While The World is Going Crazy

He had gotten weird fanmail before but these were serious threats...


13. Chapter Thirteen

Toni picked up the phone a thousand times during the most sleepless night of her life but she never got further than dialling the first few numbers of his mobile. She couldn’t find the words. 

She finally gave up on sleep around six in the morning and climbed out of bed, pulling a sweatshirt on over her pyjamas. Wandering through into the kitchen in search of a strong cup of coffee her heart leapt into her mouth as she saw Amanda sitting at the table with a bowl of cereal in front of her. 

Amanda looked up and smiled when heard Toni walk into the room, “Everything alright? You look like you’ve seen a ghost!” 

Toni swallowed hard and clutched the doorframe to calm her shaking nerves. The look on her friends face was calm and as Amanda looked at her with concern Toni realised that she had no idea that Toni knew anything. 

She forced a smile, “Just had a bit of a sleepless night.” Toni shrugged as she grabbed her keys from the side board, “I’m just going to run down to the shop for some milk.” 

She was backing out of the room when Amanda fixed her with a glare, “Dressed like that?” 

Toni glanced down at her slippers and kicked them off, sliding her feet into some trainers that were lying beside the door, “I’ll see you in ten minutes.” 

Amanda shook the carton of milk on the table in front of her, “We’ve got plenty of milk.” 

“Oh…” Toni laughed nervously. 

All she could think about was getting out of there as soon as possible, getting away from Amanda as fast as her feet could carry her, but instead she found herself walking towards her, opening the fridge and pulling out a carton of milk. 

“I’m gonna go back to bed.” she smiled weakly at her friend and backed out of the room. 

She bolted down the corridor to her room and shut the door firmly behind her, locking it and slumping against it with her back holding it firmly shut. She grabbed her mobile from the table beside her and her shaking fingers dialled Mikey ’s number. 

Toni ?” Mikey answered his phone after barely one ring, “Are you ok?” 

Toni couldn’t hold it together any longer, as soon as she heard his voice she broke down, blurting out sob after sob. 

Toni ? Toni ?” Mikey took a deep breath, trying to calm his anxious voice, “Calm down for one second babe and tell me what’s wrong?” 

Toni bit her bottom lip and forced herself to breath normally, “Amanda ’s back, she’s home…”

Toni ’s body shook as a loud knock on her door echoed through her body. 

Toni can I talk to you for a minute?” Amanda ’s voice sent a shiver down Toni ’s spine as she pushed her whole body weight against the door in terror. 

“I’m just on the phone Amanda .” she forced herself to sound normal as the door handle moved up and down as Amanda tried to get in, “I’ll be out in a minute.” 

She held the phone to her mouth, “Mikey I have to go…”

“Babe just stay in your room, I’m calling the police now. Okay?” Mikey ’s trembling hand was already dialling the police as he clutched his mobile between his ear and his shoulder, “Don’t leave your room? Promise me?” 

Toni nodded, “Yeah…” she clutched her hand to her mouth to muffle her sobs. 

Hanging up her phone she stood up and stared at her door. Was Amanda still standing on the other side of it? Did she know that Toni knew? Did she know that everyone knew? What did she want? 

Toni flung herself on her bed and pulled the pillow over her head, praying that this would all be over soon. 

---------------------- Mikey reached for the door handle as Dave pulled the car up in front of Toni ’s block of flats but Dave caught his arm. 

“Wait until the police get here!” Dave shot Mikey a knowing look but Mikey reached for the door handle again, “Seriously Mikey you’re not going anywhere until the police get here.” 

“Well where the hell are they then?” Mikey snapped as he looked up to Toni ’s floor, quickly trying to calculate which window was her bedroom window. 

Dave shrugged and let out a sigh of relief as two Mikey ed police cars pulled into the car park. It was only then that he opened the doors and let Mikey jump out of the car, but he still had to catch his arm and hold him back from bolting upstairs and charging into the girls flat before the police could even get out of their cars. 

Mikey for God’s sake would you just wait!” Dave snapped, “Toni will be down in a minute!” 

Mikey watched powerless as the six policemen charged into the building and began running up the stairs. He could hear his watch kicking in the awkward silence between him and Dave and time seemed to slow as his nerves became more and more frayed with every second that passed. 

Glancing at his watch Mikey realised that time really had slowed, only three minutes had passed since the police ran into the building, but he felt like he’d been waiting forever, “What are they doing?” Mikey snapped at Dave. 

Dave shrugged as they both went back to staring at the apartment building. 

Another endless two minutes passed until Mikey glanced at his watch again. 

When he looked up his stomach flipped as he saw Amanda being led out of the building in handcuffs. His eyes met hers and he suddenly felt a moment of guilt, how had this happened? What was it about him that turned a seemingly normal girl into some kind of psycho stalker? 

He watched in silence as the two policemen bundled into the back of one of the squad cars. He noticed strange things, the way they held their hand on the doorframe above her head, just like in the movies, the way the two policemen hesitated before one climbed in beside her, the numbers on their shoulders. He noticed everything, because he couldn’t bring himself to look at the girl who had tormented him and everyone he loved. 

Mikey snapped out of his daze when Dave elbowed him, “You can go up now!” 

He didn’t need to be asked twice. Mikey ’s feet were carrying him into the building and up the stairs before he knew what was happening. 

He was running up the last flight of stairs, breathing heavily and his legs turning to jelly, when Toni walked out of her flat into the corridor. She smiled gently when she saw him appear at the top of the stairs but as she walked towards him she cracked and she clutched her hand to her mouth, her feet frozen to the floor, sobbing quietly to herself. 

His arms around her she felt like he was the only thing stopping her from falling, stopping her from giving up and collapsing to the floor and never getting up again. She couldn’t understand what had happened, how it had happened, why it had happened. 

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