He was about to resume the chase, hoping Peters wasn't too far ahead and was at least catchable at a brisk walk, when the sergeant came back into view.
“Lost him, Sir. I never thought he could put up that sort of pace. He went tearing through the trees like a rat out of an aqueduct.” He shook his head, as if blaming himself for the lack of robot legs. “There was no catching him.” He must have been close enough to see the state of Inspector because he suddenly frowned. “Are you all right, Sir? You look as if you've come fresh from a sauna. I think I've seen beetroot look pale in comparison.”
“Very funny, sergeant.” White pulled out a handkerchief to mop his face. “I just wasn't expecting a mad dash through the woods.”
“Nor was I, sir.” Peters turned a small circle, but White could see nothing other than trees for him to be looking at. “Especially not at that pace through the woods. I could have broken an ankle or worse tearing after him. Not that he cared. I swear, if there hadn't been trees in the way he'd have been running straight as a die toward the river.”
“Straight as a die, eh? I wonder where that would take him.” White pulled out his mobile phone. “Bollocks.”
“Still dead, Sir?” Peters pulled his own out and tapped the screen to unlock it. “You should keep it in a trouser pocket. The warmth of your body helps charge it a bit. Look. I've got two percent back.”
“Let's hope it's enough.” White moved to stand next to him so that he could see the phone. “Pull up a local map. See if we can work out where he was heading.”