I looked up into my father's eyes, but he wasn't being humourous.
"Just stop arguing, okay? I was drunk...She was leaving the ladies bathroom and I shoved her, she fell down the steps, I killed her. Tomorrow morning I'll go to the station and confess, then all this mess can be over and done with." He turned back around and went inside his bedroom, clearly wanting to be alone.
"I don't believe it..." Flo spoke first.
"We all suspected it deep down" Dianne winced.
"I guess we can kiss this whole 'together' idea goodbye" George sighed.
"You guys aren't giving up just like that are you?" I was shocked, I had always admired the family spirit they kept.
"Mickey, no one wants to...but he just confessed" George placed his hand on my shoulder.
"Plus, with dad in jail we won't be able to keep Alice, and us four might be split up and put into care too" Flo added.
I shook my head, deciding to go for (yet another) walk to clear my head. As I walked through the streets, in the now chilly evening, my mind raced. Dad had killed mum, or at least that's what he'd just told us. He'd been drinking, and so had she, he'd been angry about Alice, and he'd shoved her down the stairs. It would have been a fall enough to kill her, the steps went up one large flight of stairs. My next thought was of my siblings, the small contract we had signed a week or so ago, in which we had promised not to accuse dad, and to do anything and everything to keep Alice with us. The contract was void now. I just couldn't believe that dad had shoved her hard enough to kill her, even drunk that was far fetched, and he wasn't the strongest of men. Sure, he had anger issues and a small history of domestic abuse, but I'd never considered him to be a murderer. A hard fall down the stairs, that's what had killed her. Ironic, as she fell for Drew Peters pretty hard...
Did she die from the fall? Dad never checked? Was that her cause of death? They had found her outside the bar, not at the bottom of the stairs leading to the facilities...Which means someone moved the body.
I picked up my pace, running to the police station. Luckily for me, DI Harrison was there when I arrived.
"Detective Inspector!" I called out to her, waving my arm about.
"Michael, what are you doing here? Where are your family?" She was automatically concerned.
"I'm fine, but curious. I need to know what killed her, what was my mother's cause of death?" I was slightly out of breath, which seemed to alarm her.
"Please" I interrupted her, "I have a right to know". She sighed, shaking her head.
"It was poison, someone put something in her drink" she admitted. So the fall hadn't killed her...
"What about her head? Were there any other injuries?" I had to be sure.
"A few blows to the head, yes. But nothing fatal...What's wrong?" It was her turn to ask a question.
"He didn't kill her" I beamed, "he just hurt her". Before she could ask me to expand further, I was out of the door, running home. I burst through the door, looking for Flo, she was downstairs, watching TV.
"Hey Michael, where did you go?" She was clearly dismal, and half-heartedly spoke.
"No time for that now. I need to know something, when you arrived at the bar, was there anyone else you knew there? Was mum sitting near anyone at the bar?" I pestered her with my questioning, but she didn't let it show.
"Mum was sitting at the bar, or rather she was floundering at it. Drew Peters was there, beside her, they were talking about Alice. Mum said how Drew had to stay away, from Alice and from her, but he was arguing against it." She winced slightly at the memory.
"And then you pulled her away to talk to her?" I had to be sure.
"Yeah" she seemed tired, so I left her alone and went up to my room.
Okay, so, on the night in question a lot happened. First, mum arrived at the bar, and had a drink. Then Drew arrived and talked with her about Alice, Zach probably arrived with him. Then Flo turned up, and argued with mum about the entire affair. George was around the back, binning his applications, and he bumped into Zach who had just overheard Flo and mum's argument. Then George went home, and mum went to the loo. Dad showed up and shoved her down the stairs, leaving Flo with no choice but to go home alone. After that someone moved her body out to the front, and possibly poisoned her then and there, or some time before in between all the madness.
As I was getting no-where with possibility, I decided to switch to motive. Well, the obvious one was Alice. Dad was angry that she wasn't a Kroft, so had the perfect reason to do the deed. But why poison her? He'd already accidentally shoved her down the steps, accidentally hurting her, why then purposefully kill her? I refused to believe any of my siblings had done it, thought some had a small motive, none were large enough. Zach might have done it...after all Alice was his half sister, maybe he wanted her for himself? Maybe it was suicide? After all, the Alice drama was enough to drive anyone to go mad...
Suddenly it dawned on me.
I knew who had committed the crime.