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Trouble with Chickens

I WAKENED up when the phone rang early. I knew it was early because it woke me up, and I usually wake about half seven. I was also in the middle of dreaming and I’m usually finished that when I wake up. My dream was about zombies. I can’t remember what they were doing, but it wasn’t polite.

Neither was my caller. “Miss McIsaac, be so good as to get your ass down here, we’ve got a dead man.” Inspector Gillen. He always had to drag other peace-loving citizens into his investigations. OK, I work for him, but did he really need me at six o’clock in the morning.

“No problemo, chief. Where’s here?” No good grumbling, you’ve got to seem willing. He’s not going to let me back to bed whatever I do. And why he insists on calling me ‘Miss’ rather than ‘Sergeant.’

“Meikle Powhead. It’s a cottage on the B9037, near Torryburn, about five miles west of Rosyth. You can’t miss it, there’ll be flashing lights outside.”

That was my breakfast off the menu, so I got myself ready, grabbed a couple of muesli bars and headed out.

There’s not a lot of traffic out there at six, the Edinburgh rush is just beginning to get under way, so it didn’t take me long to get there. It was June, so it was daylight by then. The flashing lights were still useful though.

The place was on a kind of lay-by, which I guessed was where the road went before it was straightened up in the sixties or seventies. Two police cars and a white forensics van were already there, as well as Gillen’s gleaming silver BMW. The house looked like the usual sort of farm cottage, door at the centre, one window at each side, gable at each end of the building. To the right was a garage of rusty corrugated iron. A car was parked in front of it, an old Toyota. The front garden, if there ever was one, had reverted to nature, but my colleagues had helped the cause of civilisation by trampling much of it down.

Forensics had even put up a tent, so I popped in there to get some plastic overshoes and nitrile gloves. Jenny O’Riordan was sat behind a fold-up table, typing stuff into a laptop. There was a pile of evidence bags on the table. “Sally, it’s yourself!” she said, “You’ll love this one. Sure you will.” She dropped the evidence bag she’d been registering into a cardboard box, and selected another from the pile.

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About iScot Magazine

iScot issue number 45 2018 124 pages of the best crack in Scotland and beyond. Featuring the very best of wordsmiths in Scotland today. Robbie Dinwoodie, Alyn Smith MEP, James Kelly (iScot goes Pop, Peter A Bell, Jason Michael McCann, Vivien Martin, Allan Martin, Paul Kavanagh’s Wee Ginger Dug, Blaze’s Page,Fiona Grahame of Orkney News, Moira Dalgetty, Bill Dale, Indy Lawyer, Ran Bruce’s Spider, Dave Bowman, Gordon Craigie, Major Bloodnok and the most excellent Billy Kay.