Granger led the way back to his office, Julianna found she almost had to run to keep up with him, his stride was so long. He took the stairs three at a time and she eventually caught up with him outside his office door.
Reid Granger: Private Detective emblazoned in gold coloured transfers on the glass panel.
He ushered her inside, offering her a seat and a choice of coffee or coffee.
“I’ll take coffee then” she smiled.
A steaming mug was put in front of her and she got her first proper look at the man who had been bounding round the small room clearing papers, dumping a dozen empty mugs into a sink and apologising for the mess. His hair was dishevelled to say the least and he needed a shave but he had an honest face as her mother would have said.
“So Julianna how can I help you?”
That was a very good question and she had no idea how to answer it. Sensing her confusion Granger decided to try a different approach.
“Why don’t you start at the beginning and we’ll go from there”
So she did, telling him everything she could remember about that night, her shift, the customers, the other staff and leaving to go home.
“But after that my mind’s a blank. I don’t know what happened to me” she wiped her eyes on the back of her hand “Sorry”
“Don’t apologise. Are you up to answering a few questions?”
“That’s all I’ve done for the past week, a few more won’t make any difference”
He pulled a large notepad in front of him then began asking all the same things she’d been asked at the hospital and by the police. No she hadn’t seen anyone in the alleyway, the hospital said there was nothing physically wrong with her, no there were no signs of any assault, no she hadn’t had any arguments with customer, she most certainly was not sleeping with any of them and as she’d told anyone who would listen she had no recall of what had happened in the hours she’d been missing.
Granger sighed, he could see how desperate she was and he really wanted to help her.
“Have you considered being hypnotised?”
“No. No way. No”
“It might help. A trained hypnotherapist could..”
“I said no. I’m not going to be put to sleep and have more time lost to me”
“I can understand that, maybe keep it in mind?”
“Okay” but she had no intention of doing so. She stood to leave, thanking him for his time.
She was quite certain he wouldn’t be able to help, after all she hadn’t been able to give him anything remotely useful. He held out his hand and she shook it, he had a nice firm grip. She liked a man with a good handshake, it meant he was trustworthy.
On the street below a busker started to play, his music carried up to the open window in the office, floating inside on the breeze.
Juilanna stopped in her tracks, her face went pale.
Granger glanced out of the window “It’s only Joe. He plays here most afternoons. Why?”
“I heard music in the alleyway just before I blacked out. Someone was playing a flute”
“Okay” he grabbed the notepad and pen “Was it this tune?”
“No. No it wasn’t anything I recognised. It was very pretty though”
“Right. Well it gives us a place to start which is more than we had an hour ago” he was smiling.
“So you’ll help me then?”
“Of course I will”
Neither of them had noticed the small light hovering just above the window sill. It stayed there for a few seconds then vanished into the afternoon shadows.