Chapter 17


IN THE McCANNS' BEDROOM

The police who searched the house the McCanns were occupying, in particular their bedroom - the room where Gerald set up his office - report that the father and the mother are reacting very differently to the trouble that has befallen them.

Kate seems to be in mourning: numerous photos of Madeleine are pinned to the wall or placed on her bedside table. Spaced between them - as though watching over the child's soul - a representation of a saint, a crucifix or a rosary can be seen. A bookmark bearing the effigy of a saint is slipped into a copy of the Bible, opening on the second book of Samuel, chapter XII, where the following verses can be read:

"[13] "I have sinned against the Lord," David said.
Nathan replied, "The Lord forgives you; you will not die. [14] But because you have shown such contempt for the Lord in doing this, your child will die." [15] Then Nathan went home.
The Lord caused the child that Uriah's wife had borne to David to become very ill.
[16] David prayed to God that the child would get well. He refused to eat anything and every night he went into his room and spent the night lying on the floor. [17] His court officials went to him and tried to make him get up, but he refused and would not eat anything with them. [18] A week later the child died, and David's officials were afraid to tell him the news. They said, "While the child was living, David wouldn't answer us when we spoke to him. How can we tell him that his child is dead? He might do himself some harm!"
[19] When David noticed them whispering to each other, he realized that the child had died. So he asked them, "Is the child dead?"
"Yes, he is," they answered.
[20] David got up from the floor, had a bath, combed his hair, and changed his clothes. Then he went and worshiped in the house of the Lord. When he returned to the palace, he asked for food and ate it as soon as it was served. [21] "We don't understand this," his officials said to him. "While the child was alive, you wept for him and would not eat; but as soon as he died, you got up and ate!"
[22] "Yes," David answered, "I did fast and weep while he was still alive. I thought that the Lord might be merciful to me and not let the child die. [23] But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Could I bring the child back to life? I will someday go to where he is, but he can never come back to me."
[24] Then David comforted his wife, Bathsheba. He had intercourse with her, and she bore a son, whom David named Solomon. The Lord loved the boy [25] and commanded the Prophet Nathan to name the boy Jedidiah, because the Lord loved him."1

For David life had to go on.

In contrast, in the part of the room occupied by Gerald, the walls are bare, cold, no photos of his daughter. It's here that he administers the Madeleine Fund, organises his very busy agenda and writes his blog. His current reading material - The Interpretation of Murder, by Jed Rubenfeld, Spirit Messenger, by Gordon Smith, It's Not About The Bike: My Journey Back To Life, by Lance Armstrong, - leaves nothing at all to the imagination about the drama the family is living through. With amazement the police officers discover a series of books and manuals exclusively intended for police services and government agencies.

- Missing and Abducted Children: A Law-Enforcement Guide to Case Investigation and Program Management, National Center for Missing & Exploited Children;

- Training Courses, CEOP (Serious Organised Crime Agency - Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre);

- Making Every Child Matter...Everywhere, CEOP (Serious Organised Crime Agency - Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre).

Mark Harrison himself wonders how Gerald McCann could have obtained these books.


Notes:

1. I have used the Good News Bible for this passage.







(Original translation by AnnaEsse here)

Chapter 18: Preliminary results. Preparation For The Interrogations