A few weeks after the attack on Bradley, Victoria was woken from sleep by an urgent banging on the front door.
She stumbled to the door and saw Morgan standing there. Morgan brushed past her and started pacing the small living space.
“Wolfgang’s been arrested,” Morgan said without preamble.
“WHAT?” Victoria felt her stomach about to revolt.
“Yeah, apparently a witness came forward to accuse him of Bradley’s beating.”
“But, Wolfgang wouldn’t do that!”
“Of course not, but with his priors and time in juvie he’s the perfect scape goat. You know the Gill family wants someone to pay for this!”
“Who is the witness?” She felt the bile creeping up a bit more in her throat.
“Gregor Manlon,” Morgan spat the name.
“No one is concerned that it’s weeks later and Gregor is just now coming forward?” Victoria asked angrily.
“Or that Gregor is one of Bradley’s best mates,” Morgan threw her hands in the air.
“The cops showed up at the Munch house early this morning. Poor Mrs. Munch had no clue what was happening. I’m not even sure Wolfgang had told her about Bradley being in the hospital.”
“What were the cops at Wolfgang’s house about?” Sophie asked as she came from her room.
“Ugh,” Victoria said. “Bradley is suddenly accusing Wolfgang of being the one who beat him.”
“What? That’s insane. Wolfgang has that tough guy look about him, but I can’t believe he’d hurt anyone!” Sophie said in disbelief.
“Especially not someone Wolfgang felt he ‘won’ a competition over.” Morgan nodded at Sophie.
“I’ll ask Camille what’s going on,” Sophie promised.
Victoria’s stomach took that moment to decide to empty itself and she ran to the kitchen sink. “Ugh, so sorry, this news literally has my stomach in knots.” She apologized while she rinsed the sink.
“So did Gregor say why he didn’t say anything immediately?” Victoria asked when she was allowed to visit Wolfgang in jail.
“Allegedly I threatened him that he’d be next and he was too scared to come forward,” Wolfgang said angrily.
“Did you talk to a lawyer yet?” Victoria squeezed his hand.
“Yeah, some public defender stopped by and talked to about eight of us this morning. I hate that I cannot help my mom pay for someone better,” he looked down at his hands ashamed.
Victoria saw the scratches and the faded bruises on his knuckles and rubbed her thumb across them gently. “Bad timing for banging your hands up on those rocks at the Bluffs huh?” she said softly.
Wolfgang laughed bitterly, “I guess. You know the bad part, obviously I didn’t do this, but him calling you those names at the party, Victoria, I was angry. I know I played it off cool, but I was really pissed. Then to see him shove his sister down. Yeah, I was really pissed.”
Victoria looked in his eyes. “Being mad didn’t do this Wolfgang. We just have to trust that the police will find the real person who did this.”
“You’re more hopeful than I am Victoria,” he said sadly. “Cops don’t want to believe someone with a juvie record. Especially when Bradley’s mother knows people in the DA’s office.”
“I’m not going to let you mope about this. You’ll see, they will find the scum who did this.”
“I hope so Love.”
“Did you just call me your love?” Victoria asked with a smile.
“Well, you are,” he finally cracked a small smile.
Victoria left the police station with that same rolling sinking sensation in her gut. She hoped beyond measure what she told Wolfgang were true and that the police could find someone else to accuse.