'The Quiet Carriage' by Philip Whitehead

- …Yep, made it…I lost him...see you at Waterloo…Bye.
- Excuse me, Miss…
- What is it?
- Just to say, this is the Quiet Carriage and your telephone…
- Ohhh, sorry darlin’. Ah, the Quiet Carriage. Look, on silent now. You going all the way then?
- Er, no, just as far as Ax…
- I love trains, don’t you? Such a peaceful way of travelling...
- Yes, I…
- Dreadful isn’t it?
- Wh…What…?
- There, your front page…Those murders…Glad to be getting back to London – feel safer there!
- Yes, it’s very unusual in this part of…
- No motive and no M.O. That’s what they’re saying, the police.
- What did you say your name was?
- Oh, it’s Barrie.
- Barrie…Nice. Jane, that’s me, plain Jane. I like that about trains…get to meet interesting people.
- Well, I’m not sure I’m that inter…
- Local then?
- Yes, I suppose I am now, I lived in Lon…
- Lovely! I like that, when people have roots. Rolling stone, that’s me. You retired?
- Well, yes, I…
- Wife?
- No, I live on my own. My wi…
- Must be lovely, do what you want, when you want.
- Oops, phone again. See, it’s on silent now. Oh bloody hell! How did he get this num…
- Look, I’ll just move seats…
- No, don’t do that, Barrie. What’s your stop? Ax something? Nice there is it?
- Axminster. It’s a little er, sleepy.
- Sleepy! Sounds perfect! Might give it a try.
- But, I thought you were going to Water…
- Like I said, rolling stone…
             - Oh, oh, text this time. No peace from these things!
- I wouldn’t know, I don’t…
- God! Oh, shit! Barrie, you’ve got to help me. It’s this guy…he’s on the train…Thought I lost him in Exeter.
- What…Why?
- He says I owe him.
- I can’t give you money.
- Don’t want your money, Barrie.

‘NEXT STATION STOP AXMINSTER; AXMINSTER NEXT STATION STOP’

- I’ve got to get off. You got a car?
- Yes, it’s in the car par…
- Perfect… just up the road, that’s all…put me on a bus or something.

- You’re a lifesaver, Barrie.
- But, I really think we should call the poli…
- No need to do that. Any chance of a cup of tea?
- Look, one cup of tea, then I’ll take you back…
- You’re a treasure, Barrie. That looks nice. Mind if I cut myself a slice?
- Oh, yes, of course.
- Knife?
- Just in the drawer, there.
- Ah, lovely! This’ll do the job.
- You know, Barrie, that thing about motive?
- Sorry?
- Motive, Barrie. Keep up darlin’!
- The police, always looking for motive…
- I don’t understand?
- The motive – it’s pleasure, sheer pleasure!
…And the Quiet Carriage.
- The Quiet Carriage?
- You sit in the Quiet Carriage expecting a bit of - quiet. See, that’s my M.O…

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