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The Eagle Chronicles 32: Spandau Secret

Title: Spandau Secret
Series: The Eagle Chronicles.
Word Count 5754
Summary Steven is in Berlin once more and his past catches up with him.
Notes: The majority of this series was written over 20 years ago and I like to think that my style has improved since then. I've been told that I should probably edit them before I post like this but I can't edit myself. To me it looks fine. If you see a section that needs work, please tell me!

32. Spandau Secret

March 1965

"So you finally decided to do it."

"Glad you could join us, old boy."

"The House hasn't been the same without you."

"And never will be again, now that Edinburgh has given in to his sister's wrath."

The members of the House of Lords were preparing to enter Parliament and Lord James Stuart, duke of Edinburgh, was finally attending after hearing a long argument on the subject by his sister, Queen Anne II. The reason he had avoided it for so long was because he hated all the hollow pomp and pageantry. Besides, the robe always got in the way and the wig itched.

A page stood patiently, waiting for him. "A telegram for you, your Grace."

"Oh. You go ahead," he told the others. "I'll be right there." He opened the telegram and read:

Resident of Spandau requests an audience with Steven Taylor in regards to A.H. . Two tickets will be waiting at the airport.

It was signed by the head of the British detachment guarding the prison. James Stuart, a.k.a. Steven Taylor, rushed out of the dressing room and jumped into his convertible. He drove home, his red robe billowing out behind him.

He reached his townhouse in St. James Square and bounded up the front steps. "Alison!" he called upon opening the door. "Pack your bags, we're off to Germany!"

Lady Alison Stuart came down the main staircase. "Germany?" She kissed her husband. "Why Germany?"

"I have received an urgent request to visit Spandau Prison."

Alison noticed he was still wearing his Parliamentary robe and that the wig was lying on the table. "You just had to leave Parliament, didn't you?"

Steven smiled. "I didn't want to cause an international incident. They've waited this long for me to show up, what will this time matter?"

"What's your sister going to say?"

"I'm older than she is," he said with a mocking pout.

"But she is your queen."

Steven put his arm about her. "I know my sister. She'll yell a bit, throw a royal tantrum, maybe a conniption fit for fun, but she'll get over it." He laughed. "We'd better pack. Our tickets are waiting."


They arrived in West Berlin and were taken by limousine to the Hotel Kempinski on the Kurfustendam . A bouquet of flowers was waiting for Alison, an invitation to dine that night at the British Consulate propped against it. "Well, luv, I think we're going to find out about the reason behind my quick summons," Steven remarked, flopping into a comfortable easy chair.

"These flowers smell absolutely lovely," said Alison, sniffing the bouquet. "There's a note here for you." She pulled the paper off its holder and handed it to him.

Steven read the note hastily then crumpled it and threw it into the wastebasket. "Just a little welcome note. How about a walk? My legs are stiff after the plane."

She recognized the change in the tone of his voice. Something was wrong. "Sure. Why don't you change into something better suited for walking. I'll just admire the view." When her husband went into the other room, Alison took the note out of the wastebasket and read it. It was a threat on his life! She heard his footsteps so she threw the note away and went onto the balcony.

Steven came out and put his arms about her. "See anywhere you want to go?"

"What about that?" She pointed to the top of a stone battlement with an East German flag flying from a mast.

"That's the reason we're here. We can go there if you want."

Alison agreed and they left the hotel and walked through the city. "Did you ever meet him when you were in Berlin during the war?"

"No. He had already been captured in Scotland with a broken leg. He was only referred to in conversation. Some of the higher ranks said that Hitler knew of the trip while others said Hess did it all on his own." He took her hand as they strolled through the city. "Are you ever curious about my 'shadowy past'? Things you want to know about?" he asked her out of the blue.

"Maybe a few things. I might want to write a biography."

"It probably would be better than those paperbacks!" he laughed. They reached the prison grounds and sat on one of the benches along the perimeter. "So, what do you want to know?"

"Can you tell me about one of your missions for Germany?"

Steven was quiet for a moment, trying to think of a good story. "In August 1943, I was sent to Moscow. I don't remember what I was sent to pick up, but, in the process of escaping, I ended up in Lubyanka Prison. As I was hiding from the KGB, I found myself in the company of an older man. Since we had time to kill, I told him of my situation. He agreed that spying is a dangerous profession because he had been one in the last war. It then dawned on me that I was speaking to Sidney Reilly. He was probably one of --if not the--greatest spies in history. I asked him to write a note for the British government stating something that only he and a few others knew about, and, at the soonest available moment, I'd send it to England. Hopefully his release then wouldn't be too far away." He stopped.

"Well, what happened?"

"I heard the KGB coming, took Sidney's note, and ran. When I was 'safe' in German territory, I learned that I had lost the note. The Russians never realized that and the British didn't believe me. To this day, the Russians want me because of what I found out." Alison said nothing. "You wanted to know."

"Don't you feel nervous behind the Iron Curtain?"

He smiled. "The risk adds to the challenge."


That evening Steven and Alison dined at the British Consulate. The meal consisted of a blend of traditional German and English food. The conversation was light. The Consul and Steven discussed historical topics of common interest while Alison kept the consul's wife up-to-date with fashion and gossip.

Each was holding his or her glass of after-dinner sherry and sitting comfortable when the Consul finally broached the subject. "What brings you to West Berlin?"

"I had an invitation to visit Spandau."

"Are you here to see Hess? He asked for you?"

"He must have. The telegram really didn't say. You mean to say you knew nothing of this?"

"This is the first I've heard of it. I was notified by the hotel of your impending arrival, but not the reason why.

"Have you any word on how Hess is? I can't even guess why he asked for me."

The Consul shrugged. "No one but Hess would know why. He seems, at times, to be in his own little world. That's why I'm so surprised."

"Well, I'll find out tomorrow. That's when the appointment is." He smiled. Across the room, he gave Alison a covert glance.

She yawned. "I apologize. It must be the jet-lag. Thank you so much for a lovely dinner."

Steven walked to her side. "Maybe that walk wasn't such a good idea."

"Maybe not."

A butler brought her wrap. "Shall I call a taxi?"

"Thank you."

They said good night and stepped outside. The taxi was waiting for them. Steven put his head to the driver's open window and told him they were going to walk instead. They proceeded down the Uhlandstrasse, strolling in quiet until they were close to the hotel. "I'm afraid for you," Alison told him.

Steven stopped walking and looked her in the face. "Why? What's wrong? I'll be okay tomorrow."

"I read that note today, the threat on your life."

"I've had lots of those," he said, trying to shrug it off. "Most of them are cranks."

"Most of them."

"They wouldn't dare try anything. The Consulate knows I'm here and, by now, so does Sarah." he kissed her softly on the cheek. "Everything will turn out fine. It always does."


The next morning Steven was ready for his interview with the former confidante of Hitler. Alison was still nervous. "After meeting Hitler and surviving the cellars of Prinz Albrechtstrasse, this should be easy." He smiled confidently. "I promise you, I'll be fine."

She looked at him. "You will be careful, won't you? I won't feel at ease until you're back here safe and sound."

"As my lady wishes," he said with a courtly bow. He kissed her good-bye and walked out of the suite.

As he strolled down the streets, he tried to think of what it was that Hess wanted to tell him. It could be a myriad of things ranging from the absurd to the credible. The question is, which extreme? He arrived at the prison gates, showed the guard the telegram and his pass. As luck would have it, his appointment had been scheduled during the British shift. The guard saluted and stood at attention once he recognized him.

He was escorted into an office where he had to sign papers and watch them compare his signature against that of his passport. "One last thing, your Grace," said a lieutenant. "He has a tendency to babble. He is just a little bit mad."

"Thanks. I'll keep that in mind."

Steven walked to the door that marked the entry to Hess's living quarters. The man raised his head and looked at Steven's face with black eyes. They stared at each other for five minutes--the Nazi prisoner and the Allied hero. Hess spoke first. "Sit down, Herr Taylor. No wonder Adolf wanted you. My astrology told me that there was something about you. Now I feel the aura myself."

Steven could understand why they said he was crazy. "But what made you choose me? The first time I saw you was when you were on trial at Nuremberg."

"You, Herr Taylor, are the only one who knew Adolf. When Speer was here, he sang your praises. Said they all believed you were a turncoat. Tell me of the last time you saw Adolf." Hess just seemed to want to talk of old times.

"The last time I saw his was May 1945. I had made my way to the bunker and found him and Eva, both dead. I was the one who burned their bodies--at the expense of my own sight."

"All the while I was wasting away in an Allied prison!" He was disgusted. "We traveled on different paths. Too many lives were at stake. I went to convince the British to surrender before more men died. They captured me and I became a prisoner-of-war. They didn't know what was wrong with what they did. The war could have ended earlier." He stared at the wall just past Steven. "I escaped and was free for thirty days. That's what I want to talk about." Steven tensed and waited for Hess to continue. "It was during this time that I put into action a plan that to bring about the fall of Britain." He turned about and smiled insanely.

"How come nothing has happened yet? Something should have happened by now."

"It was to be financial ruin. It never went past Stage One. I had some authentic pound-note plates and would have flooded the market." Steven motioned to interrupt. "That isn't all. In a safe in Edinburgh are some art treasures thought lost. I give them to you to do with what you will." He gave Steven the address

"But why me? Surely there are others more deserving."

But Hess was lost to the past, to the days of the glorious Third Reich when he figured prominently. Steven tried to get him to talk further, but to no avail. He rose and walked to the door. The British officer let him out. "You were right, lieutenant. He definitely a bit mad." When he's not being cryptic and driving me mad.

He walked out of the prison and into the surrounding park. He found a bench, sat down, and looked at the building To be alone in a fortress like that. He shuddered just thinking of the prisons he had been in and sympathized. He stood and began to walk back to the hotel to ease Alison's mind. Up ahead, he saw a crowd of people arguing heatedly. He reached the area just as the group was breaking up. He was bumped into and carried away. He tried to get himself back on course, but two burly men grabbed him by the arms and forced him into a waiting car. "What the bloody hell is going on here?"

"You will find out later." Steven saw a slight shadow across the seat from him. The hand seemed to move and then Steven felt intense pain at the back of his head.


He woke with a dull throb throughout his head. He sat up on the floor and the room began to spin. He closed his eyes, counted ten, then opened them again. It had stopped. He tried to stand, but wasn't quite ready yet. He looked around the room and it brought back memories of Prinz Albrectstrasse. Maybe Alison's fears weren't unfounded. Must be the Soviets. Makes sense.

The door opened and he saw a figure silhouetted in the open space. "Sorry if you are feeling pain," it said in broken English.

"I get knocked on the head every morning." The sarcasm went unnoticed. "What's going on here?" he asked in Russian

"We cannot let you go back to London knowing what you do."

"Hess said absolutely nothing of importance--"

"We do not care what an insane man said. You escaped Lubyanka after meeting someone."

"If you mean Reilly, no one believed me. You're safe on that account. I did have proof--a letter he wrote--but lost it when I left Moscow. That was over twenty years ago. Why are you doing this now?"

"We dared not risk it before, but now you are on our territory. What did Mr. Reilly say to you?"

"Nothing related to Soviet secrets. Probably what he did know was out-of-date anyway." He stretched. "Can I possibly have something to eat?"

"I shall send something in." The man walked to the door. "We are not done yet, Taylor."

"One thing before you go: is Reilly still alive?"

"You shall see for yourself. Tomorrow you will be on your way to Moscow." He slammed the door.



Alison tried to read a magazine while she waited for Steven's return. She had just read the same paragraph for the twentieth time. She threw it down on the table and called the front desk. "Has my husband come back yet?"

"Nein. I shall call you once he arrives."

"Thank you." She replaced the receiver. "I knew something would happen. No matter how innocent something starts out, when he becomes involved, things get muddled, complicated, and dangerous." She paced the suite's living room. "I'll go myself and find him. They might know at the prison where he went." She put on her coat and walked out.

She walked up to the front gate of the prison and asked the guard if he had seen her husband. The guard shook his head. "I have just come on duty and he has been gone long," he answered in thick-accented English.

"Where is the guard who was here before? Maybe he knows. I must find him!"

"It is not permitted."

"It's a matter of life or death!"

"I will call my superior." He moved into the guardhouse and Alison watched him talk on the phone and nod. He came out. "You will be escorted to the British officer. Please wait." He opened the gate and let her in.

She thanked him and stood nervously, waiting. A sharp-dressed officer walked towards her. "Lady Stuart? I am here to take you to Lieutenant Anderson. Please follow me." He led her to a small interview room. "The lieutenant will be here in a moment." He shut the door.

After five minutes he hadn't returned and Alison realized that she had been very gullible. I don't believe I was so foolish! How could I have let him put me in here? In trying to help, I've just caused more problems! She banged on the door. "Let me out of here! I am a British citizen and demand to be treated as such!"

The officer heard her and came to the door. "Soon you will be with your husband, and that, I expect, won't be for long. But if you are not quiet, you will never see him again."


Steven knew he could trust the food he was given because they wanted him in Moscow. The water, however, he left alone. He was going to attempt to escape that night. He emptied the water out the barred window and feigned sleep when the guard passed. After he had gone, Steven looked down the hall through the small glass window. All clear. The hall looked like one in a regular office building. He must be in a holding room of sorts. He examined the lock. It would take some time but he could do it. He felt his pockets. Nothing. He checked the lining of his jacket. They hadn't thought of his back-up set.

Early the next morning, before things became busy, Steven began to work on the lock. First, he ran his fingers along the crack between the door and the wall to make sure it was not attached to an alarm. It wasn't. Then he inserted the first pick and turned it counter-clockwise. When that didn't work, he turned it clockwise. He tried a second, larger pick and turned it counter-clockwise. It worked!

He tip-toed down the hall towards the front of the building. He heard men talking and decided to try the back hoping it would be less crowded. From the street behind the building he could see the Wall and, for his purposes, he was on the wrong side. He looked down at himself and decided that he first priority was to get a change of clothes. He walked a few blocks east then cut up to the main road to get his bearings. As soon as he was discovered missing, they would think he would head directly for the Wall. He'd fool them by going in the opposite direction.

As he was about to go into a store off Alexanderplatz, he saw a man in the uniform of the East German army. From the insignia on his shoulder, Steven could tell he was on border patrol. Steven followed, knocked him out, and changed into the uniform. Thus disguised, he headed for the Wall.

Sirens wailed and police cars stopped alongside the Wall. A man who was definitely KGB stepped out of the car. "You there! Have you see a man dressed in an well-tailored but wrinkled suit?" Steven shook his head. "Get into the truck! We must find him!" Steven saluted and jumped into the truck. The convoy then drove along the Wall, eyes combing every inch of the surrounding area. They stopped by Checkpoint Charlie and looked across "no-man's land" to the West. The KGB agent set the soldiers up as a blockade conveniently placing Steven close to the gate. "You are not to let him get past! He is an English spy who speaks fluent German! Be suspicious of everyone!"

At Checkpoint Charlie, the American soldiers watched, on edge. An escape was imminent.

The tension built and Steven patiently waited for what could be the ideal time--or something close to it. The soldiers stood in the still air waiting for this spy, hating him for causing this discomfort. The KGB agent paced the line, wanting to catch the master spy.

Steven thought it was now or never. He took a deep breath, turned to face Checkpoint Charlie, and ran. He took the KGB and the soldiers by surprise. Steven was halfway to the gate when they realized what was happening and began shooting. He ran in a zigzag pattern and was soon out of range. He stopped, took off his helmet, and saluted the KGB agent who was fuming in recognition.

The American soldiers cheered in greeting. Steven immediately took off the uniform jacket and straightened his hair. "Thanks for the encouragement, fellas. Keep up the good work. I'm off to see the wife."


Alison slept terribly that night. The cot was hard, the cell was cold, and her thoughts were troubled. They said she was going to see Steven "but not for long". It was obvious that they were going to use her to make him talk before killing them both.

A guard brought her breakfast. "How long will I be kept here? What do they want me for?" He said nothing and shut the door behind him.

At midmorning he came back for the tray. Gunfire could be heard. "What's that?" asked Alison.

"Sounds as if someone is trying to get by the Wall." He smirked. "I doubt they made it."

"What about me? How long am I to be kept here?"

"That is not for me to decide, but you should be finding out soon."


The minute the clerk at the desk saw Steven walk into the hotel he rang the Royal Suite, but there was no answer. As Steven passed by, he called out, "Your Grace, your wife has been worried about you. I just rang the suite now and there was no answer. I thought it strange and felt you should know."

Steven's bright mood was immediately dampened. "When did you last hear from her?"

"Yesterday afternoon, sir. I only came in a little while ago."

"Thanks." Steven rushed up the stairs hoping to find a note of some sort. Deep inside he knew she had gone to search for him which meant she went to Spandau and got herself caught by the Soviets. The note just backed his hunch.

He sat on the couch and thought of a plan. The only thing he could come up with was to go there and get her out--a frontal assault. He wrote a note for the Consul in case anything went wrong. He quickly changed, strapping on his knife, planning to grab a bite on the way. He left the note with the front desk clerk to be delivered only if he or Alison did not return. The clerk just nodded blankly, thinking of all the storied he had heard about Steven Taylor.

Steven reached Spandau and walked right up to the front gate. The Soviet soldier prepared to force him away. "Yes. I'm looking for my wife. I have reason to believe she is inside."

"You are mistaken. There are only the soldiers and Hess in here."

Steven spoke to him in Russian. "It appears you don't know who I am. I do not lie about such things. In case you need to be reminded, I was here yesterday to speak with Hess."

The guard was unemotional. "During the British shift. I will check with my superiors." he went into the gatehouse and called the prison office. Steven watched as the guard looked at him before hanging up the phone and coming outside. "You will be met at the entrance."

Steven nodded in thanks and strode purposefully into the prison. He kept walking and passed a myriad of rooms, many of which he didn't want to know about. He also passed the turn-off for Hess's cell. He went deeper into the prison to find Alison. The Soviets wouldn't place her in often-used areas. He heard a set of footsteps coming his way. He hid in a recess and watched as a Soviet officer passed. Steven knocked the man out and put on the uniform. This is getting monotonous. He went into a lit tunnel and followed it to the end. Two guards sat playing a game of chess. They stood and saluted when Steven entered. "I wish to speak with the woman," he demanded in Russian. One guard hurriedly opened the door. "I wish not to be disturbed." Steven walked into the cell and the door was shut behind him. He kept his back to her. "Where is your husband? You must tell me or those men out there will be compelled to hurt you."

Alison looked at his back. "Don't you know? last I heard, he was supposedly on his way to Moscow."

"Oh, I know. My question is do you?" Alison shook her head. "Do you wish me to tell you? Do you want to know where he is?" He was toying with her.

"You devil! Tell me!"

"Right here with you." Steven turned and smiled before placing a finger over his lips to keep her from crying out.

She ran over and hugged him. "Why did you put me through all that?"

"We had an audience." He nodded towards the door. "I'm going to get you out of here and I want you to play along without question." Alison nodded. Steven called the guard. "She is ready to talk. She knows where her husband might be and I want her to witness Soviet efficiency first-hand." The guards saluted and opened the door. Alison resisted and Steven "forced" her out ahead of him.

In the hall, away from the guards, he whispered, "All you have to do is get past the guard at the main gate. The Soviets wouldn't dare do anything then. If I'm not back in two days, I want you to fly back to London."

"But what about you? Shouldn't I do something?"

"If I'm not back, I'm either in Moscow or dead."

They reached one of the main corridors and Steven thought he heard voices. "Go on!" She ran along the hallway past the open door. Steven followed but was seen. Shots were fired and he tried to lead them away from Alison so she could escape. He stopped to catch his breath when he thought he had a moment to spare. He turned to continue but came face-to-face with a Soviet rifle.

Alison reached the outside and slowed before the guard suspected something. She went back to the hotel knowing full well that Steven had some plan up his sleeve. Up in the suite, she stripped out of her dirty clothes and stepped into a warm bath to soak off the grime accumulated in the prison. When she was done, she dressed in casual slacks and blouse before calling room service. She tuned in to the Armed Forces Radio to calm her nerves as she ate. She planned to stay awake in the hopes that Steven would come back, but fell asleep on the couch.


Steven was marched into an office to stand in front of a KGB colonel. "It is no worry to us that your wife is gone. You are the one we want."

Steven shook off the guards' hands, took off the cap and threw it aside. "So, I technically am a spy now, right? After all, I was found in a Soviet uniform, so at least now you'll have a good excuse for killing me."

"We're not going to kill you, at least not yet. We will go through with our original plan and take you to Moscow. Your wife's story would seem somewhat fantastical, don't you think?"

"How would you explain my leaving her, then?"

"You always go away unexpectedly. You see, I have studied your habits."

"That doesn't take into account my thoughts and emotions. I wouldn't leave my wife like that. If you would think back on your research, you would realize that I haven't done so all my married life." The colonel nodded in acceptance of this truth. "Also, however trite this may sound, I have left a note to be delivered to the British Consulate in West Berlin in case I don't return."

"You seem to have come prepared."

"I have been doing this type of thing for quite a few years now. It just comes naturally."

"Take him to a cell and make sure he is guarded closely. The guards are to be careful about what they say," he glanced at Steven, "he knows Russian."

Steven gave a mock salute as he was escorted out of the room. He was led to the same cell where Alison had been held. They definitely had no imagination. He sat on the cot and tried to think of escape plans to pass the time. Under the circumstances, none were feasible.


The day passed with no word from Steven. Alison spent the full twenty-four hours in the suite, barely speaking to anyone. She either stared at the walls, paced the floors, or stood on the balcony and looked out at the prison. That night she fell asleep at 1:00. She awoke red-eyed and took a cold shower. Freshly dressed, she placed a call to the airport and booked a flight back to London for that evening. She then prepared to wait.


Steven arrived in Red Square the morning after his capture. The KGB seemed to think of his arrest as a feather in their cap. What could be better than catching a man who had been wanted for twenty years? He was taken to Lubyanka and locked in a cell. the thick, steel slammed solidly into place. Nothing short of a miracle would get him out of this.

That evening he was taken to an interrogation room and forced into a chair facing two agents. "Tell us about Reilly."

"I have. He wrote a note for me to deliver to London, but I lost it. I tried to convince them in London that I had seen Reilly, but they didn't believe me."

He was hit on the side of the head. "A poor story. Tell us about Reilly."

Steven stayed with his story and had the bruises to prove it. He knew from all the questioning that Reilly was dead, otherwise they'd be questioning him as well. The days seemed to pass like years through the monotony of questioning and pain that followed. His only consolation was that Alison was safe in London.


That night at the airport, Alison waited until the last possible moment before she boarded the plane. She took her seat by the window and her eyes searched the tarmac for a sign of her husband. She may have been expecting too much, but Steven was the kind who was bound to his word. Maybe his luck had run out.

When she arrived in London, she went to Buckingham Palace to visit her sister-in-law and told her everything. "That was the last time I saw him. He has to be in Moscow."

Queen Anne II (a.k.a. Sarah Taylor) was angered. "They wouldn't dare do anything to him."

"He was wearing a Russian uniform," Alison said slowly. "They could arrest him as a spy without encountering any legal difficulties, couldn't they?"

Sarah realized this was true. "From what you told me, they took him before he was in uniform." Alison nodded. "There must be some channel we can use." She put her arm about her. "You just go home. Andrew and Jamie are there. I promise I'll keep you posted."

"I guess you're right. He always did come back."


Two months passed and Steven still hadn't returned. The Soviets denied all knowledge of his whereabouts. The note Steven wrote the day he disappeared only related to his conversations with Hess. Sarah placed Steven's friend in the C.I.D., John Dolittle, in charge of retrieving the art treasures and the bank plates.

Alison tried to busy herself about the house. Her son Andrew (from a previous marriage) and Steven's adopted son Jamie tried to make her happy. They took her out shopping, to the theatre, and even dancing. She appreciated what they were doing and it did help, but there was still a hole in her life.

The National Gallery asked her to come to the unveiling of Steven's donation of the rediscovered art treasures. She accepted knowing she would have to fill in at some functions where Steven normally would have gone. She made a short speech and cut the ribbon that held the curtain. The assembled crowd applauded politely and admired the collection. A man sitting in front of the major masterpiece caught her eye. He seemed entranced. She walked over to him. "I see you are a true art lover."

"Oh, yes, very much so. I feel very close to this collection," he said in a gruff voice.

"I'm only sorry my husband isn't here to see them." She sat down on the bench beside him.

"Who said he's not?" The man turned to face her. He was pale, gaunt, and bruised, but she could see it was him.

"Steven!" she cried out. All heads turned.

"So much for surprise." He buried his head in his hands and hid a smile.

Bulbs flashed about him. "Thought you were in Moscow for good!"

"So did they!"

"How did you get away?"

Steven took a deep breath. "It's quite a story. I'll tell the first part as it was told to me. When my sister's official channels failed, she sent an agent to Moscow to get me out. He joined the kitchen staff and one of his duties was to serve the prisoners' food. He put drugs in mine which slowed all bodily functions to the point where it seemed I was dead. When they removed the 'body' to the incinerator, he put me with the garbage and smuggled me out.

"When I woke, I was stiff, hungry, and desperately in need of a shower. I was in worse condition than I am now; thinner, paler, and barely able to walk." He paused for breath. "In Lithuania, I think, I spent time recuperating until I was able to be moved to Primorsk. We went across the ice floes into Finland, then across the border to Sweden, then Holland, then back to England. I arrived at the Palace early this morning and my sister told me of the opening." Alison hugged him.

He then thought of the "Madman of Spandau" who was indirectly the cause of all this. He could still manipulate people's lives even from prison. Looking at the paintings, Steven wished him well.


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