If you missed the first chapter, start here!
Snuggled up against Jake on his couch after dinner, Penelope thought back to her conversation with Officer Dolan. “Did you ever meet Jezza?”
He kept his eyes on the television. “I talked to her a few times.” On the screen a smattering of muted applause followed a swing, and the camera followed the arc of the ball as it landed on the green.
“But you didn’t know her well?”
“Not really. I saw her a handful of times before she and her husband separated, mostly when she visited him at his office.” Jake paused the replay and looked at her. “Why?”
She shrugged. “I got all irritated with that man-child taking my statement today because he kept calling her ‘the mayor’s wife’, like she didn’t have any identity of her own, but I realized I’ve been doing the same thing for the last three months. I don’t know anything about her. I’m such a hypocrite.”
“It’s probably just as well you two weren’t close,” Jake said, clicking the remote again. “This way you just look clueless instead of malicious.”
“Excuse me?” Penelope struggled to sit up straighter.
One side of Jake’s mouth twitched, but he kept his eyes on the screen. “Well, there wasn’t a forced entry and you have the key, the dog knows you, and you couldn’t have contaminated the scene more thoroughly if you’d tried.” He pulled her closer and kissed the top of her head. “But the good news is that the coroner put time of death between four-thirty and six-thirty and you have a really strong alibi.”
“Mmm, thank god I planned ahead and seduced you two years ago.”
Jake picked up the nearly empty wine bottle at his foot and emptied it into her glass. “Is that what happened? I always thought it was the other way around.”
“Ha! With your moves? Not a chance.” Penelope took a sip of wine. “Isn’t it always the spouse anyway? I bet he did it.”
“Nope. Turns out our mayor suffers from insomnia —“
“Because he has a guilty conscience.”
Jake continued as if she hadn’t interrupted. “— and he was having a sleep study done last night. Two people watched him sleep. And they have a recording.”
“I guess that would be pretty hard to fake.” Penelope tried to keep the disappointment from her voice.
“Besides, I think he still felt something for her. He was pretty upset when he found out she was dead.”
Penelope groaned and slid down on the couch, keeping her wine glass level. “I’m going to have to be nice to him for a while, aren’t I?”
“If it makes you feel any better, he tried to pin it on you, too.”
“Bastard.” She closed her eyes. “Wake me up when they get to the interesting part.”
***(Comments, requests, and suggestions all welcome!)