Jacob knocks on the door to Eve’s room at the hospital.
Jacob enters the room and gives Eve a gentle kiss on the cheek and hug on her right side.
Jacob, darling, at last you’ve come. Clara’s
Been trying to get hold of you all day.
I’m so glad to see you again.
And I’m stunned to see you like this. How could –
I wish I knew. It’s all a blur. Blackout.
I don’t remember much. You must know more
Than I. It’s the shock more than anything.
Eve, what’s the last thing that you remember?
Saying goodbye to you. And then …
Yes. Then I walked upstairs and got a bang.
Maybe it was Joseph. Maybe something
Fell. I don’t know. Oh sure, I thought he might …
But I never suspected he’d been with
Other women. I foolishly thought he …
And yet one fling from you, and this happens.
Well, it could have been so much worse I guess.
They tell me I wore a neck brace, but …
I don’t recall until … I woke, sometime …
You were calling for me all last night, they said.
Oh did I? Well, the things one says! I was
Maybe calling after you to come back,
Before … before …
Before Joseph hit you.
Or I … the stairs … looks like …
That’s what he did. Do you recall much else,
Like DCI Simmonds calling on you?
Or your parents?
DCI …? No. Nobody by that name.
Only you, my parents, who were in a
Singular state, as you’d expect, Clara
And Nurse … Nurse Appleby. Oh, she’s ever
So kind, Jacob, she brings me cakes and plays
Schubert on the CD player. And she
Even bought me a super book to read
The Chronicles by Jean Froissart, only …
I can’t read it! My left arm’s in a mess!
Eve starts weeping.
It’s been explained but I was out of it.
The strong treatment, you know. Mum said I had
An accident, but … please don’t tell, I’d much …
Mrs Jenkins saved you, you know that much?
So I’ve been told, I love her so. We were
Due to go out shopping, so she came at
Just the right time. Sadly she’s gone, bless her,
To Austria. I think, I know … I know …
I’ve lost two babes. One of my own, which is
A slight blessing as it was a … but the
Other … my poor Maureen … I hope she’s got …
She’s safe. She’s found a new family now.
That’s a relief.
You still have me.
Yes, I want you so much, mein Brüderchen,
Just not … It’s best to get away from here,
Away for good. I’ll go back home, for sure
That’s the benefit of having a Dad
For a doctor. He’ll look after me when …
My job’s freelance, I can do that from home.
The editing will be easy, but I’ve
Got nothing on at the moment. I’ve got
A new writing project lined up, which will
Be tough with my arm but, thank God, my new
Laptop comes with a voice recognition
Recording sort of thing. Don’t know how it
Works, but it should tie me over until
My arm heals completely. What will you do?
Me? Oh, you’ll never guess.
Let me think now … working in a bookies?
No, but I asked.
You’re much too good for that … the CHT?
No, it seems they’re fully staffed as it is.
Of course, Clara did mention that. OK,
Working back at Asda’s?
Modelling through an agency. In the
Morning. Angie Fryers Models Direct.
Well I never! Of course, you look the part,
Don’t get me wrong, but it never occurred
To me. How on earth did that come about?
Angie has a friend at the Job Centre.
Not Joan, surely?
Jacob nods and laughs.
What are the odds of that.
I know! Thank you so much.
I would hug you …
Jacob gives her a kiss on the cheek and hold her by the right hand.
This means a lot, you know. I’ve screwed up, so
It’s good to know … It’s my fault in a way …
Don’t blame yourself for his brutality.
It’s not just that, but … I was so naïve.
Three years of innocence, and this is the
Result. I honestly had no idea
About his past, I thought I was living
With an angel. I was. A fallen one.
When did you realise …?
Some months ago. Hilda took a taxi.
Tommy’s you mean?
Yes. Then I had a fling with an old friend,
Which you knew, or didn’t know, all about.
He wanted me to live with him, but I
Stayed just for you, I couldn’t bear the thought
Of you alone with you know who for much
Longer. Then I found out I was pregnant.
Which was fine, I covered it up, until …
You should’ve have moved out when you had the chance.
Well, this guy, John, he’s with someone else now.
In truth, he’s a ladykiller, well not
In the literal sense, but you know what
I mean. If this is as bad as it gets …
I know I could have died, but still …
At least you’re rid of him for good.
It’s like a clean break, in more ways than one!
As for the CoE … I never want
To go inside a bloody church again!
Jacob laughs uncontrollably.
That’s just … I’ve never heard you swear before.
I did before I met Joseph. Only
Mildly, mostly B words, never the C
Word though! There’s lots of things I used to do …
So … what time did Clara come to visit?
Not all that long ago. We had a nice
Long chat. She was greatly upset but when
She saw that I wasn’t as bad as was
First feared, she was more like her bubbly self.
I’m glad. It was very thoughtful of her.
Oh she’s such a lovely person, she thinks
A lot of you. She did try your mobile …
I was engaged with the police, Giving
A character witness report and that.
I see … It’s just as well I was so out
Of it! She just had something important to
Tell you, but it can wait, I guess. She left
A voicemail on your phone, if you check it.
When I told her your parents died in a
Car crash, she stuttered and changed the subject.
I know, I should have kept … Have you eaten?
Yes, tuna steaks and potato wedges
With brocolli. And you? Apart from cakes!
I had the most succulent steak, sirloin,
With roasted veg. It was very moreish.
Well, I better go now. Big day ahead.
You’ll need lots of beauty sleep now, my boy.
I guess this is goodbye, at least for now.
I’ll be only across the road, but, well,
I guess you’ll want privacy with your mum.
You know I’m well enough to leave. My dad’s
Treated patients worse off than me! I’ll stay
If it means more cake, sure that’s fine by me.
But yeah, I guess this goodbye for now …
Where is it your parents now live?
Oh, well, that’s just a short bus ride away.
You are welcome, come and go as you wish.
Maybe you could come this weekend if I’m
Better. We could walk to Blenheim Palace?
Perfect! And past Winston Churchill’s tombstone?
Of course, it’s in such a lovely churchyard.
Come here and give big sis another kiss.
Jacob kisses her on the cheeks.
I wish you a speedy recovery.
Thank you, you were always my favourite.
Jacob walks outside of the hospital, tops up his phone with his phonecard from a nearby ATM machine and listens to the voicemail message.
Hello, Jacob. I imagine you’re on
Your way to see Eve now. I’ve just got back.
Bless her, she seems helpless, Joseph is so
Evil, to the Devil he shall return.
She should recover though. Well, oh my God!
Oh my God! Oh my God! I’ve got the most
Amazing news for you. I was like in
Complete silence when I found out. How shall
I put … basically, Eve told me your
Parents both died in a car crash, well so
Did mine! I literally just checked Records
With Maia from the Foster Agency,
And we were like, woah! They both died in the
Same crash! Can you believe it? I mean we’re
Assuming that, but the dates fit! I don’t
Know quite where we were at the time, even
I was waaay too young to remember that.
In any case, that’s all I know. This is
So cool, we’re actual detectives now.
Give me a call. Thinking of you. Bye bye.
Jacob returns the call, but there’s no answer and he leaves a message.
Hello, Clara. I know it’s late, maybe
You’re in bed now, but I had to get back
To you, asap. I did see Eve.
My heart goes out to her, but at least she’s
Safe from Joseph. May the crows peck his corpse.
Listen, what you told me, that is the most
Remarkable news that I’ve heard. I don’t
Know what to say, really. Can we meet up
Tomorrow night, maybe over dinner?
I won money today, so I can pay,
But if you do want to buy a birthday present …
I’m having lunch with Cesca too, before that I’m
Going to the modelling agency.
You know, the one in the round house? You most
Likely passed it today. I’m starting to
Believe you’re right! You can just text back if
You like. Speak soon, pleasant dreams and good night.
Jacob sighs deeply, scratches his scalp and, head down, walks back home.
© 2017 AGP