Part 33: A Knife At Your Throat, Another Body On the Pile

Steve: Where the heck is Bruce? I thought he had recovered from the blood-letting by now.
Dave: He has. I saw him yesterday and he was his old self again.
Nicko: Here he comes. Feeling better, mate?
Bruce: Hi guys. Yeah, thanks, no more flu, no more anaemia.
Janick: The GP wasn't trying to butcher you?
Bruce: Nah, luckily not. Still, I've promised myself that I'd keep a healthy suspicion of doctors for the rest of my life.
Nicko: Are we all in and buckled up? I'll push the button. Weeeeee ... on to a new mission!
Adrian: Let's see what we have to find this time: "Bring back a scalpel." Hmm.
Bruce: All right, that's it: I'm going back home.
Steve: Huh?
Dave: You can't open the hatch now, Bruce, the machine's in full flight. What's the matter?
Bruce: Well, scalpel equals doctor equals beastly little blood-suckers. Not with me, I'll hasta la vista this mission. This prisoner isn't too hot on yet another life-threatening situation, thank you very much.
Steve: You never minded life-threatening situations on our missions before. If I remember well, you thought it was exciting.
Bruce: Well, if you'd had leeches sucking on your nipple, you would ...
Janick: Anyway, you can't go back now. The TM has stopped. We've arrived.
Bruce: Damn. Alright, I'll do the mission, but we should stay together. There's strength in numbers.
Steve: Bruce, believe me, I want nothing more than you staying with the group.
Bruce: Right, don't you straaaaay, from the narrow way-ay!
Steve: Stop singing or we'll leave you here all by yourself, how's that for a threat?
Bruce: Mean. I'm singing to overcome my nervousness.
Steve: When you're singing, nervousness overcomes me. And that can be a lot more dangerous than a few leeches, believe me.
Nicko: Guys, stop bickering and let's get out of the TM.
Adrian: It's completely dark outside. Why did we have to arrive during the night? That's unusual.
Dave: Last time we arrived at nightfall, we ended up in Dracula's castle.
Bruce: I still don't think he was a vampire, Davey. A pity we didn't take the time to find out for sure, though.
Steve: I thought you didn't like blood-suckers, Bruce? Anyway, I don't like this mood change.
Bruce: What mood change?
Steve: You're starting to be your annoying nosy self again. I liked you better as a whimp.
Bruce: I beg your pardon? I am not a whimp!
Steve: You acted like a pussy when H mentioned the scalpel ...
Bruce: Precautious - I acted precautious. There's nothing wrong with watching your back, is there?
Steve: Hm. Well, at least you agreed to stay with the group.
Nicko: Seedy streets. Narrow alleyways, cobblestones and overhanging balconies. Lucky I have nightvision on me camera.
Janick: Look! Gas lamps. We're in a time before electricity was invented.
Adrian: Great. That narrows it down to a few millennia.
Janick: No, we're in a time before electricity was invented but AFTER gas lamps were invented. That narrows is down quite a bit, I should think.
Bruce: So I take it we're looking for a hospital?
Dave: Yep. We'll nick a knife and go home. Easy as pie.
Nicko: You think so? Hospital inventory is usually pretty well guarded.
Steve: We could carry in Bruce as a patient ...
Bruce: What?!
Steve: Just kidding. It's fun to wind you up, I should do that more often.
Bruce: Haha.
Nicko: Ah, there's a pub, the Cock'n Bull. Sounds like we're in England somewhere.
Steve: Judging by the stink of the river, we could even be in London. Maybe in the Docklands?
Bruce: You mean to say there are actually streets in East London that you DON'T recognize at first glance? 'Arry, I'm shocked!
Steve: I don't know my way around too much in the Docklands, there's nothing to be shocked about that.
Adrian: Yeah, we never mingled with the Dockies. Bad bunch.
Bruce: Worse than Hackney?
Dave: Oh yeah, much worse. I once got into a brawl with a Dockie-gang. They came at me three against one. Had to punch my way out. Mean bastards, the Dockies.
Bruce: Well, you're still alive.
Dave: It was a close shave though.
Janick: Are you sure this is London? We have been to the East End on a previous mission and usually they don't send us twice to the same place.
Nicko: Yes, that was a cool mission. Meeting those young geezers from Iron Maiden, wohoo!
Bruce: Hm, but this is definitely not the seventies. Even in the East End they had electricity by then.
Steve: Are you insinuating that the East End's backward?
Bruce: No, I said they HAVE electricity.
Steve: You said "even" ...
Janick: Don't quarrel, guys. Let's rather find out whether there's a hospital nearby.
Nicko: I'm for trying out the pub.
Dave: Me too.
Steve: Ok, let's go to the pub and ask. But no drinking.
Dave: Why not?
Steve: We don't have money and I don't want to get into trouble. Not here. This area doesn't look harmless.
Dave: All right.
Bruce: Steve, you better do the talking. You know the lingo.
Steve: Huh? What lingo?
Bruce: Cockney rhyming slang and all that. Apple and pears and so on.
Steve: We're not even sure if this is London.
Barkeeper: Can I 'elp you?
Steve: Ehm, yeah, actually we're looking for an 'ospital.
Barkeeper: 'Ospital, ey? Ain't one in is area, china. There's Bedlam, o' course. Any o' you bonkers?
Bruce: He said "china". That's cockney, right?
Nicko: Yep. It means "mate".
Adrian: So we are in the East End after all.
Barkeeper: Course you are. This is Whitechapel.
Steve: Oh, fuck!
Barkeeper: Not in 'ere, but there's lemons outside, if that's what you're after.
Steve: Oh, eh, no that's not what I meant. Thanks nevertheless. Let's get out of here.
Bruce: What did he mean by ...?
Steve: Did you hear that? We're in Whitechapel.
Adrian: That's East End all right.
Dave: Never had a problem with Whitechapel guys though.
Bruce: I don't get this lemon business ...
Steve: But Whitechapel is infamous for only one man.
Janick: Especially in combination with this "scalpel" we have to find.
Nicko: Old mate Jack the Ripper.
Steve: Fuck, fuck and fuck. What are we supposed to do now? Do they expect us to find out who the Ripper really was?
Bruce: Would be cool, don't you think?
Steve: No, it would be dangerous.
Bruce: Can I ask you something?
Steve: No.
Bruce: About this lemon thingy ...
Steve: Huh? What lemon thingy?
Bruce: The barman said something about lemons outside.
Adrian: Birds.
Bruce: Birds?
Steve: Yeah, birds, lassies, girls. In upper-class English: ladies. Get it now?
Bruce: Lemons are ladies?
Nicko: Cockney rhyming slang: lemon curd rhymes with bird. So the word lemon stands for bird, and a bird is a girl.
Steve: Even Bruce knows by now that a bird is a girl.
Bruce: Haha, very funny. You guys are worse than the Times crossword, do you know that?
Steve: Why? It's pretty straightforward, ain't it?
Bruce: You're just saying that to make me feel dumb ...
Steve: Anyway, that's not the point. We have to find a scalpel ...
Janick: ... so I suppose somewhere in this area, a poor girl has been butchered. Or is about to be butchered. Gruesome, if you think about it.
Bruce: Oh now I get it. Ah-ha-ha-ha.
Steve: Are you mental? Why are you laughing like an idiot? Keep the volume down.
Bruce: The barman was offering you lemons, ehm, girls. Because you said "Oh fuck". He thought you were looking for some company, right?
Steve: Bravo, Bruce, you got it in one go. Now can we please get on with the mission?
Dave: If my wife finds out that I'm hanging about the East End whore pits, I'm a divorced man.
Adrian: We're doing it for the mission. She has to understand that.
Dave: You think your wife will?
Adrian: No.
Janick: Well, just because we're in the Red Light District, doesn't mean we have to do the deed ...
Janick: That's not what you were thinking of doing, Dave?
Dave: No, of course not.
Steve: Can we get back to the mission, pleeease? How to find the Ripper.
Nicko: He could be anywhere.
Bruce: And it wouldn't be a good idea to be at the crime scene. People might think we killed the woman.
Steve: True. Damn, this is difficult.
Dave: I have an idea.
Steve: Tell us.
Dave: One of us could pose as a whore and when Jack wants to kill him, the other five knock him down. Six against one, that's fair enough.
Bruce: First, this idea is crazy. Second, it's way too dangerous. And third, there is no guarantee Jack will even fall for the trap. Honestly, I don't want to spend days here, walking the streets. What if I attract other customers?
Steve: Who said that you should pose as the whore, Bruce?
Bruce: Eh?
Steve: Dave said "one of us". He didn't say you should do it.
Bruce: Oh. Eh, no, he didn't. But I kinda thought that was what it would come down to, in the end.
Dave: Actually, I think 'Arry would make a cuter whore, seeing that he has such long, curly hair.
Steve: Yeah, right. No, I agree with Bruce, I don't think this idea will work.
Nicko: Why don't we just roam around and hope we get lucky.
Dave: Good idea. Still, I think I should stay faithful to my wife.
Nicko: I didn't mean that, Dave. I meant, get lucky and find a scalpel.
Adrian: That's kinda macabre, Nicko. We only stand a chance to get lucky if a girl gets killed.
Nicko: Well strictly speaking, they were killed over a hundred years ago, there's nothing we can do about that.
Janick: What if we could?
Steve: What do you mean?
Janick: Well, maybe we can change history and get the Ripper behind bars. Wouldn't that be something?
Bruce: Oh no. Bad idea. It's dangerous to change history.
Steve: That's just what you're reading in those esoteric magazines of yours.
Bruce: I don't read esoteric magazines ...
Adrian: I saw one when I used your bathroom the other day.
Bruce: Oh, that one ... no, but actually I read somewhere, in a very serious newspaper, might even have been the Times, that you could endanger yourself if you try to change history.
Steve: You mean when we try to overpower the Ripper, he might kill us?
Bruce: No, I mean in the long run. Imagine this scenario: we bring the Ripper to court, ok? Means one of the prostitutes doesn't get killed. Now imagine ... a few years later, this girl has a child, which she wouldn't have had if she were dead, right?
Steve: Your point being ... ?
Bruce: This child will grow up and have children of his own ... and one day, one of his offspring, maybe a boy, meets one of our mothers. They fall in love. Our real father doesn't stand a chance against that bugger! They marry and have children. Which means ... we would not be born, at least not the way we are now. Different genes, you see?
Steve: I wouldn't mind if you had different genes ...
Bruce: What do you mean?
Steve: Nothing. Anyway, your theory is a bit over the top and completely illogical.
Bruce: No, it's not.
Steve: Yes, it is. Look at it like this: you ARE here now, so whatever you change in the past, you will still be here, otherwise you couldn't change anything in the first place. Got that? You will not simply vanish. Which is sufficient proof that you cannot change your own past at all.
Bruce: I'm amazed. That actually makes sense. Where did you read that?
Steve: 'Arry's theory. I used my brains. So should you.
Dave: Sorry to interrupt you guys, but I need to take a pee, it's urgent.
Nicko: Hmm, don't hope for public toilets here, Dave. I think you have to do it nature's way, behind that wall.
Dave: I'll be right back, can you wait?
Steve: Sure, be quick, ok?
Dave: Sure.
Adrian: Look over there, guys! These ladies are definitely waiting for customers.
Janick: Excellent! Jack might be hanging around here too.
Nicko: Yes, keep your eyes open. Maybe we'll see something suspicious.
Dave: Hey china, also in for a leak?
Robber: Gimme the bread or you're dead!
Dave: Hey ho, easy, I don't have any money.
Robber: We'll see about that. Get him, Gray!
Dave: No wait ... urgh!!
Bruce: There's a customer approaching a girl, maybe we should follow them?
Janick: That would be kinda indecent, wouldn't it?
Bruce: Suppose it's the Ripper? We could help her.
Steve: True, but we'll wait for Dave. He's taking awfully long.
Adrian: Hey, Dave, not done yet? ... Oh damn!
Dave: 'e...lph glll ...
Adrian: Quick, someone's trying to kill Dave!
Steve: Get 'em! There, take that, arsehole.
Nicko: Look at you, two against one, you cowards. Now how do you like this? It's five against two. The tables have turned.
Robber: C'mon, Gray, it's not worth it. Let's leg it.
Adrian: Are you alright, mate?
Dave: Urgh ... eh ... pewh. For a second I thought I was done for. Couldn't breathe anymore.
Bruce: Wow, have you seen this?
Steve: What is it?
Bruce: The guy dropped his weapon. It's a garrotte. They tried to strangle you, Dave.
Dave: Well, it surely felt awful. They wanted my money.
Steve: Ok, from now on, no one is taking a pee or anything else where they get out of sight. It's too dangerous. What if the Ripper had found you Dave?
Dave: Oops. I guess I was lucky.
Janick: Let's move on. We could ask one of the ladies if they have seen anything suspicious.
Adrian: They might think we're cops.
Bruce: Let me ask, ok? I can act like a punter. I always wanted to try out this low-life Hugh Grant kind of feeling. Just don't tell my wife, ok?
Steve: Alright, you go and ask, but wouldn't it be better to take a Babel pill first?
Bruce: Naw, it doesn't matter if I have a different accent. She'll think that I'm a rich customer. That will set her at ease. I'll check out that beautiful lemon over there. Wish me luck.
Nicko: We'll wait here, but don't get out of sight.
Bruce: Don't worry.
Steve: Actually I think Bruce should have taken the pill ... he won't understand a word the bird's saying if she's talking cockney.
Charlotte: 'ello, luv. Looking for a good time?
Bruce: Hello. Actually, I was wondering ...
Charlotte: My name is Charlotte.
Bruce: Charlotte! How appropriate, hehe.
Charlotte: Why?
Bruce: Oh, nothing, just a thought.
Charlotte: I only do bottle.
Bruce: You do what?
Charlotte: Bottle only, take it or leave it. No hit and miss, honey.
Bruce: Eh, you wanna get drunk?
Charlotte: Sure, if you pay we can get drunk. So you want some action?
Bruce: Eh, not tonight, no but ...
Punter: Hey, Charles, got a customer already? I thought you'd wait for me?
Charlotte: Be right with you hun', this one's a no-goer.
Bruce: Charles?
Charlotte: Never seen a man in drag, luv? You shocked now?
Bruce: You're a GUY?
Charlotte: Sure am, hun', but I have lovelier bacons than most of the lemons round here. And with bottle you can't tell the difference anyway.
Bruce: Right. Great. Fine. I think I'm at the wrong adress here. See ya.
Charlotte: I think you're on the wrong planet. Bye, luv.
Steve: So, what did you find out?
Bruce: I'm feeling sick.
Dave: Why, she looked cute enough.
Bruce: "She" was a drag-queen.
Adrian: Eh ... ah-ha-ha-ha. Bruce asked a crossdresser for a date. That's a good one. Didn't you notice right away?
Bruce: Actually no. And I couldn't understand a word she ... HE was saying.
Nicko: Cockney again?
Bruce: I don't know. I mean I got the words ... but they didn't make any sense. He mentioned lemons though, I got that one. He said he had lovelier bacons than any of the girls, I don't even want to think about what he meant by that.
Steve: He meant his legs, as in "bacon and eggs".
Bruce: Oh. I see. Not too bad then. Well, his legs were not that lovely.
Adrian: What else did he say? Anything important for the mission?
Bruce: No hit and miss, he said. Didn't make any sense either.
Dave: That's kissing. "Hit and miss" rhymes with kiss. Easy as that.
Bruce: Aha. I see. Well, good thing he didn't try to kiss me. Would have been embarassing. Anyway, I think he was a drunkard, he kept on raving about "bottle only".
Steve: Excellent!
Adrian: Poor Bruce.
Nicko: Bottle only. Obviously, as he's a guy.
Dave: Oh, my!
Janick: What's so funny?
Bruce: Yeah, what's so funny?
Steve: Well, a male whore offering you his bottle ... as in "bottle and glass"...
Nicko: You figure it out for yourself ...
Bruce: "Bottle and glass"...Glass rhymes with ... Oh damn, he was offering me his butt? Shit, if any of you mentions this to BBC, I'm gonna kill you.
Steve: No, but that was actually funny. Nicko, got the scene on tape?
Nicko: Yep.
Bruce: You what? Don't you dare. ... Bottle and glass ... I don't believe it. Alright, that's it ... I'm not gonna say a word again tonight.
Steve: Great. We got you quiet for once.
Adrian: But actually we're not any nearer to solving our mission. What shall we do now?
Nicko: We shouldn't venture too far from the TM. Maybe if we ... wait! See there?
Dave: What?
Nicko: That guy over there. He's carrying a doctor's bag.
Bruce: Shit, you're right. You think that's the Ripper?
Adrian: Let's tail him. He might be looking for a victim.
Janick: It's six against one. We should be able to handle him.
Steve: Alright, but let's hang back and see what he does.
Bruce: You mean, wait until he's killed her?
Steve: No, of course not. But let's follow him quietly, so that we won't lose him.
Adrian: Where is he now?
Dave: He went around that corner.
Steve: Careful, guys. Shhh. They're talking.
Janick: He's chatted up a bird. Now he is putting gloves on. Damn, he's in for the kill.
Bruce: We have to do something. We might be saving the life of our ancestor ...
Dave: Our ancestor was a hooker?
Steve: Can't you be quiet?
Nicko: Ok, I got a plan. But we have to be quick. We'll wait until he takes out his scalpel.
Adrian: By then it could be too late.
Nicko: Well, if we scare him away now, we won't get the scalpel. I'll climb up that wall. Wait for my sign before you move in.
Steve: That's risky. Be careful, Nick.
Rosie: Looking for a good time, luv?
Jack: Yes, come here.
Rosie: Sure, honey. I'm ready.
Jack: See if you're ready for this ...
Rosie: Oh, I've seen all sorts, believe me.
Jack: You know what this is, whore? It's a scalpel!
Rosie: Please don't kill me!
Jack: Now you're begging, hah. Too late for that, slut!
Nicko: Take that, you bastard!
Dave: Nicko's whacked him on the head with his camera!
Jack: Argh, ow, what was that?
Rosie: Help! Rape! Murder!
Nicko: Come on, guys!
Steve: POLICE! Stop right there!
Jack: You'll never get me.
Adrian: He's making a runner. After him!
Steve: No use, let him run. He knows the area better than we do.
Nicko: Hehe, he's dropped the scalpel. We have solved the mission.
Dave: Jolly good swing you took with the camera, mate.
Bruce: Yeah, I bet he will remember this night.
Janick: Are you all right, miss?
Rosie: What do you want from me? I'm a decent girl.
Bruce: Yeah, sure.
Dave: Don't worry, we're not the cops. We were just passing by.
Rosie: No cops? Oh, in that case ... can I show you my gratitude? You saved my life.
Bruce: You wanna take all six of us?
Rosie: If you wish. Or you could take turns ...
Bruce: Did I just hear this?
Dave: I hope my wife won't find out.
Steve: There's nothing to find out, because we're leaving now. Thank you for the offer, miss, but we're in a bit of a hurry.
Dave: Ehm, yes, he's right.
Bruce: Hold on, Steve. What's your name?
Rosie: Rosie Carter. Chaps call me Red Rosie, because of me red hair. Why?
Bruce: Oh, just so. Bye bye now. Let's go.
Adrian: Why did you ask for her name, Bruce?
Bruce: I want to check whether she was one of the historical victims or not.
Steve: That's nonsense, Bruce.
Bruce: Why?
Steve: Do I have to explain it again? Look, if you find out that the Ripper killed her, then that only means that he came back for her a second time. On the other hand, if you don't find her in the records, it could be because WE saved her life, but it could also mean that she was saved by somebody else anyway. There were other people around. In any case, it's no proof that we changed anything.
Bruce: Hmm, still, I'm curious. I will check.
Steve: Ok, go and check if it sets your mind at ease. Ah, there's the TM.
Janick: Everybody in?
Dave: Yes. You can push the buttons, Nicko.
Nicko: Oh damn.
Steve: What is it?
Nicko: Me camera's broken. Must have happened when I banged it on the Ripper's head. Shit, and I thought we finally had him on tape.
Dave: The BBC manager will go spare when we arrive without any footage.
Nicko: I think they might be able to restore part of the tape. But the end of the film is beyond saving.
Bruce: I guess that means that the identity of Jack the Ripper is meant to remain a mystery forever.
Steve: Amen. Let's go home.