Dr. Yvonne Carmichael has a high-flying career, a beautiful home, and the "perfect family." After a confident presentation to a group of MPs, Yvonne is approached by a charismatic stranger, who seems refreshingly interested in what she has to say - interested in her. Before she's had time to stop and think, she finds herself alone and intimate with him in the deserted crypt beneath the House of Commons. Although she never expects to see him again, their encounter builds to an affair, and the unexpected passion that this man arouses in Yvonne shakes her. The affair is made all the more enticing by his enigmatic nature. He gives away very little, and always seems to have one eye cast over his shoulder. He dictates how their relationship plays out, and Yvonne realises that such clandestine planning comes as second nature to him. Is there more to his 'civil service' role than he'll admit? But instead of ringing warning bells, this knowledge only thrills Yvonne even more, despite herself. One evening, dressed up for a colleague's retirement party, she meets her lover beforehand in a bar in central London. Slightly drunk and intoxicated by the thrill of the affair, they end up having sex in a small backstreet alley, Apple Tree Yard. Arriving at the party, Yvonne is glowing. She gets steadily drunk on the free champagne whilst covertly swapping texts with him. But at the end of the night, everything changes for Yvonne. One minute she is buzzing with the passion and excitement of an affair; the next she is devastated and drowning, when violence springs from an unexpected quarter.
In the aftermath of the attack, a devastated Yvonne shuts down. She drives to the police station; but can't face going in. Costley contacts her, and she finds herself confiding in him. A couple of days later, Yvonne receives an email from her attacker - casual, friendly; no mention of what happened. Over the following weeks, the stalking intensifies, until one evening he turns up in Yvonne's local shop, nonchalant and quietly menacing. Yvonne turns to Costley. She's utterly terrified. He is calm, reassuring, authoritative. He tells her to memorize an address, and he'll meet her there the next day. Yvonne finds herself at a shabby, nondescript flat in the suburbs which she assumes is a security services property - a safe house. And at last she does feel safe. Tangled together in bed, they discuss what to do. Costley tells her things have to change. Yvonne asks him if he "knows people." Costley says he'd want to see her attacker's face - wouldn't she? Early on a Saturday morning, and Yvonne is getting ready to leave the house. Gary, still in the dark about the affair and the attack, confesses that whilst he was away he slept with his colleague, Rosa. Yvonne is reeling, but can't process this right now - she tells Gary she wants to get to the recycling place early. But instead of the recycling plant, she drives to a train station and picks up Costley, taking him through the suburban streets of London - to her attacker's flat. Costley is calm and collected, as he rings the bell and disappears inside. In the car, Yvonne waits for him to return.
Costley is shaken up, but won't tell Yvonne what happened inside Selway's flat. Yvonne asks him if they need to call the police. Costley tells her no; she just has to trust him. That evening, Yvonne is arrested for the murder of George Selway. Questioned through the night, she is forced to tell them about Selway's attack. Cleveland says Costley has already admitted their affair; momentarily thrown, Yvonne then calls his bluff and sticks to her story. To her relief, Yvonne is granted bail. Back home, she tries to explain things to Gary - why she didn't talk to him about the rape; and Gary, still ignorant of her affair with Costley, comforts her as best he can. At last, the first day of Yvonne and Costley's trial arrives. After a shocking account of the brutality of the attack on Selway, the prosecution call Witness A, "the MI5 man," to the stand. Yvonne is relieved that the truth about Costley is finally coming out - surely once the jury realise that he is an MI5 agent, they will better understand how he came to deal with Selway in such an extreme, but "efficient" manner. But Yvonne's world is blown apart yet again: Costley was turned down by MI5. The air of secrecy and mystery which had surrounded him had all been an act. Yvonne finally realises that she has no idea who Costley is. The man beside her in the dock. The man she trusted. The man on whom her liberty depends.
The murder trial continues, with Costley's lawyer, Bonnard, hingeing her defence on the claim that Costley suffers from a personality disorder, which would have impeded his ability to react normally during an altercation with Selway. However this theory is ripped apart by the prosecution barrister, Price, and Costley's case seems to be left in tatters. Yvonne finally takes the stand. She sticks firmly to the story, and confidently holds her own. When she moves on to talk about the rape, her evident distress and the authenticity of her account awaken sympathy in the jury. However, Bonnard and Costley aren't finished yet. After a catch-up initiated by Costley, Bonnard asks Yvonne about working at the Beaufort Institute, and her intimacy with that part of Central London - the surrounding cafes, shops, streets and side-streets - specifically a small alley called Apple Tree Yard. Yvonne's heartbeat quickens and time slows down, as Bonnard goes on to describe the backstreet where Yvonne had sex with her lover, Mark Costley, just before going to the party where she was attacked by George Selway. Bonnard is triumphant - Yvonne is a liar. She was having an affair with Mark Costley; and she goaded her lover into killing the man who allegedly attacked her. Costley has reneged on their agreement, and Yvonne's darkest secrets are public property. Her liberty rests in the hands of the jury. But whatever the verdict, her good behaviour now has to last a lifetime.
© 2018 Kudos Film & Television Limited 2016. Licenced by FremantleMEdia International to Polyband Medien GmbH. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2023
All Rights Reserved.
Internet Service Terms
Apple TV & Privacy