Well That Was Unexpected
By David Spowart
Edited by J Matlock
By David Spowart
Edited by J Matlock
"Thanks Mr Layton; see you soon" Dale said, closing his phone.
"He's taking the next available plane down" he added.
"Here, just pull in here" I said to Cal, near the 23rd precinct.
We parked, climbed out and walked the one block to the station. We walked in and talked to the desk Sargent.
"Sir, our friend was brought in to answer some questions. Is he finished, yet" I asked, knowing it had only been ten or so minutes; but we had to start somewhere.
"Name?" he asked
"Layton, Todd Layton" I replied, looking at the rather burley man in front of me. "Nope, a detective is with him now" he replied. "Does he have a lawyer?" I asked. "He hasn't requested one" he replied. "Sir, is he under arrest?" I asked.
"No, he's only answering some questions" he replied.
We sat for what seemed like hours. I received a call from Jim Layton, informing us that he had arrived in New-York. I informed him what station we were in, and realised we had been here almost three hours.
I spotted Todd being taken to the toilet through a guarded partition. He hadn't seen me, or Dale. Cal was waiting out front for Mr Layton. Todd looked tired and drawn.
"He looks wrecked" Dale commented.
After almost four hours, Mr Layton came in with Cal. "So, what has happened; have you seen him?"
"No sir, not for a while" I replied. "Okay, I will see him soon" he replied. He walked over and spoke to the Sargent, and about 3 minutes later a detective walked out and escorted him inside the precinct.
We again waited. Laura and Lisa arrived and sat with us. "Why are they still holding him. He was with me last night. I told them when they called; so why are they still holding him?" she repeated, sounding distraught.
"Did he leave at any point last night?" I asked.
"No. We went to bed as soon as we went in. We had... you know...and we went to sleep. I told the police all this when they called" she added, Lisa holding her hand. "What else did you tell the police?" Dale asked. "They asked what time we went to sleep. I told them it would have been around eleven forty five, or sometime around there" she added.
"What time did they say she was attacked?" Dale asked. "Midnight ish" Cal replied. "Oh shit, they are going to say he sneaked out when you fell asleep" I bemoaned. "That is why they are still holding him" I added.
"He didn't leave. I would have known" Laura replied.
"Yeah, but that is not what they think" I responded.
"What about CCTV; that must show if he left the dorm" Cal replied. "Good point. I am sure they would have thought about that, as well" I added. "He will be okay. Todd does not have that sort of demon in him" I replied.
"Yeah Josh, we know him; they do not. If it fits, it will stick. The DNA will say he was attacking her and she defended her self" Dale replied.
"The assault when she scratched him will be on CCTV, as well as him walking away from her. He received the marks, as she received the DNA under her nails during their little spat" replied Lisa.
"Guys, wait and see what his Dad finds out, okay?" I said, and the group went silent. Speculation does not help at this point.
We again played a waiting game. A very well dressed man came in and approached the desk. "John Simpson, here to represent Todd David Layton" he started. "Take a seat; I will inform the detective" the Sargent responded. He came and sat near us, and I spoke to him.
"Sir, are you here for Todd?" I asked.
"Sorry, I cannot talk to anyone" he replied.
"Sir, we are his best friends. We know he couldn't do anything like this" I added.
"Well, let's hope you are right. It's not looking good at the moment" he said, just as the detective approached us and escorted him inside to where Todd was being questioned.
Again, we waited; we had been here for almost six hours. Soon, Mr Layton came out. He needed to make some calls. "Sir, how is he?" I asked. "Laura, can I talk to you, in private, please?" he said. I could see he was emotional, so I didn't push. He walked outside with Laura, and she was back within five minutes. he was still making some calls.
"What did he say?" I asked.
"They think he did it" she replied, with a shocked expression. "They want to talk to me. They think he sneaked out" she added. "Fucking told you. Didn't I say that" I spat out. "Josh, calm down; this isn't helping" Cal responded. He was right; I was just pissed.
"Okay, Laura, I have spoken to your dad. He said I could accompany you through the interview" Mr Layton responded. "Josh, how well do you know this Candice person?" he asked. "Just enough to know she is trouble. Don't get me wrong; she didn't deserve this, but she is trouble" I replied.
"She is accusing him, Josh. She said he attacked her after she arrived back at the dorm around midnight" Mr Layton added.
"No way; she's lying. Tell him Laura. Tell him she's lying. Tell him he was with you" I said, and Laura was silent. "Josh, I fell asleep. I know he isn't capable of this, but I was asleep" she said, and began to sob.
"Laura, I will come back for you; take a minute" Mr Layton said, and walked back to the security door where the detective let him through. I, myself, was confident he didn't do this; but there was a little doubt creeping into the group. Dale stayed silent, as did Cal.
"We better hope the CCTV clears him; because right now, he looks fucked" Dale eventually responded. Nobody replied to that statement, as he was right. "I need some air" I said, and stood up. "I'll come with you" replied Cal.
We walked out of the precinct, leaving instructions with the group to call if anything develops. "So, what do you think?" Cal asked. "Cal, I don't have a clue. I know he couldn't have done it, but shit...she can push buttons. I mean, what if he did? I began to question it myself for a brief second. Yeah, doubts began to surface; but rape?...No way.
"You know him, Babe; he does not have that sort of violence in him. I mean, I know they say everyone has a breaking point; but Todd?...this? I doubt that very much" he said, squeezing my hand. "So much for our marathon fuck session, Babe" I said.
We walked a few blocks and then headed back to the precinct. We arrived as Mr Layton came out. "So, what is happening, Mr Layton?" I asked. "I think he will be okay, Josh. He has never lied to me about anything, and Josh, I mean anything. We do not have secrets. He told me he never touched her and I believe him" he said. When he said anything, I wondered if that included what I was thinking to what he might be referring. Surely, he would not tell his dad he fucked a guy; even if it was me.
"Sir, what exactly did he tell you?" I had to know. "Josh, don't worry. I know college is a place for experimenting. I don't think any less of you all" he added. I cannot believe he told him. I don't have that sort of relationship with my dad. While I envy that of Todd just a little, it's just that some things are best left untold.
"So, why is she lying? What does she have to gain?" he asked. "I mean, Todd told me of the break up, her lying about the pregnancy and her other stuff she had going on. I mean, four guys in a frat house? She must have very low esteem" he added.
"Sir, I think she feels disrespected by him; and, yes, she is the kind to accuse someone of something as heinous as this, if she thinks she can get away with it" I replied. "I think he will get bail" he added. "The only evidence is the scratch and her word" he also added.
"They have reviewed the CCTV and the front entrance was clear. Their first altercation shows how he received the scratch on his neck; and nothing of him coming out. The problem is, the camera at the rear is broken; so that is against us and for us at the same time" Mr Layton added.
"Todd has been processed. They have taken his clothes from your room, Josh, and his nails have been scraped. They are looking for any DNA of this Candice person: blood, spit, that sort of stuff. They also found semen on her, so that is being rushed through; but she said she had sex earlier in the evening with some guy she met...classy dame" he added.
"We just have to wait; but she still accused him, and that will hold some weight" he continued. Soon, Todd and his lawyer walked out to the rest of the group. "You okay, Todd?" I asked. "No" he replied, as I wrapped my arms around him. "The bitch is lying, Josh; believe me, please?" he sobbed. "Todd, I believe you; we all do" I said. Laura was standing a bit back. She had her doubts now; and that is not a good sign.
"Let's get you back" I said. We jumped into Cal's beat up truck and Dale's car. Laura drove back with Lisa. I feel like she is leaving Todd to cope by himself with this. As I said, if she is doubting him and this goes to trial; she could fuck him over, and fuck him over completely.
We eventually pulled into the campus parking lot. Todd's truck was still parked; but someone had scrawled with a key across the paint work, `Rapist!'
He looked pissed and speechless. The word had gotten out that he was being questioned; no doubt in part because he was taken away, some seven hours earlier. And the campus grapevine, being what it is, word spread like wildfire. "Looks like I have an out for the modelling gig" he said, with a wry grin.
"Where is Laura?" Todd asked. "Todd, don't worry about her. We need to talk, so inside, now" His dad instructed.
We sat in our room. The police had been through the room like a tornado. What they were searching for, God only knows. Todd looked defeated. His confident cocky self was gone; he looked like shit. "Dad, I didn't do it" he cried. "Todd, I know that. I know you better than anyone" he replied.
"Yeah, I cannot believe you told him about what we did" I said. Wrong moment, but still, I was shocked that he told him in the first place.
"No secrets; where do you think I got that concept from. I don't keep anything from my family. I told him when I lost my virginity and with whom. I never lie to those I trust and love" he replied. None too bothered by my pissed off attitude.
I stood and opened the door.
"Hey, is Todd back?" asked Billy,
"Yeah, come in" I said, and he did. "Todd, you okay, dude? And just so you know, not a lot of people believe this Candice chick" he added. "Someone does. My truck was vandalised" Todd replied. "Yeah, I saw that" he added.
"Dad, this is" he was cut off. "Yeah, I know who this is. Billy Layton, you look a lot like your dad" Mr Layton replied. "Yeah, so I have been told" he responded. "You must be Uncle Jimmy" he added. "I spoke to my dad when I bumped into Todd. He was shocked, as was I" he continued. He flipped open his phone and pressed the call button.
"Hey, Dad. Yeah, he's back. Look Dad, someone wants to talk to you, okay?" he said, handing the cell to Mr Layton.
"Hey Buster!" he started. Apparently, this turned out to be his nickname for him.
"Yeah, it has been a while, man" he continued. "Yeah, she passed away a couple of years ago, man" he added; obviously talking about Barlow's Mother and Todd's great aunt.
"We could have talked man; but you bailed" he went on.
"Buster, let me talk" he continued.
"Sure, we can do that" he said, sounding somewhat agitated.
"I still live in the same house, man"
"Sunday, I look forward to it" he continued.
"Buster, I've missed you man" he ended, and flipped his phone closed.
"You okay, Dad?" Todd asked. "Yeah, son, I'm fine. It's just 20yrs. later and now I'm talking to my best friend again. it's hit me, somewhat harder than I thought it would; and, Billy, it's very nice to meet you" he said hugging his nephew.
"And you, Uncle Jimmy. It's nice to meet you. Dad often talks about you" he added.
"So, how's Betsy?" he asked. "Oh, controlling Dad for the most part" he smiled. "Yeah, she did back in the day" Mr Layton responded.
We sat and talked for a while. Mr Layton sprung for pizza and some soft drinks...buzz kill. We talked about college life, and Todd's experiences with Candice. Laura stayed away; obviously conflicted. It was about midnight when Mr Layton left to book a hotel room. The rest of the group left when Lisa came for Dale. Todd looked to see if Laura was there; but she wasn't. No sign of Aaron or Kyle; no doubt enjoying each other's bodies.
We will let them know what happened tomorrow. Todd was exhausted, and promptly fell asleep, fully clothed. This had been a tough day.
"Just hold me tonight, Babe" I said to Cal, and he did just that, as Todd slept. His light snoring again soothed me to sleep. I just hoped he didn't have any unpleasant dreams.
I woke around four in the morning. Todd was sitting on his bed, staring out the window. I could hear him sobbing. "You okay, Todd?" I asked. "Tried calling Laura, she won't talk to me. I think she thinks I did it" he sobbed. "She's working things out, dude; just give her time" I said, walking over and sitting next to him.
"Josh, if the one person I was with is not sure I was still with her when this shit happened, what chance do I have of convincing anyone; never mind a jury" he bemoaned, and I for one could not answer him honestly.
"Wait on the DNA . That should clear you. You were seen on CCTV, arguing; but that was almost two hours before her attack" I said. "So, the DNA under her fingernails is not conclusive proof, Todd" I tried to assure him, but felt I was failing.
"Look, they must believe some part of your story or they would have remanded you; not release you, pending enquiries" I added. "Yeah, but fucking mud sticks, dude" he moaned again. "And Laura, I told her I loved her; and now this shit fucks it up" he continued to moan.
"Dude, get back into bed. Things tend to be better the following day after a night's sleep" I added. He lay back down, and for the first time ever, I actually tucked him in.
To be continued...
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