It was not the woman in red, it was the woman in blue.
The same woman, only different.
She came into the room and let the door slowly close, shutting out the light from the corridors and surrounding them both in an eerie glow.
Harry was surprised, given the makeover that he could recognize her. Different hair, different clothes, padded slightly to make her look more matronly, flat-heeled shoes, and almost channeling the suburban housewife look if there was such one.
“What happened to you?” Harry had not noticed the lyrical tone to her voice before, or maybe he had focussed too much on other aspects of her.
“I hit a bus and it came off second best.” Perhaps a joke might lighten the tension, certainly from Harry’s point of view. His heart was still in his mouth, she still had that sort of an effect on him.
She walked slowly from the doorway to the chair beside the bed and sat after turning on the bedside light. Instantly she was given a surreal glow.
“How did you find me?”
“A policeman named Sykes. I was on my way back to your office to speak to you about the case when I saw two men dragging an unconscious body out of the building, and then put you in a car and drive off. I didn’t see much else, but I reported what looked like a kidnapping to the police. I said I was a friend, which seemed to surprise Sykes, and asked if he would let me know when you were found. And, now, here I am. I’m concerned about you, Harry, despite what you think of me; so, tell me, what really happened?”
“A case of mistaken identity. Some chap thought I knew some information which I didn’t. I tried to tell them, they didn’t believe me, and here I am.”
“Exactly. I have no idea. Perhaps I’ll ask them when I find them.”
“After what they did to you? Surely you’d want to forget about it.”
“If and when Harry Walthenson comes back to life, I’m sure they will be back. I saw their faces. I’m sure Sykes has mug shots and if he does, I might be able to get the drop on them.”
She shook her. “You’re mad.”
“I’ve been called worse. Now, just out of curiosity, why are you really here?”
“As I said, I was concerned.”
“Were you here before? The nurse said I had a mysterious female visitor.”
“I was going to tell you the latest about the Outtel case. Brightwater was found dead in his apartment about a week ago. The police think he committed suicide.”
It could be said that working for Outtel was toxic because everyone in a position of authority was now dead. Except for Miriam.
“I think he was murdered, like the other partners.”
© Charles Heath 2016-2019
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