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Tick Tock by Mayo Simon

Tick Tock by Mayo Simon

Author:Mayo, Simon [Mayo, Simon]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Tags: Fiction, Thriller, Suspense
ISBN: 9781473568938
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Published: 2022-08-17T14:00:00+00:00


1.38 p.m.

Cross-legged on the floor, Rose leaned in to her keyboard. Out of bed for barely ten minutes, she was still wearing the pyjamas and dressing gown she’d slept in. Her curtains were drawn, her bedside light was on. It illuminated a floor covered in books, collections of make-up and piles of discarded clothes. Some washed, some not. Three mugs with dried-out teabags were lined up by the door. Some brassy R&B played from a small speaker on her bed. The smell of bacon drifted up from the kitchen.

Her screen was on a YouTube selection of videos posted overnight, paused at the LCH riot report. Phone-shot film footage showed police and ambulance crews ushering the injured, upset and annoyed from the entrance. The time code in the corner of the screen indicated that it had been taken shortly after she and her father had caught the bus out of there.

She checked her phone again. Nothing new from Harriet, fifty-seven messages on WhatsApp, and it looked like many hundreds on Discord. As she watched, twelve more appeared. She skimmed through them. They all were from school strikers, some with images and video of placards and chanting. Most were from the UK and Europe, but she noticed a run of ten from California. Three different high schools and a university, each with their own sit-down protest. Via text, she had approaches for interviews from CNN, MSNBC, Fox, ITN and Sky as well as three from various BBC outlets. Then came the Mail, The Times and the Sun.

Her WhatsApp messages were all from MCS students, each one agonizing over the condition of friends. Marcus, Ellie, Deacon, Mariella and Faith had all followed Harriet into hospital and the ripples were spreading throughout the school.

A new image dropped on to her screen. The headline read, ‘Is this school strike leader Rose?’ The photo showed Rose in the reception of the hospital, crouched in the middle of a fight, one hand on the floor and glancing left at a man swinging a chair. He was skinny with a fat stomach.

She clicked the link. The Mail Online. She read the first paragraph.

Rose Chaplin, 14, the girl who started the school strikes which have swept the country, appeared to be involved in a riot at one of London’s top hospitals last night.



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