The last time I saw Katie McCormack was the morning after the night before; my head was a haze of red wine, sleep deprivation, and the best night of my life. To say I was a little confused by the reception I got when my eyes finally focused on the snarling figure standing over me, would be a fucking understatement. Katie was full of fight, and I was her next opponent. I was not impressed; I was more a lover than a fighter.
‘You fucking fucker, how could you,’ she had yelled on repeat, in a voice that I could only say resembled a deranged animal, until the couple in the flat beneath started yelling back ‘keep the fucking noise down’ and ‘put something in her fucking big gob’.
‘Look it just happened,’ I offered, continuing with ‘it’s no big deal.’ What the hell was I thinking? Of course it was a big deal. I had been in love with this woman since the moment she barged past me on the subway, before we were cheek to cheek in the crowded carriage on our way to Buckhurst Hill.
‘NO BIG DEAL. I’LL GIVE YOU NO BIG DEAL.’
‘I didn’t mean it like that babes.’ I stepped towards Katie, at the same time she aimed a fist at my face, and I’m not embarrassed to say, that it made me want her more.
Katie, on the other hand, had other ideas, and before I could get another word out, she had launched herself at me, fists and feet flying in every direction.
‘I will NEVER forgive you!’ The venom in her words burnt through the layers of my delicate skin.
I looked around at my tiny apartment; the floor littered with empty wine and beer bottles, discarded condoms, some still in their wrappers, a half-eaten pizza and the unwanted double duvet. Then I saw red.
Two paracetamols, four coffees and a fried egg and tomato sandwich later, I was sat in a grey lifeless room opposite two stony faced police officers, dying to use the bathroom.
‘Let’s start at the beginning, shall we? the one on the left said, ‘and this time, let’s not leave anything out.’
‘What you mean you want to hear all about the rude stuff?’ I said, sounding genuinely appalled. It wasn’t like I was a prude or anything; last night had been fucking amazing and I wasn’t up for sharing the most intimate details with a bunch of strangers. There might be only two people in the room with me, but I was certain that behind the glass mirror there were more than two pairs of eyes watching me closely. I hated the idea of being watched.
‘You were the last known person to have contact with Katie, so we want everything you can tell us about last night, this morning, Katie, no matter how small or insignificant.’ The one on the right, a red-head with steely green eyes, piped up. I guessed she was the one in charge. She had that air of authority. I forced myself to clear my mind and clenched my thighs together.
‘Okay I get it. Do you mind if we take a toilet break? I don’t think I can hold it in any longer? It’s the effects of the beer.’ I shrug and look at the detective on the left, hoping he will understand better than Red.
‘I could do with a coffee, how about you?’ Leftie said. I smiled, not sure if he was talking to me or Red, and waited. I had never been in a police station before, so I wasn’t fully up on the protocol; I made a mental note to do some research when I got home. I always liked to be prepared.
‘Fine. We’ll take a ten minute recess. But,’ Red looked me straight in the eyes, ‘when we return, you will start talking!’ Then she was gone, in one swift move, leaving in her wake a subtle, but, distinctive smell of orchids. Katie loved orchids with their delicate pink flower; I could take or leave orchids.
‘I’ll find a PC to show you where the toilet facilities are. Do you want something to drink?’ Leftie asked, with a slight softness in his voice.
‘Just a black coffee for me, ta. I don’t suppose I could push for some biscuits or a chocolate bar? I’ve only had a sandwich all day.’ That wasn’t completely true, but I wasn’t going to admit that I had forced myself to eat the cold pizza that had been strewn all over the floor.
‘Let me see what I can do.’ Leftie nodded, and ushered a young female PC in my direction; her face a little flustered which still surprises me. I’m not what you could call a pretty face, but, according to an old girlfriend, I have this sort of vibe going on that seems to attract the chicks.
TO READ THE REST OF THE CHAPTER CLICK HERE