The Squeeze is On
These were not normal times. Collier found it difficult to think of Snowden as the enemy. Betrayed, he was deeply hurt. There’s nothing worse than knowing you’ve been had by someone you trusted. Wounds can be bandaged; they can heal. But betrayal is a whole different wound, impossible to heal. For Collier, friendship faked was nothing short of disloyalty with dishonor. He patted his satchel at his feet. Nestled inside was reassurance that substantiated his convictions. Small talk and the day’s routine will put him at ease. Will he see it in my eyes that I know? No matter, he will soon enough. Fateful decisions await both of us this day. Sadly, it gave him no relief.
Sergeant Snowden returned with a thermos of hot coffee and a thick folder under his arm. He plopped himself down in one of two chairs and placed the folder on Collier’s desk. “A lot has happened since you left on holidays.” He poured coffee into a mug that Collier provided. “I guess you’ve heard by now that Churchill has been appointed First Lord of the Admiralty.” Collier nodded. “With Lord Halifax as Foreign Secretary in the War Cabinet—” he chuckled—“it won’t be too long before old Churchill and he will be butting heads.”
“My guess, too.” Collier retrieved his pipe off the desk and lit it.
“I read recently that the Polish Foreign office has accused German planes of not only dropping mustard gas on civilian populations but also brutally bombing and strafing crowds of fleeing women and children. That must give you cause for alarm.”
“Cause for alarm?” Collier placed his pipe in the ashtray. “What in God’s name are you talking about, Archie?!”
“Your son and his fiancée&rsquo...