Foyle had his arms crossed, leaning back in his office chair, waiting for what he hoped would be the final call of the day. He had been on the phone with one lot or another of military officers with the occasional civilian bureaucrat for what seemed the entire day. Really it was getting quite ridiculous - fully half the people he had spoken to today had nothing to contribute to the problem in hand beyond long-winded and completely pointless opinion. With a sigh Foyle admitted to himself that that wasn't really fair: all the repetitive speeches had been clear on one point - that whoever was at fault, it was most definitely not the speaker or anybody in their organization. This rather annoying activity was thankfully interrupted when Milner appeared in his doorway with an interrogative "Sir?" and a folder with the daily manpower projections.
"So the theory is that a crate fell off the back of a lorry?" Milner didn't even try to hide his skepticism, because really they were still talking of high explosives even if they were crated for transport, and the crate one of undoubtedly hundreds of boxes loaded into the multitude of army convoys that set off every day. Somebody somewhere would have had to be very stupid.
With a tired sigh and a small 'there you have it' gesture, Foyle answered, "Well let's call it the preferred theory. As it's the one that would allow for the greatest number of blameless individuals, followed by the idea that some private thought he had pinched a crate of socks and got an unpleasant surprise."
Milner had to admit it made sense: in a case of true accident you could blame the men that loaded the lorry, the man that received it, or even possibly the drivers for not noticing at the time; in a case of black market thieves getting hold of the wrong crate, well then you would have to start taking into question over-all security as well as who had recruited a sticky-fingered private who couldn't read. Pulling himself back to the subject in hand Milner asked, "Have the military authorities decided whether they wish to take over the investigation or will they leave it to us?"
"Hmm, both actually." The left side of Foyle's mouth quirked up in response to Milner's expression. "The military police have taken responsibly for investigating the origins and circumstances behind the seeming, umm, ….misplacement of the restricted military materiel. However in light of the severe demands on their time they have requested our 'continued assistance' in regards to local information gathering as well as the securing of sites and materiel of interest to the investigation."
Milner did a quick translation: The Hastings police would continue to investigate, anything found would be passed on to the military police, who would subsequently take full responsibility – and credit - for reporting the case solved.
Foyle continued "so off course this means well have to find some way to secure said property. I hope we can find enough give in the duty schedule"
"acutely I was thinking sir that if we do indeed have access to Mr. Tavers property" a bit of a bright lining Milliner thought when he had the idea the other day he hadn't be at all sure If it would work out "then It could solve the problem with the down street substation. The best estimate on repairing are at lest two or three weeks and frankly that's only after the UXB is removed." Foyle asked wile scanning through the coming weeks man power reports "don't suppose with have an estimate on that?" "yes, unfortunately its vague to the point of non-existent" Foyle gave a little grunt of amusement and Milliner counted "so I was thinking if we were to make use of the kitchen and front room of Tavers house as a tempary substation…"
With a smile Mr. Foyle finished for him " wile locking up the rest of the house we could secure it with out unduly disrupting the patrol routs, exultant idea."