Follow Me by Angela Clarke – Extract

Follow Me by Angela Clarke is published on 31 December 2015. Angela and her publishers Avon have kindly let me share this extract with you (remember this extract is subject to copyright so no copying and sharing anywhere else :-))

This extract is from chapter 9

“02:18

Sunday 1 November

1 FOLLOWING  10,554 FOLLOWERS

Freddie had been sat in the interview room alone for two hours

now. Her phone had died. The pale-faced PC had brought her

another scalding coffee and something that was supposed to be

an egg and bacon bap. 23 Things You Eat That Can Kill You.

Rocking back on her chair legs, she wondered how long they’d

drag this out for. Everyone had jumped up after she’d said about

@Apollyon having an audience and she was asked to wait here.

Asked or told? She was too tired to be angry. She just wanted to

go home.

The door opened and the burble of noise and movement bled

into the room. Nasreen stood in the doorway.

‘Follow me, Miss Venton.’ She turned and Freddie jumped up.

Miss Venton? I thought we were past all that nonsense? ‘So, Nas,

bet you never thought we’d meet like this, hey? How you been?’

Nasreen ignored her and clicked down the hallway. Freddie

noted she’d changed out of her flat boots into black high heels.

Let her hair down.

‘Wait here.’ Nasreen tapped briskly on a door.

‘Come!’ said a male voice inside.

Nasreen smoothed her hair and tugged at her shirt’s hem to

straighten it. She wanted to look smart. Correct. Her suit was her

armour. Except this situation was a hundred times worse than a

job interview. Being summoned to the guv’s office like this was

bad news. She knew he’d been informed after the Twitter situation

broke, journalists were already inundating the station with

calls. DCI Moast was shouting about containment. It was a PR

disaster. The guv shouldn’t even be here – he’d come in on his

night off to ‘limit the damage’. She’d never been called to see him

before. Never. She’d already been hauled over the coals for not

outing Freddie immediately by DCI Moast. Inappropriate conduct.

Endangering the investigation. She hated being told off. Her cheeks

burned. She felt guilt and shame and wanted to fix it. She’d been

a well-behaved child, only really getting in trouble if she went

along with one of Freddie’s more crazy schemes. Finding a pot

of paint outside a pub and painting one of the building’s walls

pink. Grounded. Going further from home than she was allowed

because Freddie had seen a kitten with an injured leg they had

to help. No television for a week. It was always Freddie who’d

led her astray. And now this? If Nasreen was to be suspended,

she wanted to hold it together. She would not cry. No matter

how much it hurt. No matter how upset or angry she was. Not

in front of her colleagues. She wouldn’t lose their respect as well

as everything else.

Freddie’s story about being a journalist was true, so why on earth

was she wasting her time at Espress-oh’s if she worked for The Post?

That just showed how different they were. Anything they’d had

before – any common ground they’d shared in the past – was gone.

She probably did it for free paninis. In a few short hours Freddie

had seemingly taken a wrecking ball to Nasreen’s life. Her career.

Everything she valued. Nasreen felt the wrench of despair as she

thought of Freddie confessing to entering the crime scene under

false pretences. Why hadn’t she raised the alarm when she’d seen

Freddie at Blackbird Road? She was complicit in Freddie’s offence.

And now the suspect, the real one on Twitter, had hours on them

and it was Nasreen’s fault they’d missed the Golden Hour. The

crucial period immediately after a crime when material is readily

available to the investigating team. They’d lost it to interviewing

Freddie. A false lead. A distraction. A confusion. DCI Moast had

talked about creating slow time – trying to regroup, but Nasreen

knew her deception about Freddie had lost them valuable ground.

At best, Nasreen would be demoted. She tried to make that a reassuring

thought, but anxiety overpowered her. How was she going

to keep up the mortgage repayments on her home? What would

her parents say if she was fired? She’d let everyone down. And all

because seventeen years ago she’d gone for fish fingers at Freddie

Venton’s house.

About the book

9780008165437

“LIKE. SHARE. FOLLOW . . . DIE

The ‘Hashtag Murderer’ posts chilling cryptic clues online, pointing to their next target. Taunting the police. Enthralling the press. Capturing the public’s imagination.

But this is no virtual threat.

As the number of his followers rises, so does the body count.

Eight years ago two young girls did something unforgivable. Now ambitious police officer Nasreen and investigative journalist Freddie are thrown together again in a desperate struggle to catch this cunning, fame-crazed killer. But can they stay one step ahead of him? And can they escape their own past?

Time’s running out. Everyone is following the #Murderer. But what if he is following you?

ONLINE, NO ONE CAN HEAR YOU SCREAM …”

 

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