The following morning, a police car pulled up outside Paul’s house. Everyone saw it, including Amy. She went over to the house, frantic with worry and desperate for news. Paul emerged a few minutes later, a few days of stubble on his face and he looked at Amy sheepishly as the officers put him in the car. The car drove away and Marian came and put her arm around the young girls shoulder. She suggested they go back inside for a cup of tea.
Bethan asked Amanda if they were taking the bad man away for killing her daddy as Amanda started the car. “I don’t know, sweetheart, lets get to swimming though.” She had wondered the same thing. Had Paul been responsible for what had happened to David. She drove away, not far behind the police car.
Greg and Katherine had just planned their day, they were going to drive to somewhere nice for walking and find a spot for lunch. Greg saw the car out of the bathroom window and called to Katherine. She could see Amy too and felt bad for her. She had looked shocked to see him being led away and it was more than just neighbourly concern. Katherine didn’t know Amy that well, she had deliberately kept her distance from the young mum as her own hopes of motherhood seemed to be slipping further and further away and unlike Greg, who relished spending time with kids, she found it hard. Still she knew that finding out someone you trusted was not all that they seemed was one of the hardest things to deal with and she could see it in Amy’s reaction to Paul being led away. She hoped it was nothing serious but everything pointed to him being mixed up in that explosion.
At the station, Viv was preparing to charge Paul, they had pulled in a 17 year old who had put together the petrol bomb and persuaded his younger brother to throw it inside the back window of the empty house. The fire would never have been enough on it’s own to lead to a death and given his age it seemed the manslaughter charge would be lenient. Paul also was likely to only receive a light sentence and a good lawyer would probably get him off. The evidence was fairly circumstantial but Viv was confident that he had been responsible. When he had shown Andy around the property, the evidence suggested the gas had been switched on. Maybe on a hob. The leak had filled the house so that when the teenagers had thrown the petrol bomb it had caused a deadly explosion. The footballer had been questioned at his home to establish a timeline but wasn’t a suspect. Paul would have to wait for his bail hearing before he could go home. It would be most likely be set low given the circumstances. He had asked for a solicitor and decided to use his phone call to ring Amy. He owed her an explanation. While he made the call, two police officers went to deliver the news to Amanda.
Marian stayed with Amy for most of the morning until just after she got off the phone with Paul. Amy told her everything and thanked her for her support. When Marian arrived home, Ernest asked where she had been. She explained that she had been comforting Amy, filling him in on what she knew. Which wasn’t much but she had been where she was needed. Ernest nodded, he should have guessed it would be something like that. It was what he loved about his wife, she was always where she needed to be. He had spent the morning watching some racing on the television anyway but now that she was home, he was looking forward to spending some time with her. He offered to make them a sandwich and a cup of tea which she gladly accepted.
Talk of the two police cars on the avenue filled the drive for Oliver and Angela, neither of them touching on what had happened the previous night. It was useful to have a conversation topic, Oliver didn’t regret the night before but he had very much seen it as closure and he wasn’t sure that she would. It had probably been wrong, she had been angling for it since she had arrived, since they broke up. He was looking forward to seeing his mother again and focused on that as he drove. It felt less odd spending so long in a small space with her after the time they had spent together in the past few weeks but it was still a little awkward. He had no intention of moving back home or trying to get things back to how they were. He was still happy with moving on and he knew that his aunt would have approved of that decision. He knew this wasn’t the time to tell her though and tried to make the most of spending time with her.
Harriet was trying to get through the day, she didn’t know where Mark was or what he was playing at. They had had a minor row over a holiday. How had it blown up to the point where he had spent a whole night away. Was he genuinely planning on leaving her? She tried calling his phone again, Grace had started asking where he was and said that she wanted to play. He arrived back as she finished leaving a message. He didn’t speak to her, walking straight upstairs to Grace’s bedroom. Viv had text him to say she wouldn’t be home until much later as she was going to be caught up at work and there was no point waiting around all day for her on his own. He found his daughter who was very excited to see him and he joined in her game. When Harriet came to join them, he asked Grace if she wanted to go out. She said yes and he helped her get ready. When Harriet insisted that they need to talk, he responded simply saying that they would talk later. She decided not to give him the satisfaction of leaving her and began packing his bags.
Martin returned home in the mid afternoon with Luke. He wasn’t being charged but had received a warn. He asked if he could go to bed and both parents nodded. Joanna put the kettle on.
“I’m going to move. The estate agent is coming round to put a sign up later and discuss some of the details.”
“I wanted to talk to you about Luke, he said some things to me that made me think I should really be around more. To be honest Jo, I hadn’t realised how much this was effecting you.”
“Jo, you’re nothing like the woman you were four years ago. I’m sorry, I know I’m partly responsible for that at the very least.”
Joanna felt pretty defensive but she also had to admit feeling a touch of relief at the idea that he might help. She conceded that it was time to ask Luke where he wanted to be. When he woke up, the three of them would have the first discussion as a family that they had ever had.
Donald answered the phone, it had been a long day, Mavis had barely stopped speculating over what the police officers might be saying to Amanda and Paul. It was tiring listen to her gossip even though he was used to it by now. The house was usually quiet on Saturday but Lynn had called mid-afternoon to ask if they could come round as they had some news. Mavis had busied herself making sandwiches and just finished when Lynn and the family arrived. Steven led the conversation after the small talk was out of the way. He said they were planning on moving into the area, be a little bit closer still. They had seen the for sale sign outside Joanna’s house as they arrived and that was certainly an option. Lynn broke the second piece of news. They needed a bigger place because their family was going to grow one more time.