Page Eight (2011) Script

Ah, we haven't met.

I'm putting out rubbish, obsessively.

You want me to take it downstairs for you?

No! No, no, it's fine. I'll do it later.

I've been living here for a year and I've never caught sight of you.

I'm Nancy Pierpan. Johnny Worricker. How do you do?

I'm wondering if I could ask you in for a drink.

But you seem to have company.


That is why I am asking you in.

So you started a website? That's right.

It's a place where people can make contact.

People find it easier to talk to a machine than they do direct.

Is that so?

Couples talk best in the car

'cause they're side by side, they don't have to look at each other.

Was it you who noticed that? That was my mum, actually.

Well, this has been nice, but, bad news, Ralph, I'm going to have to throw you out.

What, do you mean right now?

It's my fault. I'd completely forgotten... that I promised to talk to Johnny about his novel.

Johnny writes novels? Yes.

Am I going to see you soon?

Of course. I'm going to call you.

It was great to see where you live. Yes.

It was nice for me, too.

Oh, God, I'm so sorry. I want to apologise.

There's no need to apologise.

I assume you asked the young man back and then changed your mind.

Yes, that's what happened.

Whose novel is that?

I would love it if you stayed and had a glass of wine with me.

I can't. I've got to go home.

It's because I'm out of practice.

You'll have to explain.

Well, it's been a long time since I asked anyone back.

And, um... Has this ever happened to you?

That you suddenly realise you've made a mistake?


And then I saw you on the landing.

It was like you were sent from God.

It's very strange that I've never seen you before.

Do you live on your own?

I've got to work tonight, if that's all right.

Oh, God, I'm so sorry, I...

Call me if it happens again.

It won't happen again.

What are you thinking, Johnny?

What have you been thinking?

Why did you ask me what was I thinking? It's unbelievable.

Someone who's meant to be responsible, someone who's meant to be my boss.

I thought it was funny. No need to tell me.

Well, it isn't funny. Not in a fucking lift.

Anger management, Johnny!

I can send you on a course if you like.

I don't ask you, "What are you thinking?"

'Cause my mind's a perfect blank, that's why.

Things are that bad, I got home last night and watched the X Factor.

Yesterday was Tuesday, X Factor's Saturdays, so I know you're lying.

Not lying, testing.

Jill. Good morning, boys.

I'm coming your way in half an hour.

Jill's office.

Morning, Muna. Good morning.

So, there's an awful lotta stuff going on.

An awful lot of traffic.

What does that mean? Intercept.

Among other things, this building is swimming in information.

We have information coming out of our ears.


So, the difficult thing is to notice when someone finally tells you something important.

No reaction.

He thinks he can be rude to me.

He thinks he can treat me how he wants because we had a wife in common.

In my case, a long time ago.

All your wives are a long time ago.

Is Jill need-to-know on my wives?

Everyone knows about your wives.

So my point is this. I've called the two of you together.

I want to share a source.

Now, before we go any further, God's very excited.

Why is God excited?

I suppose like all home secretaries, God can't resist a file marked "top secret".

You're going to read this and you're going to think, "Hold on.

"The Americans are meant to be our allies".

I've never suffered from that delusion.

Johnny doesn't believe in the special relationship, do you?

They're not what you call sharing partners, are they?

Even you can't claim to have read it already.

I've seen certain words, I gather we're back in the Middle East.

We're always in the Middle East. I don't like faith jobs.

I don't like anything to do with faith.

Still no faith yourself, Johnny?

The sun will rise in the morning, I'm going to have a drink at 6:00. That's my faith.

Really? A lot of people in your church, are there?

Most people. Most people are in my church.

You're going to want to talk to me when you've read it properly.

This country is under threat, it's under serious threat.

Our problem is we can't always tell you the nature of the threat.

If we did, we'd be giving away intelligence.

That's not something I'm willing to...

This is a bit close, isn't it?

This place is a bit close. Rollo.

Thought this place was crawling with professionals.

That's why we're eating at 11:30. No one will see us, except your friend.

How are you, Johnny? I'm well, Rollo.

And yourself?

Trying to get used to my new profession.

I was hoping you could help me with an inquiry.

What inquiry is that?

She's called Nancy Pierpan.

Then she has a beautiful name.

Do you know anything about her?

Are we going to do business before we have lunch?

We're going to do business over lunch.

You're not going to let me have a drink first?

He's putting on weight. Well, you would know.

You haven't asked me about my new job.

I read what you write, but some of it goes over my head.

Really? Don't you have a double first?

I'm not really clever, Rollo.

I don't have what they call a first-class mind, you were first class.

Sure. Look where it got me.

I'm a journalist. A journalist who still works for us.

Do I? Don't you get the cheques?

What are the cheques gonna get me, huh? A house in Tuscany?

When? With whom? With the waiter?

Can't you go and do some sort of profile on her?

I work in the foreign desk.

What possible interest would I have in Nancy Pierpan?

So you do know who she is.

You were always quick, Johnny.

Not too clever, right enough, but you are quick.

England's a small country, isn't it? You tell me.

I mean, it's multi-cultural, sure.

There's more chaps named Shah, Patel.

But nothing's really changed. It's still run by the same old crowd.

Is it? I don't know who runs England.

The bankers did, and look what happened to them.

What I'm saying is there's still an awful lot of people named Baron, and Worricker and Pierpan.

Nancy was born in Damascus.

Her father was an Arabist.

What sort of Arabist? Romance of the desert, that sort of thing?

Lawrence of Arabia?

Why do you need to know? Because she's taking an interest in me.

What sort of an interest?

Making a play? Is she making a play?

She was putting out the rubbish.

She pretended it was a coincidence.

Well, aren't you flattered? No.

What's the file? Are you gonna show it to me?

Do you know...

I don't think I am.

What is this? They're saying I need a new pass.

I was given a temporary. What's going on?

Are you gonna throw a wobbly?

Of course I'm not gonna throw a wobbly. When was the last time I threw a wobbly?

7/7. Exactly. I threw a wobbly because suicide bombers killed 56 people on the streets of London... and we had no idea it was going to happen.

I didn't throw a wobbly because my pass had been blocked.

No. You're really sweet.

Who changes the passes? Who orders the passes to be changed?

Who do you think?

Take this and just make sure it's done.

What did you think of the file?

What did I think of it? Yes.

I haven't finished it yet. I haven't absorbed it.

I hardly need say, on no account is that file to leave the premises.

Gold standard.

I didn't know if you'd make it.

I promised I'd make it, didn't I?

I thought you were abroad. Who told you that?


Mum said that she always knows where you are.

Does she? Paranormal, is she? Physic?

Hey, Dad. Hello.

You're going to have to explain these to me.

Do you want to have dinner afterwards?

I thought you'd have lots of young men attendant.

You don't wanna have dinner with me. Don't I?

I hate these things more than you do.

Hello, Johnny. Max.

Goodness, what are you doing here?

I collect. I collect your famous daughter.

If there's anything you can do to get me a family price...

You still where you used to be?

Of course I am. I like it. Why would I change?

And you, Max? Defence. Defence procurement.


That's one business that's never going to suffer. Recession-proof.

And these days I also raise a little money, you know, for the party.

Don't look at me, I'm apolitical.

You're "A" everything, aren't you, Johnny?

You'll have to choose sides one day, you know.

Remember, you'll get killed in the middle of the road.

Did you get my invitation? Did I? Remind me.

I wrote you, college reunion.

Oh, yes, I think I did get something. Give me your card, I'll call you.

I don't have a card, I have a website.

Wake up, Johnny.

21st century.

You again. You seem to be everywhere.

Why are you surprised? It's my business, knowing people.

Including your daughter.


That's what I do, remember? Put people in touch.

By the way, how did Nancy like your book?

How many novels have you written?

Why do you want to know?

I'm asking you. I'm asking you a civil question.

It's my first.

So? You haven't said what you thought.

No. Why not?

Don't look at me like that. Why not?

Because I never could refuse you.

You could tell me the truth.

For once in your life, you might try telling me the truth.

Only if you insist.

I insist.

All right. They look like works of despair.

If the despair isn't real, then I don't like them because they're fake, they're unfelt.

They're avant-garde protest and nothing more.

But if the despair is real, then that hurts, too, because...

Because you're my daughter, and I don't want you to suffer.

They're not fake. That's what I thought.

So what bothers you? If I'm unhappy then it's your fault?

They make you feel guilty? The absent father, the evasive father.

The pictures are morbid.

They're morbid, Julianne.

Okay, I can see it may be my problem to do with getting older, but why do you want to piss on life before you've even lived it?

I don't think you should say any more.

I was wondering... Yup.

That young man you were talking to. Which one?

I think his name is Ralph. Ralph Wilson.

You're working.

Fuck! You're not even talking to me, you're working.

Oh, come on, let me take you home. No.

I don't want you anywhere near me.

Do you have any honest relationships at all?

How did I know? How did I know this?

Know what?

That you would come to my door.

You look unhappy. Do you want some company?

I'll come to your place.

I'm getting red wine.

I'd prefer whisky. Do you mind?

Mmm, you had a rough day.

So how old's your daughter, then? She's, let's see, mid-20s.

I split up from her mother when Julianne was very young.

Here you go.

That's not true.

I'm going to tell you the truth.

I split up with her when she was pregnant.

Why did you do that?

Because I was in love with someone else.

You fall in love easily.

Perhaps that's why my daughter doesn't trust me.

It was hard for her, watching her father keep losing his heart.

Hmm. Children don't like that. No.

Tonight, I felt I had the right to say what I thought about her work.

Clearly I didn't.

Same thing's true with writers.

Well, you can say what you like about their personalities because they think, "Oh, I can change, I can improve".

But work's different.

What about you? Me?

Isn't your father a writer? Joseph Pierpan.

Writer and activist. Yeah.

Must be odd, having a famous father.

I'm actually surprised you've heard of him.

Just how famous can you be in Syria?

You were born in Damascus? Yes.

My brother was killed by the Israelis.

When? Two years ago.

What was he doing? Waving a white flag.

Trying to stop the Israelis from knocking down a house.

The Israelis were building a wall through the occupied territories and the wall went right through the house.

Been in that part of the world?

What were you doing?

Oh, you know. No.

I don't know, you're going to have to tell me.

I was on holiday.

On the West Bank?

Where else do you go on holiday?

Darfur? Afghanistan?

Maybe this is the moment...

to tell me what's going on.

Nothing's going on.

My life was changed when my brother was killed.

He was killed by the Israeli Defence Force.

Nothing they say makes... any sense, we don't believe a word of the official inquiry.

So... It's hard enough to grieve, isn't it?

I mean, grief is hard enough anyway,

but when you don't know the truth, everything freezes and you can't move on.

All right, let's just forget about it.

I asked you in for a drink, that's all.

I'm like you, I go to work, I get through the day.

Since Jake died, I haven't been interested in making friends.

Please, it's nothing dramatic. I'm not asking for anything, but...

You seem a nice man.

You see, it's almost unbearable.

The way she looks.

She's so desperately in love with Lester Young she can scarcely bear it when he plays.

¶ He wears high-draped pants... ¶ All the same, she doesn't forget when it's her turn.

¶ He wears high-draped pants ¶ Julianne, I wish I could find you. I wish I knew where you were.

I made a fool of myself tonight.

And it's not the first time.

You were right to be angry.

All right, let's start the bloody meeting.

God knows, you're hard enough to get hold of, Benedict.

You're far grander than I am.

Would you like me to get you a cup of coffee, Home Secretary?

Some mineral water?

I had no idea you were going to be invited, Johnny.

Well, I am.

This is going to need long hours, Minister.

It's going to need expertise and judgement.

As my mother used to say, "A problem shared is a problem halved".

So, what's your next move?

Give the whole thing to the Daily Mirror? Post it on the internet?

I'm trying hard not to be offended, Home Secretary.

Please try.

Home Secretary, do you want to come back in and restart this meeting at a lower level of tension?

I don't know about anyone else, but I've got a heart condition.

I've got fatty deposits on my arteries. I have a stent.

Benedict, I can take this file out of the room, across the river to SIS, and your department will be royally fucked.

The service has been royally fucked many times.

Usually by your government jumping on us like Rover with a hard-on, and we've always survived the experience.

Oi, out!

With respect, Minister, politicians come and go.

I've counted them in and I've counted them out.

And if you want to get rid of me, you can.

That's on the record, by the way.

I'd like to go walking in Patagonia.

I've heard the wildlife there is extraordinary.

Johnny went. I did.

He loved it.

So if you want a new DG, go ahead, get one.

I'll gather up my whole family and take them on a packet boat to Antarctica.

And a double bonus, I won't be around for the end of the Atlantic Alliance.

Anthea, it won't have happened on my watch.

Okay, what are the Americans up to?

The Americans are up to what we've always suspected they were up to.

This is different. This is proof. If this is true.

They have prisoners all over the world... who don't officially exist on black sites.

So it appears. Unknown sites that don't exist either.

Not officially.

And these prisoners are telling them things... which they then don't have the courtesy to tell us.

Well, worse than that. Specifically, the Americans are failing to keep us abreast of things that are happening on our own doorstep.

Dangerous things.

If we're willing to trust intelligence obtained by torture.


Where did you get this?

Well, I thought that might be your next question.

It is my next question.

Thought it might be.

And don't give me any of that Jesuitical bullshit about not revealing your sources.

I can't reveal my sources.

Benedict, you and I can play the game...

Seems like we've already begun.

But at the end of the road, you work for me.

Remember, the people don't vote for you, they vote for me.

They don't like the people who work in the dark.

They don't know the people who work in the dark.

If they did, would they be reassured?

My view is we go to the Americans. No.

We speak to the Americans direct. No.

We tell them we know what they know.

That they have a network of sites where they're illegally detaining and torturing prisoners.

We frighten them by naming the sites.

Thailand, Afghanistan, Morocco, Poland, Romania.

Show them we're not idiots.

Why not? Because.

Because what? Because you're gonna tell your allies that they've been lying to you.

You have to think through the implications.

Are you saying I haven't?

You also have to remember that going back to the Americans might endanger my source.

You'd need my permission.

What would you prefer me to do?

Right now? Yes.

If it were my call? Please, imagine that.

Right now, I'd prefer you to do nothing.

If you want me to do nothing, why did you give me the file?

Because I don't want you to be able to say I didn't give you the file.

Further down the road? Exactly. I answer to you.

You gave me the file so that I would do nothing?

I gave you the file so that you would know everything.

Makes sense.

Johnny Worricker thinks it makes sense.

Johnny's an excellent judge.

Weak on tactics occasionally, but strong on strategy.

Is that what you think? You back Johnny, do you?

Johnny's my best friend since Cambridge.

Well, then perhaps "best friend"... can tell us what the argument for doing nothing is.

The argument for doing nothing, Minister, is that as yet you know so little.

And you shouldn't move until you know more.


One simple thing: Her Majesty's Government has always denied... complicity in torture.

You've stood up in Parliament many times, you've said it in the press.

Changing the story is going to be embarrassing.

Well, it's only going to be embarrassing if people find out.

How will they find out?

Why would this intelligence leave this room?

Who here would leak it?

I hope that question answers itself.

I hope it does. I hope so, too.

And anyway, remember, I thought the claims were true at the time.

When I made the claims, I didn't know they were untrue.

That may or may not be sufficient defence.

These things can get messy, politically.

And... What?

You said "one simple thing". What's the second simple thing?

Oh. I haven't talked to Benedict about this, Minister.

So? Does "best friend" need permission to speak?

Very well, it's this.

Has anyone actually read this thing?

I don't mean cast your eye over it, I mean read it.

Jill? Yes, I believe I've read it.

Home Secretary, you say you didn't know the Americans had these prisoners.

I didn't know.

And you had no proof they'd been torturing them.

I take your word. But perhaps someone else in your government did.

Someone else?

Take another look at the bottom of page eight.

Page eight? Yes.

What's on page eight? You haven't read it, have you?

I thought not.

Page eight, please.

American source quoted saying, "Downing Street already knows about this".

I imagine that's what bothering Benedict.

There are two possibilities, aren't there?

Either our source is wrong and the Americans lied to all of us... in which case, Downing Street is going to be furious... or our source is right, and the Prime Minister knew everything all along, he just didn't bother to tell you.

Now, I'm not sure which of those two possibilities you prefer.

It's been an interesting meeting.

Thank you. It has indeed.

I'm going to do as you suggest and leave this for a day or two.


Johnny? Fine.

We'll reconvene. Anna will be in touch.

You keep staring at that painting.

It's from the government art collection.

Don't blame me, I didn't choose it.

Actually, it was painted by my daughter.

Christ, then you're in more trouble than I am.

Thank you.

I'm glad you said that.

I'm sorry? About page eight.

I was hoping someone would say it.

Glad it was you.

Oh, okay.

I wasn't sure. I wasn't sure whether to speak.

No, that was a good move.

It means the game's in play.

You. Need to talk to you. Need a word, urgently.

Not here. Somewhere discreet.

Traditionally, it's the stationary cupboard.

What were you doing? When?

At that meeting. What were you up to?

What was I up to? Yes.

I was doing my job. I'm an intelligence analyst, I was analysing intelligence. What's wrong with that?

First thing wrong, you never mentioned it.

You blurt out this extraordinary allegation... before you talk to us, before you tell us.

What's happened to you? Suddenly you can't speak? Well?

Do you know the source? Do you trust the source?

Of course I don't know the source. I don't need to.

You don't need to?

Come on, Jill. If Ben says it's good, it's good.

Oh, right. I forgot you were at college together.

That just about sums up this whole fucking place!

What's the problem, Jill? I don't get the problem.

When are you gonna wake up?

There's a revolution going on. You don't seem to have noticed.

What sort of revolution is that?

You live in the past.

You still think there's something called pure intelligence.

The world's changed. Brits are been killed by Brits.

They're being killed on British streets.

Oh, fuck!

If you don't know what I'm saying, I'm not gonna spell it out for you.

Why don't you spell it out? Get your hands off me.

I'm not one of your conquests.

What are you gonna do? Charge me with assault in a cupboard?

You asked me in, remember? I'll counter-sue for enticement.

Sure, if you're still here next week.

The Prime Minister, Alec Beasley, today described Britain and America as two countries with shared values and common purposes.

"Nothing, " he said, "could divide our two countries

"in the worldwide fight against terror".

The prime minister is visiting Washington at the request of the president.

Well, it's great to be here. For me, it's home from home.

Oh, I see. What?

You're just gonna go home. Yes, do you mind?

I was thinking of going home.

It's choir practice in 40 minutes, and the M4 is hell.

And you're not going to tell me what you're up to?


Yes, Ben. What am I up to?

That's my question.

It's pretty obvious, I would have thought.

I put a bomb in the water and I'm waiting to see where the dead fish land.

And you didn't think it best to warn me first?

Or am I one of the fish?

If you don't trust me, Ben, who do you trust?

Distrust is a terrible habit.

Do you find that?

There's a fine line, isn't there, between calculation and deceit?

Must do better.

You're right, I should have shown you page eight.

Johnny, I'm sorry.

Good. Tomorrow we're gonna talk it over, you and I.

And we won't do it on the fourth floor, because this is about the survival of the department and the prime minister.

Coffee shop in Ebury Street? When?


The old team.

Well, I think...

So, what did you call it?

Emma? Yes.

It's me.

Do you have any idea what time it is? I knew you'd be up.

I'm feeding the chickens.

The point is this. I've had a row with Julianne.

Yes, she told me.

She had every right to be angry.

She asked you to stay because she wanted to tell you something.

What did she want to tell me?

That she's having a baby.

I don't believe you! It's true.

She's pregnant.

Do you know who the father is?

I don't. She hasn't told me.

She hasn't told you?

Johnny, it's the 21st century.

How many more times? People keep saying that like it justifies everything, every piece of stupidity.

Julianne isn't being stupid.

She knows what she's doing.

She wouldn't take it on if she couldn't see it through.

Well, is she all right?

She was.

When will I see her?

Johnny, you need to watch out.

Who was that? Johnny.

So you gave him the news?

One egg, or two?

I'm sorry.

I wanted to see you were all right. I'm all right.

It's funny, I came to find you last night.

Sounded as if you had company.

Why did you come looking for me?

Oh, because I bought you a CD.

Can I come in?

Yes. Yes, you can come in.


I know.

It's a little overwhelming. I started collecting years ago.

Believe it or not, I started with a £100. It grew from there.

You've got good taste. That's Christopher Wood.

It's wonderful.

There's no plan. I've just always bought what I've liked.

It must be worth a fortune.

Yeah. But that's not why I do it.

My second wife had very good taste.

How many wives have you had?

Fewer than five. Ah.

Do you really have it? What?

The CD.

Of course. Why would I lie to you?

Lester Young. Aw.

Thank you.

My daughter's pregnant.

It turns out that's what the row was about.

I thought it was about art, but it wasn't.

She knew I was gonna be upset because I don't think the father's around, so she was frightened that I'd judge her.

I don't really know what is it you do.

I assume you're some sort of secret service.

The other night I was pissed off because you wouldn't tell me.

What makes you think I'm in the security services?

Because most people can tell you why they visit the Middle East.

And uh, the person I was with last night was my dad.

Oh, I see. He's in London?

Did you just work that out? Was that your professional training?

No, it's more my nerves.

Why are you nervous?

Because I find myself confiding in you.

Do you? Do you really?

Or are you just pretending?

Well, I think it's brilliant, because I can tell everyone I know I live opposite a spy.

I'd rather you didn't, but...

Don't you think we have to be honest?

You and I?

I mean, isn't it important at this point?

Yes? EMMA: Johnny.


It's not about Julianne.

Then what is it about?

Yesterday, stock exchanges reacted sharply to demonstrations throughout the Arab world.

The chancellor said, "These are volatile times".

You should come down right away. The sooner you get here, the better.


Hold on. Worricker's here.

Okay, I've got to go. Goodbye.

What's the verdict? It's a heart attack.

There's a coroner coming. Real coroner?

Of course, real coroner.

You're going to examine him, are you? That's going to help, is it?

Who did you call first?

Downing Street.

Are you from Downing Street?

I was asked to take charge.

You're not taking charge, I am.

Where's Julianne?

I'm not sure.

Have you rung her yet?

I might have guessed. You're going through his stuff.

Not going through it, taking it away.

Then you'll go through it.

Do you think with his podgy fingers he could work that thing?

I was there when he had his first heart attack.

I was there for the second. They were identical.

The doctor warned him, he said, "You're living an injury time".

So you're not going to tell me there's anything suspicious.

I don't want a circus. I know.

And I most certainly don't want a territorial spat... with that woman downstairs.

Had he talked about dying?

He was worried about the future.

But he said whatever mess he left behind, he could trust you to clear it up.

Benedict was honest and hard-working.

And he looked things in the eye.

So I'd say it's important that you don't let him down.

Julianne, it's your father.

I've got bad news. Can you call me?

Or call your mother.

I may be hard to get hold of for a while.

Did he say he'll take over?

You must be Mr Worricker?

Joseph Pierpan. How do you do?

My daughter's told me so much about you.

How is she?

Nancy says you know a lot of influential people.

You work at the Home Office.

Oh, she told you.

My son was murdered.

Can you imagine?

And I am daily mocked by people who refuse to admit who did it and why.

Do you have children?

A daughter.

I'm not going to detain you.

But it would mean the world to us if you could help.

This is kind of you.

Why is it kind of me?

Don't you think it might be what I want as well?

What are they saying up your way?

Well, they're saying it was a heart attack.

You have any reason to think differently? You went up there.

Yeah, I saw the guilty egg.

We were at university together.

Ben was my tutor.

We even went on the Vietnam marches together.

He recruited me.

First it was counter-espionage, then counter-terrorism. There's no difference.

He still said it was dishonourable work you could do in an honourable way.

The better man?

I betrayed my wife and he married her.

I never knew if he did it for her or if he did it for me.


I'm in his debt.

He was an all-round decent person.

When's your husband getting back?

He's not getting back. Why not?

Because we had a disagreement.

Yeah, I'm up the Swanee.

I work for an unprincipled maniac.

God, she's as mean as cat meat.

And meanwhile, I am trying to hold down my pathetic high-powered job.

You want to get out?

I don't have the courage.

I don't have the guts.

They're gonna go after you, you know that.

Tell me. What, you hadn't guessed?

Jill Tankard took me into a cupboard and told me there was no such thing as pure intelligence.

Well, then.

They don't trust you.

They're gonna use Benedict's death.

There's gonna be a departmental shake-up. They've been setting you up.

Setting me up? How?

They're gonna say you put Benedict up to it.

It was you that gave Benedict the source.

I didn't. I didn't give him his source.

I only saw the file for the first time this week.

I know that. I don't know the source.

I'm sure. But they don't care.

They're gonna tie a tin can around your tail and run you out of the building.

They don't like you, Johnny.

It's personal.

Do they have a reason?

Well, the usual reason. They think you're anti-American.

I'm not.

All right, then, they just feel that you have more fun than they do.

I've got a question.

I mean, I don't mind if you don't answer.

I don't mind. I'll answer anything.

When I said, "I only saw the file for the first time this week," you said, "I know".

Oh, yeah, so? How do you know?

It's important, Anna. How do you know? How do you know I hadn't seen the file?

I know because when I started sleeping with you, I made a decision.

What decision?

I decided to trust you.

It's a bit arbitrary, isn't it?


But so far you've never let me down.

North Utsire, northerly, becoming cyclonic four or five, occasionally six in far north. Becoming variable three later.

Fair, good.

South Utsire, north-westerly five or six, veering easterly or south-easterly, four or five.

Becoming variable three later.

Fair, good.

Nothing if not predictable.


Johnny? Johnny?

Are you there? It's Jill.

I'm answering. Good morning, Jill.

Have you forgotten? We're due to meet, we've got a meeting.

Well, that's it.

Problem is, I've got that tickle you get at the back of your throat when you know you're gonna be ill.

Where are you, exactly?

Aren't I at home? I'm in Battersea, aren't I?

That's not what it says here.

This is hardly the day to go undercover.

Goodness, you're playing with the toys.

Are you playing silly buggers?

No, not at all. I thought it was you that was playing silly buggers, very much so.

After what happened yesterday, we're on amber.

Everyone's got to open their safe.

I'm happy to open my safe.

There's nothing in it but half a bottle of brandy and some shaving cream.

But I can't do it today.

Not if the whole department's to avoid the flu.

You think with Benedict gone you move up a peg.

But you don't, you move down.

I hope to God you know what you're doing.

Oh, Mr Eliot, I thought I heard you.

Mrs Ashanti.

It's been so long since we saw you.

I've been travelling. I'm only in this country for a couple of days.

The death has been announced of Benedict Baron, the director general of MI5.

Baron will be remembered for his policy of... making the security service more accountable.

Under his direction, the secretive organisation...

The Road House. Rather a come-down, isn't it?

Isn't this where you used to meet Gerry Adams?

Is it, Rollo? You'd know better than me.

So, who are you this time?

My name's Eliot, after the poet.

Mmm? Eliot who?

Tom Eliot, you idiot.

Never heard of him. What does he do? Christmas cards?

Two coffees, please. Sure.

You vanished. I was in Israel.

Good. Do I owe you?

No, it's fine. The paper paid.

You can open it. I'd rather hear it from you.

Well, she's perfect, isn't she? Is she? Tell me.

Well, if they'd invented her, they couldn't have done a better job.

You gonna have to tell me who "they" are?

I'm assuming that "she" is Nancy.

Is there anyone else in your life?

Nobody at all? Since you ask.

Well, Nancy is a perfectly pitched creation.

Is she? Is she a creation?

If you want to know, yeah. It all stacks up.

Yes, she did have a romantic-looking brother, who was indeed killed.

And yeah, there was one of those Israeli Army inquiries where they concluded the Israeli Army never does anythinhing wrong.

Her father is indeed an impeccable Arab scholar, living a quiet and saintly life in Damascus.

There she is, Johnny. The wronged woman, the grieving sister.

Waiting for you, brilliantly rehearsed, learnt her lines, ready to go.

What are you saying? Too good to be true?

I didn't ask you to pimp for me, Rollo.

Nor did I ask you to vet a girlfriend.

She's not a girlfriend, she's a neighbour.

Oh, she's kind of a fantasy neighbour, isn't she?

Perfect for an old spy who's lost faith in the old values.

I haven't lost faith.

Haven't you? No, I still believe in them.

The purpose of intelligence is to find the truth, not to confirm what we already believe.

We're meant to look for what's there, not for what we want to be there.

Come on, Johnny! Once they wanted communists, we gave them communists.

Now they want Arabs, we give them Arabs. Thank you.

They decide what they're looking for, we find it for them.

What has really changed? Nothing.

Look, I know what you're going through. You must be in tricky place, Rollo.

It was a bad day for Ben. It wasn't a great day for me.

Ben ran his own agents and he kept them close.

So there are quite a few people waking up in your position.

Benedict did a good job on you.

The whole service believes that you leaked security secrets to a newspaper in return for money because that's what Benedict told them.

There's a flap going on, isn't there?

A turf war, that's what I'm hearing.

Are you? Where are you hearing that?

Don't give me that "answer a question with a fucking question" lark, Johnny.

I didn't go on the interrogation course, I wrote it, remember?

Sorry. What's more, I just went to Israel for you... on what could be a wild-goose chase.

All right, I dipped into the Tel Aviv beach scene, I got tanned on every inch of my sexy body.

But even so, you owe me this!

All right. What this is about, Benedict had proof the Americans have sites, black sites.

Of course they do. Yes, but now we can tell you exactly where they are, we can draw the map.

Why is that news? That's not news.

You could hear the screams for the last 10 years.

Little bits of intelligence, we're so careful not to enquire... too closely where they came from.

They came from torture chambers, we knew that.

We guessed, we didn't have evidence. And this is actually different.

Why? Why is it different?

Because it establishes who knew.

Who's known all along.

So, who knew? Who knew the sites?

Our prime minister.

Our prime minister knew.

I see.

Party of one, is it? Dining alone?

Too right, table by the fucking window.

Our prime minister had access to American intelligence... which might have helped save British lives, and he didn't tell us.

He didn't tell anyone.

Okay. Okay, I'm getting a picture here.

Good. I'm glad you're getting a picture, Rollo.

Presumably our prime minister didn't tell us because he doesn't trust us?


And he didn't tell his home secretary because he doesn't trust her either.

Correct. Our prime minister doesn't trust anyone, is that right? That's the way it looks.

'Cause he stands alone, the true saviour of his nation.

And everyone else, except for him, is a wishy-washy liberal fuck!

They don't believe.

Then what happened? Benedict finds out.

How? Through a source.

Yeah, but a source of his own. A source's name you don't know.

That's the interesting bit.

What does Benedict do, in that situation, on discovering that his prime minister... hides secrets from his own security service?

Of all the things that Ben could do, what does he do?

Remember your first day, Rollo. First day in the service.

Of course, Monday morning, 10:00 am. you give the first lecture.

And what did I say?

"Never share intelligence you don't need to share".

Consider. Benedict is given lethal information about his prime minister.

And what does he do with it?

He gives it to Anthea. He gives it to you.

What was his plan, then?

Bring down the government?

Weather's changing. Certainly is.

Feels like the end of an era.

As for me, I'm fucked.

Live out my life inventing stories for a national newspaper.

Can't even come to the funeral.

Rollo. Rollo, you have me.

Sure. How long are you gonna last?

I thought it would be you.

Don't be ridiculous. Why?

Because I dreamed of you this morning. I had my Johnny dream.

Whoever taught you to lie like that?

Who do you think?

So, how many years since I saw you?

I guess five.

You sold me a little Gertler, remember?

You're sure? You really want to sell it?

Christopher Wood. Died at 29.

Threw himself under the train.

I wouldn't sell it, if I were you. I have to.

Bad times?

Why did you bring it here?

There are places in London you would get much more.

Because you have a safe.

Because you have cash. How do you know?

Because you showed me.

Well, will you take 60?

Do I have any choice?

Here. Thank you.

Well done.

That daughter of yours, she's doing well?


Does she still adore you?

I think she does, she's just scared of showing it, that's all.

And you, Johnny?

Still winging it on charm?

I'm late. Thank you, Leona.

I've got to go.

Thanks, sir.

Hi. Hi.

Yes? Dad, it's me.

At last. Where are you?

I've been worried sick.

I know. I couldn't leave Mum by herself.

Julianne, are you at the farm?

Dad, a man came to see me.

What man? Who?

I don't know. He came to my studio. He wanted to know where you were.

What did you say?

I told him the truth.

I said I hadn't seen you, then I packed a bag and came up to Mum's.

Julianne, I'm going to see you so soon, I promise.

Stay at your mum's, whatever you do.

I need to talk to you.

He said they're looking for you.

Ah! Here's a surprise.

Julianne, I've got to go. I'm sorry. Stay where you are, please.

Blow me down. Thought the shy boy wasn't coming.

I wasn't. What made you change your mind?

Oh, you know, whim, caprice.

Good evening.


Welcome. Thank you.

Good evening. Good evening, Prime Minister.

The prime minister will now say a few words.

Thank you.

Thank you, thank you.

Well, I don't want to spoil such a wonderful occasion with a long speech.

As my daughter says, "Daddy, you spoil everything".

But I would like to say a few words, if I may, about liberal values and the price of defending them in the modern world.

What do you think? What do you think of him?

I don't know. I've never known what to make of him.

At least he believes what he says.

Is that enough?

The prime minister wants a word.

Not now. When?


We'll tell you when.

Sorry, it's past 1:00. He had a long phone call.

The White House doesn't admit we're in a different time zone.

Ah, Johnny.

It's been a long time. So it has.

I'm surprised you could make it.

Why? I heard you had flu.

Really? Who told you that?

Why? Isn't it true?

Isn't it? Maybe the beginnings. The onset.

Oh, and having just lost the DG, I didn't think you'd come.

I'm sorry, everyone, but we're going to need some privacy.


I remember when peace first came to Northern Ireland, I took Ben for a drink.

In those days I was just an MP.

Benedict said, "The Cold War's over. Northern Ireland’s fixed.

"This could be very bad news for the service".

Well, all honour to Ben, but it turned out he was wrong.

On the contrary. Yes.

We're busier than ever. And larger.

That's the problem, isn't it? There's so much intelligence.

Ceaseless intelligence, and there's barely time to consider it.

The difficult thing being to decide what's important.

That's right. And what's not.

Basic point.

There are times when the interests of the government and the interests of the country are coincident.

You can't put a cigarette paper between them.

Do you agree?

Do you agree? I don't disagree.

So, I need to be clear.

I'm contemplating reorganisation. Had you heard that?

As a matter of fact, I had.

Oh, really. Who from?


A department of Homeland Security.

It'd be a popular move after the failures of the last 10 years.

Let's have a Royal Commission to give us cover, then let's reconfigure the services entirely.

Why not?

I hardly need say for everyone already in place it could mean huge advancement.


Huge opportunity.

Or its opposite.

Right. You understand me.

There's one other thing I'd like to discuss.

Before he died, Benedict gave you a file?

My own view is that file should not have been distributed.

And for that reason, I'd like it returned.


I don't know what to say.

I don't carry secret files about my person, so I don't have it with me.

After all, I came here tonight for social reasons.

I find that very hard to believe.

You don't strike me as an overly sentimental kind of person.

Didn't you come here because you wanted to talk to me?

I think we both know we have a question to answer, Prime Minister.

And what question is that?

Why do you imagine Benedict gave me the file?

You tell me. Why did he show it around?

Why did he do that?

I've no idea.

He showed it to the home secretary. Indeed.

What's your view, given the sensitivity of the subject matter?

My guess is Benedict knew he was ill.

Sorry, he'd already had a heart attack?

But also his arm was dragging. His arm?

I noticed at a meeting with the home secretary.

It's a familiar sign. He couldn't pick up his papers.

What meeting was that? I think Benedict knew he was dying.

He handed out the file because he wanted certain issues discussed.

He wanted everything out in the open.

And so, whatever else, we must respect his wishes.

He was my friend.

So for me it's a matter of honour.


Do you know the famous saying about the yellow box?

I've not heard it, no.

"Do not enter the yellow box unless your exit is clear".

I wonder where you think your exit is?

I don't have an exit, so I don't have a strategy.

I'm not thinking that far ahead.

I'm very conscious, Prime Minister, that I've been forced into an area... closer to politics than it is to security.

What I was saying earlier.

In times of national emergency, the two are the same.

Nothing is more dangerous than when people make mischief by trying to separate them out.

But surely that's something you're going to have to take up with your home secretary.

Yes. I'm working on that.

Right now, I'm working on you.

All right. If the file is correct, it suggests that you had intelligence which you failed to share.

You knew the names of potential British terrorists, but you failed to pass them on because you didn't want to reveal where you'd got them.

You risked lives.

And you knowingly misled Parliament about illegal practices.

Let's look at the facts.

The man who compiled that file is dead.

And with him died the knowledge of who his source was.

I don't know the source. Do you?

You know as well as I do, without a source your file is worthless.

The allegations can't be corroborated.

Therefore, the allegations can't be correct.

Is that what you're telling me, sir?

It's false?

The allegations are false?

What time is it?

Just gone 2:00.

All other copies of the file have been returned.

I want yours back within 12 hours.

2:00 tomorrow, shall we say?

You've been a loyal servant to this country for many years.

I'm not expecting you to throw it all away.

No. Nor am I.

It's late. Can we get you a room?

No, thank you. I'm staying at a friend's.

Goodnight, sir.

Goodnight, Max. Goodnight, Ted.

How did it go? I want Special Branch.

All right? Yes, but I'm freezing.

Where are we going?

I love it.

Is this what you do for a living? Occasionally.



I had a feeling that if I asked a favour, you were the sort of person who'd come through.

You trust me.

Why on earth would you trust me?

Because that's the job. Deciding who to trust.

That's what the job is.

Also, you told your father that I work for the Home Office.

I lied. Yeah.

You trust me because I lied.


Well, what were you doing in Cambridge?

Why, seeing the prime minister, of course.

Anyone behind us? No.

Are we going back to London? No.

Two rooms, please. One room, two beds, please.

Don't we need to talk?

I don't want to spoil the evening, but I have a question.

The first time we met, the young man... Ralph.

Tell me, how did you know him?

He came to the meetings. For the campaign?

He just turned up out of the blue?

Said he was keen to help.

Did he?

What's this about? I got you something.

Something to thank you for coming to fetch me.

What is it?

It's the truth about your brother's death.

I got hold of the Shabak report.

How on earth did you do that?

It's powerful stuff.

You were right. Jake was killed in cold blood. There was a cover-up.

You have a cast-iron case for manslaughter. You might get murder.

It's all in there.

Have you read it?

The problem is going to be with using it.

Why shouldn't I use it?

Because everyone will know where you got it.

How would they know?

You're not cut out for this line of work, are you?

Tell me what you mean.

I mean you live opposite me.

We share a landing.

I see.

Do you want a drink?


Am I driving? Not with me, you're not.


They say you can only begin to mourn once you know the facts.

Do you think that's true?

I'm mourning, too.


Who are you mourning?

My oldest friend died a couple of days ago.

He made an allegation.

An allegation that, as yet, I've failed to make stick.

I see.

Must be tough.

Well, it is.

He left me a job to do.

And my life's not...

worth living till I see it through.

I just got my life back.

I don't suppose you'd let me thank you.

I think I'd die if you thanked me.

I think some people have been quite surprised by your new appointment.

Yes. Well, as you know the prime minister and I haven't always seen eye-to-eye on every issue, but recently events have thrown us together, and do you know what?

We've found we actually like each other.

You get on. Extremely well.

We've always got on on a personal level, and now...

Didn't hear you get up.

Good morning. How are you?

Better, much better. Good.

Do you know the home secretary?

The one who says, "We can't be free because we have to be safe"?

That's her.

Thank you, Mr Eliot. Thank you very much.

She's our deputy prime minister.

I thought we didn't have a deputy prime minister.

We do now. Beasley is saying he thinks of her as his natural successor.

She's been bought.

We need to go to work. Are you coming with me?

Try and stop me.

Well, as you know, some prime ministers designate a deputy, some don't.

Obviously, it's a mark of how well we're now working together that the prime minister has wanted to give me this particular job title.

Emma. How are you? Busy.

You haven't met, have you? This is Nancy Pierpan.

Okay. So sorry to hear your news.

She's my neighbour.

She's kindly doing a stint as my chauffeur.

Come in.

Go to the barn. She's waiting for you.

Do you think Nancy could possibly have a cup of coffee?

I'm so sorry. I said terrible things.

It's my fault. I've been stupid.

I'm a bad father.

Just put my mind at rest.

It's not Ralph Wilson, is it?

Ralph Wilson?

Why would it be Ralph?

Because I saw you together.

Are you out of your head? Thank God!

Is that what you've been thinking? Is that what you think of me?

I didn't know what to think.

If you must know, it was a conceptual artist. Oh.

Good. Well...

I'm glad conceptual artists are good for something.

How long did it last?

It lasted a week.

A good week?

Well, then, your daughter's in with a chance.

How do you know it's a girl?

Because I had a girl.

I don't know why I bothered to make you all lunch.

God knows, I've got enough to do. It's delicious.

Everyone says Benedict knew he was dying.

So why didn't he at least leave us an order of service?

Did he ask for anything in particular?

Oh, you know. Stuff about England.

So typical. So typical of him.

I don't think Benedict gave a damn about England, did he? Except... as some version of paradise.

Imaginary, like all paradise.

I'm sure it's what the Belgians feel about Belgium.

I'm sure they do.

And the frigging Albanians.

And you're no use.

You like jazz.

Johnny, can you come with me, please?

There was a politician. I'm sorry?

An American politician came here for lunch.

Couple of weeks ago.

I don't suppose you remember his name.

He piloted his plane to the local airfield.

You didn't mention this before.

I was angry before.

Is the plane enough of a clue?

It's not certain, but there's a fair chance that I'm going to have to leave the country.

I have a feeling this week may not end well.

I'm running out of rope.

They're not gonna make me deputy prime minister.

Will I see you at the funeral?

I'll try.

"Try" as in you will, "try" as in you won't?

He's on his way.

You're gonna tell me what you're doing?

I'm doing what you do for a living.

Aren't you in the surveillance business?

Going through your things, seeing what's there.

Don't worry. I don't do guns or violence.

How did you get in?

There's a dead-lock in the combination.

We still have skills in the public sector you don't in the private.

Contact, contact.

Nancy, you can come up now.

This is an expensive outfit.

I was wondering who'd stake such a serious investment.

And then I saw the photo on the fridge.

I had you marked from the beginning.

I know you did. From the moment I met you.

I've been taking photos of your operation.

Are they on that camera? And sending them to a computer.

You're Jill Tankard's little boy.

Nothing to say?

This is the man who pretended to support your campaign.

I can't believe what you did.

I can't believe it.

How far would you have taken it? I'd have slept with you.

For Queen and country, I would have done it.

I was never interested in you, I was interested in him.

I meant to believe that it was a coincidence.

An Ml5 man just happens to live opposite a known subversive.

I'm not a subversive.

Then what the fuck are you? Ralph!

It's time to have a word with your mum.

I'm going to leave early. Please cancel all my appointments.

He's back in contact.

What made you choose this place?

Best reason, because the food is good.

Hello. I've got whisky, but my friend usually drinks white wine.

Whisky. Of course.

So, interesting choice. How does it feel to be unemployable?

What's in the bag? Have you brought me the file?

I've been trying to calculate how long you've been working this racket.

What racket is that?

You're running a cowboy unit out of Downing Street.

Don't think you can call it a cowboy unit.

We answer to the prime minister.

Clearly you've forgotten, so do we. What's your point?

The prime minister never liked the security services because we refused to tell him what he wanted to hear and we were always bothering him with facts.

So he started his own intelligence unit. Am I right?

Dealing directly with the Americans.

In traditional practice, the torturers are meant to be held at arm's length.

You have no proof.

Well, as a matter of fact, I do.

I found Ben's source.

I've spoken to Ben's source.

I don't believe you. Believe what you like.

And will that source go on the record?

Can you produce that source?

That's a gamble you're going to have to take.

Johnny, you're bluffing with an empty hand.

Is the prime minister willing to take that risk?

I know the source.

Face it, the world's changed.

What are the British gonna do? Get new allies?

Allies who behave better? Benedict was onto you, wasn't he?

He'd worked it out. That's why he put the file out.

Because he knew you were betraying your own department.

Reporting to the prime minister isn't betrayal.

You financed a piece of private enterprise... and employed your own son.

I've taken photographs of his premises.

Fuck this. This isn't the student union. I'm not here to debate.

The world's moving on, and it's time it did.

Because you guys, with your public-school ties and your, "After you, old chap," didn't make much of a job of it, did you?

Last meeting of the club, Johnny. Last meeting of the club.

In the last 48 hours you've broken every rule in the book.

You're no longer in the service. You will never work again.

Your pension's gone.

And if you blow the whistle now you'll also go to prison.

Is that what you want?

Because that's what lies ahead if you don't give me that file.

I'm willing to cut a deal. What's the deal?

No Royal Commission, no reorganisation.

Is that all? No.

Publication of the internal Israeli report on the death of Jake Pierpan.

You're crazy. We leak it.

The government admits it's deeply concerned.

It's shocked at the cover-up in the occupied territories. That's the deal.

You know it's impossible. Is it?

Of course! It's the quid pro quo.

You give me something, I give you something.

Think about it. This is far worse.

Isn't the temptation of heroism coming a little late in your career?

I've watched you work. I always admired you.

I thought, "Johnny's clever. Johnny keeps out of trouble.

"Johnny's a lucky man, he's got a life".

Don't you have a life, Jill?

It's the girl, isn't it?

You're doing this for the girl.

They come and go. Don't they, Johnny?

They come and go.

Not this time.

Is the file in there?

Hello? Is that Allegra?

It is.

I believe my friend Rollo gave you a document.

He did.

Go ahead, broadcast. You have my permission.

Thank you. Good luck.

What are you doing? Just reading.


Looking for the next great novel.

They don't seem to understand that feelings are interesting, but the world is interesting, too.

Want some coffee? I have to say goodbye.

Goodbye? Yeah.

What does goodbye mean?

If you want a Saab, it's waiting in Cambridge.

You'll have to pay the parking charges, but it's nicer than your Peugeot.

This is a small painting you might like.

It's by the same artist, but not as good.

Couldn't possibly take it.

You can take it.

You're going to live for many years and be an old woman.

And this way, you'll always have something decent on your wall.

Going to tell me why you have to go?

I've cut a deal.

They've gone along with it, but they don't like it.

They'll make my life not worth living.

Would you like me to come with you?

I couldn't ask you to do that.

Couldn't or... won't?

I'm not really used to the idea of having feelings again.

It's dangerous, isn't it?

Too dangerous for you?

I'm frightened. I fuck everything up.


Thank you.

You're welcome. This is very kind of you.

We're heading north.

We're here today to remember the life of Benedict Baron.

The hymns and readings have been chosen by his family.

And the first hymn by his oldest friend, John Worricker.

I Vow to Thee, My Country.

¶ I vow to thee, my country

¶ All earthly things above

¶ Entire and whole and perfect

¶ The service of my love ¶

The government today responded officially to the document obtained by the BBC which reveals that the peace campaigner Jake Pierpan was gunned down in the occupied territories... when he was clearly holding a white flag.

The prime minister, Alec Beasley, today visiting his constituency, acknowledged the strengths of public reaction to the revelation.

Even at times of national crisis, certain basic human freedoms have to be protected.

We must never stop insisting on telling the truth to our enemies, but sometimes we have to tell the truth to our friends as well.

That's a difficult duty, but between democracies with shared values it's an essential one.

¶ And there's another country

¶ I've heard of long ago

¶ Most dear to them that love her

¶ Most great to them that know ¶ Politicians on all sides in Britain... are today expressing their shock... at the news that the Israeli Army... suppressed a highly critical Shabak report, which established the truth about the death of a British peace...

I wonder, could we change the station?

Anything you want?

I'd like some jazz.