Rupert sat in his flat in the dump the government called a "potentially lively estate". They also praised the "beautiful parks full of wildlife". Rupert chose to disagree with these carefully worded quotes from the government leaflet he got through the door each month. If he had to write it, he would call the estate "potentially dangerous with possibilities of terrorist action" and they say beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Well, if you called brown, muddy and burned beautiful they it may be accurate. The one true statement was that the parks were full of wild life. The people who chose to burn down the trees were certainly wild (drug induced most probably) and they were most definately alive (until they threw themselves off the roof of his block of flats. The council should really take down the ladder...
As previously mentioned, Rupert wanted some food and was displeased with the array of fine dining material in his fridge. On display on the top shelf was some tomato purée with mould growing out of the top. Next to that was a half drunk glass of orange juice with a few dead flies in it. Then some cheese that smelt worse than Rupert's feet. In the compartment on the door, lived some milk that he had had for three years (involving a bet with some of Ruperts's shall we say less classy friends). The only edible item in there were some peanuts, which he was allergic to and therefore couldn't eat. You
So, he decided on chips instead.
It was raining by the time he had just seen a man violently whacked with a sledge hammer in the fish and chips shop and so he was then scared to ask if he could have a roll with his. The shop owner was known for having rapid mood changes. He paid for his chips and wandered outside into the drizzle on the way back to his flat. He didn't mind soggy chips; he ate them so much that they were beginning to become a favourite of his.
Once he had polished off his chips and was safely in his house, he began to think about Lance. He recalled the weird conversation he had had with him, minutes before his arrest. He remembered Lance's oddly distracted mood, but that was understandable as he has just killed 114 people. Almost including himself. Would Lance really do that to him? Would he attempt to kill his own friend, someone who had stuck by him through thick and thin (in Lance's case, mostly thick. He was loaded.). Would he really betray him?
"We'll find out after the break!" blared the TV that he had automatically turned on. It was an ancient repeat of Deal or No Deak for one of them 'You got lucky!' shows or something.
Rupert was still thinking about the way Lance had treated him when he went round there to look for Lance. It was as if he didn't even know him. A sudden thought sprung into Rupert's mind. Lance was such a control freak; he had a voice and video recorder in his house in case he was ever burgled. Rupert decided on impulse that he should go over there and check it out. There might be some kind of clue to why and how Lance managed to kill all those people.
Two miles and a soggy coat later, Rupert arrived at Lance's house in the dull and drizzly air that was still hanging around like an unwanted guest. He wasn't surprised to find the door was unlocked and a police tape over the door. He ducked the tape in an altogether swift moment and whacked his head on the door.
"Damn that's another 53 brain cells. I really can't afford to lose much more than that per week, let alone per day!" he muttered to himself irritably. The doctor had warned him that his clumsiness wasn't good for his health or IQ.
He pushed the door open and with a small creak it opened. He stepped nervously into the house, wondering what on earth he was nervous about. He slowly crept down the hallway and into Lance's study. He had never been in the study before and it was exactly what he had expected.
A neat desk with a type writer sat as the main occupier in the middle of it, next to a notepad with a few bulletpoints about his next dental appointment. Attached to the wooden desk, was a few drawers in a nice cabinet. He opened the first one. It contained files from case studies he had recently investigated, all neatly typed up on his type writer. The second one contained all of his bank details, premium bond numbers and insurance documents. None of these really interested Rupert as they were not what he had came for. He knew that the camera was installed in the hallway, with playback from the last month available from a screen in a locked cupboard somewhere in his house. Lance, however, didn't tell Rupert where the key was because he thought that he might be a criminal living on the Breckland Estate and all. Neither did Lance tell Rupert where the hidden cupboard was. He would have to look around.
Firstly, he consulted the manual. He liked to be sure that the manual backed up his reasoning for doing something, to avoid the catastrophe when he was investigating a missing purse but that is another story... Anyway, Rupert checked the section of the manual where it said 'Looking For Hidden Things'. He had two things to find and so felt justified in referring to this section of the book. Before he checked the book, he decided to look in the third drawer in the cabinet. It was locked. He glanced at the manual.
"The best place to look for hidden things, are locked places because it is then obvious that the person who has hidden it doesn't want you to look there."
Rupert was pleased with his discovery and used a hammer he always kept in his pocket incase he was ever attacked on the estate, to force open the drawer. Inside, it was almost empty. There was a solitary piece of paper taped to the far side of the drawer that you wouldn't have noticed if you hadn't have stubbed your toe and crouched down to check there was no blood or were 30cm tall. Luckily, Rupert had stubbed his toe. He ripped the piece off from the side of the door and read it eagerly. It said 'Key - 7up'. Rupert was confused. Did that mean 7 drawers up or the drink 7up. He would try both. He looked for the 7th drawer up and discovered that there wasn't one. Ah. He tried his second theory and went to the fridge. That was where he kept his 7up (when he had any of course). He went to the kitchen and found the fridge after a while looking as it was disguised as a cupboard. Rupert opened it and took out a can of 7up and realised that he was thirsty so he drank it. He shook the can to make sure he had drunk it all then threw it in the bin.
"Damn!" cried Rupert in frustration with himself. His mum had always told him he was an idiot and had always believed otherwise until he had given her some of the cheese that was in his fridge. She didn't make it past her 60th birthday...
He removed the can from theh bin and wandered idly into the study. He slumped down onto the wooden harback chair and realised this wasn't a very good place to slump. He chucked the empty can onto the typewriter and wandered over to the window. Then he heard a whizz and a beep coming from the type writer. There was a red light coming from the type writer which seemed to be scanning the barcode of the 7up can.
"Access granted" droned a computerised voice and the type writed slid back down into the desk and a compter monitor rose out of it. It was the latest touch screen video monitor that Rupert had only dreamed about owning when he had seen it in the TechnoClub magazine a few months ago. It was cutting edge technology and Rupert was staggered to find that Lance of all people had one. He epitamised the word 'Technophobe' as he still used a typewriter and had never owned or used a mobile phone in his life. Impressed, Rupert went over to the screen and typed in the date that he wanted to view the recordings from. He missed typed, being hopelessly clumsy, and accidently typed in the date of which he had last seen Lance. Their conversation appeared on the monitor. Rupert watched the chatter flow and then stopped, rewound and watched again.
"Wait a sec", he muttered to himself. "That's not quite right..."