Jennifer Morrison, Angela’s mother, lived in New Jersey, in a renovated brick house nestled around many, definitely a step down from her last residence, a Manhattan apartment on the Upper West Side.
Angela could only remember the Manhattan days and those long Sunday afternoons in Central Park. She stood outside the front of the building, after a short walk from Van Vorst Park. Not the same as Central Park.
Why had she moved?
She had not seen her mother since the funeral of her cousin, Cathy Jones. It had been a dark and stormy day, one where she truly believed Cathy’s spirit had been looking down on the congregation, looking for Al to spike him with a lightning bolt.
Al was, at the time, behind bars, accused of her murder.
Significantly, a lightning bolt had hit a mausoleum not far from where Cathy was being buried.
Since then she headed south, away from New York, taking the time to mourn the loss of her cousin, and her friend, time to consider all the things they were going to do, never did, and now never would.
Then, suddenly, out of left field, she received a call from Al, first to apologize, second to say he was not responsible for Cathy’s death, and that he was working on a new theory as to who was the real murderer. He added he was getting close and he had a few questions he needed to ask her about Cathy in those last days before her death.
It was all very intriguing, but she hadn’t been in a talking mood, then.
When she heard about her father Joseph’s murder, she called him back; asked if it was related to what Al was working on, and when he said it was possible, she caught the first next plane out of Tampa the next morning.
Al met her at the airport, not what they originally planned, but what he needed from her couldn’t wait He had also booked her into a hotel, was going to take her there, let her get settled, then come back.
Her first impression of him was that of a man she hardly recognized, someone who looked like he had the hounds of hell after him. Unshaven and disheveled, he looked like he had slept in his suit. All the time he was with her, his eyes furtive, looking this way and that, not focusing on her.
It made her also edgy; she started looking over her shoulder too. Then she had to ask, “What the hell is the matter with you?”
“I think I’ve got too close to the truth.”
“What truth, Cathy’s murderer?”
“No, another matter I’m looking into. I came to tell you it’s not safe, and when you get to the hotel, lay low till I call you again.”
Another sweep of the arrivals hall and she saw him stiffen.
His nervousness was infectious.
“Hell is coming to breakfast.”
A glance in the same direction as his eyes revealed who he was referring to, a woman she had seen before and didn’t quite remember her name.
But Al recognized her. Miriam, the red-headed floozy.
© Charles Heath 2016-2019
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