AFTER my alfresco adventures with the Bob Hope at COP26 which I managed to turn to my advantage, my position at St Andrew’s House is now somewhat enhanced. I’ve been getting asked to address drug recovery forums all over Scotland and feel a bit of a fraud. There are a lot of poor people out there who are struggling with addiction. Yet, all I’ve ever done is get off my tits one night after hammering a gazpacho of magic mushrooms and strawberry Creamola Foam at a Magdalene College bash.

But I’m now closer to the cockpit of the Scottish Government. This is where I need to be if I’m to discharge my duties as a Boris Johnson sleeper providing intelligence on the Scottish independence movement. Problem is though, there’s nothing much to report. It’s been a while since I’ve had any of my clandestine meetings with “H”, the ministerial double agent in the Scottish cabinet. And besides, I’ve come round to the idea that no-one at the top of the Scottish Government is in any actual hurry to be independent.

This much became clear with an internal email circulated only to Peter’s WhatsApp Group and selected advisers (of whom I’m now one). As is the way with Murrell’s epistles it doesn’t waste time on niceties. “During our upcoming conference all Zoom meetings will be monitored by a special VAR team. They are instructed to stop proceedings immediately if anyone is caught saying anything specific about indyref2. A virtual red card will appear on the miscreant’s screen and they must immediately leave the meeting and report to me at the end of business the same day. Furthermore, if anyone is quizzed about independence by the BBC’s political staff the designated line is: ‘A second referendum remains an important part of the wider independence framework’.”


STEWART McDonald is agitated. I fear he’s becoming increasingly paranoid about the Russians. He’s due up for the National Conference and asks that we meet on Friday night. The venue is to be Firhill Stadium in Glasgow where Partick Thistle are hosting Dunfermline Athletic in the Scottish Cup. “There’s a pie stall at the back of the Jackie Husband stand. Meet me there at half-time and I’ll tell you more,” he says.

He then proceeds to tell me about when Thistle played Budapest Honved in the old Uefa Cup in 1972. “The Hungarians heard that Thistle were known locally as ‘The Maryhill Magyars’ and thought they were all communist sympathisers. So, they sent dozens of agents into Maryhill to make connections. It’s believed that the legendary Cold War masterspy, Zoltan Varga, who joined Aberdeen around this time was a sleeper who provided valuable information to Moscow about the UK’s fishing industry.”

Frankly, I find it all rather hard to believe. I fear that Stewart, a decent lad, has been going all George Smiley after spending too much time hanging out with some of his new chums in MI5 and British Special Branch.


IT’S the pre-conference knees-up and music has been provided by the Runrig Tribute Band, Toerag. They’re supported on the night by Fat Cops, a vanity band comprising some bored media types.

As there’s free nibbles and drink all the usual suspects are there: Prof MacWhirter, Clegg of the Courier; crepuscular McKenna and big Alan Cochrane, the Queen’s unofficial ambassador in the north and the man who once told me that Brexit was too good for the French and we should have just invaded them.


LET’S not even go there. I reached the sanctuary of my hotel at around 6am after getting howling with the Toryglen Young Shamrocks For Independence who tell me they’ve uncovered a secret Whitehall plot to send in the British Army in the event of independence. The UK Government would justify it by saying that having nuclear submarines on the territory of a neo-Marxist independent state would present a clear and present danger to British security. I laugh out loud at this. They’ll never know how close to the truth that really is.


I MEET Stewart at the designated pie stall where we partake of Bovril and a Lawrie & McQuade 50th anniversary League Cup steak bake. Stewart keeps looking over his shoulder. “Rupert, we have a problem,” he says. “I think Moscow has recently activated sleeper agents who have been living under deep cover in Scotland for an entire generation. They’re the ones who are behind the rogue Celtic FC fan organisation, the Green Brigade. They’re already taking up key positions in the media and Scottish public life ready to strike if we become independent. They must be stopped.”