As they hurried up the spiral staircase, MacFarlane could hear Doubleday humming 'Roll Out The Barrel' and laughed: "hark at you, Dom, that song's a bit of a motherhood statement from you, I can always tell that you're hyped up, glad to be free of the old al desko for a a bit of physical action, and even chasing a will-o-the-wisp such as the flotsam or jetsam from one of the ferries going into or coming out of Castlebay is enough to get your juices pumping!" and Dominic replied: "you're probably right enough there, Par, but if I'm right and there is a message in that bottle, I'm claiming the mural,"and pushing through the front door, MacFarlane couldn't resist calling back over his shoulder: "or Muriel, as that auld biddy on Corrie used to call her picture wall," and the two hustlers scrambled down towards the eastern shore of the tiny island, Dominic checking the sight-line he had picked to show him where the floating bottle had been and. . . . .there it was, bobbing just a few yards away from the breakers, though on this side they were hardly more than ripples and even the shore on the other side was hardly battered, so sheltered were they by the spine of the curving archipelago, with Barra and Vatersay providing a useful wind-break, and as MacFarlane watched his Partner in Crime use a child's fishing net, on a long bamboo cane, to catch the bottle and bring it carefully ashore, he couldn't help but congratulate himself for his own foresight, in recognising the perfection of this lonely place both as a base for their microfinance scams and a safe have which, with it's own generator and the easy access provided by satellite communications and the internet, meant they could function here for as long as they wanted, safely under the radar - literally! and that tip-off last year from his friend in Oxford about the likelihood of another pandemic, but on the same sort of scale as the 1918 flu one, within 12 months, had been just the nudge they had needed, and here they were, in Lockdown, with enough stores to keep them going for more than a year and not a cloud in the sky, and then he noticed that Dom was frowning, holding a piece of paper he had taken from the bottle: "what is it, Dom? a shopping list, or the mobile number of a 12-year-old who lives on Mingulay with her aged grandparents and pet sheep and dreams of being rescued from a life worse than death by a bonnie prince from over the water, or an infamous Scottish baronet or, if he's too busy, his dashing Man of Business?" but Doubleday shook his head, and said: "it's addressed to us—by name—'Sir Parlane MacFarlane and Dominic Doubleday, Muldoanich'—and the message is—'I'm watching you, boys, right now'!" and it was the reflex of self-preservation that made MacFarlane's head swivel as he scanned the horizon, mentally checking everything he saw, from a rock barely cresting the surface of the water, to a distant island, but Doubleday was looking up at the sky and wondering just how high would a drone have to be to be both invisible and inaudible?