Heroes and Villains – Part 2







Wednesday 19th October

3.45 pm

Complete Style


“All right, Fiona, we’ll talk tomorrow,” Anna Mitchell said into her cell phone as she walked out of her office, seeing Marina at her desk.


"So are you driving up with Mary Marina?"

"I was boss," Marina looked up from what she was working on, "Kylie is going on the busses."

"Okay," Anna smiled, "I'm going to drive up with Missy."


“So has she formally returned to work yet?”


“Next week – Rhenia formally starts then as well.  Come on – time to finish for the night…”




7 pm

Gallifrey House

New London


Maggie sat at the side as she watched the catering staff setting up the tables to one side, her sister walking to and fro and ‘instructing’ the staff as to where things should be put.


“No, I want the plates for the hot snacks to be placed over here…”


“Amy, lass,” Maggie said as she stood up, “You’re worse than our glorious leader trying to get the rest of us to do what she wants.  Come and have a coffee with me before you have a meltdown.”


“Margaret,” Amelia said as she walked over, “are you accusing me of being too strict over how my granddaughter’s party should be?”


“Accusing you?  No,” Maggie said as she poured a coffee and handed it to her sister.  “Telling you to your face – yes, yes I am.  It’s Karen isn’t it?”


“I am flattered you remembered Dame Margaret,” Karen Kumalo said as she came over.  “Charlotte asked if I would come tonight in her stead, and I always like to arrive just when I am needed.  Will you introduce me?”


“Amy, this is Karen Kumalo, one of the people who works for Charlotte van der Byl in Africa.  Karen, my sister Lady Amelia Ashley.”


“A pleasure, and may blessings overflowing come to you,” Karen said as she shook Amelia’s hand, Amy flushing as she said “I…  I’ll just sit down for a minute…”


As she sat down, her eyes closed as Maggie raised an eyebrow to Karen.


“As I say, I come when I am most needed.   Now, forgive me, I have some preparatory work to do…”  She walked off, Maggie shaking her head as one of the staff came over.


“Is she all right?”


“Oh yes – get on with your work, she won’t disturb you again…”


“Why on earth is my mother sleeping?”


“There you are young Pips,” Maggie said as she looked at Pippa.  She was wearing a denim skirt, a black waistcoat over a white blouse, and high black boots.  “Or is it Sarah Jane Smith?”


“Well, a little before my time, but yeah,” Pippa said with a smile, “and Mum?”


“She was invited to take a little rest,” Maggie said as she looked at Karen walking round.


“Karen Kumalo?  So she’s here tonight…”


"Should someone whisper in ears that Karen is actually royalty and welcomed in palaces across the world?"

"Oh that information would blow my Mother's mind," Pippa laughed, "I must somehow ensures she hears it."

"Pippa you are evil."

"Aren't I just."  Pippa smiled as a tall thin man walked over.


"So is everything in place for when the kids arrive, and to your satisfaction?"

"It is Neal, and thank you for letting us do this here."

"Well with the publicity, and other things, I get plenty from this as well."

"I know, but it will still mean so much to my daughter having her party here."


“Ah – you must be Neal?”


“Merlin – Neal, meet Mary Thomas, aka the Wizard.”


“A pleasure,” Mary said as Marina walked in, wearing a white jumper, denim jacket and jeans, and black boots.  She looked at Pippa, and smiled as she said “room for two?”


“I think so – oh my god…”


“Oh yeah – Neal, why don’t you take my friends for a chat and a drink, somewhere quiet…”



As Neal walked off with the others, Grace walked in, wearing a crimson wrap top and pants, and a long dark brown wig.


“Greetings,” she said quietly, “I am in control here.”


“Good lord – Kate O’Mara?”


“Well, it seemed appropriate,” Grace said as she turned to see Abby and Tony come in, Abby wearing a striped blouse and white pants, Tony a Colin Baker outfit.  Diana walked slowly with them, Pippa walking over and kissing her on both cheeks as she said “it’s good to see you again Countess.  Let me find you a seat…”


“This way, girls,” Grace said as an assortment of Daleks, Cyberwomen and other characters came into the room…



"Well, I might have guessed you'd come as someone special," Abby said as Luke and Jack came in, Jack adjusting the cuffs of his frilled white shirt as he stood and looked round.  "And just who have you come as?"


"Captain Jack Harkness, reporting for duty, Ma'am," Jack said as he saluted Abby.  He was wearing an army great coat over a blur shirt, dark trousers and braces, while Jack had a grey waistcoat on over his shirt, and black trousers.  "May I introduce Professor Yana, and make sure you keep a close eye on him."


"And why would I do that?"


"In case I become a Master, apparently," Jack said as he kissed Diana.  "How are you my dear?"


"Recovered enough to spend some time here this evening...  How are you Jack?"


“I cannot complain – I here young Poppy is on her way?”


“Indeed - It will do us all good I think to see all the young people having fun."

"On that I will agree Diana darling," Jack looked serious, "real  life has just got a bit too much recently, and I fear worse maybe to come."

"Well for tonight let's forget all about that."




"So how have the busses been Grace?"

"NOISY," the blonde shook her head, "I'd forgotten what the decibel levels could hit with that many excited kids inside what are basically metal boxes."


“And the special bus,” Maggie asked.


“On the way now…”




“Happy birthday Sweet Sixteen…”


“Thank you, thank you,” Poppy said as she sat back, wearing a pair of silver jeans with ankle boots, and a tight white top.  Dawn was wearing a red gown with black boots, and Laura a denim jacket and jeans with “ACE” printed on the back.


“Why on earth did you get me to wear this,” Mel said as she sat in her silver jacket and boots, while Erica wore a long black coat and striped scarf, a floppy hat on her head.


“The old and the new, relax, it’ll be fun,” she said with a smile as Jess adjusted the cuff of her black jacket.  “I like the idea of been the current Doctor – he’s cool.”


“He’s old,” Erica laughed.


“Old, but cool – how much longer?”


“Soon be there…”



"Oh I'd forgotten her," Grace laughed as she saw Holly walk in wearing the old style air hostess’s uniform, "I wonder if she has the matching Australian accent to be Tegan?"

"I don't know," Harriet smiled, "but Tommy as an Ice Warrior is unusual casting."

"CRAP!" Alexandra whispered as she saw Holly and Tommy come in, "I thought he was too busy to come."

"Well it seems he wasn't bestie, so you'll have to just enjoy yourself with the rest of us tonight."

"This isn't fair."

"I know it isn't, but it's the reality of you and Holly Sands."


"Lover look," Heather tugged at Sandy's sleeve.

"What am I looking at?"

"Tommy did bring Holly."

"Oh shit." Sandy looked round for her daughter, "do I need have a word?"

"No, by the look of it Katy is talking to her."


“Okay, but let’s keep an eye open…”


“Folks, get ready,” Pippa said into the microphone, “she’s nearly here…”


As the group gathered to one side, the minibus pulled up outside and the door opened, Erica smiling as she got out and said “well, hello – and you are here?”


“To escort the birthday girl,” the tall thin man said in his natural Scots accent as Poppy got out.  “Oh my goddess, you’re…”


“Here to escort the baby girl in,” the other tall man said as they took Poppy by the arms, the others opening the door as they walked in.


“Boys, girls, welcome Poppy with her Doctor escorts!”


There was a scream as they watched David Tennant and Matt Smith walk in with Poppy, the grin clear on her face.


“How did they…”


“Cassie Stone called in a couple of favours,” Maggie whispered to Grace, “and there are others to come…”





“We need to sing something to the birthday girl,” Pippa said, “but we need someone to lead the singing, and I have that someone here.  Please welcome, from the Divine Comedy, NEIL HANNON!”


The room screamed as the thin Irishman came out, and said “well, where’s the birthday girl.  After three…”


As they sang Happy Birthday, Poppy stood with Neil and blushed, before he said “So, a Doctor Who party?  I got the perfect song for this – want to hear it?”


As the room cheered, he picked up a guitar and began to sing.


“Oh now I love this one,” David Tennant said as he stood with Mary Thomas and Matt Smith.


“I wonder why,” Matt said with a grin…


Well, I've roamed about this Earth
With just a suitcase in my hand
And I've met some bug-eyed Joes
I've met the blessed I've met the damned
But of all the strange, strange creatures
In the air, at sea, on land
Oh my girl, my girl, my precious girl
I love you, you understand

So reel me in, my precious girl
Oh come on, take me home
‘Cause my body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam
Oh, no

I have wandered, I have rambled
I have crossed this crowded sphere
And I've seen a mess of problems
That I long to disappear
And all I have's this anguished heart
For you have vanished too
Oh my girl, my girl, my precious girl
Just what is this man to do?

So, reel me in, my precious girl
Oh come on, take me home
‘Cause my body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam
Yeah, reel me in, my precious girl
Oh come on, take me home
‘Cause my body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam
Oh, no

Well, you took me in
You stole my heart
I cannot roam no more
Because love, it stays within you
It doesn't wash up on a shore
And a fighting man forgets each cut
Each knock, each bruise, each fall
But a fighting man cannot forget
Why his love don't roam no more

Oh, reel me in, my precious girl
Oh come on, take me home
‘Cause my body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam

Yeah, reel me in, my precious girl
Oh come on, take me home
‘Cause my body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam

Yeah, walk with me, my love, my love
Walk tall, walk proud, walk far
For you are my love, you are, you are
You are my shining star

Yeah, walk with me, oh, my love
Walk tall, walk proud, walk far
For you are my love, you are, you are
You are my shining star, you are, you are

Reel me in, my precious girl
Come on, take me home
My body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam

Reel me in, my precious girl
Come on, take me home
My body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam

Reel me in, my precious girl
Come on, take me home
My body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam

Reel me in, my precious girl
Come on, take me home
My body's tired of travelling
And my heart don't wish to roam



“Now then, the birthday girl gets one choice!”


“Father Ted,” Poppy shouted out.


“Okay then – here we go…”


Pale, pubescent beasts
Roam through the streets
And coffee shops
Their prey gather in herds
Of stiff knee-length skirts
And white ankle socks
But while they search for a mate
My type hibernate
In bedrooms above
Composing their songs of love

Young, uniform minds
In uniform lines
And uniform ties
Run round with trousers on fire

And signs of desire
They cannot disguise
While I try to find words
As light as the birds
That circle above
To put in my songs of love

Fate doesn't hang on a wrong or right choice
Fortune depends on the tone of your voice
So sing while you have time
Let the sun shine down from above
And fill you with songs of love
Take me


The guitarist broke into the well-known theme as the crowd cheered, Neil smiling before he continued.

Fate doesn't hang on a wrong or right choice
Fortune depends on the tone of your voice
So let's sing while we still can
While the sun hangs high up above
Wonderful songs of love
Beautiful songs of love




“He sounds nice,” Judith said as she stood with Annie, “weally nice.”


“Yeah he is,” Annie said as she looked over, “hey Ingrid, looking good?”


“I thought so,” Ingrid Mueller said as she came over, the face of a cat painted on her face as she wore a nun’s habit, Judith giggling as she saw her.



"You know that Dr Who had already become a fixture when I was a young girl," Mary Thomas shook her head as she looked round, "I'm just amazed that kids today are still fans."

"Well like the Doctor himself the show has always evolved and transformed itself." Grace sipped her drink Ama danced past with Nick.

"So…  When do you want me to show those clips of you in it Grace?" the Welshwoman laughed, "that is going to blow several little minds." 

"Mary I didn't even say a word," Grace shook her head, "I was just a young model hired to look decorative in the background of the scene."

"It's still going to impress a lot of these children Grace."

"It even impresses me," Neal the owner of the museum said as he waved a glossy print.

"How the hell did you do that?" Grace shook her head as she looked at the picture.

"I printed a screen capture up as a photograph," the man laughed gently, "Now can I beg you to sign it Mrs Brand?"

"If you wish," Grace shook her head, "though I'm not sure why you'd hang my picture in the show with all these others."


“Oh I am sure I can find somewhere, after all – you are not the only star revealing their part tonight…”


“I’m not – who else…”


As she looked to the door, she saw Cassandra and Rick come in with their children, all dressed like the people in the First Doctor series.


“Iain and Barbara – nice,” Grace said as the kids went to talk to Poppy and the others.


“You must be Neal – I think these may be of interest to you,” Cassandra said as Rick passed him a box, “souvenirs of the episode I did recently with Peter.”


"Thank you Miss Stone. It really too kind of you to donate these bits."

"Neal,” Cassandra said with a smile, “it's nice to see them find a place they will be appreciated."

"She has closets of stuff from shows and movies she has done cluttering up our house Neal," Rick hugged his wife, "I just wish we knew more places she could donate other things to."

"To me these are precious objects..."

"To my husband they are clutter," Cassie laughed.

"Well if we work out a valuation you know you can take a tax deduction? The museum is a registered charity."

"Well I wasn't looking for a deduction, but if you want send my PA in LA the papers when you have valued them."





“Hey,” Erica said as Capricorn came over to her, “have you been let out then?”


“I’m on a short leash, but yeah – Mom eventually calmed down,” Capricorn said as she accepted a drink.


“What about Allyson?”


“No idea – I haven’t spoken to her yet.  They flew back this morning, and Mom had me with her at the Ladybird shoot all day yesterday.”


“Oh yeah – hey, they’re not here tonight are they?”


“Not that I know of…”


"Is that Karen Gillan talking to Jeannie Poppy?"

"It is Aunt Maggie."

"How the hell did Mary Thomas get her to come for your party Our Poppy?"

"She didn't...Jeannie asked her, she's a friend of hers."

"I keep forgetting several of your friends are celebrities in their own right."

"Jeans had an ulterior motive for getting Karen here. Mom and Mary want to use this place for a shoot, and they want Karen to model for it."



“If you can all look to the stage for a moment?”


As the party looked over, Mary Thomas said “now, I’m a little bit older than most of you…”


“Only a little,” Juliette shouted out as the room laughed.


“Well, my Doctor was Tom Baker, and he can’t be here tonight…”


“Oh, I don’t know if that is true…”


“Oh lord – it’s the Curator,” Erica said as the white haired man came out, and took the microphone.  “Can Poppy come up here please?”


As Poppy walked up, Tom said “Now, if my little Welsh friend here can do this, we have some messages from across the pond for you…”



"How are things looking Caroline?" Francesca whispered.

"So far so good Admiral, the enemy seems to be respecting the idea that this party is out of bounds."

"I will keep my fingers crossed."

"So changing subjects what are these rumours I'm hearing that you've actually slept with a Doctor Who?"

"It's malicious gossip," the Marchesa laughed.

"Yes it is," Eleanor broke in, it's actually more than one."

"Oh?" the tall blonde Englishwoman looked amused, "do I want to know details?"


“One is no longer with us, the other is not here…”


“Can I have your attention for a moment?”


The room turned as they saw Poppy standing on the stage, smiling as she said “I just wanted to take a moment to thank you all for being here tonight, to thank Mom for the party, in fact – hell, just thank you for being you.  To me, we are all champions!”


As the room cheered, Pippa came up and said “That’s an amazing choice of words, Poppy,” as they all heard a thumping drumbeat coming from behind a curtain on the stage.


“Dum Dum DUM.  Dum Dum DUM!”


“Who the…” 


Poppy, you're a girl, everybody shout out
Standing on stage, turns sixteen today!

You brought down the place, with your mom and Grace
And now we gotta say this is your day, singin'


We will, we will rock you
We will, we will rock you


“Boys and girls,” Pippa said as the curtains opened, “please welcome Brian May, Roger Taylor and Adam Lambert, with a special song for today!”


Poppy, you’re a young girl, cute girl
Posing for the press, gonna be a top girl someday
But today’s your birthday, Sweet sixteen they say
And you’re gonna dance all over the place


We will, we will rock you, sing it!


The whole room responded with We will, we will rock you, yeah before Brian May went into a guitar solo as Poppy screamed


Poppy, you're an cute girl, nice girl
Smiling with your eyes, they light up the place today
So we hope that today, In our own way
We’ve helped make it a special birthday, do it!


We will, we will rock you, yeah, yeah, come on
We will, we will rock you, alright, louder!
We will, we will rock you, one more time
We will, we will rock you


As Adam Lambert started to sing We Are The Champions, Katy could see Sands was getting more and more upset.


"I can't stand it Katy,” she suddenly said as she put her glass down, “I'm going to ask her to dance."

"Ask? Ask who?" Katy's eyes followed where Sands was looking, as she saw Holly and Tommy talking to Abby and Carina.


"She's mine not his," Sands growled as she started to stand up, only to feel herself being pulled back down by her best friend.


"Down girl," Katy whispered, "you said yourself that when they are together Holly is out of bounds."


"Not tonight...."


"Have you drunk more then you should?" Katy interrupted her best friend.


"I don't know,” Sands said as she looked over, “have I?"


"It sounds like it to me," Doc said as she suddenly appeared.  "Alexandra Richmond stop it before you do something you'll regret."


"And you will stop me Anna?"


"We both will if we have to," Katy spoke softly.


“Is there a problem darlings,” Kylie said as she sat with them.


“Two things that do not go together well, Kyles – love and booze,” Katy said quietly.


“I love her,” Sands quietly sobbed, “I love her and I want to be with her, but…”


“Anna, Katy, let me talk to her for a few minutes,” Kylie said quietly, the other two nodding as they went to the bar.


“I do understand how you feel,” Kylie said quietly as she held the young girl’s hand, “believe me, I do, but the worst thing you could do now is go to her like this.  You don’t want to hurt her, do you?”


Sands looked up and slowly shook her head as the tears started to flow.


“Then for tonight, no more alcohol, and you stay with one of us, all right?”




“What is going on Doc?" Holly asked as she cornered Anna at the bar.

"Sands is getting uptight,” Anna said quietly as she looked over, “and she's had one glass too many of champagne."


"Meaning what?"


"That she wants to take the person she loves onto the dance floor."

"Oh Crap!" Holly went pale as she looked over, and then at Tommy.


"Don't worry,” Doc said quietly, “Katy and I will try controlling her with Kylie’s help. You just have fun."


"Thanks,” Holly said quietly, “but I hate that she's feeling like this."

"Well that's the problem when you have two lovers Hol."


“How would you know anything about that, Anna…”  Holly then looked again at Doc as she said “Who?”


“Like I said, me and Katy will watch her with Kylie’s help.  Is that enough for now?”


Holly slowly nodded and mouthed “thanks” as she walked past Katy, Poppy walking in the opposite direction.


"Is there something bad happening Katy?" Poppy asked as she came alongside the teenager.


"Nothing for you to worry about Pop,” Katy whispered, “just enjoy the party."


"Is it to do with Sands and Holly?"


Katy looked at her as she said "How the hell?"


"Katy I have eyes," Poppy laughed, "and I know most people haven't noticed, "but I put two and two together weeks ago."


“You haven’t said anything…”


“Nope – unless I want to shock Gran, it’s between them.  Just be there for her, all right?  Actually – find Capricorn as well…”




“HOTS Support meeting…”



“How in the name of all that’s holy did you manage to get THOSE guys,” Pepsi said as she stood with Nikki and Becca.


“I think her aunt called them in,” Becca said, “She knows Mrs May from her charity work.”






“Ah,” Pepsi said with a smile, “I get it now…”





The links in and out of this group never cease to amaze me," Mel shook her head, "when I won my scholarship I really had no clue what the world was that was opening up to me."

"Well, do you regret winning it?" Pepsi asked with a smile on her lips.

"Not one damn bit...Right Mom?"

"Darling I'm just happy that you are happy," Eva Eckholm nodded as she gazed in amazement at all the stars.


“She’s learning.”


Eva smiled as she saw Emma Carlton and Denice Crosby next to her.


“Welcome to the special world of the Saints and Sinners, Kirkham division – next stop Halloween…”


“Decided on your outfits yet,” Emma asked Denice.


“Oh yes, but I’m saying nothing – what about you Eva?”


“Depends on your music tastes…”




In one corner, Jeannie looked at Karen Gillan and said "So?"

"I was sort of trying to distance myself a bit from Dr Who Jeans."

"I know Karen, but the clothes will be amazing, and they guarantee you the cover."

"I know," the red headed Scot shook her head.

"Basically it's too good to turn down, and you know your agent will say just the same thing."


“Oh all right then...”



As the screen showed black and white scenes from the Patrick Troughton era, Cassandra groaned as she saw her mother on the screen, and then cheered as Grace appeared on the screen in a silver catsuit.





“All right, I’m fine now,” Sands said as she sat with Katy, Capricorn and Erica, “I know I was a bit loud, but…”


“It’s all right,” Shawnee said as she sat with them, “I understand.”


“You knew?”


“I guessed – come on Sands, we all have – but an older woman?  I thought I was the wild child of the Secret Six…”




“Well, it seems as if we have another Sweet Sixteen success underway,” Juliette said as she sat by the bar with Mary and Caroline.


“Ai – it’s a pity do many of the Brits could not be here tonight though,” Mary said with a smile.


“Well, they do have the party for Agnes and Donald on Saturday,” Mary said with a smile, “and they’ll all be over next week.”


“That’s true – but it would have been nice if Aunt Fiona was here.  I thought she was going to send a message tonight, Mary?”


“Ai she was, but she called today to say she was tired, so I passed on her good wishes earlier.”  Mary sat for a moment as Grace and Pippa came over.


“What’s the topic of conversation?”


“Fiona – have you spoken to her this week Pip?”


“Yeah, she was a bit tired, but otherwise happy, she was telling me about a shoot she’s arranged for Angel, Fi and Victoria in Chelsea – the right side of the town, as she put it.  I’m looking forward to seeing her in a couple of weeks’ time.”


“She’s an inspiration to us all,” Carina said as she and Abby came over.  “To have gone through all that she has and still come up smiling…”


“Yeah,” Abby said as she saw her mother talking to Sandy and Heather, all of them sitting round a table, “she is at that…”


5 pm GMT

Xavier International

The Aldwych


“Lily, do you have a moment?”


Lily looked up to see George standing in the doorway of her office, a slightly worried look on his face.


“Sure, what’s the problem?”


“There’s a package in holding, it was hand delivered, and – well, something’s not quite right about it.”


Putting her pen down, she picked up her telephone and dialled a number.


“Tracy, find Lou, meet me in…”


“Lower mail room.”


“Lower mail room, bring the bag…”




“Lilian, darling, I was about to finish my report,” Louise drawled as she came into the room, wearing a light blue jacket over her grey jersey dress, “what is…”  She saw Tracy at the table, putting on a pair of latex gloves, and Lily looking at the large manila envelope.


“George, check the security tapes, see if you can find out how this came into the building,” Lily said, the older man nodding as she lifted the edge of the envelope with a pair of tweezers.


“Let’s have a look,” Tracy said as she carefully picked the envelope up, looking at it before she felt round the edges.  “There’s something in here all right, but what triggered the spider senses?”


“Hand delivered, no postmark, addressed personal to Shirley Xavier?  None of our usual contacts would use that method…”


“Hmm…  I can feel some sort of thread or wire under the top.  Lou, get the fire bucket will you?”


“Of course Tracy darling,” Louise drawled as she brought the half full bucker of sand over, Tracy putting the envelope in upside down before she picked up a thin scalpel and carefully cut along the seam at the bottom, going slowly, carefully.  As the material parted, she opened the edges and looked inside.


“Yeah – we got a device, I can see the wires and the charge.  Lou – cover it.”


The other two stood back as Louis picked a brown bag up and filled the bucket with sand, as George came back in.


“Got the courier on the system,” he said as he brought up the image on the screen, Lily looking at the woman in the black leather jacket and mumbling “shit…”




“George, I want security on the Chelsea home put at maximum, two in residence.  Tracy, alert the team, I need to make a couple of phone calls.”





Park Avenue


“Now who is calling this late,” John said as he and Shirley came in with Maisha.


“I’ll deal with it,” Shirley said as she walked over to the telephone and picked it up.  “Shirley Xavier?


“I see, Lily, anything else I need to know?


“You are certain?  You have taken appropriate steps?


“Very well then – I will inform Caroline and alert her.  Good work Lily.”


“Problem in London,” John said as she ended the call and dialled another number.


“No – just a crank causing trouble.  Caroline?  I’m calling to see you at your offices tomorrow – and you may wish to increase screening.”




Thursday 20th October

9 am

Complete Style


“The draft for the Gillan contract is with Pippa to approve before we send it off,” Anita said as she sat with the other assistants.


“Good – Marina?”


“Madame Kalinikov is coming in to see you at one this afternoon, Anna – I will arrange for her and her assistant to be given the tour of the offices we promised.  Also, Juliette’s new assistant starts this morning, and Missy will be calling with the new comptroller at four.  Shall I call you when they have met with Mary?”


“I presume Kylie is coming in for her practical experience this afternoon after school?”  As Marina nodded, Anna smiled and said “good – well…”


As her telephone went off, Anita walked over and picked up the handset.


“Global Editor’s Office.


“We’re just finishing a meeting, but…”


Anna and the others looked over as Anita suddenly went pale.  “I understand, I’ll put you through to her office,” she finally said as she pressed a button.  “You need to take this call, Anna – in your office, we’ll wait out here?”




“It is better if you take it in there,” Anita said as Anna stood up and walked into her inner office.


“Anita?  What’s going on?”  Marina could see her colleague’s face was pale as she stood up, the other assistants doing so as she started to cry.


A moment later, Anna came out as well, her face drawn as she looked round.  “I…  I have just had some news.  Anita, would you call Pippa’s PA, tell her I am on my way to see her now.  Marina, go and find Merlin, ask her to come to Juliette’s office in fifteen minutes…”




Tricia nodded as she sat at her new desk, holding a mug of coffee as Alexis sat on the desk beside her.  The new employee was wearing a grey jumper and flowing skirt, while Alexis wore a roll neck sweater, black leggings and short black boots.


“I think today you need to get used to how things work here, Tricia – you happy with the induction schedule?”


“I think so – it’s strange knowing I will be dealing with Hong Kong as well, but...”


Alexis held a hand up as the phone started ringing, and she picked it up.


“Hey Marina, what’s up?”


Looking at Juliette’s office, she said “she’s dealing with correspondence, but I can interrupt her.  How long?


“Yeah, what’s going on?


“Okay, I’ll tell her,” she said as she ended the call, and said to Tricia “man the phones for a minute, will you?”


“Sure thing,” Tricia said as Alexis walked over and knocked on Juliette’s door.




“Juliette,” Alexis said as she looked in, “I just had Marina on the phone.  She says Anna is coming down in five minutes, and Merlin is coming to join you now.”


“Anna?  Not Pippa?”


“No – Anna.  Shall I get some coffee?”


“No time,” Juliette said as Mary came in, her hands in the pockets of her waistcoat.


“Okay Ju lass – any idea what this is about?”


“None whatsoever,” she said as Alexis saw Anna coming down the office, the editorial floor falling silent as she passed them.  Coming in, she said “can you give us the room for a few minutes Alexis,” waiting as the young woman closed the door.


“Anna?  What’s happened,” Juliette said as their boss looked at both of them.


“I… I just told Pippa this, and she’s arranging a meeting for staff later, but I wanted to tell you both myself.”


“Anna, what’s wrong,” Mary said as Anna sat down, Juliette and Mary sitting with her.


“I just had a call from the police in London.  Fiona…  Fiona’s cleaner let herself into her flat this morning, and found Fiona in her rocking chair, the television on.  She was…”


Mary and Juliette looked at each other, Anna starting to cry as she said “they think she must have had a heart attack during the night.  I’m sorry…”


“Boed i'r arglwydd roi'r heddwch y mae'n ei haeddu,” Mary said quietly as Juliette handed her a tissue, feeling the tears in her own eyes as she said “who else knows?”


“As of now, apart from us, I suspect it will be going through the PA network, and I put a call in to Karen Boyd.  Pippa is going to go and see Grace – apparently she is Fiona’s executor?”


“She told me,” Juliette said quietly as Alexis and Tricia watched from outside.


“Something bad has happened,” Tricia said quietly, “I’ve seen that look in the bar.”




As she turned, she saw Janine standing there with Marina, the pain in her face clear as she said “we lost Fiona…”


“Oh god,” Alexis said quietly as she sat down, Tricia looking at them as she said “Fiona…  Fiona MacKenzie?”


“Yeah,” Marina said quietly, “this is a sad day…”



10 am



Rhenia sat at her desk, a mug of coffee to her side as she glanced at the meeting papers and sorted them into various piles.  On each of them she put a different weight, smiling as she said “Right – the ‘can wait’ pile, the ‘delegate’ pile and the ‘get this done now’ pile.  That at least is a start,” she said as she took a drink from her mug, and then looked to the door, as she heard the hubbub outside suddenly go quiet.


Standing up, she brushed down her trouser suit and looked out, seeing the staff members as they stared at Missy walking to her office.


“Missy?  What’s going on,” she said quietly as the veteran agent guided her back into the office, and closed the door.  “Missy?”


“I’ve…  I’ve just had some very bad news,” Missy said quietly, “a very old and very dear friend has died suddenly, and a lot of people are going to start calling soon for our reaction.”


“Who is it?”


“Fiona MacKenzie, the UK editor of Complete Style.  Rhenia, we’re going to need a press release, and in the meantime…”


Nodding, Rhenia looked out of the office door.  “Shona – two minutes,” she said, waiting as the press officer came in.  “What’s going on,” the redhead said as she looked at the two managers.


“Fiona MacKenzie died last night,” Missy said, Shona nodding as Rhenia said “if the press call, tell them we are deeply saddened at the news, and we will issue a statement in due course.  How long do you need for that?”


“Let me call CS, see what they want to say, and I’ll have something in an hour.  If they ask for Missy?”


“Tell them she is in mourning, and not taking any interviews at this time.”  Missy looked over and nodded as Shona said “understood.  I’ll let the switchboard know and get to work on the release.”


As she went out, Rhenia looked at Missy.  “May I call LA, let them know?”


“Do so,” Missy said quietly, “I’m going to meet up with Ju and some of the others…”


10.30 am

Jameson Security


Caroline looked up from her desk as the door was opened by Hannah, and Karen Boyd came in, looking as if she was about to burst into tears.


"Karen what are you doing here?" Caroline stood up as the doctor was shown into her office.

Putting her bag on the desk, Karen looked round and said "do you have a real drink here darling; I have some bad news and you are going to need one."

"I do, and you are making me VERY nervous Aunt Charity," Caroline said as she went to a cabinet, pouring a whisky into one glass and some ginger ale into the other.  "Is it my Grandfather?" she noticed her hand shook as she handed Karen the soft drink, and sat beside her.

"No it isn't Dan," Karen said quietly as she drank her drink in one large gulp, "It's Fiona, she had a heart attack last night. They found her this morning."

"NO!" Caroline heard herself cry out as she looked at the older woman, and put her glass down, "she had beaten her illness..."

"I know darling," the older woman said as she put her arm round the younger one, "none of us was expecting this."

“It's not right....It's not fair," the tall blonde whispered as she drank her drink.

"I know, I know.  Nothing about this makes sense, but it has happened…"

As the tears started to come, Caroline put the glass down.  "You and she were the people Mum told me I could always go to for help…  I still remember her face when she handed me the letters from Mum…"


“She was a one off, a true star,” Karen said quietly, “and I suspect if she was to see us now, she would tell us to get over ourselves and get on with life.  First, however, we do need to mourn…”


“What’s going on,” Eleanor said as she and Veronica stood outside Caroline’s office.


“I think she’s had some bad news,” Hannah said quietly, “it may be best to leave her for the moment.  I will inform Francesca…”



11 am

St Angela’s


"Oh God my Mom will be in a hell of a state," Ama said as she looked up from her phone with tears in her eyes.

"Why? What has happened?" Jeannie said as she looked in her bag for a Kleenex.

Ama looked at her, as she whispered "Aunt Fiona died last night..."

"WHAT?" Jeannie went pale as a ghost as she looked up.

"Oh crap I forgot you knew her as well Jeans," Ama said as she realized her error in blurting it out, and knelt next to her friend.

"If it hadn't been for her kindness, I'd never have become a model, I’d not be here, I'd still be in Harlow..."  Jeannie murmured a random stream of thoughts before bursting into loud tears,

"What is going on?" Grace ran over as she saw the girls crying.

"You haven't heard Miss?" Ama whispered.

"No I haven't Ama, so please tell me."

"Fiona MacKenzie has died Miss."


Grace stared at the two girls as Kate Hardistay came over.


“Grace, Pippa Ashley is here to see you, and she looks as if it is not good news.”


“I think I just heard,” Grace said quietly.  “Kate, will you find Anna Carlton and ask her to meet Ama and Jeannie in the refectory.  You two head there, I’ll join you as soon as I can.”


As the two girls made their way along the corridor, Grace stood for a minute, her eyes closed before she headed to her office, Pippa standing up as she came in.




“I know – I just came across Ama and Jeannie, and they told me,” Grace said as she went to a cupboard, pouring some drinks into two glasses before she handed it over.  Raising the glass, she said quietly “may she be at peace.”


“Amen,” Pippa said as they each took a glass, and then sat down.


“What happened?”


“Anna got a call this morning, and she came to tell me, then asked me to come here.   She said they think she had a heart attack, but she seemed to be happy, as if she knew what was coming.”


Nodding, Grace rubbed her eyes as she said “this is going to spread like wildfire.  Any idea who is handling the arrangements over there?”


“I think Anna has already contacted a funeral parlour over there, and has offered to pay all costs.  She said you are the executor of her will?”


Grace nodded as she said “I am - I have her solicitor’s number, I’ll call them in a little while, see what the situation is.  If it was a sudden death, an unexpected one, won’t there be a postmortem?”


“Possibly, but for now, let’s just talk about her…”



11 am

Complete Style




Juliette looked up and smiled a small smile.


"Juliette darling, Carina phoned me with the news...Are you okay?" Klaus looked at his wife with deep concern in his eyes as Janine ushered him into the office.


"To be honest I'm not sure darling," Juliette said as she looked at her husband through misty eyes, "I'm not sure I've yet really taken it in."


"Here," Klaus patted the sofa to indicate for his wife to sit with him, then put an arm around her as she did so.


"I can't believe she's gone Klaus...I owed her so much and I'm not sure I ever really told her that...and now I never will."


"An awful lot of people owed Fiona a lot for her kindness and help," Klaus started to gently pat his wife's head as she started to cry into his shoulder.


“Mary just whispered in Welsh and then went back to her cave…  Anna is devastated…  Pippa went to speak to Grace…  And…”


The sound of the phone ringing made Juliette look up as Alexis put her head round the door.


“I know you said you didn’t want to be disturbed Boss, but it’s Alice McKinnon on two.”


Juliette nodded as she stood up and put the phone on speaker.




"Is it true Ju?" Alice's quiet voice came out of the speakerphone.

"I'm afraid it is darling," Juliette replied as she let out a small sob.

"Oh God…”  There was a pause before Alice said “I was hoping it was just a nasty rumour."

"No it isn't.  I’ve already had Titi on the phone to get my reactions – she’s going to do a special on Sunday."

"I owed her virtually everything. It was her idea that I should try designing, and for me and Duncan to start APCO," Alice started to cry over the phone.

"I remember Bats.  The nights you sat up in Paris, talking about it with me and…"

"Has anyone told Tufty?"

"I don't know," Juliette started to cry again, "or if anyone has spoken to Virtue and the Bandit?"

"I'll ring Will and ask," Klaus spoke.

"Thanks Klaus, I'm not sure I'm up to talking to Mandy, she will be totally devastated."




4.10 pm GMT

Ordford Castle


“I’ve heard Klaus,” Will said as he stood by the telephone, “but Mandy’s been on a shoot all day.  I need to talk to her before I call Angel and the others, but I have spoken to Charlie, and he’s broken the news to Olivia and Fiona.  I think Donald’s going to…”


“I’m back darlings,” Mandy called out as she came in.


“I’ll call you later,” Will said as he turned to see Mandy coming in, a Burberry coat over her grey trouser suit.


“I have had an exhausting day darling,” Mandy drawled as she took her coat off and hung it up, “and I need a…  Will, whatever is the matter?”


“Has anyone spoken to you today, Mandy,” Will said quietly as he walked over.


“No – it was a closed set, and I never have the telephone switched on while I drive.  Why – what has happened?”


“You’d better come and sit down,” Will said as he took Mandy into the drawing room, and then poured her a drink.


“Will you’re scaring me now – what has happened.”


“Mandy,” Will said quietly as he put the drink on the table in front of her, and sat down, holding her hand, “Fiona MacKenzie died during the night.”


Mandy stared at her husband, looking to see if this was a joke, and then the tears started to flow as he held her.



6.20 pm



“Died?  What happened?”


“As far as I know, she had a heart attack some time last night,” Donald said over the telephone as Eve sat with Paula, “by all accounts, she looked peaceful when they found her.  I’m sorry Paula, I know she was a great friend to you and Eve back in the day.”


“But we just saw her in Sydney a few months ago, she was so full of life…”


“Paula,” Agnes said over the telephone, “Duncan and I are wondering if we should postpone the party on Saturday…”




Paula looked at her sister in law as Eve said “No – this is Fiona we’re talking about here, and I’ll tell you what she would say.  She’d say forget about her, have a drink on me, and remember me for the good times.  We meet on Saturday, and we celebrate two things, as it should be.”



11.30 am

The de Ros Mansion


“Miss Alexandra and Miss Heather to see you Madame,” Edith said as Sandy came into the drawing room with Heather, Diana and Valeria looking at them both as Diana said “what’s happened?”


“Diana, we just got word, and we said we’d come and tell you…  Fiona MacKenzie died last night.”


“Madame MacKenzie?  Mon Dieu…  Was it the cancer?”  Diana said quietly.


“No – according to Ju, it was her heart.  If nothing else, it must have been painless.”


“Diana, are you all right?”  Valeria looked at her daughter in law, who was quietly sobbing.


“Fiona – she was such an inspiration, so much love, so much joy…  Abigail!”




Diana stood slowly up as Abby came in, the tear stains evident on her face as they hugged each other.



12.30 pm

St Angela’s


“There you go,” Grace’s secretary said as she brought a mug of coffee in for her and Pippa. 


“Thanks,” Grace said as she put her hand over the handset of her phone, and then said “Anna Mitchell has already been in touch with you?


“Very well then, if you can let me know when the initial legal requirements are completed, I can arrange to come over and take care of the paperwork.


“Thank you – please, contact me whatever the hour if needed.”  Putting the phone down, Grace sat back and rubbed her eyes.


“What’s the situation?”


“They are conducting a postmortem, but it is only likely to confirm.  As it is an unexpected death, nothing can be done until the police give the all clear, but the solicitor is liaising with Fiona’s church and the funeral parlour on behalf of Anna.  As soon as they can, they will announce the details.  She apparently left instructions for her cremation, and where her ashes are to be scattered when the time comes.”


“That’s Fiona – she always seemed to be prepared for everything.”


Grace smiled as the telephone rang again.


“Grace Brand?”




“Uncle Charles – what can I do for you?”


“The ambassador,” Pippa mouthed, Grace nodding as he said “I have heard the news Grace – I am so sorry, I know she was the one who helped you re-emerge.”


“Thank you, Uncle Charles - that means a lot.”


"Buckingham Palace wants to convey its sympathies Grace, they asked me to ask you how best to do it."

"That's kind of them Uncle Charles," Grace said as she took a deep breath. "Well I think Merlin...Mary Thomas was as close a friend as Fiona had....If they make it a message to Mary?"

"Alright that sounds acceptable, I'll advise them.  If there is anything else we can do?"


“I’ll let you know, thank you Uncle Charles,” Grace said as she ended the call, the bell going for lunchtime.  “I wonder if Ama will tell them…”


"I'd met her but I didn't really know her," Anna Carlton mused as she sat with some of the others. "I do know though that a lot of people in the industry are going to be devastated by this news."


“What was she like?” Erica asked.


“Well, if you think of a smaller, slimmer and more Scottish version of Merlin, you got Fiona – from what Abby and others say, even when she battling Leukaemia, she tried to stay involved with everything.”


“When we were in Sydney,” Nikki said quietly, “she and Mary were running the show between them, they made a formidable team.”

"Both Mrs Brand and my Mom thought of her as a close friend," Poppy said as she took a sip of milk.

"Well she helped a lot of people."  Ama sighed as she said “Mom told me how much she was like an older aunt when her Mom was still alive.  Always looking out for her.”

Poppy looked across the table, and said "Is it true that she kept file boxes with cards on everyone who ever caught her eye has having potential Doc?"

"So they say."

"Oh it's true darlings, I once got a chance to look in her back office," Kylie smiled as she joined them.  “She showed me some of the cards – and she said the only true surprises she could remember were Jeannie and me.”

"WOW!" Poppy shook her head, "so do you think we were all in there?"

"You were probably in her files from the day you were born Poppy," Anna smiled as well.

"So why does everyone always insist that my becoming a model was a foregone conclusion?"

"Because it was darling," Kylie stopped as Jeannie wheeled herself over. "Are you okay Jeans?"

"No,” Jeannie said quietly, “but I guess I will be."

"Did Mrs Brand say anything to you about the funeral?" Nikki asked.

"She said she doesn't know yet," Jeannie took a deep breath, "and I told her school or no school there was no way I'm not going to be there."


“I will be going with Mom as well, whenever it is,” Ama said as she hugged Jeannie, “so we can mourn her together…”


1 pm

Complete Style


Anna looked up as Marina came in, holding a sheet of paper.


“Is that what I think it is Marina?”


“Yeah – just came down from the press office.”


Anna closed her eyes and said “go on, let’s see what they come up with…”


"The management and staff of Complete Style magazine globally wish to record their extreme sadness at the passing of one of our own with the death of Fiona MacKenzie..." Marina read from the prepared statement.

"Please let me see," Anna said as she opened her eyes and took the paper from her assistant's hand.

"Is it alright boss?" the young woman asked quietly.

"A trifle formal Marina, Fiona would have hated that, but yes it’s a perfect statement."

"Do I have your permission to release it then?"

"Yes go ahead Marina," Anna slumped back in her chair, “we need to get this over with."


“Also, Jeanne Beckmann called – can you see her at five?”


“Yeah – oh lord, Madame Kornikova…”


“I called and explained, she will come tomorrow, but Missy is still coming in with Rhenia – I’ll show them in when they arrive.”


“Good – what’s the mood like out there?”


“Sombre, but those of us who had met her are doing what she would want – getting on with the best job we can do.”




“More messages, Mrs von Furstenheim,” Tricia said as she came into the office with a handful of sheets of paper.


"I have to apologise Trish, this isn't the easiest start to your career here at the magazine," Juliette tried to smile as the younger woman brought in the latest messages.

"Well I didn't know Miss MacKenzie, but reading some of the messages I rather wish I'd had the chance."


Juliette nodded as she looked at the sheets.


“As you requested, I called Miss Carter, and explained what had happened.  She will pass on apologies to the other ladies…”


“Thanks,” Juliette said as the telephone rang.


"It's Linda Evangelista on Line 3 for you Juliette."

"Put her through please Alexis." Juliette took a deep breath.  "Good afternoon Mother."

"Not really a good one Pelican," the voice on the other end sounded a little quavery.

"No, you’re right - I guess it isn't."

"So I need to know some of the what, where, and whens Ju? You know a lot of girls are going to want to do something." 

"Well Mother,” Juliette said quietly, “All I know is that Palomino is the executor of her will, but I still haven't heard any details regarding a funeral, a memorial service, or even where to send flowers."

"Okay...How is Merlin taking it?"

"She's locked herself in her cave,” Juliette said quietly, “and isn't talking."

"That's not healthy."

"I know, I was going to give her another hour then go see her."

"Titi has already rung me, she wants to do a memorial thing for her show."

"She rang me as well, but I put her off till tomorrow, I'm not really ready to even think about that yet."


“I know – Ju, we need to be there when the time comes.  For now, look after Mary – she’s probably hit the most…”





1 pm

The Tavern on the Green


“Dead?”  Shirley looked at Janice as she sat down, and said “what happened?”


“Apparently she had a heart attack,” Janice said as she looked round the table, “so Juliette sends her apologies, and I know Sandy went round to see Diana to tell her.”


“How is Caroline?”


“Devastated by all accounts – I called her office, but her secretary said she was sitting with Karen Boyd.”


“She is,” Francesca said as she joined the party, “I managed to slip out for a few minutes to update all of you.”


“I met her at that Eve Stone evening,” Claire said as she sat with Tonia and Kelly, “a lovely woman to talk to, even though she had been ill.”


“Yes, she was, a true character…”


“So what did you think of last night’s debate?”


“Did not see it – we went to young Poppy’s Sweet Sixteen,” Shirley said, “but I suspect it was nothing we have not seen before.”


“It wasn’t pretty,” Claire said quietly, “can we think of nicer things.  How was London?”


“AMAZing,” Kelly said in unison with Tonia, “I know the girls wish they had been there, but to share a stage with the like of Dita and the best dancers in London.”


“And Georgette was a true lady,” Tonia said with a smile, “even if we had to take Shirley’s jet there and back.”



The National Arts Club

Gramercy Park South


“I thought I might find you in here,” John Hammond said as he entered the bar, to see Luke Heller and Jack Linklater sitting with a drink in their hands, “I take it you’ve heard?”


“Mary called us,” Luke said quietly as Jack looked into his glass, “Shirley?”


“I came straight here – she’s lunching with some of the ladies – but I think she will hear there.  Bushmills all around Jacob.”


“I sometimes wonder if God really hates us,” Jack said quietly, “for Fiona to defeat the cancer, and then just to leave like that…”


“You don’t believe in God, Jack,” John said quietly.


“And you wonder why?”   Picking up the glass, he raised it and said “Gentlemen, a toast – to Fiona, may her light burn bright in heaven.”


The others raised their glasses and drank before Luke said “what are the funeral arrangements?”


“I think Grace is working with Anna Mitchell – I called her, and CS are funding all the arrangements.  We’ll hear soon enough…”




11 am PT

Oakland Hills, San Francisco


“Yeah, I understand Maddie, thanks for letting me know.  I’ll tell Suzie when she gets back from school.”


Dave Clarke came out of his bedroom, putting his suit jacket on as he saw Mary put the phone down – and then saw as she turned the tears in her eyes.


“Mary, what’s happened?”


“That was Maddie – Fiona MacKenzie passed away last night.”


“The UK editor of Complete Style?  We met her at Juliette’s wedding, didn’t we?”


“Yeah – she was like part of the furniture apparently, and suddenly she’s not there.  It was sudden, not like with Mom, but still…”


Dave put his arm round his daughter as she started to cry.  “I know, kiddo, I know,” he said quietly.







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