Alex Peters flew to Pamplona from Madrid. She was in her mid-thirties and her ginger hair flowed easily down to the collar of her light-blue shirt. Her blue eyes surveyed her fellow passengers on the turbo-prop plane as it rode the thermals just after takeoff from Barejas airport in Madrid.
As the plane flew over northern Spain towards Navarre, she thought about why she was on this journey. Her friends had recently expressed their sadness that no one was hunting the trophy hunters, who killed animals to boost their egos. Peters was a lifelong lover of animals and the sadness of her friends hit home, hard. She had vowed to pursue those who hunt the defenceless from long distance, a cowardly distance. She had been provided with the name of an organisation who could help her in this quest.
They had provided her with the itinerary of some trophy hunters in Spain and Portugal and she’d been delighted with their help. In her normal job, working undercover behind enemy lines, she had killed many animal abusers – people who hit their donkeys with sticks and people who’d run their horses into the ground. These people, the abusers, met their end. The animals were given some relief, some respite from their ordeals.
Alex took out her diary and started to write. She liked to jot down her thoughts about the places she visited, especially about their history. It would be fun in a few years’ time to reread these diaries and see what her experiences had been.
Peters had no hold luggage and was planning to buy some clothes in Pamplona, almost certainly from El Corte Ingles, the department store found in every Spanish city she’d ever been to. She wouldn’t need a bag as her carry-on luggage comprised a neatly folded black travel bag inside a rucksack. There was no point in buying a suitcase she wouldn’t need on the flight back from Lisbon to London.
As for toiletries, she was used to not brushing her teeth for weeks in her ‘day job’ back in the real world. She was working now, but not for her usual employers; this was more a favour, a career break in terms of target, but not in terms of methodology. The showers in the hotels would be a luxury compared to rivers and lakes. She looked at her passport as she walked down the steps of the plane. This was the last time she would be using her own passport until Lisbon. After clearing customs here in Pamplona, she would become Pat Walker, a name she would use until Santiago de Compostela.