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Muddied Waters

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Rumoured graft and bribery in Township business should have left a certain municipal official wealthy, and an ideal target for murder. So why was he dead and broke? Newspaper editor Gloria Trevisi must find out, before one of her houseguests is arrested... or killed.

The Plattsford Sun has all the news that's fit to print... and more.

"Stories within stories fill this mystery with an unpredictable and gripping fascination that never lags."

-- Viviane Crystal, The Best Review

Not an average day at the office…

In the midst of an unusually busy work week during an unusually wet spring, immediately after the discovery of an unusual crime scene, a stranger (at least to the community of Plattsford) arrives to visit Gloria. Naturally, curiosity is rampant, even at the local police detachment…

“I believe you were taking photographs from a low-flying aircraft over the field where the victim was found?” Inspector Gray queried.

Gloria quelled an angry response. “Yes, Inspector, Mrs. Ormsford and I had been flying over the district. I was photographing the results of recent flooding for next week’s front page and she was searching for some stray sheep. Is there any—”

“And I believe that once again you have photographs of the scene? Taken from the aircraft shortly before the arrival of the police?” he asked, cutting her off.

“Taken at the moment the body was discovered, as a matter of fact. Mrs. Ormsford was on her radio, calling the airport to telephone the police, as I was taking the picture,” Gloria clarified. “What I’d like to know—”

“So we have been informed,” he cut in, clearly not in the mood to answer questions, Gloria observed. “And I gather—”

“The film is at the office,” she interjected. “As soon as it is processed, I would be glad to—”

“Fine. Don’t let me keep you from your work.” The Inspector stood up. Dismissed. She stood and edged toward the door. “Oh, Ms Trevisi—” She turned back. “You have a guest staying with you, I hear, who drives a rather interesting car.”

“I have a guest, Inspector.” She leaned against the doorframe. “Your point?”

“When did he arrive?”

“Yesterday afternoon.”

“We can check on that, of course. May I ask what sort of business he is in?”

“Eric Hawkins is a professional musician, like my husband. A baritone soloist, actually, working on an operatic career.”

Gray accurately summed up her momentary glare. “I have no interest in your personal life. We are keeping tabs on anyone out of the ordinary, staying in the area.”

“Then I believe you’d be better off talking with Constable Sheila Miller. She was keeping tabs on him last night.” Gloria couldn’t help the slight twitch in her upper lip.

“Thank you. That will be all.” The inspector’s face gave nothing away as he gestured toward the door.

Gloria walked out without a backward glance. A courtesy print, and the loan of the negatives to the police, in exchange for nothing; no doubt they had more photos of the scene than she did. And more-than-average curiosity about Eric; why? What was interesting, or unusual, about an incredibly handsome, internationally-known operatic baritone, who drove a sixties muscle car, visiting her while her husband was away? Or, more to the point, why did this interest Detective Inspector Gray.

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