Spare a thought for Vianna McKenzie-Bramble. The 28-year-old Londoner was fined £12,000 for holding a party at her home in Hackney on 17 April last year.

The party for about 40 people featured food, drink, a DJ and a bouncy castle. It was in contravention of lockdown rules. It was also the day of the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral.

The previous night, in a more upmarket postcode, two parties took place in the same house, eventually merging into one and spilling into the garden. There was no bouncy castle in the Downing Street garden, but there was a swing, belonging to young master Wilfred Johnson, the son of Boris and Carrie Johnson, who were not at home that night.

Fuelled by a suitcase full of wine, and pumped up by a DJ set executed by a special advisor from his laptop, an oafish attempt at operating the child's toy predictably resulted in its destruction. By the time that happened, it was the early hours of the day of the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral.

So how come Vianna McKenzie-Bramble was prosecuted by the Metropolitan Police, but nobody in Downing Street has been?

There are at least eight occasions the Met could investigate. And it is not as if they had to be called by irate neighbours: the Downing Street complex is one of the most secure buildings in Europe, guarded 24/7 by - you guessed it - the Metropolitan Police.

And Ms McKenzie-Bramble is not the only one. Some 2,000 people have been prosecuted for breaches of the Covid rules in London alone, paying fines of £1.2 million between them. But Old Bill is staying well away from the Downing Street events - and that is fuelling the sense of injustice in the country, the notion that it is one law for the rulers, and another law for the ruled. Or that the rulers just do not care about the rules.

The latest party/work event with alcohol to emerge is a leaving do for the former head of the Covid-19 unit in the cabinet office - literally the people writing the rules. It is going to be part of an ever-lengthening list of events to be investigated by the most well-known civil servant in Britain, Sue Gray.

Not only is Boris Johnson and his supporters saying we must wait for Sue Gray, the second Secretary General in the Cabinet Office, to file her report before we pass judgement, the Metropolitan Police are also saying they want to wait for Sue Gray's report before looking to see if any possible criminal offences were committed. Ms Gray is becoming the Godot of Westminster: we are all waiting for her.

It is now six and a half weeks since the first reports of a Downing Street party emerged. How long does it take to get some straight answers? Media speculation has it that Ms Gray might report sometime next week.

However, we have been hearing that almost every week since she took over the investigation. In the meantime, the answer to virtually every question journalists ask of Downing Street is "I don't want to pre-empt the findings of Sue Gray's inquiry."

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson

The same went for Boris Johnson himself. In his Commons appearance at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday, the one where he had to explain away a garden party in Downing Street on 20 May 2020 (no children's swings were damaged at this one).

That was the one where his principal private secretary - his top civil servant - sent out an email invitation urging people to "bring your own booze". The one that provoked another flood of stories on radio and television programmes of people who could not be with loved ones as they died. Who sat in car parks trying to exchange final words over facetime, or who held brutally truncated funerals - all because they obeyed the rules.

Mr Johnson invoked the senior civil servant and her investigation as the shield to hide behind, in refusing to answer all questions beyond his carefully scripted (ie heavily lawyered) opening statement. The one where he apologised to people who were offended, but said he genuinely believed he was attending a work event that was within the rules.

Conservative Party officials briefing for the Prime Minster stuck even more doggedly to a script that consisted of "we do not want to pre-empt the outcome of the inquiry". Only one new piece of information emerged - the Prime Minster did not see the email his principle private secretary Martin Reynolds had sent to almost 100 people.

Nor was he sent the email. Not surprising, as the PPS would normally deal with the PM's agenda and invites and emails.

So how did Mr Johnson find out about the party/work event with booze? Well, that would be "pre-empting the outcome of the inquiry".

So, would answering the following questions: How did the Prime Minister find out about the event if he didn't get an email? Did he hear the noise and just stumble upon it? Who told him to come? Did he have a drink? Did he bring a bottle? Does the Prime Minister normally drink at work events? What other minsters were present? Were you (to the spokespeople) at any of these parties?

All meeting the same answer - inappropriate to say anything that might pre-empt Sue Gray's report.

Only one direct answer to a very direct question from a journalist: is the Prime Minster a liar? The answer: No.

Sue Gray, we were told, has the Prime Minister’s full backing. But then it got interesting. We were told the Prime Minister will accept any facts she finds in her report. But what about recommendations? "We are not sure what format Sue Gray's report will take."

10 Downing Street

Previous reports, people who have seen them say, were a set of facts, with no conclusions. The conclusions were drawn by the person who received the report - the Prime Minster. So, Boris Johnson may have to draw conclusions about himself.

The report will be published, we are told. And the Prime Minster asked Parliament to wait until they had possession of the full facts before arriving at their own conclusions.

Some, of course are not waiting. They have seen enough. And not just opposition MPs. A small knot of Torys have come out and called on the Prime Minister to resign.

They have said they have sent letters to the chairman of the backbench 1922 committee, calling for a confidence vote. Sir Graham Brady - the chairman and recipient of letters - need 54 such missives, representing 15% of the MPs to call a vote.

He became a familiar figure during the dying days of Theresa Mays premiership in 2019. At the nadir of her popularity, she scored a satisfaction rating of minus 49%. On Friday, Boris Johnson scored -50%.

The first figure to break ranks was Douglas Ross, the leader of the Scottish Conservatives. Who put the PM on notice, then made good on his promise, calling on him to resign and handing in a letter to the 1922 Committee.

He was dismissed as a "lightweight figure" by Leader of the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg, in remarks that stoked fury in Scotland.

Boris Johnson has never been popular there, but is even less so now. And the rift with the Scottish Tories has deepened in the past couple of weeks.

Even before this week’s revelations, there were talks of the Scottish Conservative Party having to break away from the English party in order to have a credible. electable alternative to the SNP.

Mr Rees-Mogg's remarks have blown the divisions into the public domain. Most of the Conservative members of the Scottish Parliament have since come out in support of Douglas Ross, and opposition to Boris Johnson.

Covid-19 and 'Partygate' are proving to have consequences for the future of the Union - with more on this topic expected in the coming week.

Labour Party leader Keir Starmer

The Labour Party has pulled into a ten-point lead over the Conservatives in two successive opinion polls. The more middle ground-friendly front bench (and backroom operation) are bedding in, and the 'Partygate' affair offers them the easiest opportunity to duff up the government without breaking sweat.

For the first time in a very long time, the Labour Party now looks like a credible alternative government, which means Mr Johnson cannot dismiss them with rhetoric and jokes.

Mr Johnson's superpower, at least among Tory MPs, is his reputation as an election winning asset: when that goes, he goes.

The Conservative Party MPs also know the economic situation is going to get worse in the months ahead, and Brexit is yielding no discernible dividends for the public or businesses.

The only bright spot they are clinging to is the management of the Covid pandemic, despite the fact that breaching Covid rules has them in the mess they are now in.

On Friday, for the first time in over three weeks, the number of daily infections has dipped below 100,000. The hospitals have coped with the Omicron wave, and excess deaths have not spiked. But the ever-changing virus is hardly the best rock of hope to cling to.

This weekend MPs will be in their constituencies, getting their views on Partygate and the future of Boris Johnson. No doubt some of those they encounter will have been fined by the local police for breaching the Covid rules.

Like the 300 people at a rave in a railway arch in Hackney on 23 January last year. The Met Police fined them £15,000. The Home Secretary, Priti Patel, took to Twitter to denounce the partygoers actions as "an insult to those hospitalised with Covid-19, the NHS staff, and everyone staying at home to protect them".

This week she has been tweeting her support for Boris Johnson.

But it is hard to think of any combination more toxic for the Prime Minister than his own former employer, the Daily Telegraph, breaking the news of the two Downing Street staff parties on the eve of the Royal Funeral.

Britain's Queen Elizabeth pictured sitting alone in Windsor chapel on the day of Prince Philip's funeral

That image of Queen Elizabeth sitting alone in the chapel at Windsor, obeying the same Covid rules as her subjects, was widely remarked on at the time as showing leadership in the pandemic. The revelations about the slovenly ship being run by the Prime Minister in his own office of state stands in stark contrast.

The latest is this morning’s Daily Mirror story about "Wine Time Friday," a regular diary-date drinks event in the Downing Street Press office every Friday from 4pm to 7pm, when staff would unwind with a glass or two of wine.

So popular were they during lockdown, the paper reports, that staff clubbed together to buy a wine cooler fridge for the office - the Mirror has photos of the fridge being delivered on 11 December 2020.

It says the suitcase - the memorable detail from the Telegraph story on Friday morning, used to transport wine to the leaving do on the eve of Prince Philips funeral - was frequently employed to keep the wine cooler topped up with prosecco, white wine and beer from the Tesco Express at Westminster tube station.

And all the while, the question hangs in the air of every political conversation in this great city - what on earth is going to come out next?