THE dark, brooding storms and the fierce thunder and lightning circling Brisbane during the Daniel Morcombe coronial inquest could be just a coincidence.
But the Morcombes won't discount it's Daniel's wrath, his lost spirit spurring them to find the answers, to find him.
Bruce and Denise Morcombe are realists who are pragmatic about what might have happened to their 13-year-old son seven years ago.
They know he is probably dead, most likely murdered, but they want to lay his body to rest and give him a grave that they can visit.
The vast web of lies spun during the inquest this week by career criminals means they may never know how he died.
But the Morcombes believe Daniel's spirit is compelling them to seek the truth amid these "disgusting, despicable" lies.
"They're just disgusting. It's like we've attracted every lowest piece of scum on the earth," Mrs Morcombe said.
"If they're going to make up stories, don't involve other people and family members and poor Daniel.
"Why do they do it?
"Just because P33 hates P32 or some other trivial reason.
"It's a waste of police resources for all this and it hurts everybody.
"I think they should be jailed for all their lying.
"But to these people it doesn't matter.
"If they need a car they'll just go grab one and dump it round the corner when they're finished with it.
"If they need drugs, they just go rob a house.
"Daniel seems to have been a magnet for these people.
"I've never been to court before so you don't know what to expect."
Mr Morcombe said the family would now look forward to their son Bradley's 21st birthday on Sunday and then Christmas.
"We're very happy with the week. We've seen four persons of interest as well as some more details on the investigative process on a number of POIs," he said.
"So we've got to the point we're at and we don't think it's been a wasted effort. We think progress has been made.
"We'll just wait for March now."
More POIs and their associates are expected to be called during March next year.
Morcombe family lawyer Peter Boyce has been by the Morcombes' side through the first 14 days of the inquest.
The father of six - who has been a lawyer for 33 years - said this week, involving the questioning of four of the 35 persons of interest in Daniel's case, was even tough for him.
"Having read all the material, they're more strikingly poor than I thought they would be," he said.
"Their demeanour, their presentation, their lack of respect for just common decency.
"Things you would take for granted, we couldn't with them.
"They are disgraceful people.
"The classic for me was when P1 was asked on day two (this week), 'do you place much importance on giving an oath?' and he said, 'not really'.
"P1 was adamant our murderer would be known on Thursday, so what are they up to, these guys, in jail?"
Yesterday Mr Boyce questioned a P33 who claimed he was involved in Daniel's abduction, rape and murder.
P33 has provided multiple versions that are inconsistent.
He yesterday admitted to lying about many details in his versions but claimed the version he gave during the inquest was true.
"You've done significant damage to Morcombes, haven't you?" Mr Boyce said.
"On your version you've killed their son and if it's a lie you've deliberately tortured the Morcombe family."
"It's not a lie, sir," P33 said.
Mr Boyce said the Morcombes had researched the process so they would understand how the inquest would unfold.
"For Bruce and Denise and the boys it's good to see these people and hear it first hand," he said.
"Bruce had seen P1, but Denise hadn't.
"The other thing that is really important is Bruce and Denise's dignity and the respect they command by their dignity.
"It would be easy to lose your cool.
"Even if they're lies, these people have said some dreadful things about their child.
"To lie and go into that detail about what they did to your child is horrific for any parent.
"It's worse because they don't know how he died.
"Thursday (P33's alleged confession to Daniels abduction, rape and death) has been tough on them. You can see it in their faces.
"But they are realists and they are really good to work with."
The respect for the family was no more poignant than yesterday at lunch when a woman handed Mrs Morcombe a bunch of mini red roses, told her she was a mother and wished her well.
Mr Boyce said he was involved in the Fitzgerald trial but the Morcombe case was "the worst by a long way".
He said looking at the criminal histories, the facts of that past criminal behaviour and their habitual lying was sometimes "overwhelming".
"The Fitzgerald trial took six months of my life," he said.
"That was the other one that was really tough.
"But this one is tougher because I've got children of similar age.
"You see what decent people (the Morcombes) are and it'd be just everyone's worst nightmare not to know.
"Yet they show up every day and they're going to see it through to the end.
"As a lawyer I don't think I've ever seen a collective group, 35 of them, who are at the lowest end of our society, some who will never be rehabilitated and will always be inside.
"That's as a lawyer. Then you get Bruce and Denise as parents who have no concept of what low lifes there are and they've got 35 of them all in a bunch.
"You can't believe they exist.
"I've spent days having to read this material and I just can't believe it that we have people like this in our society."
Mr Boyce expects two more people of interest to come before the coroner in March.
He said he hoped to help confirm or disprove the various versions people of interest had provided police.
"I think the police generally have done a good job examining P1-35," he said.
"It's unfortunate some things didn't happen earlier in moving the investigation forward.
"That first 13 hours with these criminals is a very long time (before police took action).
"Collectively they are by far the worst I have come across.
"This is by far the worst you could ever run into.
"The worst thing is if it's not one of them, where do we go from there?"
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