Wednesday 3 – Thursday 4 October 2012
Detective Lennard took Missy outside. They walked from the front door around to the backyard before the detective started speaking.
‘Never hurts to get a bit of fresh air,’ Lennard began with small talk while she came up with a way to broach her questions. Missy nodded in agreement. After hearing the shocking news about Detective Seaborn’s accident, the crisp air did wonders for her nerves.
‘Missy, there was something that Ricketsen left out about Detective Seaborn’s accident,’ Lennard said. Missy was shocked.
‘What more could there be?’ she asked.
‘Seaborn was shot in the head.’
‘He WHAT? Why didn’t Ricketsen say before?’
‘I told him not to. It’s something that I want to keep between us at the moment. Please, don’t mention it to your husband until I give you the all clear. The fewer who know that Russ was murdered, the less noise we’ll have to deal with while we investigate,’ Lennard spoke in a quiet voice. She did not want anyone to overhear the information that she was passing on to Missy.
‘Then I’m in real, serious danger?’ Missy held on to Lennard’s arm for security.
‘I believe so. And if you tell your husband, he’s just going to get stressed out, and in my experience, stressed partners can often cause things to go wrong in investigations.’ Lennard wasn’t asking for Missy’s compliance as much as she was demanding it.
‘The last thing I want is for anything to go wrong. You have my word that I won’t let on to William.’
They stood in silence, Missy absorbing the information, Lennard trying to find the perfect words to steer the conversation in another direction.
‘Ah, look’ Lennard started, ‘this is just y’know, routine type of questioning so don’t take offence at it, but are you and your husband getting along? I mean, are you having any problems at the moment?’ The detective anticipated that Missy Fairmont would launch into a fierce defence of the relationship she had with William, but it did not come.
‘I guess you could call them problems. I’ve been on to him for months to cut back on the interstate business meetings but he refuses to stop going. To be honest, I don’t know why he needs to go out of state because the business that comes from New York alone would keep his company afloat for years.’
Given how candid Missy’s reply was, Lennard seized the opportunity to push the line of questioning further.
‘Lately, have you noticed your husband acting strangely or out of character?’
‘Like what?’ Missy replied.
‘Has he been over-compensating after you have a disagreement? Is he distant? Anything at all that you think just doesn’t feel right?’
Missy gave the Lennard’s questions some consideration. She wanted to feel safe in her own home again, and if that meant discussing her personal life with the detective, then that’s exactly what she intended doing.
‘The only thing that I can put my finger on, Detective Lennard, is that before William left for L.A., he made a lot of phone calls. And if I walked into the room, he’d clam up almost like he’d been talking about me. Now, I’m not sure who he was calling, or if it had anything to do with the meetings or his company, but he’s never made that many phone calls since I met him. It’s probably no help at all, and it’ll probably end up being some new business deal, but you did ask about things that were out of character and strange.’
‘No, no, it could be nothing, or it could be something. We need to know all of this kind of stuff so that we can rule out potential suspects, or find out how this stalker knew where and when you’d be places.’
Missy’s eyes widened, as she understood the real reason behind Lennard’s questions.
‘Be honest,’ she said, ‘do you consider William a suspect? Do you think he has something to do with this whole situation?’
‘Professionally, I can’t confirm or deny that at the moment, not until we’ve been able to investigate every angle,’ Lennard replied stoically.
‘But what do you really think, Detective Lennard?’
‘I think . . . I think that there’s something about your husband that I don’t like, and I can’t put my finger on it just yet.’
Again, Lennard expected the woman to leap to her husband’s defence with fierce rhetoric, and again, Missy did not.
‘Ten years ago when I first met him I would have disagreed with you, Detective Lennard, but in the last few months . . . well, let’s just say that you’ll have no argument from me.’
. . . To be continued . . .