He sat Simon down right in front of me. As I looked at him, I felt sick. His hands were tied behind his back. A deep purple patch spread across the side of his face and consumed his right eye. It was swollen almost to the point of being closed. In his mouth he had a dirty cloth which was tied around the back of his head. I could tell he was struggling to breath through his nose, the cuts and swelling oozed a thick bloody mess all the way down to his top lip. Through his feigned nonchalance, I could see the fear.

Steve was outside in the corridor and I could hear him talking to someone out there, another man. I know for a fact that I heard the other man tell Steve that Lewis wanted to see me in the Cathedral, and then Steve closed the door. I wouldn’t be going to the Cathedral, not until Steve had finished whatever it was that he was going to do. I looked at Simon again, who was still struggling to breath through his liquid covered face. The guy standing beside him had a gun over his shoulder and he was staring dead ahead, guarding us until Steve’s return. As I looked at his face, we made eye contact and that’s when I saw it, the slightest flicker but it was there. Guilt. Pure subconscious guilt. This guy didn’t want to be standing here doing what he was doing.

“Is he going to do this to me?”, I asked the guy. He didn’t answer. “Or was it you? Did you do this to him?” I asked. I sat back into the sofa and crossed my legs. “You did didn’t you! What the hell do you want?” He looked at me.

“It’s best you shut up”. He said. I smirked.

“You’re not going to do anything to me” I said, “I’m his. If you touched me you’d be sitting in this chair covered in blood too.” The guy smiled back and nodded.

“You’re right.” He said.

“Why are you doing what he says?” I asked. “He’s lost, even he doesn’t know what he’s doing”.

“I’m not working for him.” He said. “It’s best you shut up now.”

“Why?” I asked. “Am I touching a few nerves here?” I asked, knowing he wasn’t going to touch me, not really caring if he did.

“Not in the slightest, Kirsty. Not in the slightest.”

“Then why?” I asked again, with a provocative smirk.

“Shut the fuck up!” He said with a loud snarl and he glared at me. I saw something in that glare that stumped me for a second. His eyes didn’t match his voice. He was trying to tell me something. He slowly moved his eyes over to the side table next to the sofa while at the same time raising a finger to his lips. I shushed. On the table there sat a walkie-talkie, left there by Steve. I didn’t even realize it was on, but I decided to stay quiet anyway. The door opened and Steve walked in. I looked up at the guy with the gun and we made eye contact again. It was still there, the guilt, and then he turned and left. He closed the door behind him leaving me alone with a bruised Simon and Steve.

“Now”. He said. “Where were we?” He pulled up a chair beside Simon and sat down. I didn’t answer, I simply stared at the floor. “Okay, I’ll tell you where we were”, he pulled his chair closer and he grabbed my face and squeezed. He lifted my head up to his face. I could smell his angry breath. “I want to know where he is Kirsty and I’m going to find out”. He threw my head back hard into the sofa. “We can do this the easy way, or we can do it the painful way”. He stood up, picking up the wooden chair that was underneath him. He swung it as hard as he could at the wall behind him. It hit the old plaster work and bounced onto the sideboard, smashing the picture frame onto the floor. Steve was angry and out of breath. He glared at me, waiting for a response. He exhaled all the air of his lungs and walked towards me while clenching his fists so tightly they were going white. Rage was running through his body. He screamed as loud as he could right in my face.

“STAND UP!” he raged. I slowly stood up. He took a deep breath and squeezed Simon hard on the shoulder. “We’ll be back in fifteen minutes” he said, “you sit here and wait for us”.

He walked me to the door and pushed me out. The guy with the gun was out there too. As Steve marched me down the old wonky corridor, he shouted back to him.

“We’ll be back shortly. We have an errand to run”.