Detective Wilkes sat back in his chair. He felt puzzled. He had been back at headquarters a full day now, and everything seemed normal. But every time he suggested working on the case of Christopher Harrison and Emily, nobody wanted to talk to him. His partner had suggested a doughnut run, his supervisor had suggested some filing, and the department secretary had jumped up and run off, muttering something about needing the little girls’ room. It was all very odd. Perhaps it was time to make some waves around here.
He started asking questions. Not among the office staff or his fellow detectives, obviously, but among his informants, the casual hangers-on of the streets and businesses around the precinct house.
He had no luck. No one had seen anything suspicious, nothing at all, honest, Detective, wide-eyed. He knew enough to distrust the wide-eyed look, but it didn’t help much when he already had suspicions.
Then quite by chance, he ran across the entertainer who’d done a comedy act a few weeks ago in the pub across the street. A nervous chainsmoker, he wasn’t from this part of the country, he was from Scotland, oddly enough, and he saw no reason not to talk to the local police.
He had chanced to see a very well-dressed woman in heels striding into the precinct house late at night, perhaps around one in the morning. He thought it odd how well she looked so late at night.
He was shot dead the morning after talking to Wilkes, at the train station, by persons unknown, as he prepared to board his return train to Glasgow.