Readers, the brighter among you will begin to realise the reasons why I was unable to update you during the grim events I have just described. The stupider among you will likely be so concerned with chewing your sleeves and banging your head against a cupboard that you will not have given the issue much thought.
Essentially, I felt it necessary to keep as low a profile as possible and decided I could not risk an online presence. I am not an effective liar and the circumstances would have necessitated my keeping up the charade on this electronic diary that all was well, a charade that the brighter among you would doubtless have seen through and the conscientious among you might have reported to the Dundee constabulary. I was not too concerned about the stupider among you because you likely would not have noticed anything amiss and would happily have got on with your usual business of dribbling and misusing apostrophes.
The next morning found me still crouching uncomfortably behind my couch, unsure as to how to proceed. I was startled out of my paralysis by a rattle at the letterbox. It was the newspaper. I ran to see if the previous night's terrible atrocities had been reported by The Dundee Courier.
"TWELVE DEAD AND MUTILATED IN McMANUS JEWEL HEIST" the headline read. Eagerly, my eyes flew across the page, frantic for information... "Tewari Eye stolen ... priceless ... twelve men murdered ... eyes torn from victims' heads ... no obvious leads ... witnesses sought ... police suspect the involvement of the Dundee Mafia ... victim's widow said, 'I just can't believe someone would kill my Jim out of greed for money' ... tragedy...", etc, etc.
Readers, you will now be imagining me, shivering by my letterbox, reading those awful words, tears stinging my eyes, my lower lip quivering and my heart quailing. You are right to imagine this because it is what happened.
There was also an article by Jack McKeown on page 8 where he interviewed local kite enthusiast Duncan Moonie, which was fascinating and briefly distracted me from my immediate woes.
The Courier's report (on the robbery and murder, not on Moonie and his kites) spurred me to action. I had to quickly get shot of the jewel. If police somehow found out that I was in possession of it, I would be in trouble. There was no escaping it. They would take one look at Fell and realise he was merely a tool, incapable of independent thought. I would be the one carried off to gaol forever and brutally abused by bullish prisoners for the remainder of my days, and that would be the story of me.
What could I do with the jewel? Commit it to the flames? No, it would never burn. I could not destroy it as it was made of some sort of precious material as hard as diamond. I could hide it, but it might be found. I would have to give it to someone else. Sell it to a greedy jewel lover? No, it was too famous. Who could take it? Something in the article pricked my attention again.
The Dundee Mafia! They were used to crimes and criminals - perhaps they would buy the jewel from me and take it off my hands. Perhaps they would use their clout to offer me protection. Perhaps they would take razorblades to my face. It was a ludicrously risky plan, but for better or worse (in hindsight, worse), it was the plan I decided to follow.