The second book in the Red Riding Quartet series, 2001
This book is dedicated to the victims of the crimes attributed to the Yorkshire Ripper, and their families.
This book is also dedicated to the men and women who tried to stop those crimes.
However, this book remains a work of fiction.
Tuesday 24 December 1974:
Down the Strafford stairs and out the door, blue lights on the black sky, sirens on the wind.
Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck.
Running, fucked forever – the takings of the till, the pickings of their bloody pockets.
Fuck, fuck, fuck.
Should have finished what he started; the coppers still breathing, the barmaid and the old cunt. Should have done it right, should have done the bloody lot.
The last coach west to Manchester and Preston, last exit, last chance to dance.
Part 1. Bodies
Sunday 29th May 1977
Sunday 29 May 1977.
It’s happening again:
Burning unmarked rubber through another hot dawn to another ancient park with her secret dead, from Potter’s Field to Soldier’s Field, parks giving up their ghosts, it’s happening all over again.
Sunday morning, windows open, and
Radio on: alive with death.
Stereo: car and walkie-talkie both:
Noble’s voice from another car.
Ellis turns to me, a look like we should be going faster.
‘She’s dead,’ I say, but knowing what he should be thinking:
Chapeltown – my town for two years; leafy streets filled with grand old houses carved into shabby little flats filled full of single women selling sex to fill their bastard kids, their bastard men, and their bastard habits.
Chapeltown – my deal: MURDER SQUAD.
I switch on the siren, a sledgehammer through all their Sunday mornings, a clarion call for the dead.
And Ellis says, ‘That’ll wake the fucking nig-nogs up.’
But a mile up ahead I know she’ll not flinch upon her damp dew bed.
And Ellis smiles, like this is what it’s all about; like this was what he’d signed up for all along.
But he doesn’t know what’s lying on the grass at Soldier’s Field.
I’ve been here before.