43 -- the last chapter

43 -- the last chapter

A Chapter by Kasey Klein

 

Randy Joyce Locke and the incident at Sparrow Lea

 

43

Sometimes hard choices. Sometimes the apparent distracts us from the obvious, which isn’t always a bad thing. Much of the information that passes in front of us isn’t all that important. Most to the time, the object is more important than the shadow the object throws. When I’m trying to navigate a busy street, the moving car is important not the person driving the car. Dealing with what we can see in any given moment and not the vast complexities behind what is apparent is just how we can move through the day and not get stuck in the moment.

However, the shadows are always important. When I first interviewed Martha Smith, I accepted what she presented, what was apparent. I took the domestic job as a favor. I didn’t see the shadows, what was obvious, because I never bothered to look. Mrs. Smith presented me with a tale, so much folklore, and I accepted what she said. She was married. Her husband was cheating on her. She wanted ironclad proof. This was the apparent.

What was obvious when I re-interviewed was she was a predator. I was armed with the knowledge Eve had painstakingly dug up. In my first interview, I looked at Mrs. Smith, but I never really looked at her. I could see in Smith’s eyes every conjecture of Eve’s was true.

I hate being used for someone else’s agenda that doesn’t fit neatly into my sense of right and wrong, which is why I don’t jump every time Aristotle Harrison calls. “Having used all our resources,” I told Martha Smith. “We have concluded John Smith is not having an affair and we have copied your husband with that affidavit.” Martha Smith was not pleased. “Further, our office has uncovered a pattern of behavior of yours, not just in this marriage but also in your first marriage that is immoral if not illegal. Again, affidavits and reports have been copied to all involved parties.”

Martha Smith, of course, was livid and, of course, refused to pay my final invoice, which I had tripled just for the fun of it. As Smith glared at me, red faced and stamping her foot in refusal, I said calmly: “I anticipated as much and have Andrew Coward, my lawyer, filing this morning.” As the door slammed, I called: “Have a nice day,” behind her.

 

“You did bring your bathing suit?” Taylor Richardson asked me as I entered into her backyard. “I thought Eve would be with you.”

“No swimming today. I’m still pissed at Don and don’t want to give him the treat of seeing me in a bikini.” Taylor laughed, thinking I was kidding. “Eve’s bringing a date, picking him up at the airport. I told her it’d be cool.”

“Of course.” Taylor put her arm around me, leading me toward the crowd of people. “I did talk to Don about that incident. I know your loyalty extends far to Janet and all �"”

“She didn’t do it. I know she has the drug history. I know she’s had two arrests, but none within five years.”

“Don showed me the evidence, Randy, and really, it doesn’t look good.”

I shrugged. “Taylor, things are rarely what they seem. I’m just a little disappointed Don doesn’t step up to the plate here but I understand. His bosses want something. You, Taylor, are fooled into thinking Janet’s bust was incidental and opportune and they’re just taking advantage of the bust to get me to roll over. I’ll give you some facts. First off, I didn’t kill Jack Binder, the child rapist. Second of all, I didn’t arrange the murder. Thirdly, I don’t know who did the murder or who arraigned the murder.”

I nodded to myself and went on. “They think I know something. I don’t. This new hierarchy has been buzzing around me like flies around crap, trying to trip me up. Failing that, they set Janet up. Come on, what would anyone be doing with that much coke under her front seat? And they followed her around until she’s driving through a school zone?” I laughed. “Then, Taylor, they come to me and say: ‘It’ll all go away if you give us a name?’”

“It’s not that I don’t believe you �"”

“The good news, Taylor, is that District Attorney Donald Richardson is clean in all this. I was afraid I’d have to take him down. I love you guys, you know.”

Taylor gave me her narrow eyes and smirked. “You got one hell of a hole card, huh?”

“Don’t I always?”

I like the Richardson’s parties, mostly lawyers and law enforcement people. I get to catch up with people I’ve crossed paths and swords with. I get to make new contacts. Most the people either know me personally or know me by reputation. I greeted Don at the grill. “So, Don, when Mayor Mockridge is impeached, are you up for the job?”

“Nice to see you, too, Randy, and I doubt it. The mayor’s a pretty solid guy. He even pays his parking tickets.” He bit his lip. “This is a party �" eat, drink, be merry. Later on, we can talk about that other business.” He nodded toward the side gate. “Who’s that with Eve?”

“That’s Jeffery Kent, a good friend of hers.”

“Not the Jeffery Kent, the investigative reporter that broke the Benjamin Lawrence Manson case two weeks ago?”

I giggled. “Be a good boy and I’ll see if I can get his autograph for you.”

As Eve introduced Kent around, people gathered. Being prosecutors and investigators, they had questions. The scattered serial murders was not an easy case to crack. Officially, Manson was on the hook for eleven murders. In the press, Kent had connected one more.

“Elementary, my dears,” he said flamboyantly. “Though the murder of Jack Pratt doesn’t fit the profile, Pratt’s male and the body was never found, Pratt practically lived next door to Manson. My theory is the Pratt found Manson out and got killed for it.”

“That’s a stretch, don’t you think?”

“I do have an alternate theory about Pratt, which you can read all about in my upcoming book, The incident at Sparrow Lea, due out next fall.”

I laughed across the distance. Kent winked at me. “So, Mr. Kent,” I called over everyone. “What are you working on now?”

“I’m glad you asked.” He bobbed a pointing finger at me with a coy smile. “I’ve stepped into this story of corruption. It seems a young woman was setup. Oh, the details don’t matter that much right now.” Eve handed Jeffery Kent a sheet of paper. “I have internal memos and emails.” He looked around. “I was hoping the mayor would be here but I’ll catch up to him later for a comment.” He nodded to the faces. “As I call your name, I’ll give you what I have on you, then you can comment.”

Kent winked at me again. “Mr. Richardson, I copied you on all the paperwork. You’ll be the one prosecuting.”

“Randy �"” Donald Richardson said from behind me.

“Don, I told you if Janet wasn’t cleared and apologized to by the time I got back, I’d take everyone down.”

I keep my promises.

 

 



© 2011 Kasey Klein


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Author

Kasey Klein
Kasey Klein

palmyra, NJ



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Greetings and salutations. I'm serious about my writing. I'm not much for writing or reading poetry. I like the classics: Poe, Frost, Whitman. I'd like to read good short stories. If you don't.. more..

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