The Battle for Jericho.


Sisters Sarah and Ellie have opposing ideas about what to do with their recently deceased mother’s estate. Ellie is all for dumping the lot but Sarah wants to sort it – their family history is there.

Sarah comes across an old telephone message from her younger sister, Tess, on a rarely used answering machine that predicts her own death. Tess was a TV journalist at the seaside resort town of Jericho’s only TV station and she was investigating a number of mysterious local deaths when she, too, died suddenly – ostensibly as a result of a stroke, but Sarah now questions the diagnosis.

Ellie, is not interested in solving the mystery of Tess’s death until she too is confronted by new evidence. It appears that a mutant jellyfish had infiltrated the Jericho water network and was taking over people’s brains. Tess had correctly predicted that she would be a victim.

Sarah’s attempts to confirm the story are met with resistance especially from Simon Backhouse , the Mayor of Jericho at the time of the jellyfish outbreak.

Sarah’s investigations reveal other confronting legacies. She discovers that her husband had a brief affair with Tess before she died and Tess’s son, Jarrad, is a result of the affair. Sarah is angry that Ellie hadn’t confided the information and the revelation puts a strain on their relationship. It emerges that their mother, in her later years, had struck up a relationship with a mentally disturbed neighbour, Tom, who regularly gave her strange drawings he’d done. Then there is a forceful, evangelical pastor, Clive, who lays claim to the mother’s house on behalf of his church.

When Sarah looks more closely at Tom’s drawings she realises that he knew about the rampant jellyfish. And when Clive sermonises about Tess being taken by the devil for her sins it becomes clear that their mother must have been aware of elements of the story. Clive taunts the sisters with a link to a Dark Net video which shows Tess’s death on camera as she is presenting a news report about the monstrous jellyfish. The sisters are both deeply disturbed by the gruesome images but Ellie is also furious with Sarah for digging up the past. Why couldn’t Sarah have just dumped everything like Ellie suggested?

Sarah tracks down Simon Backhouse and confronts him with his lies and the evidence she has against him. The family is going to sue and the gross incompetence of his council and all the authorities is going to be revealed. But Backhouse turns the tables. They have photos that have been manipulated to incriminate her. Matthew is dead as a result of her bullying, he claims. Sarah is threatened and escapes but as she is rescued by sister Ellie there is news of another mysterious death on Jericho Beach involving an exploding head. The sisters have got work to do!