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Innocent: Part 2 of 3: The True Story of Siblings Struggling to Survive

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Язык: Английский
Год издания: 2019 год
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      Innocent: Part 2 of 3: The True Story of Siblings Struggling to Survive
Cathy Glass

Innocent can either be read as a full-length eBook or in 3 serialised eBook-only parts. This is PART 2 of 3 Innocent is the shocking true story of little Molly and Kit, siblings, aged 3 years and 18 months, who are brought into care as an emergency after suffering non-accidental injuries. Aneta and Filip, the children’s parents, are distraught when their children are taken into care. Aneta maintains she is innocent of harming them, while Filip appears bewildered and out of his depth. It’s true the family has never come to the attention of the social services before and little Kit and Molly appear to have been well looked after, but Kit has a broken arm and bruises on his face. Could it be they were a result of a genuine accident as Aneta is claiming? Both children become sick with a mysterious illness while, experienced foster carer, Cathy, is looking after them. Very worried, she asks for more hospital tests to be done. They’ve already had a lot. When Cathy’s daughter, Lucy, becomes ill too she believes she has found the cause of Kit and Molly’s illness and the parents aren’t to blame.  However, nothing could be further from the truth and what comes to light is far more sinister and shocking.

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Copyright (#u47975dd7-9741-55b6-a332-47cbcdeca777)

Certain details in this story, including names, places and dates, have been changed to protect the family’s privacy.

HarperElement

An imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers

1 London Bridge Street

London SE1 9GF

www.harpercollins.co.uk (http://www.harpercollins.co.uk)

First published by HarperElement 2019

FIRST EDITION

Text © Cathy Glass 2019

Cover layout design © HarperCollinsPublishers Ltd 2019

Cover photograph © Voisin/Phanie/Getty Images (stock photo posed by models)

A catalogue record of this book is available from the British Library

Cathy Glass asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work

All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. By payment of the required fees, you have been granted the nonexclusive, non-transferable right to access and read the text of this e-book on screen. No part of this text may be reproduced, transmitted, downloaded, decompiled, reverse engineered, or stored in or introduced into any information storage retrieval system, in any form or by any means, whether electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, without the express written permission of HarperCollins e-books.

Find out about HarperCollins and the environment at

www.harpercollins.co.uk/green (http://www.harpercollins.co.uk/green)

Source ISBN: 9780008341985

Ebook Edition © September 2019 ISBN: 9780008353728

Version: 2019-06-03

Contents

1  Cover (#u56b2571a-8528-5661-bda1-f5cfb8e7943a)

2  Title Page

3  Copyright

4  Contents (#u47975dd7-9741-55b6-a332-47cbcdeca777)

5  Chapter Eleven: Exasperated and Worried

6 Chapter Twelve: Play Nicely

7  Chapter Thirteen: Not Responsible

8  Chapter Fourteen: Hospital

9  Chapter Fifteen: A Breakthrough?

10  Chapter Sixteen: My Fault

11  Chapter Seventeen: Accused

12  Chapter Eighteen: Leaving

13  Chapter Nineteen: Shocking

14  Moving Memoirs eNewsletter (#litres_trial_promo)

15  About the Publisher

LandmarksCover (#u56b2571a-8528-5661-bda1-f5cfb8e7943a)Frontmatter

List of Pagesv (#ulink_eb0cb94b-ffd6-50e3-9156-9bd77e6f3fe5)vi (#ulink_a712d1a7-24a1-500d-824b-42f95ef5d355)112 (#ulink_4179b1e5-8eab-5b00-bdd2-502fa1bc5059)113 (#ulink_fad015c0-a050-53b0-87bb-c67169365b43)114 (#ulink_9247a319-f337-5c87-a5e5-cd0eea4bdae7)115 (#ulink_5a282e54-c013-59a9-9c07-6476e39a3fa4)116 (#ulink_ee27a7dd-ffa6-5dab-bdf1-11656cd14df5)117 (#ulink_e4f796b0-7056-50fe-8c37-4b4c7b71e5e4)118 (#ulink_b77558b3-f872-5fc3-9248-a30e63af6671)119 (#ulink_cc69cde0-7c59-507c-aca5-73912cb89e5b)120 (#ulink_85051130-e464-50cd-9c84-d6b9ea117db0)121 (#ulink_b42b1f82-a435-5f31-8aa2-a446c2dad4c0)122 (#ulink_af49eaf0-ce4a-5d30-87ca-627b7a45cbaf)123 (#ulink_331bc54f-a461-59e8-9adf-6b5fae143535)124 (#ulink_6e8cf93c-9f98-569d-98da-2dfe9b3ce559)125 (#ulink_98abaa40-cb61-5a3c-8ec8-3103ec2fd72f)126 (#ulink_cadba2e9-2064-5b07-abc5-c6f8100ed8a4)127 (#ulink_32085eb3-0542-5e73-b06a-019218d6c2a8)128 (#ulink_9497ff9a-eb73-51b8-8f73-3f22af7404f4)129 (#ulink_dc4def16-c9df-55a6-a66c-8c3e0725c592)130 (#ulink_a7be6f72-652c-5fcf-9129-9841adaab868)131 (#ulink_1b88e78b-56ee-54cb-be46-730242fd508c)132 (#ulink_71ce24b0-800f-538d-8412-1d81cbea1c29)133 (#ulink_b7473f3b-f5c7-595b-8de5-440c190fbc74)134 (#litres_trial_promo)135 (#litres_trial_promo)136 (#litres_trial_promo)137 (#litres_trial_promo)138 (#litres_trial_promo)139 (#litres_trial_promo)140 (#litres_trial_promo)141 (#litres_trial_promo)142 (#litres_trial_promo)143 (#litres_trial_promo)144 (#litres_trial_promo)145 (#litres_trial_promo)146 (#litres_trial_promo)147 (#litres_trial_promo)148 (#litres_trial_promo)149 (#litres_trial_promo)150 (#litres_trial_promo)151 (#litres_trial_promo)152 (#litres_trial_promo)153 (#litres_trial_promo)154 (#litres_trial_promo)155 (#litres_trial_promo)156 (#litres_trial_promo)157 (#litres_trial_promo)158 (#litres_trial_promo)159 (#litres_trial_promo)160 (#litres_trial_promo)161 (#litres_trial_promo)162 (#litres_trial_promo)163 (#litres_trial_promo)164 (#litres_trial_promo)165 (#litres_trial_promo)166 (#litres_trial_promo)167 (#litres_trial_promo)168 (#litres_trial_promo)169 (#litres_trial_promo)170 (#litres_trial_promo)171 (#litres_trial_promo)172 (#litres_trial_promo)173 (#litres_trial_promo)174 (#litres_trial_promo)175 (#litres_trial_promo)176 (#litres_trial_promo)177 (#litres_trial_promo)178 (#litres_trial_promo)179 (#litres_trial_promo)180 (#litres_trial_promo)181 (#litres_trial_promo)182 (#litres_trial_promo)183 (#litres_trial_promo)184 (#litres_trial_promo)185 (#litres_trial_promo)186 (#litres_trial_promo)187 (#litres_trial_promo)188 (#litres_trial_promo)189 (#litres_trial_promo)190 (#litres_trial_promo)191 (#litres_trial_promo)192 (#litres_trial_promo)193 (#litres_trial_promo)194 (#litres_trial_promo)195 (#litres_trial_promo)196 (#litres_trial_promo)197 (#litres_trial_promo)198 (#litres_trial_promo)199 (#litres_trial_promo)200 (#litres_trial_promo)201 (#litres_trial_promo)202 (#litres_trial_promo)203 (#litres_trial_promo)204 (#litres_trial_promo)205 (#litres_trial_promo)206 (#litres_trial_promo)207 (#litres_trial_promo)208 (#litres_trial_promo)

Chapter Eleven

Exasperated and Worried (#u47975dd7-9741-55b6-a332-47cbcdeca777)

‘It’s only happening after contact,’ I told Tess on the phone. Very worried, I’d telephoned her straight away, and thankfully she was still at her desk at 5.30 p.m. Lucy and Paula were taking care of Kit and Molly. ‘Either the children are getting very upset at contact and they’re reacting by being sick or it’s something they’re eating there. I can’t think what else it can be.’

‘They weren’t ill on Wednesday, were they?’ Tess pointed out.

‘No. So what was different? I’ll keep a close watch on Kit’s rash and take him to the hospital if necessary. They haven’t got any other symptoms and I’ve given them nothing new to eat. We’re having lasagne for dinner, which they haven’t had before, but we haven’t had dinner yet.’

‘How did they seem when they came out of contact?’ Tess asked.

‘Quiet, but not obviously upset.’ Tess would know that most children took time to adjust to seeing their parents at contact, not because they didn’t want to see them, but because they were anxious at being in care and only seeing them occasionally.

‘I’ve read the contact supervisor’s reports for Monday and Wednesday,’ Tess said. ‘Nothing stands out. I won’t get today’s report until Monday. I think I should observe contact on Monday. Will you tell Molly and Kit I’ll be there, please?’

‘Yes, and Tess, I’m still waiting for the details of any food they’ve had at contact.’

‘I’ll chase it up. Is it all right if I give the contact supervisor your email address and ask her to email you the details direct?’

‘Yes, please,’ I said. ‘I find it difficult to believe it is anything they’re eating there, as Aneta will be monitoring what they have closely, but I need to include it in the diary so we can eliminate it. Aneta sent some biscuits and juice home with them today, so I can cross those off.’ Parents often take food and drink into contact for their children. If it’s not consumed, they usually send it back with the children so it doesn’t go to waste. The children love the food and snacks from their parents, they are very special and a tie with home. Sometimes parents prepare meals for the child to bring home and have at their carer’s.

Having informed Tess that Kit and Molly had been ill again, there wasn’t much else I could do but watch them closely. Neither of them was especially upset at being sick. I think because they’d been ill so often it had sadly become the norm for them. The rash on Kit’s chest hadn’t spread and both of them were breathing easily, although Molly did say she had a tummy ache. I told her I thought it would pass but to tell me if it didn’t.

Paula, Lucy and I dressed the children in their pyjamas and we went downstairs. I served dinner around 6.30 p.m. Molly and Kit both ate a reasonable amount, so I didn’t think it was a tummy bug they’d both picked up. After dinner we adopted our usual routine of Paula and Lucy looking after Molly while I took Kit up to bed. The children were more settled and didn’t cry so often. The bruises and swelling on Kit’s face were hardly visible now. As I settled him in his cot that night I checked the rash on his chest. It was fading fast. It appeared to be as Aneta had said – that the allergic reactions came and went very quickly. But what was causing them? I still hadn’t a clue.

When I took Molly to bed she asked when she would be seeing Mummy and Daddy again. I explained it was the weekend and pointed to the calendar showing Saturday and Sunday, and then Monday when she next had contact. ‘But on Sunday we are all going to see my mummy,’ I said with a smile. ‘She is Adrian, Lucy and Paula’s nana.’

Molly looked a bit puzzled and I explained what a nana and grandpa were. As far as I knew she didn’t have experience of grandparents. Filip’s parents were dead and Aneta’s mother lived abroad and they didn’t see her. ‘You’ll like Nana,’ I said. ‘All the children I look after do.’

Molly snuggled down with her soft toy, I tucked her in and then sat with her for a while. After a few minutes I said, ‘Goodnight, sleep tight, I’ll see you in the morning.’ I came out and left her to go to sleep. Now the children were more familiar with their surroundings, my family and me, it was reasonable they could go to sleep without one of us being there, though I would of course check on them, answer their cries and settle them as necessary. I waited on the landing for a few minutes, but Molly was soon asleep.

During the evening I checked Kit’s rash a couple of times, tiptoeing to his cot and gently lifting his top. By the time I went to bed it had completely disappeared. I supposed that whatever had caused it was no longer in his system or he was no longer in contact with it. Aneta had said that it wasn’t always food that caused a reaction, but it could be something in the air or that they brushed past, like pollen or germs or washing powder. It was a minefield and as far as I knew the tests done so far had failed to identify a cause.

That night both children slept through till morning and I praised them. Up until then one or other of them had woken and needed resettling. I felt on top of the world after seven hours sleep, and the children looked more refreshed too. Paula, Lucy and Adrian played with them first thing in the morning and then I took them supermarket shopping, which gave my family some time to themselves. Little ones are lovely, but they are full on and need to be watched and kept amused the whole time. In the supermarket I put Kit in the trolley seat and Molly walked beside me, helping to take the items we needed from the shelves. If she couldn’t reach, I lifted her up. The shopping took twice as long as normal, but it kept the children amused. They were very well behaved. Kit sat contentedly in the trolley, watching everything going on around him, and Molly didn’t demand sweets as some children do. I sensed that going to the supermarket was as much a novelty for them as it was for me shopping with two little ones. I loved it.

Once home, Adrian unpacked the car and helped put away the groceries, and then after lunch he went to see Kirsty. Lucy went out too later, and once Paula had finished her college work she came downstairs and joined me to play with Molly and Kit. I saw her looking at them a little sadly, clearly deep in thought.
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