DI White shifted down a gear to steer around a dead fox spattered like a Bacon masterpiece against the grit-in-tar that passed for a road surface these days. How many times had they driven along here in the past few days? Too many. Cryogenic psychopaths notwithstanding there were too many loonies in the woods.
In the passenger seat, Peters devoured a packet of potato-based snacks that had probably never been formally introduced to an actual potato other than as concentrated powder and e-numbers. “What I don't get, sir, is why?”
“Why?” White frowned. “Why what?”
“Why is everything connected?” He counted with orange-stained fingers. “We've got the two missing lads, the mad robot, the all-seeing computer...”
“Yes.” Peters frowned. “The dead people who may or may not be cryogenic test subjects and poor Vera Cotman, the mummified mother.”
White shuddered. “Please don't make pet names for cases. You sound like a newspaper hack.”
“Not me, sir. It's what the Laverstone Times is calling her. It's in their online edition. He brandished a mobile like a crucifix to a vampire.
“How did they get hold of the mummification angle? Someone talked, didn't they?”
“I'm afraid so, sir.” Peters licked his fingers free of cheese-flavoured powder and scrolled the phone screen. “Ah. Chief-superintendent Beamish.”
“Why am I not surprised?” White pipped his horn, startling a man urinating at the side of the road.
“That's the police ranks for you sir. The hight up the rank, the less common sense you possess.” Peters coughed. “After the rank of inspector, of course.”