I clung onto Scarecrow's jacket until he succombed and hugged me back. I don't know why I chose to run to him as opposed to Foster...maybe it was because he was Bethany's brother. I'd seen how he had talked to her: he'd pretended to be frosty with her but I knew from having two younger siblings that deep down that voice was laced with affection. My shoulders heaved as I whimpered to myself, 'How could he? how could...'
'Woah woah woah,' Scarecrow forcibly peeled my arms from off his jacket and held me at arm's length,whilst Foster grabbed a chair. I fell meekly into it, and looked up at them, the tears streaming down my crumpled face. 'Dani-what is this?' They looked a little bit scared, as if they were expecting me to have held up in times of hardship. I suppose I was crying more out of shock, and anger, but desparation made up for the majority of my weeping.
'It's Dad- I mean. Mr Richards,' I didn't want to associate him with me. 'He- Jagan found it... his prints...Mr Heg was shaking, and the prints from his apartment..,' I took a deep breath and tried to make sense of my hysteria. 'Jagan found my father's prints in Mr Heg's place. He's doing something that isn't right.' I felt tears welling up again. 'Why would he?'
Foster and Scarecrow had pulled up chairs by this point. I was glad that they were by my side as opposed to crouched down like a school teacher with a naughty five-year old. 'Sh*t,' Foster muttered to himself. Scarecrow gave him a look and turned to me. I felt my bottom lip wobbling as I tried to compose myself.
'Look,' he said, 'We'll get back to the others and we can all talk this over..'
'No.' I sniffed. 'It goes deeper than this. Dad was...Well. My mother died when I was eleven. Dad was our lifeline. You know, Georgie, my little sister- she was seven. Seven. That's not the age to lose a parent...and we couldn't even know why. I mean, I do now...' I shuddered at the thought of my mother held at gunpoint. I can't think any further than that without wanting to throw up. 'But I was eleven. I was trying to be intelligent, become a teenager. I liked watching murder mysteries...of course that meant I liked to search around the house too. I...' I looked up miserably. I wanted to tell them but I could have sworn that Foster had...
'It's Ok,' Scarecrow said. 'We don't have to talk about everything now.'
'It's about Maria,' I looked at Foster, who looked like his heart had skipped a beat. 'I'm not sure you should know.'
'They didn't?' his face fell, and my lip wobbled again as I saw the realisation in his eyes. 'They...they couldn't have,'
'I don't know when it was.' I tried to console him but now he was merely staring into space with a distant expression. I looked down. 'I found a receipt for a necklace, a personalised locket. And it said that the name was "Mar-"' I broke off and reached out for Foster, but he shrugged me away. 'I'm sorry, I'm so sorry.' I turned back to Scarecrow. 'I was eleven. I thought my parents were happily married and then to find this in his study...I fobbed it off, said it must have been a gift from the team, her birthday was coming round. But now...well. I think he could be capable of anything.' I gritted my teeth. I couldn't believe I was his daughter. I was ashamed. 'Could we go back now?'