FW3-3: They Fought In the Fields

Detailed summaries.

FW3-3: They Fought In the Fields

Postby Lynnedean » Tue Feb 18, 2014 11:51 pm

FW3-3: They Fought In the Fields (detailed summary)

April 1941

In a night bombing raid over the south of England, a German plane is hit. Three airmen bail out over farmland.

Next morning.

On the farm, young two members of the Women's Land Army are going about their morning duties. Rose Henshall is working a horse-drawn plough and Joan Dillon is herding cows across the farmyard.

Barbara Hicks emerges from the farm cottage and smiles good morning to the farmer Hugh Jackson, as she mounts her bicycle and rides off. Jackson, with sour face, does not acknowledge the greeting.

In response to a call from the Home guard, Foyle and Milner go to Jackson's farm. On the way, Sam comments on it being hard to believe that it's spring. "Bombs last night, and lambs are being born this morning."
Milner observes, "Spring, and the smell of cordite in the air."

Sam stops the Wolseley beside a field in which lies the body of one of the members of the crew of the stricken German plane. The local Home Guard captain greets the policemen and suggests that Sam does not join them in looking at the body, as the man was in a mess because his parachute hadn't opened. A disappointed Sam stays by the car.

On examining the body, Foyle notices that the man's holster is empty and that the ripcord handle in his hand has nothing attached to it. Milner observes that the ripcord appears to have been cut.

The captain reports that two men came down, and that they had run off but the dogs had picked up their scent. He shows Foyle a map of the area, and says it seems the men were heading back towards their crashed aircraft.

On Jackson's farm, to the delight of the Land Army girls, a new John Deere tractor is delivered. Barbara Hicks returns in time to watch its arrival, and says cheerfully, "God bless America, eh?"

Jackson snaps about it having been paid for and the Yanks making money out war. He spits. Barbara asks him why he has to be so rude, and he responds by asking her why she has to stay on the farm and not in the hostel like the other women. Barbara explains that she was billeted by the Land Army and that Rose and Joan stay on the farm. The two other women sneer at her, Rose saying she has cows to milk at five in the morning, and Joan asking if she wants to help. Barbara does not reply but heads for the farm cottage.

Curling, a neighbouring farmer, arrives and demands to know how Jackson got the tractor, as he had put in for one months ago but hadn't got one. Joan says he won't need one if they take his farm off him. Curling snarls that if Jackson and his pals on the committee threaten his farm, he'll blow their heads off.

The two men engage in a fistfight, which ends with Jackson throwing Curling off the premises.

Foyle and Milner examine the wreckage of the German plane, leaving Sam, once again, waiting by the car.

Foyle notes the electronic equipment scattered on the ground. A member of the Home Guard explains that the burnt-out aircraft appears to be a Dornier and would have carried three crewmen. When he indicates a body still in the wreckage, Foyle queries the number of crewmen, but the Home Guard assures him it would be three. Foyle puzzles as to why the two who landed safely would head back to their downed aircraft. He and Milner join the search for the missing airmen.

Joan reminds Jackson that his son Tom will be home in two days. He tells her gruffly that she won't get his son and she won't get the farm.

Milner spots the two airmen.

Joan and Rose are in the middle of sowing a field by hand when Joan says she is tired and needs to take a break. She walks a little way off and sits down, but, looking back sees Jackson approach Rose and a squabble begin, ending with the farmer pushing the woman to the ground and walking off.

The German airmen are captured. Milner takes a pistol from one man, but finds no weapon on the other.

Foyle discovers that both men speak English, and is told by one of them that it is normal. He informs them that the other airman who jumped was killed and that his parachute cord appeared to have been cut. The men do not respond, but when Foyle walks away, one talks to the other in German in alarmed tones. Behind them, the DCS waits until they stop talking, and then asks them their names. One gives a Heil Hitler salute and firmly announces that he is Oberlieutenant Schimmel. The other simply gives his name as Sabartovski.

A military vehicle arrives as Foyle is in the middle of asking the men to explain why there were four on the Dornier. A major and a private, Tom Jackson, alight from the vehicle and the officer approaches the prisoners, completely ignoring Foyle. The soldier roughly orders the airmen to put up their hands, but the major interrupts, telling him to treat the Germans with respect. He salutes the two men, introduces himself as Major Cornwall from the Prisoner of War Interrogation Service and, shaking their hands, welcomes them to Britain. The Germans are ushered into the car.

Foyle has been waiting patiently, and reminds the major that he is there by asking for a word with him. He begins to say that he has spoken to the prisoners and that something is amiss, but Cornwall cuts him short by saying, "Well, thank you for the tip off." Foyle tries to speak again, but the major silences him by saying that while they are grateful for his help, they'd really prefer that people didn't speak to enemy prisoners and left the job to them. "We are the experts and we run a very sophisticated show. Amateur sleuthing is of course understandable, but, er, unhelpful."
Foyle realises that there is no point in pursuing the matter and replies, simply, "Right."

As Cornwall climbs into the army vehicle, Milner looks at his boss with a mixture of disbelief and disgust. Foyle responds with a humorous 'well, that told us!' expression, dipping his body briefly with a little bend of his knees.

Night, two days later

Another bombing raid is taking place.

In the darkness, Curling is walking through the fields near Jackson's farmhouse.

Barbara Hicks wakens at the sound of two reports from a shotgun. She looks out of her bedroom window and sees Curling shooting at rabbits.

Joan and Rose lie awake in their bunks, listening to the noises outside.

Barbara dresses, and as she leaves the cottage on her bicycle she is watched by Hugh Jackson from a window in the farmhouse. As she cycles in the darkness down a lane away from the farm, she sees a man cycling towards her. He passes so closely that he nearly knocks her over.

The man is Tom Jackson, who has cycled all the way from his base. At the cottage door, Joan greets him with a kiss.

A short while later, Rose calls on Hugh Jackson and tells him that Barbara has gone out and his son has arrived. Jackson takes a revolver from a drawer and says, "Let's do it, then."

Curling is gathering up his kills when he hears a gunshot. He looks at his pocket watch, and notes that the time is five o'clock.

Hugh Jackson, overcoat on and a bottle of whisky in his hand, watches Rose and Joan drive his tractor through the darkness of the farmyard. A covered truck arrives, splashing its way across the ford at the entrance to the farm.

Jackson, already drunk, staggers to a nearby field, sinks onto the grass and takes another swig of whisky. Disturbed by something, he rises to his feet and what he sees shocks him. He drops the open bottle and claps a hand to his mouth.

Next morning

Sam drives Foyle to join Milner at Jackson's farm.

As Milner takes his boss into the farmhouse, Sam gets out of the car and walks to where Rose and Joan are sitting on a bench outside the milking parlour. Sam smiles, but the two Land Army women survey her with insolent and resentful stares. Barbara and Tom are nearby and look at her blankly.

In the farmhouse, the dead body of Hugh Jackson is upright in an armchair, his face is splattered with blood from a shotgun wound in his chest. Milner says it doesn't look as though he shot himself because there was no note left and that those who commit suicide with a shotgun usually blow their heads off. The detectives note that the gun lying against Jackson's chest has been recently fired and the man smells of whisky. Milner informs Foyle that there is no wife, but there is a son, Thomas, and it was he who found the body.

Outside again, Foyle is told by Jackson's son that he found his father at around 6am, after having just arrived from his barracks on a twenty-four hour pass. Joan interrupts the conversation, complaining crossly that the cows must be milked but that the farm workers are not being allowed to do it. Foyle tells her to go ahead and that Tom can help as he is finished talking with him.

Foyle notices that Barbara, instead of going with the others, makes to leave, and he queries it. Barbara replies that she doesn't work on the farm. Foyle notes her attire – white shirt, dark blue v-neck jumper, khaki tie and trousers, and purple cap – and seeks confirmation that she is with the Land Army. Barbara, obviously not pleased to be spoken to by the detective, replies sarcastically, "No, I'm wearing this for a dare." She goes on to explain dryly that she is a pole selector who surveys woodland to find trees suitable for felling for use as pit props and in roadblocks, et cetera. Foyle gives a little smile and asks if she knew the dead man. She says she didn't and that she has been there only a few days.

Foyle asks Barbara her first impressions of Jackson and she replies, "He was not too different from most men: rude, lazy, lascivious … and ignorant!"
Her provocative words elicit no response from Foyle other than "Right. I see. Thank you very much." He then asks her to keep them informed of her whereabouts, and, with a little smile, turns away.

In the milking parlour, the DCS speaks with Rose, Joan and Tom. The women tell him that they sometimes stay in the farm cottage rather than in the hostel because of early starts and that Jackson lived alone in the farmhouse. Many gunshots were heard the previous night because Curling, who owns the farm next door, was hunting rabbits. Rose reckons that the reason the farmer was shooting so close to the house was because he was angry with Jackson, but she won't say why. Tom leaves, so Foyle asks Rose about Jackson's wife and she replies that the woman went off with a farm labourer ten or twelve years ago.

At the POW holding camp, Cornwall interrogates a nervous Lieutenant Sabartovski. He tells him that the relevant authorities have been notified that he is alive and well. Sabartovski admits to being a navigator and part of the Dornier's crew, but is reluctant to say more. Cornwall assures him that his organisation goes by the book in accordance with the Geneva Convention 1929.

In Jackson's farmhouse, Foyle and Milner examine the room in which Jackson was found. Foyle looks at the bullet hole in the back of the chair and then at a blood-spattered door immediately behind. He is digging a pistol bullet from the wood of the door when Milner comes in to report that he can find no whisky bottle.

Foyle postulates that someone shot Jackson with a pistol while he sat in the chair and that the bullet passed through him and lodged in the door, after which a shotgun was used to make it look like suicide. "Clever. But not clever enough to fool us, eh, Milner?"
Milner grins and says, "Being the amateur sleuths we are".
"Well, quite!"

They decide to stick with the suicide story for the time being, until someone says he or she knows something to the contrary.

Sam bursts in to report that Barbara Hicks has found another German.

When the three, accompanied by two uniformed policemen in a second car, arrive at the specified meadow, they find Curling training his shotgun on an unconscious man hanging by parachute straps from a tree. Curling immediately turns his shotgun towards them. When Foyle asks if the land is his, the farmer replies gruffly that it should be, and then demands to know who they are. When he realises that the police have come to take charge of the German, he walks off. Foyle shouts after him, asking if he is Mr Curling, and the farmer replies that he is.

The German airman, a Luftwaffe lieutenant, is cut down and laid on the grass. Foyle immediately checks his holster and finds it empty. Foyle and Milner consider the possibility that someone found the man, took his pistol and used it to shoot Jackson.

Milner asks Foyle if Barbara, who is standing a little way off, could be a suspect. His boss replies that she could, and goes to speak with her while the German is being taken to the second car.

Barbara tells him that she didn't see the airman come down and that she assumed it happened during the air raid. Foyle asks if she came to the farm as soon as she found him and she replies that of course she did, as she wasn't going to get him down on her own. "English men are bad enough without getting tangled up with Germans!" She goes on to say that even if the man did come down during the raid, he wasn't there at 4am, by which time the raid was over. She explains that she was there at that hour to see badgers in the meadow and is sure the man wasn't there because she had also looked at the tree, an English Oak. "This is Quercus robur – just as beautiful in the dark."

Foyle comments about the difficulty of distinguishing a pistol shot in an air raid making it hard to be precise about the time of Jackson's death. "Unless you know different. Nobody else seems to know."
Barbara says that she is sure the others told him that they heard much gunfire. "Some from the raid, but mostly from the inbred moron who lives next door."
"Mr Curling?"
Foyle says, "Thank you" and turns to go. But then he stops, turns back and asks casually, "Where do you get your opinion of men?"
Foyle glances away as Barbara answers and so does not see her eye him up and down, a faint smile on her lips.

Foyle tells Milner to take the airman to the farmhouse to see what he has to say when he recovers consciousness, and says that Major Cornwall should be informed but that there was no need to do it immediately. Concluding that they will need to be in the area next day, Foyle asks Sam to find them somewhere to stay for the night. She thinks it a good idea, especially as it will save petrol. Foyle says he will walk over to Curling's property to speak to the farmer. Sam and Milner are to take Barbara back to Jackson's farm.

Curling is skinning rabbits when Foyle arrives. Continuing with the job on hand, he tells the DCS that Jackson was a drunk who was allowing his farm to run down before the offer of the workers from the Women's Land Army came along in 1939. Foyle asks about his relationship with the other farmer and Curling says that he got a place on the local agricultural committee, the War Ag, and explains that his neighbour used his position to get grants, jump the queue for a tractor and try to get him evicted.

Foyle asks if Curling knows of any reason why Jackson would kill himself and the farmer replies that the man never got over his wife leaving him for a farm hand, which is when he took to drink.

Major Cornwall arrives at Jackson's farm and finds Milner and a police constable in the farmyard watching over the injured airman. Milner explains that they are waiting to interview him, but the major ignores him, introduces himself to the German and orders his soldiers to put him in the car. He asks Milner if the man is hurt and the detective sergeant replies that he was concussed but has come round.

The soldiers move towards the airman but stop as Milner politely protests that the officer does not seem to understand the situation. When Cornwall replies that it's Milner who doesn't seem to understand, Milner nods towards his boss, who is now walking up to them, and says in deliberate tones, "Detective Chief Superintendent Foyle."

Cornwall turns to Foyle in surprise, uttering. "Detective?" He tells Foyle that he thought he had said he was a farmer.
The DCS confirms that he is in fact a policeman, and says he's there because the airman might be able to help in what could prove to be a murder inquiry. Cornwall says dismissively that he doesn't give a damn and that he's taking the man away now. Foyle begins to request a little time with the prisoner, but the major silences him abruptly. "We have all the authority we need!" The injured airman is taken away.

Foyle returns to the farmhouse to examine the rest of the rooms and is in Jackson's bedroom when Sam looks in to let him know that she is back. Foyle has discovered a brassiere on Jackson's bed. Sam points out that it's made from silk and when her boss suggests it might belong to one of the Land Army girls, she says it's probably Rose's or Barbara's, as it's too large to be Joan's. She asks if he wants her to find out, and when he indicates yes, she stuffs the item into her jacket pocket.

Sam takes Foyle and Milner to where they can stay for the night. All the hotels and pubs are being used for billeting troops, but she has found them rooms in the Woman's Land Army hostel.

The hostel supervisor tells the two men that they will sleep in a separate part of the building and she invites them to sit down to dinner, which is just being served to the women in the main hall. Sam and Milner marvel at the food on the table. Along with various vegetables, there is roast beef, roast potatoes and Yorkshire puddings. Sam says that there is apple crumble for dessert and bacon for breakfast in the morning. The three tuck in.

From the POW holding camp enclosure, Schimmel and Sabartovski observe the recently captured airman being brought in and taken to the sanatorium. The man spots Schimmel and gives him a Heil Hitler salute, which the other airman returns. It is obvious, however, that there is no love lost between the two men and that Schimmel is somewhat alarmed at the other's arrival.

Next morning

Joan, Rose and Tom walk to a particular spot on Jackson's land, carrying spades. Rose says that they should talk to Foyle, but Joan will have none of it. The three begin to dig.

In the women's hostel, Foyle leaves his room and makes his way the bathroom. He is just about to try the door when it opens and Barbara emerges. She is shocked and demands to know what the policeman is doing there. Her appearance and reaction fluster Foyle for a second and then he explains that he was just trying to use the bathroom. She says that she was referring to his presence in the hostel, as men aren't allowed, and he replies that she's absolutely right but that they made an exception last night.

He asks why she is there and not at the farm. She says she wouldn't feel safe staying at a place where someone was murdered. Foyle queries the word "murdered". Barbara explains crisply, "Well, if it were simple suicide, why would someone as lofty as yourself be spending so much time on it?" She walks off back to her room, leaving Foyle with the realisation that's he's been slapped down again.

Foyle and Milner visit the local postmistress who mans the village telephone exchange, a PBX switchboard in her post office. She tells Foyle that the call she took from Tom reporting having found his father's body was at six o'clock on the morning the farmer died. Foyle asks if that was the only call and she says that there was another one about thirty minutes earlier but that she doesn't know if it came from the farm because the caller did not give her long enough to respond.

As the policemen are about to leave, Curling comes in and gives the postmistress several dead rabbits. Foyle asks him if he heard any shots from the Jackson farm on the morning the man died, and Curling replies that he heard one at around 5am and two more maybe half an hour later.

As Foyle and Milner climb into the Wolseley, a bus pulls up at a stop nearby. A rough looking character, unshaven, in old clothes and carrying a sack, alights from the bus and watches the Wolseley drive away without the occupants being aware of him.

Rose, Joan and Tom are working in a field on Jackson's farm when they see the Wolseley crossing the ford. Joan warns the others to keep their nerve.

Foyle and Milner stand on the bridge over the river that borders the farm. Foyle gives his sergeant a list of jobs to do: the river is to be dragged, the Land Army women are to be checked out to see if any of them has a criminal record, and a lead is to be sought on Jackson's missing wife and the man she ran off with. The DCS also instructs Milner to speak with Major Cornwall to try to elicit information about Tom Jackson, to see if there's any chance of speaking to the recently captured airman, and to find out if he realises that one of the two other Germans is not an airman.

Foyle then reminds Sam that she said she would speak to the Land Army women, which she does straight away. She approaches Rose in the farmyard and shows her the silk bra that was found in Jackson's bedroom. Rose denies that it is hers and asks who she is to be asking questions. Sam acknowledges the validity of the question and walks away.

Foyle explores the milking parlour on Jackson's farm and finds blood in a crack in the stone floor. Sam enters the building and reports to her boss that Rose has denied being the owner of the bra. She says that she suspects the woman of lying, although it is an expensive item for her to possess.

Barbara comes in and interrupts the conversation, saying that she has remembered something. She goes on to tell of bumping into the cyclist near the end of the farm lane at around four on the morning Jackson died. She is unable to describe him, but says she noticed he had a rucksack on his back. As she finishes speaking, she notices Sam stuffing the bra back into her pocket, and demands to know from where she got it. She says that it is hers and wants to know what Sam is doing with it.

Foyle says pointedly that they were trying to decide what it was doing in Jackson's bedroom. Barbara takes his reply as a statement and not a question, and replies sharply, "Well, when you've decided would you let me know?" While Foyle is absorbing her response, she asks if she can take the bra: "Or is it exhibit A?"

The DCS explains that it is evidence, but says she can take it and they'll let her know when they need it. Barbara takes the bra from Sam's hand and marches out of the milking parlour. Foyle looks at Sam with an expression that indicates that they have got the answer to one question at least but it was something of a surprise.

Milner speaks with Major Cornwall at his base. The officer refuses permission to interview Lieutenant Weiser, the man found hanging from the tree, on the grounds that he is a prisoner of war, has his rights and is, in any case, not well enough. He does concede, however, that it might be possible to talk to him when he is feeling better.

When Milner asks about Tom Jackson, Cornwall says that the soldier is on compassionate leave and can be spoken to at home. Milner explains that he does not wish to speak to Jackson but is seeking any information the major might have about him. In this matter, Cornwall is willing to co-operate.

He tells the detective that very soon after his father's death, Jackson requested reserved occupation status because he now had charge of his father's farm. Cornwall reaches for a file as he continues to say that Jackson also tried to dodge call-up by claiming reserved occupation on the grounds that he was vital to the farm. Cornwall adds that Jackson senior had told them otherwise, and hands Milner a letter in which Hugh Jackson states that Tom is not needed on the farm and so any request for reserved occupation status should be denied. Milner is surprised that father would report son.

Foyle stands in the milking parlour with Rose and Joan. He asks how often the building is cleaned and is told that the cowshed and milking parlour are done every morning and night after milking. When he is told that no animals have been killed there in their time at the farm, he points out the blood in the crack in the floor. The women deny any knowledge of it.

Foyle asks if Hugh Jackson was a violent man. Rose says immediately that he wasn't, but Joan says nothing. Asked about the shots Curling heard coming from the farm at 5 to 5.30 the night Jackson died, the women say that they were out harrowing with the tractor from 5am and heard nothing. Foyle says they can go, but as they start to leave, he considers another question, and asks if they were aware of anything going on between Jackson and Barbara Hicks. Joan laughs out loud at the thought of what Jackson might have been getting up to. Foyle says he's not saying there was anything going on, but Joan replies with a grin, "Well, why was you asking if there wasn't something."

When the women leave the milking parlour they find Sam beside the Wolseley, waiting for her boss. Joan has a go at her, saying she's Lady Muck keeping her eye on the sod-busters. She asks, "Why can't the old man drive himself?"
Sam replies that her boss is not an old man. But Joan is into her stride, and launches into Sam, accusing her of not knowing there is a war on. "Us breaking our backs and here's you, all spick and span with your barnet done up like a Cornish pasty, hanging around…"
Sam interrupts, trying to explain that she was drafted in from the MTC to drive the DCS, but is in turn interrupted by Joan asking if she is Foyle's fancy woman. Before Sam can respond, Rose ushers Joan away.

The man who got off the bus near the post office makes his way through the woods on Jackson's farm. He hears someone shout, and stops. Peering through the trees, he sees Foyle and Milner standing on the riverbank, watching uniformed policemen dragging a bicycle out of the water. The voice was that of one of the constables, attracting the attention of the DCS to the find.

On examination, the bicycle appears not to have been in the river for more than two days. Joan is passing and stops to look. She says the bike is not one of theirs and walks on. Milner wonders aloud who would need a bicycle and then throw it away.

Sam asks Foyle brightly if there's anything she can do to help, and is very disappointed when he replies that he doesn't need her at the moment.

The man in the trees continues to observe without being seen.

Foyle returns to the farmhouse and looks around Tom's room. On the bedside table is a framed photograph of a woman cuddling a small boy, and standing on the table in the centre of the room is a child's toy in the form of several brightly coloured, cardboard farm figures.

Outside, Milner questions Tom about Curling's activities during the night Jackson died. Tom tells him that the air raid ended at 4am and that Curling continued shooting rabbits for a while after. Milner says he knows that Curling stopped at 5am, an hour before Tom said he got to the farm, and if Tom left the barracks at midnight, he couldn't have taken six hours, as the cycle ride would not take more than four. Tom explains that the journey took longer because of the darkness, encountering roadblocks and getting lost at one point. Milner asks why he is lying.

Tom says he didn't kill his father. Milner replies that he didn't say he had, and comments that it couldn't have been easy for Tom's father to raise his son alone after his wife left. Tom says sourly that if his father had behaved better, his mother might have stayed.

Milner finds his boss still in Tom's room, looking at the farm figures, one of which is unlike the others, appearing to have been coloured in crayon by a child's hand. He reports that Tom's story doesn't add up so there is no explanation for where he was.

The two men leave the house and climb into the waiting Wolseley. As they travel, they discuss their findings and raise questions they'd like answers to... Tom Jackson hated his father and by killing him stood to inherit a valuable farm, improve his chances of getting Joan to marry him and reserved occupation status would get him out of the army. Joan stood to inherit the farm by getting Hugh Jackson out of the way by marrying Tom. Rose seems to have been afraid of Jackson and is certainly hiding something. The German is a puzzle. How did the gun get to the farm? Who's the man with the rucksack seen by Barbara Hicks?

Milner remarks "Speak of the devil" as they spot Barbara by the roadside, obviously having trouble with a punctured tyre on her bicycle. She accepts the offer of a lift and Milner puts her bike in the car boot.

Barbara tells them that she has had a successful day finding her quota of suitable trees for use as poles and has also enjoyed seeing the wild flowers in the woods.

From a distance, and unobserved, the rough-looking man watches the farm.

In the POW holding camp, Schimmel stops Major Cornwall as he walks across the yard, and asks about the prisoner who was brought in the day before, explaining that he is an old comrade. The officer tells him that Weiser is in the sanatorium but doing well and will be transferred to the main block the day after tomorrow. Schimmel thanks the major but is very disturbed by the information.

Next morning

As Sam ferries Foyle to the farm, she asks if he thinks she should be doing more for the war effort than just driving him around, and she says she also spends a lot of time just hanging around while he's working. She explains that the girls on the farm work very hard and look as though they could do with some help. Foyle tells her to go ahead. He says they will be at the farm all day, but if he needs her, he'll let her know.

Milner and several police constables are already in the farm yard when the two arrive. Sam parks the Wolseley then takes a bundle from the boot, explaining to her boss that she has borrowed some rough clothes from the girls at the hostel, just in case.

In the woods, Barbara is surveying trees near the farm when she hears a noise. Looking up, she sees the rough-looking man making his way to the farm in a secretive manner.

In the farmhouse, Foyle looks through Hugh Jackson's bureau and finds a revolver in the drawer. At the same time, Milner walks in, announcing that he has found a Luger pistol hidden amongst logs at the front of the house. Foyle remarks, "Three shots, three guns." He sniffs the revolver and concludes that it has been recently fired. He says they know who the Luger belongs to and that he thinks he should return it.

They leave the house. From the front door they can see Sam working in the potato field with the other girls. Foyle explains that she wants to do her bit for the war effort, and he asks Milner to get one of the constables to drive him over to the POW camp.

In the field, while bending to work the ground, Rose suddenly turns her head to one side, and gags. Sam asks her if she is okay. The woman replies that she is, but she doesn't sound it.

Sam straightens up to ease her back, and spots the Wolseley heading across the ford. Realising her boss is going somewhere without her, she shouts after it, but to no avail. Joan leers and asks if her lover boy has run off without her, and Sam snaps at her to shut up. Joan invites her to make her shut up, but before Sam can respond, Rose, who is now trying to start the tractor, tells Joan to put a sock in it.

The tractor won't start and Rose curses it. Sam tells her that she's flooding it, and changes the position of something on the outer housing of the engine which enables the tractor to start purring.
Joan remarks sarcastically, "I suppose daddy has a fleet of these on his estate."
Sam silences her with "No… my cousin does."
Rose grins.

Foyle is alone in Cornwall's office, waiting for the major. Killing time, he looks around and notices with interest, in a partly open drawer, a box of imported cigars, and on top of the desk, a wooden cigar box containing more of the same.

Cornwall arrives and apologises for keeping the DCS waiting. Foyle declines an invitation to sit down and says he is simply there to speak to Raimund Weiser. Cornwall replies that that will not be possible. Foyle presses by saying that requests to speak to Weiser have already been made as he might be able to help with a murder enquiry but that all have been rejected.

Cornwall attempts to cut the DCS short. "Look! It's a general rule of the Prisoner of War Interrogation Service that…"
But Foyle is not going to accept another refusal. He continues talking over the major. "So I find myself having to look into the extent with which you are involved with, er… black market cigars?"

Cornwall's complacent expression disappears in an instant. He realises that his desk drawer is open and the imports in plain view. He concedes defeat and consents to an interview, with the condition that he be present. He says that he will not have Foyle ruining the hard work that's already been done and that the debriefing of enemy flyers is a delicate science.
Foyle asks if the major has got anything useful from the first two airmen. Cornwall replies by saying that he is sure British pilots don't talk when they're caught, so he's not surprised when the Germans don't. He explains that it takes time and that intimidation is counterproductive, so they use kindness. "To very good effect, I might add. You wouldn't believe the results we get."

Foyle begins to ask about Sabartovski, describing him as "the unarmed one not in uniform…" but Cornwall steps in again, his patience gone.
"He had a flying suit! And many of them aren't armed. If you want to speak with Heir Weiser, I'll arrange it. But don't try to take over my job, Detective Chief Superintendent!"

Cornwall takes Foyle to the sanatorium and they find Weiser is in his bed. In German, the major explains to the airman who Foyle is and then tells the DCS that he will translate for him, as the man speaks no English. Foyle seems to consider it before saying, "Right. Well… I'm wondering if he remembers the night he was shot down."
Cornwall translates into German. Foyle continues, "He came down into the trees."
Cornwall translates for the German again and the airman replies. Foyle appears to be listening to him. Cornwall tells Foyle that he said he was unconscious because he banged his head.

Foyle produces the Luger and shows it to Weiser. The man sits up a little more in his bed and, in German, indicates that he recognises it. Before Cornwall can translate, Foyle asks, "Do you know how you lost it?"
The airman immediately replies and Cornwall relays his words. "He says a woman came and took it when he was hanging from the tree, but he was barely conscious. She had a red jacket on. Blond hair. Was very attractive."

Sam is taking a break in a pleasant spot on the farmland when Joan approaches. The Land Army girl hesitates, but Sam says she's sure there's room for two. Joan says she can't understand why Sam is so nice when she has been so unpleasant to her. Joan sits down next to her, explaining that the place is called Poppy Bank, although poppies don't grow there. She asks if Sam grew up in the country and Sam replies that she did. Joan comments that she could tell by the way she set to work in the field. She says that she grew up in East London and had never seen the country until she came to the farm.

Suddenly, Joan leans forward and picks up an empty whisky bottle she had noticed lying in the grass. She tells Sam that Hugh Jackson loved Poppy Bank and when they got their quota, they had to work hard to recover the overgrown neighbouring area for ploughing because he wouldn't have the meadow touched. Rose comes to drag them back to work and thanks Sam for helping get so much done in one day. Joan thanks her, too.

Foyle interviews the postmistress again. She tells him that Jackson's wife ran off with a farmhand called Andrew Neame eleven years go. They went to King's North Farm in Faversham, Kent. No post ever came from there, not even a birthday card for her son.

Foyle asks if he may make a call.

A while later, Foyle and Milner follow Barbara Hicks as she walks through the woods, telling them about the man she saw watching the farm. Foyle takes Barbara by surprise by asking how a pistol would help her in her work. She looks back at him but says nothing. The DCS explains that the airman described the woman who took his gun.

Something appears to catch Milner's attention and he walks away from the two. Barbara stops walking and turns to Foyle. She asks if he is suggesting that she took the German's gun and shot Jackson. He says he's only suggesting that she took the gun. She walks on and Foyle follows.

Concern about what the policeman appears to her to be thinking, is getting Barbara worked up. She pours out an explanation that even if she took the gun, she couldn't have shot Jackson because she didn't come across the German until after the farmer was dead.
When Foyle comments, "So you said," Barbara retorts, "There you go again. You don't believe me, you'd rather believe him."
"No, not at all. I'm simply doing my job."
Barbara stops walking again and turns to Foyle, who stops beside her. "Why are you so sure it was me he described?"
"Well, red jacket, blond hair, very attractive…"
Barbara's face shows wonder that Foyle should think of her when given that description, and more so when he adds,"…sad eyes."
The two stand looking at each other in silence.

The moment is broken by Milner calling Foyle over to look at a freshly turned mound of earth that appears to be a grave. As they look at it, the squawking of a startled bird attracts their attention elsewhere. They go in that direction and find a make-shift tent. Foyle and Barbara approach it and are seen by the man Barbara reported. He turns and runs, but Milner grabs him and the two fall to the ground. A tussle ensues, ending only when Barbara picks up a heavy stick and threatens the stranger with it. Foyle looks down at him and asks, "Mr Neame?"

Back at the farm, Foyle and Milner question Neame. When he says he heard Jackson had killed himself, Foyle tells him it was murder. Neame asks where Genevieve is. Foyle queries that Mrs Jackson is not with Neame, and the man says he has not seen her since May 1930.

Foyle and Milner return to the woods, and watch while constables dig to find out what is under the fresh mound of earth. Foyle tells Milner that he has learnt from the people now in the farm in Faversham that Neame went there alone eleven years ago, but hasn't been seen for a couple of years.

A constable shouts to indicate a find and he and his colleague pull something out of the ground. It is half a pig.

Schimmel and Sabartovski attempt an escape from the POW holding camp but are discovered before they get through the gate. Weiser watches from his hospital window and, leering at them, wags a forefinger as if to say, "No, no, no."

Sam, Rose and Joan sigh with relief at having completed the job they were doing in the potato field. Sam cannot resist imitating one of the Land Army posters and, throwing her arms in the air, she cries "Dig for victory!"

As they survey their handiwork, Rose tells Sam that, by hand, she and Joan turned all twenty acres into workable land throughout the winter of 1939, the coldest winter in living memory, during which birds froze to death as they flew through the air. She says the acreage will yield thirty tons of potatoes this year.

Two constables are seen approaching. Joan and Rose look at each other nervously.

In the Hastings police station, Foyle interviews Joan. He asks if the shot Curling heard at 5am was the pig being killed. When she doesn't reply, he tells her what he knows… Half of the carcass was taken to be sold and the rest hung in the milking parlour to be dealt with later, but the police turned up, so they had to bury it.

Joan admits nothing, prompting Foyle to say that people everywhere were tightening their belts and the law was taking a very dim view of the black market. Joan responds angrily, saying that they haven't been paid for two months because of the tractor. Jackson killed the pig to make the last payment even though she warned against it, and he said she and Tom had to help. She says that Rose saw the farmer shoot the pig, was sick and then went out and ploughed. She can't see what the crime is.
Foyle explains that profiteering is against the law and although Joan may not have taken part, she knew about it and should have reported it.

Joan accuses Foyle of picking on her because she has a record. She says she ran away from London to start again but that he won't let her.

Foyle then interviews Rose, who tells him that the government made a list of all the farms, workers, buildings and livestock - a second Doomsday Book. Jackson hadn't declared all his livestock and there were more sheep because over a hundred thousand were evacuated off Romney Marsh and he took some as they were herded by. Joan was against it, but Jackson said all the farmers did it.

Rose says that Foyle enjoyed his food at the hostel but it was their beef, pork, eggs and lamb. "I suppose you'll have to arrest yourself now for receiving stolen goods."

She laughs nervously. Foyle smiles. He sits down on the edge of the desk and enquires quietly if she is feeling any better. She is surprised. He says that Sam and Joan told him she'd not been well recently. Rose says she's fine. After a pause, Foyle asks if it has anything to do with Hugh Jackson. Rose doesn't speak. Foyle asks if stealing other people's underwear to wear for him meant she was very much in love with him or that she was afraid he wasn't with her. Rose begins to cry and says that she thought it would make him love her more. He wasn't an easy man to love and his wife leaving hit him hard. "But there was a good man underneath. A man who could feel love… I think."
"But not enough to want you to keep the child you're carrying."
"No." Rose breaks down in tears.

Foyle interviews Andrew Neame next. Neame tells him that he and Genevieve were in love. He says she'd arranged to go to him but had never come, and that he had assumed she couldn't leave her son. He had returned after so long because he had learnt of Jackson's suicide. Taking a page of the Tenterden Times from his pocket, he shows Foyle the newspaper article.

Afterwards, in discussion with Milner, Foyle says that Neame would not have gone over to Tenterden to pick up a paper and then go back to the farm and wait to get caught. He thinks the man is telling the truth. He also thinks that Mrs Jackson never left the farm. Sam surprises her boss by saying that she thinks she knows where Genevieve might be.

Next morning

Foyle, Milner and Sam watch as the place where Sam and Joan had sat on Poppy Bank is dug up. Sam explains what made her think to look there… Poppies grow where untouched ground has been disturbed after many years. They grew where land had been shelled during the last war. Jackson wouldn't hear of the meadow being ploughed up and this is where he used to sit.

As he waits, Foyle looks around him and catches sight of Barbara standing amongst the trees a short distance away. He walks over to her and discovers that she is crying. She pulls herself together a little as he draws near. Foyle says nothing, but his stance and expression invite Barbara to speak to him.

Fighting back her tears, she says, "The dog, the woman and the walnut tree, the more you beat them the better they be. Isn't that what they say?"
After a short silence, Foyle asks gently, "What is it?"
Barbara says that working in the woods is wonderful because you're so busy that you can't think. "But then sometimes it just sneaks up on you."
Foyle draws closer and asks, "What happened to you?"
Barbara replies, "There was a man. There was a marriage. Not a nice one. But there was a son, a beautiful son. And my son, my beautiful son, I lost at Dunkirk."

Her grief rekindles and her tears flow. Foyle steps towards her and takes her in his arms to comfort her. She puts her head on his shoulder and weeps uncontrollably. Then Sam comes walking nearby, calling out for her boss. Barbara lifts her head from Foyle's shoulder, her tears subsiding, and Foyle goes to Sam.

Sam was calling her boss to tell him that the constables had found something. Now she stands with him and Milner as they watch the diggers unearth a skeleton.

Milner calls at the POW holding camp to take Tom Jackson away.

In Foyle's office in Hastings, the DCS tells Tom that they found the pig. He then asks Tom where his father was when he left the farm. Tom replies that he was off drinking, and adds that he did not shoot him. Foyle enquires what happened to his mother. Tom tells him that she went off with a farmhand when he was young, and that he had not heard from her after that. He says he hasn't tried to get in touch because he supposes that she wouldn't want him to.

Foyle informs Tom gently that his mother is dead, and that she didn't run off with anybody and hadn't actually left the farm. Tom strongly insists that she did, saying he remembers her saying goodbye. He is upset to recall it, saying that he just thought she was going shopping or something but she never came back.

Foyle explains to Tom as gently as he can that he thinks his mother intended to leave but that his father didn't want her to, and that it was he who killed her. Tom is dazed. He says that his father must really have loved his mother.

Foyle and Sam go to the interview room where Rose and Joan are waiting. Joan assumes that the DCS has come to charge them, but he announces brightly that they are free to go. The happy women thank him and smile warmly at Sam. Joan asks how they are to get back, and Foyle, putting on his overcoat, replies, "Police escort. Come on!" The woman laugh and follow him out.

The Wolseley pulls up outside the Women's Land Army hostel. Foyle tells the others to go in and that he'll be there presently.

When Joan enters the main hall she finds the room full of women who shout "Surprise!" It is her birthday and a party has been arranged for her. Tom is there, too.

In the garden outside, Foyle sits alone on a bench. He, too, gets a surprise, when Barbara walks up to him and hands him one of two glasses of ginger beer she's brought from the hall. He compliments her green dress and she tells him that it is silk, made from the German's parachute, and dyed. She has made eight in all, including one for Joan. Foyle is a little puzzled and remarks that the parachute must not have been badly damaged. Barbara says it looked like a new one.

She asks him if he is going into the party and he says he will in a moment. She sits down beside him. He is delighted when she tells him that Tom proposed and Joan accepted. "That's good!"
She asks, "Is it?"
He says it is, but Barbara throws back, "But for how long?"
"Well, things the way they are, good for the time being is perhaps enough?"

Barbara looks at him for a long moment and, echoing his earlier question to her in the woods, asks, "What happened to you, then?"
"What happened to me?" Foyle deliberates before answering, and then responds, "There was a woman. A marriage. A good marriage. And a beautiful son. My beautiful son is alive, thank God, but… I lost my wife. So I have a vastly higher opinion of women than you do of men." He smiles at Barbara briefly and then turns his eyes to the ground in front of him.
Barbara says that everything is so very difficult. Foyle nods in agreement, saying softly, "Yeah."

After a moment's silence, Barbara changes the mood by raising her glass and offering a toast "To Tom and Joan!" Foyle looks up and smiles, and they drink to the happy couple.

In the Hastings station, Milner tips Weiser's kit out onto Foyle's desk. The DCS examines a parachute strap and observes that the flax is not stretched as it would be if used, then he finds salt deposits on the uniform.

Weiser has just transferred to the main body of the POW camp and is walking across the yard towards the building as the Wolseley pulls up at the gate. Foyle calls out to Cornwall, who is in the yard, that he must not let the man enter the building. Cornwall angrily protests at the intrusion, but Foyle firmly reiterates his warning, saying that Weiser is not who he says he is, that he is there to kill Sabartovski.

Cornwall demands an explanation and Foyle tells him urgently that the plane Sabartovski arrived in carries a crew of three. The fourth man, Sabartovski, is not an airman, he's a technician with information so valuable that the Germans want him dead to prevent him telling it. There has already been one attempt on his life and there is about to be another.

While Cornwall keeps Foyle standing at the locked gate, Weiser is searching for Sabartovski.

Foyle closes his argument with a threat. "If we lose him, we lose the information. We've already tried to help you with this and you resisted. You resist again, you've got a lot of explaining to do!"

Cornwall orders the gate to be opened.

Inside the building, Weiser corners his prey in the washroom. By the time Cornwall, Foyle and Milner find them, he is throttling Sabartovski with a length of chain. A fight takes place before Weiser is finally brought down.

Weiser sits handcuffed in a chair in the interrogation room while Foyle and Cornwall stand by in silence. Milner enters and reports to his boss that Sabartovski died without regaining consciousness. Cornwall asks why he was killed. Foyle explains that as long as the Dornier flew, the technician was safe, but when it was hit, he had to die because he knew too much about the equipment. One of the airman died as a result of using a parachute that had been sabotaged, and when he was told about it, he became distressed because he realised it had been intended for him.

Cornwall asks Foyle why Sabartovski would talk to him about it. Foyle replies that he didn't, but that, in his hearing, the technician talked to Schimmel when they were first caught. Cornwall wants to know why Foyle didn't tell him he could speak German. Foyle replies, "Well, frankly, Major, there became less and less point in telling you anything, and it's only whatever I managed to pick up in Germany during the last war. It's not that good."

When he goes on to say that Weiser speaks English, Cornwall insists that the man doesn't. Foyle says he knows does, because in the sanatorium he had understood a question without it being translated, and when captured he had understood every word spoken; also, after hearing the police talking about the woman who was with them being a possible murder suspect, he had described her later as the person who took his gun.

Cornwall asks what information Sabartovski had that was so important. Foyle says that, from what he said to Schimmel, he was an expert in radar, known in Germany as Funkmess. It looked as though there was a new system on the Dornier. The crash survivors had made an effort to get back to the plane to make sure it was destroyed. Weiser was sent for the same reason and to silence Sabartovski. He deliberately got himself caught in order to be brought to the POW camp.

Cornwall is astounded when Weiser asks in perfect English: "If I faked the parachute drop, how did I get here?"
Foyle offers his explanation, saying that it was by boat: there were salt water stains on his uniform and no marks from a parachute and harness that had never been used before. Weiser smiles and says that it was a beach landing from a U-boat.

When Foyle says that they know why he killed Sabartovski but not why he killed the farmer, Weiser asks how he knows he killed the farmer. Foyle explains… Weiser was seen arriving at the farm on a bicycle. He was trying to find the plane, but there was activity in the area that night, so he gave up, dumped the bike in the river and found somewhere to fake the parachute drop. Jackson saw him and went home to report it by phone. The German followed him into the house, shot him with the pistol and replaced the telephone receiver. He used Jackson's shotgun to fake the suicide, then hid the gun in the wood pile by the door as he left.

Foyle asks Weiser if Jackson was killed because he had seen him. Weiser says no, it was because he was English. Cornwall tells him that he will hang.

As Foyle prepares to leave the POW camp, Cornwall apologises to him. He says that he does have had good results from the method he uses, and that he had spent a year in university in Heidelberg before the war and found the Germans to be a civilised and gracious race.

Foyle asks if he ever played football against them. Cornwall says cricket is his game but there's a dearth of cricket pitches in Heidelberg. Foyle says he was in a police football team that played in Germany in 1936. They had been met by a friendly German team who had wined and dined them well the night before the match. The next morning, the police team staggered onto the pitch, hung over from the night before, but the German team that turned out consisted of eleven entirely different men who had been in bed before ten and not touched a drop. "We got a complete stuffing. They use different rules. But if we don't want to lose this war, I think first of all we've got to be sure about what game they're playing. And you're right – it's not cricket."

As Foyle leaves the farm for the last time, he asks Tom if he knows where Barbara is, as she has not been seen at the hostel. Tom remembers that she gave him a letter for the DCS yesterday. He hands it to him, saying that she has moved on to a new area, but it's classified information, so she couldn't say where.

As Sam drives her boss away from the farm, he opens and reads the brief letter.
"I've been moved on. I can't say where, but… I'm sorry. I didn't think my view of men could change, but you've changed it. Barbara."
Foyle sighs.

The car drives on towards Hastings.

* * *
"Progress might have been all right once, but it has gone on too long." ~ Ogden Nash
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