Quintet

Frederick Forsyth is releasing five short stories on the Internet, suitably entitled Quintet. They are being released at Online Originals. They were due to be released at three-week intervals, but only the first three have so far been released -- the supply seems to have dried up, and I do not know why.

I do not, however, like the restrictive policies under which they are being released, nor are they compatible with my computer system, so I have not read them myself.

This page provides information about these short stories, taken from the above page.

The VeteranThe Veteran
By Frederick Forsyth

Released: 1st November 2000

In a miserable crime-infested housing estate of north-east London, a solitary walker is mugged and kicked so brutally that he is taken away in a coma. The case falls to Detective Inspector Jack Burns.

With the help of one eye-witness prepared to testify, Burns tracks down two known thugs with a history of violence. Piece by piece, strand by strand, the old-fashioned copper builds the case against them, until he is given the go-ahead by the Crown Prosecution Service.

Helpless, he watches as his case is torn apart by a brilliant barrister who has amazingly taken the case for peanuts. Only on the last page does the honest policeman learn the chilling reason behind it all. A twist to take your breath away.

The MiracleThe Miracle
By Frederick Forsyth

Released: 22nd November 2000

A wealthy American tourist hurries through the mediaeval alleys of Siena, Tuscany, late for the spectacle of the famous Palio horse-race. His wife stumbles, falls and twists an ankle.

In an adjacent courtyard a soft-spoken stranger helps bandage the foot and tells the tourists a weird, compelling tale of the miraculous things that happened in that very courtyard in years gone by.

Mesmerised, the American cannot tear himself away. The Palio race takes place beyond the ancient roofs as he listens and asks for more. Who was Caterina of Mercy? Who is the quiet stranger? In the last line, all is answered.

The CitizenThe Citizen
By Frederick Forsyth

Released: 13th December 2000

At take-off, Speedbird One Zero seemed a pretty straightforward night flight from Bangkok to London. But when the dinner trays were cleared and the lights dimmed it became clear that something strange was going on.

A muttered meeting in the half-darkness, a note to the captain from an anonymous nosey-parker and the skipper had little choice but to alert London. When One Zero landed, the Customs were waiting. In force.

But a twist reveals a much more cunning plan. And a Customs Chief with an ace of his own.

The Art of the Matter
By Frederick Forsyth

Not Yet Released

Trumpington Gore is an out-of-work actor, flat broke and with one last item worth selling - an extremely grubby old oil painting. This he takes to the mighty House of Darcy for valuation. He is persuaded to accept a pittance and it is sold at auction. Two months later, cleaned, restored and authenticated, it is sold on for a fortune as a genuine Old Master.

The Board of Darcy is not best pleased. A scapegoat must be found. This takes the form of the junior valuer, who is fired. He protests that he warned the old oil might be a masterpiece, but all reference has been erased from his report.

He contacts the cheated actor and between them they decide the House of Darcy will live to wish it had never heard the name of Trumpington Gore, the human chameleon.

The Whispering Wind
By Frederick Forsyth

Not Yet Released

No details have been released about this story as of yet.