Boris, King of Oxford glared across the table at Wing Commander Tom, flanked by duster salesman and occasional spy Nigel Farage and wondered – not for the first time – why he ever agreed to come to Number Ten in the first place. This was proving to be an awful lot of bother for a bit of a bunk up and life-threatening amounts of alcohol. And the Prime Minister was awfully grumpy today.
“Answer the question, Boris!” yapped Lucy, pointing a finger.
Wing Commander Tom maintained a dignified and somewhat sinister silence. Next to him, the Minister for Good Ideas & Gin was feeling pleased with herself for positioning the biscuits tantalisingly out of reach of Boris and Nigel. Psychological warfare, you see. Dr Samantha Martens was playing hardball.
“Your Highness,” said Tom, the two words having never been spoken with such disdain in recorded history. “First, you declare war. Then, you send an undercover agent in the guise of Nigel Farage -“
“To be fair, I wasn’t in the guise of Nigel Farage,” spluttered Nigel, “I AM Nigel Farage!”
“Fine.” Tom carefully placed his pen on the table and slowly clasped his hands together. “You sent Nigel Farage to spy on us and the next thing you know, it’s peace treaties all round. Now. You came here to kidnap Tony Blair, didn’t you?”
“I most certainly didn’t!” declared Boris, most put out. “I tell you, the Boz-meister only showed his face for a bit of slap and tickle – actually, I showed a lot more than my face! Ha! – but it’s true, I say! The whole peace treaty ruse was just that! A ruse! A slippery ruse for some Prime Ministerial how’s-yer-father…”
Boris’ voice trailed off as he saw the suggestion of a quiver on Lucy’s bottom lip. Something inside him made a fragile attempt to get his attention. It was whatever remained of his conscience.
“Oh… well…” Boris softened his tone and reached out a hand towards Lucy. “I didn’t mean it quite like that, of course, Bozza is such a frightful blunderer in the gob department…” Lucy raised an eyebrow. That, at least, was true. Boris continued. “That night, that was a very special moment – it certainly must have been for you and it even was for me in some ways – but a galloping bonker such as myself is a beast that simply can’t be tamed…”
“No, you idiot, the peace treaty!” Lucy slammed her fist onto the table. “I thought we were going to join forces! Use our considerable influences to reunite Great Britain! Put Tony Blair on trial for war crimes! And… so on!”
Boris cocked his head and bunched his brows.
“Did you really think that, then?”
Jumping to her feet, Lucy kicked back her chair before launching herself across the table towards a startled Boris. Wing Commander Tom caught her with a well-timed lunge and dragged her back across the polished surface.
“I’m going to smash his face in,” Lucy growled, wriggling against Tom’s steady grip.
“I’ll hold him down for you,” said Dr Martens helpfully, getting to her feet.
“No!” said Tom in his firmest voice, tactfully wrestling the Prime Minister back into her chair. “Everybody just sit down.”
“Ah, all this violence…” mused Nigel, his eyes brimming with wistful nostalgia. “Reminds me of my days in UKIP.”
“Listen,” said Dr Martens, taking her seat and another biscuit. “We have proper official government documentation for that peace treaty – with your signature on, no less! You can’t just say you didn’t mean it!”
“Quite right,” said Tom, holding up some very official-looking paperwork. “Here it is. Legislation is such a beautiful thing, don’t you think, King Boris?”
“He’s got a point,” sighed Nigel, folding his arms.
“Et tu, Brute? Honestly, you’re supposed to be on my side!” Boris shook his head.
“Although, there is still the question of whether it is legal under Oxford law,” Nigel swivelled his gaze between Boris and Lucy. The room was suddenly quiet.
“Well, only two people can answer that question for certain,” stated Tom, his fedora lower than ever across his face.
Boris found himself in a quandary. He could simply attest to the fact that the process remained incomplete. Although that would jeopardise his position as a world-class trouser-dropper and give rise to rumour that his charms had been resisted. But to admit to the deed could lead to an awful lot of extra work. He couldn’t remember the last time he had faced such a tricky conundrum. He pulled his ill-fitting deerstalker tighter on his head, hoping it might instigate some useful brain activity.
Lucy opened her mouth to speak, but a smart rapping at the door cut her off and all eyes turned to see Mumsie and a heavily burdened tea trolly scuttle into the room.
“I don’t know why anybody bothers knocking around here,” lamented Tom, mainly to himself.
“I thought you might want some refreshments,” said Mumsie, unloading her wares onto the table and all over Tom’s carefully arranged paperwork.
“Quiet, Mumsie!” snapped Tom. “Prime Minister, you were saying..?”
“I’m not going to say in front of Mumsie,” Lucy replied, folding her arms.
“Mumsie – just leave it there,” wailed Tom, waving at the seemingly random assortment of offerings, which ranged from four types of tea and ham sandwiches to hard liquor and what looked like pork scratchings. “I am in the middle of my interrogation! I have many things to establish – such as motive. And intent. And…”
“I say, you bugger, who are you to be asking the questions?” roared Boris. “The way I see it, you were the one who rumbled along to the crime scene waving a gun. Why is it no one is asking you where you were at the time of the murder?”
“He’s got a point,” said Lucy.
“Well – that is quite easily explained…” began Tom, before the arrival of yet more uninvited visitors forced a further interruption.
Lead by a gleeful Sir Edd Evans-Morley, a distinctly less enthusiastic Minister for Culture, Media & Sport and Minister for Unlikely Events shuffled reluctantly into the Cabinet Office.
“I am afraid I have dreadful news, Prime Minister,” said Sir Edd, his face suggesting anything but.
“I’ll have you know I am interrogating at the moment,” huffed Tom.
Sir Edd ignored him.
“Prime Minister, the press are now in possession of the gun we believe was used to shoot Tony Blair,” he continued. “It was found hidden in the shrubbery out the front. And my, my – have they got a lot of questions to ask you, Prime Minister.”
Lucy paled to a most peculiar shade and Dr Martens instinctively passed her a large gin. Rising to her feet, Lucy turned to Wing Commander Tom.
“Alright, Tom. Maybe we should do things your way,” she sighed. “I think it’s time to maybe shoot the press.”