Tuesday evening, I got home late. While preparing dinner, I’d left the kitchen door open. The spare-key tenant walked down the staircase with a load of washing. She broke off her descend to talk to me about the theft. (See part 1 and part 2)
She was no longer sure about her version of events.
She wanted to talk things over.
Told her, I was no longer sure about the open or closed door to the room.
She said I must have arrived on the higher floor, the moment she was in the room to close the windows.
So, her version now tallied with my Monday version of events.
I said I was no longer sure the door had been open, or closed, or whatever.
We went over the arrival of the elder window cleaner at my door and subsequent events.
We agreed the elder window cleaner couldn’t have hidden a laptop under his blouse or in his trousers.
She still claimed he must have seen where the spare key was hidden.
Told her, he had never denied this.
I had mentioned to the victim that morning, she should check sites like EBay or Marketplace. Stolen goods are often sold on such sites.
Spare-key’s IT boyfriend had told both women, tracking software needed to be downloaded and activated.
I no longer knew whom to believe. At first, I had believed spare-key and victim were up to something and the window cleaners were innocent, like me.
She mentioned the elderly man might have hidden in one of the cupboards on the various landings.
I found this rather stupid, weird, suggestive.
Told her, I passed him going downstairs while I went up. I had left my downstairs room open, while hurrying upstairs. He knew I was coming downstairs, so why risk hiding in any of the places on that floor?
I presume he went to the ground floor to help his colleague. But all I actually knew was, that I had not stolen the laptop, nor the camera. I knew I was innocent – but without alibi.
We were about 5 minutes into our conversation, when one of the other tenants decided to join us. It always takes about 3 to 5 minutes for her to materialise and check what is going on. Especially, when two or more tenants are having a chat on a landing.
At first she was ignored.
Then she got involved into the conversation.
I was surprised: she did not know what had happened Monday.
Neither she nor her upstairs tenant had been informed about the window cleaners having been called to clean windows, nor about the teft, nor about police having been called, nor about the search for fingerprints – nothing.
Nosy-parker mention, that when she got back from work Tuesday afternoon, a guy was working on the outside, street façade of the house.
Nobody had been informed about that.
Was this the same guy who had been working somewhere at the back, Monday morning?
I forgot to ask.
Regardless, she and her upstairs neighbour had been out of the house, so were not involved in the circus.
But should they not have been warned?
Nosy-parker mentioned her upstairs neighbour regularly left doors unlocked. So did the most of us, while in the house.
Like the rest of us, those two also had pcs, laptops, smartphones, televisions, personal treasures.
If I’d been the victim, I would have written a warning for everybody on the whiteboard.
I mentioned police had not contacted me yet. It was Tuesday evening and it worried me.
Spare-key said not to worry. Police knew where I lived and would know where to find me.
I told her about my blunder that morning: how I’d completely forgotten the victim was unable to give police my mail address as her laptop was gone.
Spare-key said not to worry. Insurance would certainly cough up money to enable her friend to buy another new laptop.
I found that fairly cold-hearted. Victims of theft are usually upset, devastated, shattered.
If the stolen laptop had been my friend’s and I would have been the one having used a spare key during the time it had disappeared, I’d be upset and mortified. I would have held myself responsible.
But everybody reacts differently, I know.
We chatted some more, before she continued her journey down the stairs, to the washing machine.
But by then, she had kind of admitted she had been hiding in the shower that morning. (See part 3)
I finished preparing my dinner.
I did not feel like eating it.
Poking at some lettuce, I had the uncomfortable feeling that somehow my experience and interpretation of what had happened Monday morning, had been used to make another version fit.
I felt slightly sick.
Something still jarred.
I was blissfully unaware things would get worse – for me.