Chapter 1 - The Lancet Story
It was midwinter in London, on a bitterly cold and bleak night in January back in the late 1970's, when my first assignment began. An icy north wind moaned mournfully around the red brick apartment block in Chelsea Cloisters, where I was staying, in Sloane Stree, South Kensington.
Clammy cold, concerned, I woke from a nightmare, my sheets soaked through with perspiration. The vision of a long-term friend, whom I hadn't been in touch with for a while, suffering in a feverish delirium, was harrowing. For a moment, a feeling of fear swept through me. Was it true? It could be. Because, as I woke, strangely a voice had called out to me - his message crystal clear.
"Tell him to stop taking the tablets."
I sat bolt upright in bed.
Bleary eyed, but now on full alert, I peered at the red digits on my bedside clock, as I reached out to switch on the bedside lamp.
"It's 3 o'clock in the morning," I protested. "I can't ring Brian up just out of the blue - not at this hour. I haven't spoken to him for about three weeks."
"Do it!" said the cool, clear voice that echoed round the room.
I remember muttering something softly to myself in response to the idea. How was it, I was suddenly clairaudient. But then, as waves of energy began to swirl right through me, spiralling up my spine and into my head, confirming that this was real and that I should pay attention, I knew something special was afoot. Even so, I attempted to hang back.
"You know...I need some kind of 'proof' of this sort of thing. It's so ethereal," I said. "There are those who would not believe that a message like this is possible."
"Get The Lancet," came a curt, but I noticed, not unkindly response.
I would have much preferred to snuggle down again in bed, to dismiss all this as a figment of my imagination; best forgotten - return to the land of nod... And I suppose if someone else had been with me, then that is what they would have said. But as it was I was alone. And I'd learnt, these past few weeks, inexplicable contacts like this were important - as if I was being asked to complete some kind of assignment and should endeavour to follow through - for the good guys on the other side. It would be up to the recipient to decide - whether or not to listen - to the wisdom that was offered........ Shivering at the cold, I swung my legs out of bed and....picked up the phone.
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