“Hey Anna” I slump in the chair opposite her.
“Are you going to talk to me today?”
“Yeah actually I think I will” I nod and Anna almost chokes.
“I want to talk about my mother”
“And what has bought this up?” Anna is very excited.
“She came to me last night” I smile.
“Mum, Mum” I yell but she just sits in the old woodshed mumbling to herself. I try to get closer the more I walk towards her the distance never closes. “Mum” I yell and she turns her head.
“Vera dear I have been waiting for you” She sings. “Oh darling I miss you so much”
“I miss you too mum” I find myself crying. When I wipe the tears I realise they are blood. I stress out. A person runs by and I can’t quite make out who.
“Vera you have to know” My mother starts
“Know what mum tell me?” I plead.
“You have all the answers already”
“And what did she have to day Vera?” Anna asks
“She said I have all the answers and she misses me”
Anna slumps with that lack of answers my ‘mother’ left with me. But I knew what she meant. Even in death we are like one person. We were always on the same level.
“I think you need some time in your cell Vera and then maybe your mother could drop you off half a brain” she hisses. She why is she so pissed?
I have about thirty minutes before I get to see Harry so I pull out Theo’s diary from under my bed and start at the beginning. Theo talks a lot about me, about my smart mouth and the way I smile at her. By the time Steph come to fetch me nothing of particular interest comes up. I will keep reading later on but for now I need to see Harry.
I sit directly across from Harry and hold both his hands. His brows come together in confusion.
“Harry I think, I think you need to be honest and share some shit with me”
Harry shakes his head.
“Why not? I shared so much with you. More than I ever have” I feel slightly betrayed.
“Fine but stop me when you want”
I cannot deny her anything. She has shared everything with me. She is bursting to get me out of here and I know it drives her crazy at my unwillingness to comply. I know if we find the killer I will have to leave and she will be stuck here. I will not leave her here to rot. So I will stay with her, I am willing to let a killer run free just as long as he stays away from her he can live. I just wish she would stop pestering me about my childhood. She thinks I am some kind of saint or perfect guy and I don’t want to taint that right now. I don’t think she would cope knowing how fucked up I am and finding out her beloved Theo is dead. Well at least I think she is. I need to be the one to look after her now, I promised Theo.
She just sits there waiting for me to start. I could just look at her all day. They way her hair is braided down her back but all the little curls at the front spring to life. Or the way her golden eyes seem to pour into me. Her soft pale skin I just want to reach out and touch it. For now I will settle for her hand.
“So when I was younger my father used to drink. He would be out every night and sometimes be gone for days at a time. My mum and I learned to live on a small budget because most of our income got swallowed. One night I heard my mum yelling for someone to get off her. I opened her bedroom door to find Ken, my father forcing himself on her. She yelled at me to get out but there was no way I was just leaving her with him. So I grabbed the bat from under their bed and hit him with it. I just kept hitting and hitting. I was blinded with rage at what he was doing to mum and all the times he left us and she cried over him.”
“Did you kill him?” she asks. I think I can hear some excitement in her voice maybe.
“No I did not” She slumps in her seat. She is disappointed I did not kill Ken. “I left him bloodied and bruised. He was in a comma for months before he woke up. When it was time for him to leave the hospital I told my mother he could not come back with us. Not after what he did. I told her that we didn’t need him that I would look after her. She told me it was only temporary. That is when the fighting started. I was so pissed off at the world I would fight anyone that even looked at me. Mum told me all in one sitting that I shamed her and she and Ken were back together.” I take a breath and Vera’s face saddens. “I flipped out and moved out but not before making sure Ken ended up back in hospital.”
“Harry that is terrible, I am so sorry” she whispers.
I look up at Harry and can see a teenage boy filled with rage living on the streets and I want to be there and save him. I want to nurture this poor child. A tear escapes from my eye and he catches it.
“How did you end up here? How did they pin it on you?”
Harry sighs, “I found the first body” he finally says reluctantly.
“Who was she?”
“Her name was Sally Grey”.
I stiffen at Harry’s words. My breath becomes hitched and my hands begin to shake.
“Vera?” Harry asks his voiced laced with concern.
“Ha-Harry, I, I know that name”
Harry pulls me onto him and covers my body like a shield with his arms.
“Harry, Grey was my mothers maiden name” I whisper.
“She had a sister named Sally. My aunt Harry the one I lived with. She was his first victim”