the vampire murder case (part forty-five)

This story started here.

About twenty minutes later, we were all in Dr. Lee's office. Dr. Lee was in her usual chair, and Åsa was in the other one, looking somewhat shell shocked. My employer sat on the sofa until everyone was assembled, then she got to her feet and walked slowly to the side of the room so she could face everybody at the same time.

Two Jinx who I didn't know stood on either side of the door.

"Marshall teases me sometimes about my reluctance to do conventional detective work," she began, "but I use those methods when they are necessary. With Dr. Lee's cooperation, I did two things the night before last. One was that I obtained fingerprint samples from three people: Åsa, Lloyd, and Spence. This was done without their knowledge, from items in their rooms. We have a friend who can get fingerprint information for us, and that information arrived this morning."

If you've read the earlier stories, you may think this is another of her bluffs, but it wasn't. Our friend with the fingerprint connection doesn't appear in this story, but you'll meet him soon enough.

"Here is what we found out. Lloyd has no record. Spence had been arrested a couple of times, years ago, for petty theft and extortion. But there was some very significant information about Åsa." She turned to Dr. Lee. "Do you have a policy on members who were police officers in the past?"

"Yes. They are not allowed. Ever."

"And what if you discovered that a member in good standing had been a police officer at some point?"

"He or she would be kicked out immediately, because that would mean they had lied to become a member in the first place."

"And what would they take with them when they left?"

"Well, we wouldn't kick them out naked. They'd get whatever clothes they were wearing, not including their jacket, and nothing else."

"Well, then you will be interested to learn that Åsa's real name is Jillian Wells, and she was a police officer for–"

Åsa started to stand and protest, but Neil was standing behind her by then, and he grabbed her shoulders and slammed her back down into the chair. "Quiet," he said in a low voice. She slumped, her head hanging.

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About Anthony Lee Collins

I write.
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