can show you my gratitude?’ Sam had carefully avoided getting close to her boss up to now, but tonight it would be essential to get him on his own.
The big man moved his hand down onto her breast and squeezed. ‘After we close, don’t change. You can come as you are.’ He laughed at his crude little joke and sauntered off.
Donna, one of her colleagues, finished snorting up a line of coke and wiped the traces of powder from around her nose. ‘Be careful. That bastard will do you serious damage when he gets you alone. Once was more than enough for me. He’s like some huge bleedin’ animal.’
‘I can take care of myself,’ Sam said softly, getting up and adjusting her top where the sweaty hand had pushed the dress down. It was all she could do not to rush off to the loo and throw up; however, her goal was in sight. The whole point of her spending a month undercover in this humiliating role was to learn when the next big shipment of drugs had arrived. Markstein’s remark about the “better stuff” could only mean one thing: the consignment was here.
Twice before, the police drugs squad had raided the premises but had found nothing, leading their chief to suspect that he had a mole within his ranks. This persuaded him to pass the job of getting inside information to UC9, the Secret Service special undercover group; hence, Sam’s involvement.
Her break over, the scantily dressed Agent Smith went through into the crowded club to resume serving over-priced drinks to over-sexed, over-paid city boys, whose only ambitions seemed to be to get high, get drunk and get laid. The music was pounding and the strobe lights blinded her as she edged her way around the dance floor in search of her prey.
Sam turned to a table with two men whose female companions showed signs of being slightly worse for wear, and to her eye, were almost certainly under-age.
‘Get us another bottle of bubbly, will you?’
Sam went to the bar and returned with a tray containing an ice bucket and four glasses. After opening the bottle, she leant forward to pour the champagne, and the two men’s eyes lit up as her skimpy outfit did exactly what it was designed to do. One of the men offered her his credit card with one hand and tucked a twenty-pound note into her cleavage with the other.
‘Why fank you, sir,’ she said sweetly, an angelic smile on her face. In one way Sam was sickened by this charade. Whatever would her mother think if she could see her like this? Hopefully, she would be unlikely to recognize her own daughter in the shoulder-length auburn wig, false eyelashes, heavy makeup and fake tan. While she wasn’t a prude, neither was she an exhibitionist. Only the thought that in exposing herself she generated tips totalling several hundred pounds a week which went to a children’s charity, kept the smile on her face.
The evening wore on interminably into the early hours, and Sam was relieved to see the shutters coming down on the bar. Her back ached and her feet, trapped in excessively high heels, were killing her. The last customers drifted out; it was time to do her stuff. Within a couple of hours, the drugs would have left the premises. A month of careful planning followed by another month of pretending to be a drug-addicted tart was coming to its dangerous conclusion. Sam needed to get a message out for the police to mount an immediate raid, but it wasn’t that simple. None of the members of staff were allowed to carry mobiles; the penalty was instant dismissal. The maids’ uniforms had nowhere to conceal a phone, and the girls’ lockers containing their daywear and bags were frequently searched. This had forced her to evolve a dangerous plan.
‘Well big boy,’ she purred to Markstein. ‘Is it time to test the merchandise?’
‘Yeah, get us a bottle of fizz — the good stuff, mind you; not the crap we serve to the customers.’
Sam went under the counter flap into the bar and emerged carrying her loaded tray. While unseen behind the bar, she had removed a tablet from the concealed flap in her thong and now held it in the palm of her hand beneath the tray. All the eyes of the staff were on her as she dutifully followed the boss into the private room; everyone knew what was about to happen, another scrubber was about to learn the hard way of the Albanian’s violent sexual perversions.
The softly lit room had only one function. Hostesses were allowed to “privately entertain” guests for an exorbitant fee. It was richly carpeted, and the walls were alternately lined with drapes and mirrors. Its furniture comprised a long low settee and a coffee table, nothing else. Above, on the ceiling hung yet another mirror.
Sam placed her tray on the table and heard a loud click as he bolted the door behind her. From his pocket, he produced a small plastic bag of white powder which he pushed into her hand.
‘Right, get your kit off.’
So much for foreplay, Sam thought as she forced a smile. ‘Shall I open the bottle?’
‘OK,’ he said, kicking off his shoes and dropping his trousers.
She popped the cork and poured the glasses, surreptitiously adding the tablet to one of them as he ripped off his shirt. The arrogant pratt stood naked and aroused before her, wearing only a pair of white socks. Surely he didn’t imagine he was any kind of turn-on. Her colleague Donna hadn’t exaggerated: the fat hairy gorilla’s manhood was frighteningly large. The sight of all that flesh was enough to bring tears to her eyes. However, with one hand on his hip, he looked vaguely like an obscene teapot she had once found in Amsterdam. Sam was tempted to laugh. Given his record for extreme violence, that probably would not be a good idea.
‘Stop pissing about. Let’s get down to business.’
One of his meat-dish hands grabbed the front of her uniform and ripped the flimsy fabric off, leaving her wearing only her thong. Ignoring the glass she offered, he snatched the bottle and liberally poured its contents over her bare chest. Placing his mouth around one of her breasts, he noisily slurped the liquid.
‘It’s the only way to drink champagne,’ he said, pouring more of the liquid over her boob as he came up for air.
This was not how Sam had planned things to happen. The fast-acting tablet would have knocked him out in seconds. Time for plan B. ‘Let me pour,’ she said, taking the bottle and emptying it over her breasts.
‘Mmmm.’ he moaned still slurping as his hands pawed at her thong.
‘You are such a naughty boy, speaking with your mouth full. You need teaching a lesson.’ Sam swung back her arm and crashed the bottle onto the man’s skull with all her might. The oaf’s jaws sank into her flesh as he fell to his knees. Sam yelped, pulling her bruised breast away.
It said in the Service Self-defence Manual that a champagne bottle was the ideal weapon: the thicker glass was less likely to break so it imparted far greater force, guaranteeing a knock-out. Tonight, she discovered to her cost the book was wrong; this man was down, but to her surprise, he certainly wasn’t out. While Sam was exceptionally fit and strong, dealing with a man of his size and strength, dressed as she was in high heels and a thong was no mean task. To come out of this alive, he had to go down and stay down.