“I understand.” Tobias said grimly. “No, that’s fine. I’ll have to see if the hard copies are corrupt as well. Goodbye.”
Tobias sighed and through his phone down onto the couch beside us.
“That was Echo. Apparently all the footage from the last three days is corrupt.”
“From the complex?” I whispered. My stomach churned, without seeing what had happened no one could paint a reliable picture about how Jimmy got back to the apartment.
“I’m sorry Ruby.” He exclaimed. “I know you were probably hoping that the footage would prove Jimmy’s innocence.”
I nodded and stood up. I needed to see him, now more than ever. I needed to know what had happened.
The elation of Tobias’ admission about wanting kids with me, wasn’t even enough to bring me from my despair. My friend was in jail because of me and fixing it was the only thing that would make me feel better now.
Tobias spent the rest of the night trying to access the cameras from his old software, while I fell into bed and forced myself to sleep. Tobias was next to me when I woke, and despite all the drama he looked peaceful. I dressed, put my phone on silent and I slipped out of the apartment before Tobias had even stirred, determined to make up my own mind about what had happened.
I caught a cab to the police station and demanded to speak with Jimmy. The older officer from the evening before walked out.
“I thought we decided to leave the visiting Miss Moritz.”
I shook my head. “No, you and Mr Clarke decided that. Jimmy is my friend and I have a right to see him.”
“Very well.” He responded. He looked at one of his colleagues before pointing at me. “Show the girl through to the visiting room and let Mr Lawson know he has a visitor.”
I followed the second officer through the station and he led me into a stark grey room with nothing more than a table and two chairs. I swallowed hard. Jimmy didn’t deserve to be here, in this cold place, devoid of anything of substance.
A few minutes later a quiet Jimmy was led to the table. He was wearing a white shirt and grey trackpants, both of which had already began to gather dirt.
“Jimmy.” I whispered.
He grunted as the guard pushed him down into the other chair and lifted his cuffed hands up and onto the table. The guard locked them into place and then walked out of the room.
“Does Tobias know you’re here?” Jimmy said as he pulled his cuffed hands as close as he could toward himself. I watched him with concern, his usually bright face seemed almost grey and he looked tired. I shook my head and looked out the room at the guard who watched us intently through the window.
“You have to understand that he just wants someone to be culpable, and he’s willing to look at the easy answer because it means this is over.” I whispered.
“I do understand Ruby.” He murmured, before looking up at me. I watched as his dull eyes widened. “Wait, you believe me?”
“Yes.” I replied simply. “I don’t think you’re capable of hurting me or Tobias.”
“I care about you… probably a little too much.” He murmured, his face reddened. “And I respect you both. I couldn’t do what they’re saying I did.”
I smiled softly, I felt bad he still had unrequited feelings, but they were using that as a reason for him to want to hurt me, when it was one of the main reasons I knew he wouldn’t. I needed to know more, to know everything that had happened. I owed it to him to help.
“I know. Jimmy, why don’t you tell me what happened after you left the apartment?”
Jimmy nodded and took a long slow deep breath. He squinted, as if the memory was already to hard for him to recall. “I’d been helping Tobias with a few things at work while you were away. I had arranged to hand deliver the new proposal to Echo communication. “ He looked down and then shook his head. “They’ve been dragging their feet and making things difficult. So I met with Ryan, and gave him the files.”
Jimmy frowned and licked his lips. “After that I left I went to the pizza place and got a slice and a beer since it was just down the road. It was after that when I felt odd. I don’t remember how I got home. I don’t remember how I got into the apartment. I don’t remember texting you.”
Jimmy sounded distraught, his eyes were red and wet with tears. “After the pizza place I don’t remember a goddamn thing.” he paused.
“Tobias asked to look at the footage from the complex. It gets synced to the cloud but for some reason the last three days footage is corrupted. I can’t even find out how you got home.”
Jimmy’s body sagged into his chair. “I don’t blame anyone for thinking it was me. I would too with all this evidence.”
“I’m going to find out the truth Jimmy.”
Jimmy half smiled then looked out the window at the guard. “I think our time is almost up.”
“I’m sorry about this.”
I stood up and walked toward the door, as the guard opened it. I looked back at Jimmy and smiled sadly. I hated that I had to leave him behind when I knew it wasn’t him behind any of this.
“Bye Jimmy. I’ll sort this out. I promise.”
“Bye Ruby. You’re a good friend. You both are.”
I nodded and walked through the door as the guard opened it. Even though Tobias had turned his back on Jimmy, Jimmy understood. It was his character, the kind of person her was. I owed it to him to find out the truth.
I left the station and caught a cab home. Before I could unlock the apartment door it flew open. I looked up at Tobias, whose eyes were bright with anger. His mouth was taut and I could tell just by looking at him his was holding on to his temper but thin threads, threatening to break at any moment.
“Where the fuck were you?” He asked. “I called. I was worried.”
I bit my lip, I’d put my phone on silent before I went to the police station. “My phone was on vibrate. I’m sorry.”
Tobias moved out of the door frame allowing me entry, but his face didn’t change. I walked past him, into the living area. I placed my handbag on the bench and stayed facing away from him.
“Where were you.” He asked again. His voice was softer this time. His hands rest against my hips before snaking around my waist. He kissed the tip of my right shoulder.
“I went to see Jimmy.” I mewed.
Tobias’ body tensed against mine, and not in a good way. His grip loosened and he stepped away. I resisted the urge to turn and face him and walked into the kitchen. I opened the fridge and took out a bottle of juice.
“Ruby.” Tobias said, his voice low and volatile. I looked up at him, his eyes hardened as he focused on me. He leaned against the breakfast bar and gnawed on bottom lip nervously. “You knew how I felt about that.”
“And you knew how I feel about it too.” I exclaimed. I opened the juice and took a long swig, my mouth was dry. “And I said I needed to see him if I was supposed to believe.”
Tobias’ face softened and he sat on the stool, rest his head in his hands. “And?”
“And he didn’t do it.” I replied. “Any of it.”
Tobias looked up at me with disbelief written all over his face. “Ruby. The evidence!”
“I know you’re a facts based man Tobias. You look at numbers and work out how you can increase them. Your job is calculations and facts. So it figures that face value evidence is big for you. I get it, Hell even Jimmy understands… But I looked him in the eyes and I saw past the evidence. Someone is threatening us, but it isn’t him.”