My elation of an afternoon off work, and my excitement of going out for the evening with the lovely Laura, were both sadly truncated by finding out that we’d been burgled.
A power cut at work? Early departure? Jackpot! Well, so I thought. Arriving home at 2pm, I settled into bed to read The Dark Knight Strikes Again. Something that I read recently inspired me to pick it up and to appreciate it again. It really is a daring and exciting book, both with its plot and its style. What bliss!
At four-ish, I left the house and went to Electrik to meet Kate and Graham. We had tea, millionaire’s shortbread and I explained about my plan to meet Laura later, and to take her to the pub quiz at Odder. Graham raised his eyebrow into an arch, “Really?” I smiled at him. Something good was coming, I thought.
Dropping Kate off at Dunk’s, I dashed home to get ready for my date. The house was cold as I opened the front door. Walking into the kitchen, I saw the door swinging, open. “I’ve not closed that properly after smoking,” I thought, “what a plonker I am!” I pulled the door shut, but it was locked, so I couldn’t close it. “Strange,” I thought, fetching the key, “I bet I locked it without closing it properly.” Thinking nothing more of it, I dashed out to meet Laura.
As we waited at the bus stop, Chaw called. “We’ve been burgled.”
My heart sank. Had my mistake in leaving the door open offered an easy entry to thieves? How much damage had I caused.
Laura was saintly. “Of course I don’t mind missing the pub quiz. Would you like me to drive you back home? It’s quicker, I’m sure.” Perfect.
Chaw was flustered. Her room was a mess. Her laptop was missing. Her camera had gone. Kate was very quiet. Nothing much had been taken from her, but her underwear drawer was messed with. My iPod was gone, along with a tenner in cash, and – the fuckers – The Dark Knight Strikes Again was gone too. Matt came back. He lost a watch, a camera, his laptop. Was this all my fault?
No. We found a screwdriver by the patio doors, and a crowbar in the lounge. There were marks on the patio doors – entry had been forced. Relief at my lack of blame soon subsided as I realised how easily the intruders had got in. As Tyler says, we’re hoodwinked by the illusion of safety. The tart taste of spit in my mouth seemed ever more real at that moment. The risks of everyday lurk just beneath the surface.
Chaw's fluster grew. At one point she accused me of being an accomplice to the invaders because I hadn’t lost much in the burglary. Kate stood up for me. I won’t forget either of their actions.
The police came. Matt and Chaw took forever to give their statements. Kate and I were sitting in the lounge, and we listened to them chatter on to the policeman about holidays, mortgages, insurance.
Kate looked at me, wearily. “Would you like to move out?”