More from Dr Webster

This is the second chapter with a few revisions. Once again feedback is appreciated.

Chapter Two
The Impossible Train Ticket
Following Dr Webster’s example Sara quickly dressed herself and belted down the corridor after him, collecting his room key as she went.
Dr Webster was in reception when she caught up with him, he looked back at her.
“Well I can’t follow you naked,” she stated, “besides it might not look good if I’m in your room.”
“Fair point,” Dr Webster conceded, “go back to your room and while I have a look round.”
“No I’m coming with you, safety in numbers.” She insisted, but Dr Webster was already out of earshot, she signed and followed him out into the night.
It took about ten minutes to reach the station and although it was bitterly cold and Sara was beginning to regret following him out, she was stamping around rubbing her hands trying to retain some heat. She only had herself to blame, she’d left her coat in her room and the good doctor had advised her not to follow him, well at least it had stopped snowing. She could see Dr Webster edging his way around the station, checking to see if the coast was clear, happy it was he slowly ascended to the platform.
Even in the dark it was obvious there was a body on the platform, Dr Webster slowly crept to the body and switched on the torch on his phone. The fluffy snow was now crimson stained with blood making it resemble an obscene splatter pattern, Dr Webster crouched down and checked the pulse; dead. He already had guessed that but there was always the chance he’d made it through. Dr Webster began to examine the body, as he did so he became away of the sound of footsteps behind him, he turned round and saw the top of Sara’s head emerge from the steps.
“I was evidently wasting my breath,” he sighed with a wry smile. Sara smiled back at him and began to approach him, “I wouldn’t it’s not pleasant.”
“I’m too cold to argue, but I am made of strong stuff,” she countered and crossed to the body. She gasped and partially gagged at the sight, she should of listened. Dr Webster noticed her shaking, he wasn’t sure if that was cold or shock but either way he draped his coat around her shoulders, he’d put up with the cold and get back to the examination.
Male, aged 35-40, height about six foot, dark hair and beard. Cause of death multiple gunshot wounds to the torso.
Dr Webster turn out the dead man’s pockets; there was a pen, a lighter, an unopened pack of cigars and finally, a wallet. He opened it up and read the details there was a driving licence in the name of “Marston Plummer”, a small amount of cash and some cards in the same name, then he spotted a train ticket and took a look at it.
“How extraordinary,” he said out loud. “Sara look at this.”
“What is it?” she asked craning her neck to see the ticket, “oh a train ticket,” she added bemused.
“Not just a train ticket,” he began. “It’s been issued at this station only about twenty minutes ago.”
“How?” Sara quizzed, “the ticket machine isn’t on.”
“So it’s not,” he mused studying the ticket. “Single fair, destination.. Infinity??”
“What?” asked Sara, “Is there a town called Infinity?”
“I don’t claim to know every town in England but I’m guessing no.”
The two looked at one another puzzled, an impossible ticket for an impossible train, evidently there was more to this then just an act of rage. Dr Webster returned his attention to the crime scene, aside from their own footprints there were only two other tracks, one started from the platform edge suggesting he arrived on the train, the second from the steps unfortunately it wasn’t possible to determine which one the dead man’s tracks were; same size shoe, not patterned as far he could tell in the light. The cold was getting to him now and the battery on the phone was bleeping low battery, he better have a quick scout round for any more clues.
“Just put the wallet back in his pocket,” said Dr Webster handing the item over to Sara, “we don’t want to cause much more disruption to the crime scene.”
“Thanks,” she murmured and braced herself as she slipped the wallet back into the dead man’s jacket. Dr Webster returned to the body shaking his head as the phone battery gave up and darkness fell.
“Have to call the police from the hotel, my mobile has died.” He said solemnly and they cautiously re-trod their walk back.
“When did you charge it?” She asked as they walked.
“Last night, the battery lasts about a day and a half tops if I only use it sparingly,” he answered.
“Why didn’t you charge it?” She asked, tailing off realising why.
“I got distracted,” he answered sweetly as they approached the hotel. The landlord was waiting at the door for them, weary but still cheerful.
“It’s a bit late and chilly for taking the night air,” he said with a sleepy chuckle.
“It’s not exactly that,” began Dr Webster, “we need to call the police.”
“Oh why?” Quizzed Terry. Dr Webster patiently explained the events to the increasing bewilderment of Terry.
About twenty minutes later the police arrived and took brief accounts from Dr Webster as they proceeded to the station.
“So there was a train at a time when the line is shut, you saw two people on the platform and you think you saw one get shot,” reiterated the police constable.
“That’s right,” confirmed Dr Webster.
“Can you confirm this miss?” the second constable asked.
“Partially,” Sara answered, “I saw the train at the platform and later the person lying on the platform. I was going back to bed when the shooting happened.”
“Back to bed? Why did you return to the window then?” Asked the first constable.
“Because Benjamin, rushed off saying he’d witness a murder.” Sara replied and noticed the expression on the two policemen’s faces. She blushed and made an apologetic face to Dr Webster. “We were in the same room as we’d erm…”
Sara felt the words dry up, she felt really embarrassed.
The second constable coughed politely, “I think we get the picture.”
The awkward moment was broken by their at the arrival at the station. Dr Webster led the way as the policeman produced the their torches to illuminate their way.
“The body is just on the platform,” Dr Webster explained, “sorry about the footprints.”
The two policeman shone their torches onto the platform and turned to face Dr Webster with a stern look.
“Is this some bad taste prank?” Asked the first constable aggressively.
“What do you mean?” asked Dr Webster somewhat bewildered as he turned to look into the torchlight. “Good grief, I don’t believe it,” he muttered.
“What is it?” Asked Sara nervously and cautiously ascended the platform for a look.
The platform was empty and the snow undisturbed, the body and all the foot prints had completely vanished. Dr Webster and Sara exchanged glances at one another in total bewilderment.
“Maybe be we’re on the wrong side,” rationalised Dr Webster.
The first constable coughed indignantly and scanned the opposite platform with his torch to check, the result was exactly the same, empty. Webster walked along the platform they were standing looking for a bloodstain in the snow or any sign of the snow being swept to cover the tracks but to no avail, he conceded defeat for the moment and the two policemen escorted him and Sara away.
They were returned to the pub where the two policemen went over the whole thing again, being discreet for Sara’s benefit.
“I see that you wear glasses,” began the first constable, “long or short sighted?”
“Short,” replied Dr Webster curtly, “and before you ask. No I wasn’t wearing my glasses when I was watching from the window.”
“So you both were half-asleep, you weren’t wearing your glasses,” summarised the second, “only you saw the shooting from the window and there’s no body on the platform.”
“Nor..” incurred the first constable, “..was there any sign of a body being moved.”
“Yes it’s quite perplexing,” agreed Dr Webster.
“Look sir, I don’t want to be funny but I think you were half asleep and because of your eye-sight you misinterpreted some shadows. We’ll leave it at that for now, we’ll have to do some inquiries to make sure,” stated the second constable. With that they left, leaving the perplexed Dr Webster and Sara in silence with each other. Finally, Dr Webster broke the silence by deciding to retire to bed.
“Good-night,” wished Sara and gave him a warm but brief goodnight kiss.
Fresh snow had fallen during the remainder of the night giving a fresh whiteness to the whole area, the trains pulled into the station and the new passengers left a fresh series of footprints on the crisp white platform. The trees were freshly coated and thin wisps of powder shaking down in the breeze. It was this winter scene which unfolded through the windows in the pub restaurant as Dr Webster sat down to breakfast and watched Sara clear away the dirty crocks of his now departed fellow diners.
“May we did imagine it,” mused Dr Webster.
“Well I saw the body,” Sara replied, “and read the train ticket”
“Suggestion or some kind of phantasmagoria maybe..” concluded the doctor unconvinced.
The landlord interrupted their discourse by bellowing service from the Kitchen, Sara disappeared through the service doors and emerged a few minutes later with a plate and a fresh pot of coffee.
“Here you go,” she chirped, “Full English with extra mushrooms and bacon, looks like you have a long day ahead of you, you’ll need to keep your strength up.”
“Thank you,” replied Dr Webster unwrapping a butter portion and being to spread it on his toast.
A moment later Terry popped his head in from the kitchen, “Sara, I’ve some sausages left over, would you like some sausage and scrambled eggs?”
“If you don’t mind,” Sara smiled back.
“Well it’ll only go to waste and I can’t leave my staff in the lurch,” he answered and with that disappeared into the kitchen.
Dr Webster hovered his cutlery over the breakfast, evidently his mind was elsewhere so Sara decided to lighten him up a bit.
“Looks like I am getting a double helping of sausage,” she joked sweetly.
“What? Sorry!” Flustered Dr Webster, suddenly return to reality from his line of thought.
“Never-mind,” she laughed and returned to the kitchen.
“It’s a pity we didn’t keep the wallet,” he mused to himself, “Marston Plummer, odd name. The whole scenario is a bit odd. Substitution code perhaps?” He finished his breakfast in sullen silence, various thoughts mulling over in his mind.
Once breakfast was over and done with, Dr Webster returned to his room, showered and collected his belongings for the off. Just before he left he had a quick look out the window at the station but it was obscured by the morning fog. As he left he picked up one of Sara’s earrings from the pillow, evidently it had fallen during their nocturnal activities, and slipped it in his pocket before going down stairs to settle the bill. Terry was cheerful as ever as he sorted out the payment, how could he be that cheerful all the time?
“Are you requiring a VAT receipt doctor?” he asked.
“Sadly I can’t put this on expenses much as  I’d like too,” he answered politely.
“What did happened with the police?” Terry inquired, “Sara was quite evasive about it all.”
“Oh it was a trick of the shadows, a sheep must have been mauled and crawled onto the platform.” Said Dr Webster hoping it would sound partially convincing.
“Happens to the best of us doctor,” smiled Terry. “Have a safe journey home.”
“Thank You.”
As Dr Webster started up the car he noticed Sara wandering around the car park chasing signal on her phone, he wound down the window and whistled, well his attempted at a whistle, to attract her attention.
“Do you want a lift?” He asked, “It’s not a problem.”
“Oh if you don’t mind,” she replied with a smile.
“It’s on my way,” he countered and with that he opened the passenger door.
It took about ten minutes to get to Sara’s house and throughout the journey, Dr Webster was beginning to feel his normal self again but he no intent of letting this matter drop, perhaps he could take a sample off his shoes and see if anything turned up there.
“Just here,” said Sara as the car approached her drive. Dr Webster pulled the car over and bid her adieu. “Would you like a coffee?” She added as she got and the car, Dr Webster accepted the offer.
Down in Bessington police station PCs Murray and Price were discussing the events of the morning, it seemed a bit weird to them.
“Must be a hoax,” said Murray, “although I can’t see what they have to gain.”
“My question is,” began Price, “what’s a little hottie like Sara boffing a geek like that?”
“Beats me,” answered Murray, “lucky I guess. Mind you, aren’t geeks cool now?”
Their banter was interrupted by the arrival of the head of the local branch of CID; Chief Inspector Dean. Chief Inspector Dean was well known for being a stern man to work with, he was ruthless with his staff, stern with the detainees and seemed to be perfectly serious all the time. He had rough hawk like features and a predominant bald spot which he made not attempt at hiding and at a height six foot-six his imposing image was complete.
“What’s going on with this early morning nonsense?” Dean barked at the two constables.
“Hoax or mistake we reckon gov,” answered Murray.
“I read the report, those two seemed very certain of their facts.”
“We reckon it was some shadows,” said Price
“Have you proved it?” asked Dean
“No sir.”
“Well go out and get evidence to support or deny this supposition then.” He ordered and slammed his hand hard on the nearest wall to add emphasis.
“Yes sir,” garbled the two officers and quickly departed.
   Sara placed a cup of coffee in front of Dr Webster who was sat at the far end of the kitchen table while she waited for he Chai Tea to mash to sufficient strength.
“Thanks for the lift home,” she said as she rummaged through the cupboards for the biscuit tin.
“Oh very it is the least I could,” he answered. “I even got you home before eleven.” He laughed as noted the time on the clock. Sara looked at him utterly bewildered, the joke clearly having gone over her head.
“Have you got patients to see today?”
“Not today, the joys of being staffed in a very small private practice. Just a meeting with my two nurses at…” He trailed off.
“” prompted Sara.
“Great jumping gobstoppers, in forty five minutes.” Dr Webster ran his hands through his coat. “I better phone and cancel now where’s my blasted mobile.”
Sara laughed as Dr Webster’s frantic search make he resemble a whirling dervish, she reached into her pocket and offered her own phone. “Phone them on mine”
“Thank you,” Dr Webster answered and nipped off into the hall to make the phone call. Smiling Sara retrieved the tea bag from her mug and put it in the bin, as she did so something orange on the floor. She bent down picked it up, looked like a train ticket. When was the last time she’d gone somewhere by train?
At that moment Dr Webster re-entered the kitchen, “Thanks for that.” He said offering her the phone. “What have you got there?”
“This,” she answered by way of reply and handed him the card. He studied it and he too changed demeanour, the ticket read: 02:30 Single Fair. Destination: Infinity.
“I must of put in my pocket my mistake,” she stated bluntly.
“You have a new nickname, Serendipitous Sara,” beamed Dr Webster examining the ticket. Now he had proof of his impossible train… he quickly downed his coffee and bid his adieus to Sara and wrote down a copy of his number for her. “I better go,” he stated. “Call me later on and I will fill you in.”
“Where are you off to now?” Sara asked.
“I have a friend who may be able to help,” Dr Webster explained, “we need to strike now. We have a body to find and a murderer.”

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