Sunday, June 3, 2018

Skeletons and Secrets

Needless to say, all the talk outside had to do with woman's death. The atmosphere was morbid. Most guests didn't know what to do. The bar was very popular with many seeking some libation to calm them down or dull the memory of the past 45 minutes or so.

Pearce had gotten Mack to locate all the employees and move them into the side yard. He returned to the main room to see if there was anything else he could do. He saw the EMT's moving someone out of the room. The body was on a gurney and not in a bag. 'Good' he thought. He must have misunderstood Sam. He thought Sam had told him the lady died. He found Mercer and Hollis. "Thank God, she is still alive."

Mercer hesitated, then realized what the confusion was about. "No, unfortunately she died. We just thought a body bag would cause even more commotion. If we left her here, there would be no question as to what happened. So we moved her that way. You realize somewhere in our mist is a killer?"

Pearce was taken aback. "Killer? You think someone killed her?"
Then he looked down and saw a chalked outline of, what he assumed, was the body. 

"I'm pretty sure she was poisoned by either opioids or amphetamines, and an extreme dose at that."

Thinking Pearce may be upset that chalk was used one of his ornate oriental rug, Mercer spoke, "The chalk vacuums up. I assure you it does not harm the rug." 

Pearce shook his head. "That's the least of our problems now." He looked back at the outline, "What can I do to help?" 

"Just keep the guests calm. It is going to take us a while to interview to everyone. Mike is checking the kitchen for any possible drugs or other lethal substances." Looking at Pearce's expression, he added, "Don't worry, I don't see him finding anything. My guess is that it was someone in this room tonight."

The Sheriff walked over to the table to interview those who had been sitting with her during dinner. It was easy to pick out the woman's date. He was distraught. The Sheriff asked him to step over to the next table to give him some privacy.

"I am sorry for your loss. This is never easy, but I need to ask some questions."

"Of course."

"Did she have any enemies, or any threats?"

"No." He paused, "Wait, there was something but I think it was a just coincidence."

"When this happens, there no coincidences."

He told him something she had shared with him. "I can't imagine that having anything to do. . ." He swallowed. " . . .with what happened tonight.

Both men sat there for a moment or 2. Finally the Sheriff broke the silence, "Look, the last time I remember seeing the 2 of you was at both Kathleen's and Bunny's wedding."

Silence again, the Sheriff finally spoke,"Gallagher is a small town. Everyone has a few secrets." He paused, "And I can pretty much assure you, everyone has skeletons in their closet."

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