worst mistake of her life.
Grace turned off the light in the paltry kitchen. Maybe it was just as well that Keith wasn’t likely to put her in the interview room in the morning: she was in no fit state to attempt to read Matt Beeston’s mind.
She undressed in the box-like bedroom and went to take a shower. As the hot water poured over her shoulders, she thought of Matt in his cell, lying alone on a thin plastic mattress with the choice of facing a graffiti-covered wall or a metal toilet bowl. Would she be able to tell from his face tomorrow morning whether or not he’d spent the night thinking about what he’d done to Rachel Moston, abouthow he had laid her out so carefully on the inhospitable ground and then violated her with a half-empty bottle of cheap Polish vodka?
She turned off the water and stepped out of the shower. Wrapping herself in a towel, she faced the steamed-up mirror and wiped away a patch of condensation above the sink, ready to brush her teeth. Meeting her reflected eyes, she caught a glimpse of how she felt others must see her: a plain face, serious, wary and tired. She spat out the toothpaste, dried herself off and went through to the bedroom, put out the light and settled down to listen to the unfamiliar night noises.
Even with the window open, the building felt stuffy. She’d watched similar blocks of flats being built, and there never seemed to be any natural materials on site: no bricks, wood, stone or slate. It was as though this whole place was constructed of plasterboard, metal, plastic, cables, glue, grout and mastic, while she longed for shelter, for something solid and enduring. The blue-painted brick and gravel of the little suntrap yard of Polly and Jessica’s house came to mind. Perhaps she should look for something like that to rent once this short lease expired. Though whether she’d want Pawel Zawodny as a landlord was another matter.
Grace realised she wasn’t ready to sleep. Her mind was churning, and all thoughts led back to the investigation. Or to Trev, which was worse. She settled herself comfortably, stared up at the ceiling and gave herself permission to review the week properly, day by day. It seemed as though every piece of the investigative jigsaw had alreadybeen considered; one or two slotted together, but it was far from clear where they fitted into a bigger picture. As she waited for a distant car alarm to fall silent again, a connection she’d missed earlier suddenly jumped into her head: when the young man in the campus bookshop this afternoon had given his name – Danny Tooley – she’d failed to recall that she’d come across it before.
She got out of bed and padded through to the living room to fetch her laptop. Back in bed, she piled up her pillows behind her, crossed her legs and settled it open on her lap. The screen gave out all the light she needed. She’d already trawled through Polly Sinclair’s Twitter account on Monday and, though she hadn’t checked out everyone, she had found that Polly was linked to over two hundred people. And, yes, she was correct: the list of followers included Danny Tooley. Now she clicked onto his account and found he followed seventeen women and six men. Rachel Moston was not amongst them, but nearly all of them also appeared in Polly’s lists. Polly was the first person he’d followed and he had favourited several of her tweets. He had never sent a single message to anyone and, apart from Polly, who’d followed him back, his only followers appeared to be automated bots, except for the last person on the list – Roxanne Carson. Grace was about to follow Roxanne herself, so she could keep tabs on her, but remembered that she’d have to log it with Keith as the senior investigating officer and decided it was too much trouble.
Grace checked out Facebook. Danny had opened an account, but never posted to it and had no friends. It wasenough, however, to allow him limited access to other accounts.
She wasn’t sure