I don't own New Tricks, the BBC does.

New Tricks.

The First Quartet.

When he heard from his old friend and colleague, Jack Halford about the new unit the police were setting up to crack open unsolved cases and the police didn't have the money or the resources to bring in currently serving officers but were planning on instead using retired police officers, Brian Lane was instantly intrigued.

His primary interest was the possibility of taking a look at cases bad coppers had not really bothered to investigate and had simply dumped on the pile to gather dust because they were just incapable of investigation because they wanted to look good.

Brian had to admit to himself there would likely be cases that had been deemed unsolvable by the bloody higher-ups simply because too much time was being invested in them by detectives who were as dedicated as himself and Jack. It would likely put a few noses out of joint, but Brian didn't care. He had very little respect for the higher-ups in the police, especially those who were more suited to spending time in Parliament than in a nick.

But he had other reasons for not liking the higher-ups….

Brian closed his eyes and rubbed his balding forehead while he thought about the invitation Jack had sent him.

He was surprised Jack had sent him one given that although they were friends, there were likely other police officers whom he would have liked to work with him in this new unit.

Okay, while the name UCOS - oh, you had to love police acronyms, especially in the modern age of what those bloody young amateurs deemed policing; they spent more time yakking on about police procedural rules without thinking hard graft and a bit of rule-bending actually got results in the long term - had a lot to be desired, Brian imagined it would be just the thing for bored ex- detectives who had nothing better to do with their time than sit around and wait until they suffered from severe arthritis or die of boredom.

I certainly fall in the latter category, Brian thought sadly to himself, thinking about all the times which had become more and more common over the last few years since his retirement since he had gone about doing things, like reading books or play puzzles, only to get bored because the stories or the puzzles were static, and there was no real intrigue. The problem with many mystery novels were the plots and the outcomes were so predictable Brian wondered why they even bothered putting pen to paper. It made no sense to him, really.

Esther was in two minds about him joining this new UCOS. On the one hand, she wanted them both to have something in common, something to talk about; Brian wasn't stupid, and just because he was oblivious to what his wife thought and wanted, he wasn't completely ignorant.

He and Esther would never have lasted this long if that were the case. Brian knew he sometimes aggravated his wife; that massive mess where he had taken pills and had become an alcoholic when the stress of being a cop was becoming too much for him to handle, and it had turned him into a shadow of the man he had once been was a primary example.

But on the other hand…

Esther knew how depressed he was, how bored and listless he was.

She knew he wanted - NO! needed something meaningful to do in the long term, but she was terrified, and he could definitely see it in her eyes if he joined UCOS, he would suffer, and likewise their marriage would take another blow much like it had when he had become an alcoholic, which had spiralled out of Brian's control.

Brian really wanted to join this UCOS.

Not only would it get him out of the house and back into the land of the living, as he deemed detective work, a world he had thought he had left when the last disaster had happened. But best of all, he wouldn't be returning as a cop.

Although he had loved been a police officer, and he had hated to leave since it was one of the best things in his life since it had given him the opportunity to put his brain and mind to the task of solving crimes, using intellect over brawn as many of his colleagues had done, sometimes even planting evidence which to Brian was one of the worst sins you could commit, especially since it had the unfortunate habit and biting you in the long term.

Brian could understand the appeal of course, but it was only because of his mind and his way of looking at the world as though it was a massive jigsaw puzzle for him to solve that he had ignored it all, even though other police officers who had become respected heroes among the rest of the force had done it, in fact, they had built their entire careers on lies. Always so sure they had the right guy, always so sure they had been one step ahead. Oh, they had been one step ahead alright; one step into the consequences for falsifying evidence, and Brian personally knew a hundred people whom he was positive had done it.

At the same time, he didn't want to go back to being a DI. Brian may have hated how he had left the force, and he might have resented his downward spiral into booze and depression, but he knew one of the primary reasons behind it deep down was because of his duties as a Detective Inspector which had brought him down; the never-ending complaints directed towards him because of his obsessive attitude towards the cases he was working on as he was dedicated to solving them.

He remembered the stress and the aggravation; he had his own beliefs about the mess which had resulted in his retirement from the police

Thinking about those bastards who had respect because they had fitted some criminals up for things they hadn't done and had gone on to be heroes in the force, only that was because they had done things in a calculated way to make them look good made Brian annoyed. He found if he and this new unit (if he got in) found cases where some of those so-called heroes had made a monumental mess disguised as a watertight case, he wouldn't be sorry about shoving it in the face of the amateurs. Brian paused as he realised he was letting some of the anger he was feeling over how he had been treated in the last few years of his career. Not good. It wouldn't do to be angry, not if he wanted to keep himself sharp. But he couldn't help himself since he was thinking about Anthony Kaye.

He was convinced Anthony had been left to die, choking on his own vomit. Everyone had claimed he had made a mistake and there was very little sympathy aimed his way since the whole disaster had occurred during the height of his alcoholism, but Brian was convinced there was a conspiracy against him; Anthony was a well-known drug offender at the time, he should have been checked over. He wasn't sure how high up this whole mess went, but he was convinced the officers in charge of the custody suite had conspired to not do anything to help Kaye from dying and push the blame onto him, and since everyone knew he was a drunk, no-one would question it.

Brian hoped he was admitted into UCOS. He hated not knowing the truth, but he was not sure if he knew he would like what he found out about the truth of the case.