Will stepped outside of The Willows Care Home and crossed the road to the Subway on the corner of the high street. After the morning he’d had, all he looked forward to was a steak and cheese foot-long in a hearty Italian sub. His mouth watered at the thought.
There were two people ahead of him, but Will didn’t mind that – it gave him time to fine-tune his order. The door opened, and two police officers scanned the queue. They stopped in front of Will.
“Can I have you name, please, sir?”
“Could you repeat your name, please – for the benefit of the tape?”
Will sat across from the inspector and her male colleague and searched the table of the interview room, as though the answer would appear in front of him. “Will Rooney – no relation.”
“Would you like to call a lawyer?”
The way this week’s going? I probably need one! “No, thank you.”
“Do you know a Mrs. Mabel White?”
Will stared. What had that old battle-axe done now? “She’s a resident at The Willows. I’m one of her carers. . . What’s this about?”
“She says you kicked her this morning.”
Will jumped to his feet, his chair scraping the linoleum. He leaned forwards on the desk. “Kicked her?! How could I kick her when I was the one pushing her wheelchair?”
The inspector looked nonplussed. “Then how do you explain this?” She withdrew a photograph of a large bruise on Mabel’s shin and turned it towards Will. “That was taken today.”
Will sank back to the chair. “I was behind her.” He studied the photo. A bruise that angry wouldn’t have appeared in the hour since Will had left Mabel in her rocking chair. And it certainly hadn’t been there then.
“Was anyone with you at the time?”
“Zoe Kennedy. She’s my colleague, who I’m working with today.” He looked the police officers in the eye as a thought struck him. “We have to work in pairs with Mrs White. She’s had about three other care staff arrested in the past six months.”
The police officers said nothing for a moment or two. Then, the inspector leaned towards the tape. “Interview terminated at. . .” she checked her watch. “Thirteen fifty.” She and her colleague stood and extended their hands to Will. “Thank you, Mr Rooney. That will be all. You’re free to go.”
Back in the Day Room of the Willows Care Home, Mabel White sighed as she allowed the rocking chair to come to a halt. Her scheme hadn’t worked this time. Oh well, there’s be other times. She clicked her fingers and her broken leg healed itself.