Late night or early morning phone calls are very scary things. It usually means somebody has died. Fortunately it can also mean that someone has crashed their car into a roundabout, puked up in the passenger seat, been arrested for 'drunk driving' and have pissed themselves in the back of a police van.
“Iwisheyewuzdead..” Verity bawled down the phone, her words all squashy and merging into one another. “'OwculdIavebinsofuckin'stewPID!! 'ow? ... an'they'vetakinme'fuckinshoos! Myfavriteredlesbo's! Darl, imsosorry... reallyfuckinsorry...blahblahblahblahblah”
Without saying anything I just stood there listening, waiting. And then there it was, between her tears and snot bubbles, silence.
“And what about John?” I asked desperately “What good news was you bringing? Has he started eating? Talking?? Has he moved???”
“Err, yeah,yeah, youculdsaythat, kinda. Thethingishe'sturndcompletelybackt'normal. jus' like that!” I think she tried to click her fingers as she said those last words, but instead must have fallen over and dropped the phone. I waited for the receiver to finish bashing itself against the loose plastic kiosk, then shouted/called: “Verity... VERITY!?!?” But there was no reply, just the approaching stamp of running boots, jangling keys and a policeman's radio. A moment after that the phone went dead and all that remained was a feint ringing noise echoing its way down the line; soon even that stopped and then there was nothing: just silence, shadows and a very confused man.