What a crap week.
There was no way Alfie was going to get out of this one. Even if the Knight had forced him to do it, he still hadn't told anyone or done anything to stop the killings. He would be convicted as an accessory to murder and for attempted murder. My boyfriend was a criminal. My ex-boyfriend.
Mendrick sent me home from his place in a hospital bed. He told me that the case was closed and that there was no point in me hanging around so I should go and get some rest. Funny that he didn't say the same thing to Charlie, who was standing very closely beside his bed, her hand clasped in his. I want to be happy for them. They're perfect for each other in their own strange way, and Charlie is certainly having a good effect on the boss, but there's something inside me, something twisting my stomach in knots and making me unable to look at Charlie and Mendrick. Jealousy.
My flat was dark when I got home. What else did I expect? There was no-one else living here now. I looked around at the kitchen and sitting area, both looking as though nothing had changed. Alfie's things were still sitting around the room, staring at me, reminding me that he had once lived here.
I threw my bag at the kitchen counter and sat on the sofa. What did I do now? I had been part of a couple for so long, always having someone else there for me, I didn't know how to be single. I pulled my knees up against my chest, hugging them close to me, wanting to just disappear down the back of the sofa. No one would notice.
Sitting in the armchair next to me was Alfie's jumper. I reached over and snatched it, holding it in front of me and staring at it. I didn't know what I felt about Alfie; whether I hated him, or if I still loved him.
I put the jumper to my face, taking a deep breath, my nostrils filling with Alfie's familiar scent. Once more, tears pricked at the corners of my eyes, but this time I didn't have the strength to fight them and allowed them to fall down my cheeks. I pulled the jumper on over my head, letting the sleeves fall over my hands. I didn't care that it was too big, or that I looked like an idiot, I just wished today hadn't happened; that Alfie hadn't been caught so we could still be a normal couple.
Sobbing violently, I lay down on the sofa, hugging myself as tightly as I could, trying to imagine that it was Alfie holding me instead of sitting alone.
The phone rang and I snapped back into the real world. Quickly trying to stop myself from crying I scrambled across the sofa to grab the phone from the low table that stood on the other side of the sofa.
'Hello?' I said, still sniffling. I reached for the box of tissues that always stood next to the phone and hastily wiped my face, as though the person on the other end of the phone could see the marks the tears had made on my face.
'Al? Are you OK?'
'Hi Jamie,' I said, trying to sound cheerful. 'Why are you calling? Is Vicky OK?'
'Yes she's fine,' Jamie reassured me. 'I was actually wondering if I could speak to Alfie if he's in. I need to ask him a couple of questions.' At the mention of his name I could feel my confidence wavering and my eyes filling up again. 'Alannah?'
'I'm sorry but he's not in at the moment,' I said, not wanting to tell my friend the whole truth at this moment. Unfortunately, my voice cracked and I let a sob out.
'Alannah? What's wrong? You're going to tell me the truth or I'll send Vicky around to get it out of you. You know you shouldn't mess with a woman who is five months pregnant.'
I couldn't help but laugh through my tears. Jamie always made me smile, even over the phone.
'It's not a very nice story and I wouldn't want you to think badly of Alfie,' I said, trying to get out of talking about it.
'Alannah, I'm worried about you. Tell me what Alfie has done now and I promise I will go and beat him up for you.'
'It's a bit late for that,' I said, sniffing again. 'Alfie's been arrested. He's in prison awaiting a trial as an accessory to murder. He also tried to blow up my entire building today. He was going to kill me.' I burst into tears again, my throat blocking, making me unable to speak properly.
'OK then, we're coming over. You shouldn't have to be alone, not now.'
'Please- don't-' I choked out. 'It's- not- worth- it.'
'Yes you are Alannah. We'll be with you in a few minutes, I promise. Don't go anywhere.'
I put the phone down and sat staring at it for a few moments before resuming my position, curled up in a ball on the sofa. I loved my friends, but sometimes I wished they weren't quite so supportive. All I wanted was to be alone so I could wallow in self-pity.
But maybe having them here would help mend my broken and bruised heart. I couldn't deny that I had loved Alfie, that I still continued to love him, but maybe one day that love would go away and I'd be able to find someone new. And when that happened I would be able to hate Alfie as much as I had in that interrogation room.
Alfie was gone. It was time for me to move on.