Liam had told Ellie about the pattern by the following evening. He really hadn’t wanted to, but when she rang him to say that there had been another, and that it had been the Southampton harbour one, he knew he would have to sit down with her and tell her. All day long he considered how to approach it, and exactly what to say. He was baffled enough as it was, without trying to think how to explain it to someone else. Luckily it wasn’t any old someone else, but Ellie, and no matter how much of a mess he managed to make of explaining, she would surely get at least the general idea at some stage.
He didn’t mess it up, and got what he had to say across very efficiently; for some reason, Helen’s postcards had been falling off their pin board in the exact same order and within the exact same time frame as they had originally been sent almost a year ago. Ellie was silent. For some moments Liam thought that his support for her over the past couple of weeks had been for nothing, that she would throw his love and concern back in his face and make out that he had lost his mind. When she spoke again, she said something that proved to him that she certainly did not think that about him, and just how much she valued him being there for her and understanding. Crucially, it made him see how alike they truly were, as she vocalised what he had been thinking. Maybe, she said, Helen was on one last tour. Maybe she had wanted to take one last trip to her favourite places, and maybe she might come to visit them for one final time. Liam allowed himself to give in to emotion for the first time since the first postcard fell, as Ellie began to weep on his shoulder. He hadn’t known what to think when it started. There was a slight breakthrough when they found the potential explanation of him brushing against the cards and knocking them off, but then it was right back to square one almost as quickly as that had surfaced. If what he was thinking, and Ellie had shown she was thinking as well, was the case (which was more to go on than anything else; Liam had given himself many sleepless nights over the past few days trying as hard as he could to suss out any kind of reasons), after the most recent one from Southampton there was only where they lived in Winchester, and it would be due the next day.
(Chapter 6 due tomorrow, 23/12/08)