“Hey, Ellie how was your weekend?” Morgan called from her office when she saw Ellie walking past.
Ellie turned around and walked into Morgan’s office.
“Good, Mike and I went out yesterday.” Ellie replied, sitting down.
“Oh, serious then?”
“Hmm, I really like him, he’s so easy to talk to and easy going.” Ellie nodded.
“What’s up you look a little down for someone in the first throes of love?”
“Well Kate’s missing. Sort of. She called me over the weekend but she didn’t sound like Kate, if you know what I mean.”
“Why?” Morgan asked, giving Ellie her full attention.
“Well, she kept saying sorry, it’s not like her and she sounded different, depressed I guess. And she couldn’t tell me when I’d see her or when she’d call back.”
“Mmm, well maybe she’s doing something private, like rehab? You said in the past that she’s a user.” Morgan offered.
“Yeah, I thought that too, but I’m pretty sure she’d tell me if she was. Would they limit her calls?”
“Depends on why she’s in there, perhaps the courts have sentenced her there or she’s a pretty serious addict.” Morgan said. “Anyway, now that you know Kate’s alive, perhaps you can start focussing on your commitments at work?”
Ellie’s head shot up as she looked at Morgan, “What do you mean?”
“Come on Ellie, some of your accounts have slid and we haven’t had any new manuscripts put forward by you. Look don’t get me wrong I really appreciate what you do here but at the moment you’re coasting, I really need all hands on deck, ok?”
Ellie stood up, “Ok, I get the message.” And with that she left Morgan’s office.
+ + +
Ellie sat at her desk, scanning the top of it. It was covered in numerous piles of paper, some manuscripts, others correspondence. She had to admit, she’d never let her desk get this weighed down with paperwork before.
She sighed and picked up a single sheet of paper from the pile nearest her. It was a letter from a book store asking for details on the next author talk, Ellie was arranging.
She put her head on her hand and tried to concentrate on what she needed to do at work, but Kate’s incessant apologies kept coming back to her. Ellie knew one thing, Kate was not in a safe place, whether that was rehab or not, she didn’t want to be there and Ellie felt compelled to help her, but how?
Ellie picked up the phone and began to make calls to arrange the author talk. After a couple she decided to talk to D.I Thompson, after all he said she could call if she had any questions.
“Hi, D.I Thompson, it’s Ellie.” When did she get on first name basis with a Detective Inspector?
“Oh, Ellie. Hello.”
“Look I just wanted to run a couple of things by you. Kate called yesterday morning, but she seemed out of sorts, not herself.” Ellie began.
“Oh, well it’s good she finally called you, yes? At least now you know she’s not dead or kidnapped, as you had thought before.”
“Yeah, well, I’m still not sure about the latter. She didn’t sound like she wanted to be where she was.”
“Oh, what did she say?”
“Well, she didn’t say anything about where she was and she didn’t sound herself. She kept apologising and she couldn’t tell me when she would call again or when the would be back.” Ellie continued.
“Ok, well if she didn’t say that she didn’t want to be there, how can you assume that? Perhaps she feels really guilty for worrying everyone over the past couple of weeks. From what I’ve heard about Kate it’s a good thing that she is feeling some empathy I don’t think others thought she had a lot in the past.” D.I Thompson explained.
“Yeah, well. If Kate were in rehab, for instance, would she be able to sign herself out?”
“Well that depends on why she’s in there. If she is proving to be a danger to herself or others, the doctors at these clinics can section her until they feel she is no longer a danger.”
“Oh, I see. Would she be able to have visitors?”
“Again that would depend on her condition and what the doctors feel is best for her. I think you just need to relax, Kate is safe and wait for her next call. Ellie, it’s admirable that you are so loyal to your friends, but sometimes they need to do things that they don’t necessarily want to share with everyone, despite how close you maybe.” D.I Thompson said. “Now if I’ve answered all your questions, I really do need to go.”
“Thanks D.I Thompson, “ Ellie replied, “good bye.”
+ + +
At the end of the day, Ellie’s desk looked a little better, she had eradicated a number of the piles of paper and was left with a small list of things to follow up on tomorrow. There were still things that were due last week, a couple of urgent things that had come across her desk today and a tall pile of manuscripts to read. Ellie bundled one of the manuscripts into her Longchamp bag and left for the day.
Outside the evening was balmy and people were milling around the neighbouring bars and pubs, Ellie looked longingly at the couples walking hand in hand. She thought of Mike and felt a stab of guilt at the lack of attention she had paid to him recently. Morgan was right she had devoted more time to Kate than to Mike, she should be euphorically in the initial stages of a new relationship, instead she was treating Mike like a husband she had had for a number of years. Ellie decided she would devote this week to Kate, whilst Mike was on night shift and then put it to rest, devoting time to her new lover instead.
Ellie ran to the bus stop just as the 279 pulled up, it was packed and Ellie found a spot to stand in toward the back of the bus.
Ellie watched London whizz past from the window still deep in thought. She knew there was something wrong with Kate, but was it because she was being detained for her own safety or was she being held against her will by someone?
Ellie decided to walk along Kate’s street again, looking for silver Mercedes’. It was now after 6pm and most people would be home from work by now. Fortunately living in London very few people had garages or off street parking so it would be easy enough to see who owned a silver Mercedes in the street. What she planned to do once she had determined this she wasn’t sure?
She rummaged through her bag, she was sure she still had a flyer from the week before with a grainy picture of Kate on it, in case one of the neighbours started asking questions.