Around 10:30am, Joshua returned to the house. His mouth was set in a grim line, his eyes hooded and his skin pale grey. He climbed the stairs, using the banister rail to drag himself and entered the bedroom. He didn’t seem surprised to find it a mess; the bed wasn’t made and dirty laundry was still on the floor. Moving automatically, he quickly straightened the duvet, picked up the washing and dropped it into the laundry basket in the corner of the room. He opened his wardrobe, grabbed a holdall from the top shelf and started pulling clothes off hangers to stuff into it, not caring if they got creased. Hangers were flying off the rail, but he ignored them in his haste. He yanked open his underwear drawer, pulling it completely off the runners, the contents tumbling to the floor. He snatched handfuls of socks and pants and chucked them into the top of the bag before going into the bathroom and seizing toiletries off the shelves.
When the bag was full, he picked it up and without a backward glance, marched down the stairs. He dropped it by the front door and walked into the lounge. On the coffee table was the pad and pen they’d been using to make the wedding lists. He sat on the sofa and pulled the coffee table closer so he could lean on it. He seized the pen, and sat with it poised over the blank sheet, trying to marshal his thoughts. The first sign of emotion crossed his face as he wrote ‘My darling Remy,’
An hour later, wearing a desolate expression of absolute grief, he drove away from the house.
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