The Ink Black Heart Timeline

Below is a timeline of the sixth Strike novel, The Ink Black Heart.


June 2010: Edie Ledwell and Josh Blay’s first-ever TIBH interview (Ch 14).

14 September 2011: The Buzz interview with Edie Ledwell and Josh Blay (Ch 5).

15 September 2011: Drek’s Game moderators chat about The Buzz interview (Ch 5).

January 2012: Pen of Justice blog started (Ch 25). 

8 June 2012: Anomie tweets that Katya Upcott was sacked as Edie Ledwell’s assistant and that Josh Blay remains with Katya (Ch 24). 

5 February 2013: The Buzz article “Runaway YouTube success The Ink Black Heart snapped up by Netflix.” (Ch 5)

6 February 2013: Moderator chat about The Buzz article (Ch 5).

24 May 2014: Edie Ledwell hospitalised for attempted suicide (Ch 5). 

28 May 2014: The Buzz article: “Edie Ledwell’s Agent Confirms Hospitalisation.” (Ch 5)

Moderator chats between Paperwhite and Morehouse, and Morehouse and Anomie (Ch 5).

Thursday, 9 October 2014: The Ritz on Robin’s birthday. Attempted kiss (Ch 1).

Friday, 10 October: Robin’s birthday dinner with friends, organised by Ilsa (Ch 1).

Following weeks: “Barriers re-erected” between Strike and Robin after The Ritz (Ch 2).

23 November 2014: 40th birthday party for Strike at a restaurant, organised by Nick and Ilsa (Ch 2).

Week after: Andy Hutchins hands in notice (Ch 2).

Late November: Farewell drinks for Andy at pub, Sam Barclay on surveillance in West End (Ch 2).

Early December 2014: Strike hires Dev Shah (Ch 2).

A Friday in December: Pat tells Robin what she thinks of Dev.

Christmas 2014: Robin volunteers to stake out their billionaire client’s house on South Audley Street (Ch 2).

Strike is in Cornwall (Ch 15).

28 December 2014: Ex-boyfriend of Miss Jones buys coke in front of Dev. Miss Jones comes to office to see photo and makes a move on Strike (Ch 3).

New Year’s Eve: Mother in the Groomer case has told Strike that her daughter plans on going to Annabel’s with the family of a school friend so Strike and Midge go to Annabel’s. Strike meets Madeline (Ch 3).

New Year’s: Robin is in Zermatt, Switzerland, on a skiing trip with her cousin Katie and her husband, mutual friends from Masham, and Axeman (Ch 4). 

Second week of January: (Monday 5th?) Robin returns to office with Swiss chocolates (Ch 4).

7 January 2015: It is announced that The Ink Black Heart could be made into a feature film (Ch 5). 

Chats among 6 moderators (Ch 5).

Sunday, 24 January 2015: Josh calls Edie and tells her there’s a rumour going round that she’s Anomie (Ch 6).

Friday, 30 January 2015: Robin is in the office alone reviewing the Groomer file. Edie Ledwell visits the office (Ch 6). Robin watches the first episode of TIBH. Robin visits a flat in Acton (Ch 7). Strike goes to McDonald’s for a Big Mac before meeting Madeline in Nightjar (Ch 8).

Thursday, 12 February 2015: Moderators chat about Josh meeting Edie that night (Ch 9). Edie Ledwell is killed in Highgate Cemetery (Ch 10).

Friday, 13 February 2015: Full team meeting at the office. Robin learns of Edie’s murder from the BBC News website (Ch 10). Moderators chat about the murder (Ch 11). DCI Ryan Murphy and Angela Dawlish come to the office to talk to Robin about Edie (Ch 12). Strike stays at Madeline’s. Wally Cardew live streams (Ch 13). 

Saturday, 14 February 2015: Valentine’s Day. Robin receives card from Hugh Jacks (Ch 14).

Sunday, 15 February 2015: Strike tails Fingers for Robin while she visits a flat in Walthamstow (Ch 14).

Monday, 16 February 2015: Robin covers Strike’s shift (Ch 10). 

Mid-March: Robin visits a flat in Tower Hamlets (Ch 15).

Thursday, 12 March 2015: Strike takes over from Robin on surveillance of Fingers in Sloane Square (Ch 15).

Friday, 13 March 2015: Strike gets a call to move the camera in the billionaire’s home on South Audley Street. He goes to Richoux and reads The Times, then gets a call from Allan Yeoman (Ch 15). Meanwhile, Robin is in Walthamstow tailing Groomer and Legs. Strike calls Robin and tells her Yeoman called. Strike calls Yeoman back saying he and Robin can meet him next Tuesday (Ch 16).

Paperwhite and Morehouse chat online about The Halvening and Anomie. Paperwhite wants Morehouse to send a photo (Ch 17).

Monday, 16 March 2015: Strike has the day off and searches for Seb Montgomery online (Ch 18). 

Tuesday, 17 March 2015: Strike and Robin get a taxi to the Arts Club to meet Yeoman and Elgar (Ch 18).

Strike and Robin go to The Tottenham for a debrief. Robin finds out she’s got her new flat, hugs Strike, and gets herself a drink (Ch 19).

Thursday, 19 March 2015: Moderator chats between Anomie, Hartella, Worm28, Vilepechora and Fiendy1 (Ch 20).

Three weeks later: Thursday, 9 April 2015: Strike and Robin cross paths in the office. Strike lets Robin know that Phillip Ormond can meet them next Thursday. In the afternoon, Strike follows Seb. Strike meets Barclay at the Red Lion and Sun where Seb, Wally, Tim, Nils and Bram meet for drinks (Ch 21). Strike follows Zoe. Strike talks to Katya Upcott on the phone (Ch 22).

Strike has dinner with Madeline (Balti curry, speciality cocktail) and stays at her place (Ch 25).

Chat amongst six of the moderators in the game (Ch 23).

Friday, 10 April 2015: Robin spends the morning watching Fingers’ flat in Sloane Square.

At midday, Robin follows Fingers to The Botanist. Midge takes over surveillance at 2pm while Fingers is still having lunch. Robin goes to the office and reads an email from Strike, reads tweets by Anomie, and watches YouTube video of Kea Niven (Ch 24).

Strike spends the morning tailing Groomer to Bond Street, then to a restaurant, and then to the British Museum where he loses sight of him. Barclay takes over surveillance. 

Charlotte Campbell comes to the office to ask Strike to investigate Jago Ross (Ch 25).  Robin speaks to DCI Murphy on the phone (Ch 26).  Dev and Strike meet in Opium to discuss the Jago Ross problem (Ch 27).

That night, Robin goes to Bob Bob Ricard’s with Ilsa (Ch 28)

At 10pm, Strike drinks his favourite whisky and reads Robin’s notes on the Pen of Justice blog (Ch 29).

In the taxi home from Bob Bob’s, Robin asks Midge to get Drek’s Game login details from her ex, Beth (Ch 30).

In-game chats between all eight moderators (Ch 31).

Strike and Robin don’t see each other for the next five days (Ch 32).

Weekend of 11/12 April 2015: Uncle Ted stays at Lucy’s over the weekend. Strike goes for a coffee with him (Ch 32).

Wednesday, 15 April 2015: Strike emails Prudence apologising for not answering her about the possible meeting dates (Ch 32).

Thursday, 16 April 2015: Robin picks up Strike from the office at midday, and they talk about the case in the car (Ch 32).

They arrive at Lisburne Road and interview Katya at her home (Ch 33).

Strike and Robin go to Hampstead Heath (Ch 34) before going to The Flask pub. 

At The Flask pub, Robin logs into Drek’s Game for the first time (Ch 35). Strike interviews Phillip Ormond in a separate room (Ch 36). After the interview, Strike joins Robin. She interacts with Anomie on Drek’s Game for the first time, and he says he killed Edie (Ch 37).

Tuesday, 21 April 2015: Strike is in bed with Madeline when she asks when he broke up with Robin (Ch 38).

Wednesday, 22 April 2015: Strike watches Groomer, who takes a long lunch at Charlotte Street Hotel until after 5pm. Strike and Robin have an Anomie case catch-up at Gerrard’s Corner (Ch 38).

Thursday, 23 April 2015: Strike tails Fingers, who does a lot of walking, including to Sotheby’s (Ch 39).

Robin’s first art class at North Grove Art Collective (Ch 39). She walks Zoe home (Ch 40).

The following week: Strike rehires ex-Red Cap Stewart Nutley.

Strike agrees to meet Madeline after her launch event.

Conference call team meeting with the agency members (Ch 41).

Monday, 4 May 2015Strike goes to Lismore Circus estate to watch over where Wally Cardew lives with his grandmother and sister.

Robin watches Yasmin’s house from Saucy Sausage in Croydon.

Strike follows Wally and MJ to Embankment and Whitehall Gardens (Ch 41), then to the Ship and Shovel on Villiers Street. Strike injures his leg and gets a taxi back to Denmark Street (Ch 42).

Tuesday 5 or Wednesday 6 May 2015: Strike stays in his attic flat after injuring his leg. The subcontractors are not happy about the workload. Robin has a catch-up chat with Strike in his flat (Ch 43).

Thursday, 7 May 2015: The day of the general election. Robin takes Wolfgang to the vet. Wolfgang is later put down. Ilsa rings Robin and tells her she’s told Nick about the pregnancy and that it’s a boy. Robin forgets to vote in the general election (Ch 44).

Friday, 8 May 2015: (At 00:23) Anomie invites Buffypaws to chat. Anomie seems to be drunk texting. In the early hours, Strike and Robin speak on the phone and make plans to go to Comic Con (Ch 44).

Saturday, 9 May 2015: Arts and Drama in Schools website goes live. Robin contacts Tim Ashcroft (Ch 45).

Tuesday, 12 May 2015: Robin gives Strike the Buffypaws cheat sheet (Ch 45). 

Wednesday, 13 May 2015: Robin interviews Tim Ashcroft in Qube, Colchester (Ch 45).

Strike finishes reviewing Kea’s online activity and sends a summary to Robin. Pat brings fruitcake up to Strike’s flat. Strike discovers Jamie Kettle online and calls DCI Murphy (Ch 46).

In game chats between five of the eight moderators of Drek’s Game about Comic Con (Ch 47).

Thursday, 14 May 2015: Strike drives to King’s Lynn to interview Kea Niven and speaks to her mother (Ch 48). He interviews Kea in the Maids Head (Ch 49).

Robin walks to Harley Street where, according to Midge, Gus is heading. Midge goes to take over from Barclay on surveillance of Preston. Robin follows Gus to Fischer’s restaurant (Ch 50).

Strike goes for a kebab and chips before heading to Bond Street to meet Madeline after her launch party. He bumps into Henry and a friend, and then Charlotte (Ch 51). Strike and Madeline argue (Ch 52).

14 May 2015: (At 15:38) Chat between four moderators. (This is dated 20th May in the text; we assume it is a mistake and should be the 14th.) (Ch 53)

Friday, 15 May 2015: Strike and Robin meet in the office. They decide Robin should approach Yasmin as Venetia Hall.

Strike goes to Sloane Square to watch Fingers at The Botanist (Ch 54).

Saturday, 16 May 2015: Yasmin emails Robin/Venetia back saying she is happy to meet.

Strike tails Preston Pierce down Swain’s Lane.

Robin calls Strike about meeting Yasmin at Comic Con (Ch 54).

Saturday, 23 May 2015: Strike and Robin meet in the office before getting the Tube to Comic Con (Ch 54). Robin interviews Yasmin while Strike, dressed as Darth Vader, hunts for Anomie (Ch 55). 

Oliver Peach/Vilepechora is pushed onto the railway tracks (Ch 56). Strike gives a statement to police (Ch 59.)

(At 11:18) Morehouse and Paperwhite chat (Ch 58).

Strike goes for dinner with Madeline at Kazan. He stays at her house (Ch 59). 

Robin’s dad collapses in the driveway and is taken to hospital with a “heart episode.” (Ch 59)

Sunday, 24 May 2015: Strike wakes up in Madeline’s house (Ch 59).

Dev gets video recording of Jago kicking his daughter (Ch 59). 

Robin picks up her things from a storage facility and moves to her new flat on Blackhorse Road with help from Strike. They have fish and chips. Strike calls Ryan Murphy about Oliver Peach (Ch 60).

Monday, 25 May 2015: (At 22:57) Moderator chats between Anomie and LordDrek (Ch 57). 

Tuesday, 26 May 2015: Ryan calls Strike saying Charlie Peach has been interviewed (Ch 62).

Moderator chats between four of the moderators (Ch 61).

Wednesday, 27 May 2015: Housekeeper at South Audley Street removes camera and takes it to Fingers in a restaurant (Ch 62).

Barclay calls saying Gus is in the clear because he’d followed him while Robin says he was active in the game (Ch 62).

Thursday, 28 May 2015: Strike has a date night with Madeline (Ch 62).

Friday, 29 May 2015: At 8:40pm, Anomie tweets about Maverick, Grant and Heather (Ch 62).

Saturday, 30 May 2015: Strike and Robin go to the Royal Spinal Cord Injury Centre to talk to Josh Blay (Ch 62, 63).

Wednesday, 3 June 2015: Strike meets Grant at The Gun, Docklands (Ch 64).

Thursday, 4 June 2015: Robin does surveillance in Sloane Square and reads an email from Strike. Nutley takes over surveillance at 1pm. At the office, Robin receives a message from Anomie asking her to be a moderator and tells her she needs to pass a test the following Thursday (Ch 65). 

Strike conducts surveillance on South Audley Street (Ch 65).

Robin goes to Highgate Cemetery and bumps into Pez. Robin goes with Pez to North Grove. She talks to Nils (Ch 66). Pez and Robin then go for drinks in the Gatehouse (Ch 67). After leaving Pez, Robin goes to Zoe’s (Ch 68).

Strike goes to the Tottenham, then the Angel, and then the Cambridge (Ch 68).

11:57pm: Chats between moderators (Ch 69).

Friday, 5 June 2015: 00:06: Chats between moderators (Ch 69).

Strike wakes up at 5am from “jumping stump.” The office is bombed (Ch 70). Pat and Strike go to Starbucks, Robin joins them, and they go to The Tottenham to give statements (Ch 71).

Ryan Murphy drives Robin home (Ch 72).

Moderator chats (Ch 73).

Strike speaks to Madeline and Lucy on the phone (Ch 74); Robin shops for food and speaks to her mother (Ch 75).

Strike arrives at Robin’s for the night; they eat and discuss the case (Ch 75).

Saturday, 6 June 2015: Strike and Robin drive to Katya’s to talk to Inigo. On arrival, Inigo and Gus are driving away. Strike and Robin follow them to their second house in Whitstable (Ch 76). They talk to Inigo (Ch 77).

Strike and Robin stay at the Marine Hotel in Whitstable (Ch 78, 79, 80). 

11:29pm: Moderator chats between Morehouse and Paperwhite. Morehouse leaves because there’s someone at the door (Ch 81).

Sunday, 7 June 2015: Strike and Robin set off for Leeds. They stop off at Cambridge Services on the way. Robin meets Rachel Ledwell in Meanwood Park while Strike sits in the cafe (Ch 82).

Strike and Robin drive to Cambridge (Ch 83). They go to the Stephen Hawking building and find Vikas (Ch 84), and are then interviewed by the police (Ch 85).

Tuesday, 9 June 2015: Strike and Robin stay in a hotel on Poland Street. Team meeting at the cafe (Ch 86).

At half eight in the evening, Strike goes to Jago Ross’ apartment in Kensington (Ch 87).

Strike returns to Z Hotel with beer and whisky. Robin/Buffypaws is banned from Drek’s Game. Strike and Robin drink whisky in Robin’s hotel room (Ch 88).

Wednesday, 10 June 2015: Robin does surveillance in Sloane Square. Strike visits Denmark Street to see how the builders are getting on. Strike and Robin go to New Scotland Yard to meet Ryan Murphy and Angela Darwish (Ch 89).

Strike and Robin go to St Stephen’s Tavern in Westminster (Ch 90).

Strike goes to see Yasmin. He finds out she’s been pretending to be Anomie since Comic Con (Ch 91).

Robin discovers the identity of the girl in Paperwhite’s photo. She gets a threatening phone call (Ch 92).

Strike speaks to Robin on the phone (Ch 93) and is confronted by Madeline on Denmark Street (Ch 94).

Robin gets a taxi back to Z Hotel (Ch 94).

Thursday, 11 June 2015: 00:15: Chat between Anomie and Worm28 (Ch 95).

Strike leaves a voicemail for Grant, calls Ryan Murphy and Midge, then Robin. He tells Robin to stay put in the hotel. He goes to St Mary’s Hospital because of his leg and has tests done. The doctor tells him to rest for at least four weeks (Ch 96).

Friday, 12 June 2015: Strike wakes up at 8am feeling sick from drinking whisky the night before along with tramadol painkillers (Ch 97).

Strike and Robin have a video call with Nicole Crystal with her parents present (Ch 97).

Sunday, 14 June 2015: Strike and Robin spend the weekend researching Marcus Barrett, Nicole Crystal and Twitter trolls online. Robin agrees to go with Strike to see Grant Ledwell the following evening (Ch 98).

Monday, 15 June 2015: Bill Reeves’ 18th birthday.

Pat receives another anonymous call. Strike writes an email to his landlord and to Allan Yeoman.

Dev Shah arrives at the office and tells Strike that he’s wrapped up the Fingers case.

From 3pm, new office furniture is delivered to the office (Ch 99).

After a phone call to the office, Strike and Robin go to meet Zoe at her place (Ch 100).

Robin, as Worm28, talks to Anomie and Paperwhite. She reveals Anomie and Paperwhite to be the same person (Ch 101).

Strike confronts Tim Ashcroft, resulting in him running down the street after Robin and Zoe appear. Strike and Robin escort Zoe to the Tube. Zoe goes to the Z Hotel to stay in Robin’s room (Ch 102).

Strike and Robin go for sandwiches at a sandwich bar before setting off for the Ledwell’s house (Ch 103).

Strike and Robin talk to Grant and Heather at their home (Ch 104).

Strike and Robin go to the Upcotts’ house and Anomie is revealed (Ch 105, 106).

Friday, 26 June 2015 (this date isn’t certain since there are inconsistencies): Strike is in hospital when Robin visits for the second time. Strike shows Robin a photo of the office door.

Prudence is visiting Strike that evening.

Robin has a date with Ryan Murphy… (Ch 107)