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Thread: The Wolves of Manchester

  1. #16
    joseph engraver
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    .Chapter 15
    Questions without Answers
    Sunday, after church services the two Callahan men went into the den, closed the door behind them to discuss the Gustavo twins, and the unusual conversation with Scott Pinkerton.
    “Chris, I don’t have much faith in dead spirits, but I do believe in too many circumstances pointing in the same direction. That is why I am sure that the Gustavo twins are responsible for the disappearance of Pinkertonīs daughter. If you catch them poaching, most likely the charges will only result in a fine and loss of their hunting licenses...If I question them about the Barrette they will lie, and nothing will come of it. Then I am sure they will be put on alert and we will never be able to prove a damned thing. What I intend to do is have their movements watched as soon as their father has recovered .They are not the brightest individuals, eventually they will make a mistake that will give us the right opportunity to question them. Then we can to put enough pressure on them to cause them to panic. That is when they will make mistakes and give us the leverage we need to separate and question them. Individually they will fall apart. Then I am sure that what circumstantial proof we have is enough to convince my chief to at least give me a man to follow their movements. Do you agree Chris?”
    “I agree with you, but there is no need for a tail at this time. Their father is not well after his heart attack and they are sticking close to him and their mother’s side. They are not going anywhere until he has recovered, and I don’t think that will be until late fall. So for now we wait, have a nice poker game and an excellent supper with our family.”
    The matter settled they opened the door and got out the cards and pennies. It was while Chris was raking in a pile of pennies he had won playing deuces wild, when he was struck with an Idea.

    “Clarence!!! We know that the twins will lie and most probably the father will back them up. But their mother believes her sons walk on water. We need find a way to talk to her alone, she we will know the day they gave the barrette to her. If we can tie them to the time Pinkertonīs daughter’s disappearance we will have enough proof to get a search warrant.”
    While Chris was stacking his winnings, Clarence picked up the phone and called me. When he asked if my daughter was still seeing Rosalie Gustavo, I told him that she saw her twice a month to deliver cookies to Rosebuds.
    He said, “Do a favor Bill. When she sees Misses Gustavo again, have her ask about the barrette and if she can remember what day it was when her son gave it to her.”
    I told him that I would, but I wanted to know why, and is my daughter in danger?
    “It is just a hunch Bill, just a hunch. You can be sure there is no danger for your daughter. When will she deliver her cookies? “
    “I don’t know Clarence, but she is in the kitchen with her mother baking. Give me a minute and I will find out for you.”
    As I am not allowed to enter when they are baking, I went to the kitchen door and asked.
    Sylvia said. “Daddy, we always deliver my cookies on Tuesday and tomorrow is Tuesday. Now please do not interfere, your two master bakers, we are making money.”
    I could not resist the chance to say. “I hope that you two will be able to reimburse me the money I am owed for the ingredients and electricity that I pay for.” Then I ducked before they could throw something at me.
    When I returned to tell Clarence, he was laughing. “I overheard the entire conversation. Bill, I will call you at your office on Tuesday, tomorrow is Tuesday isn’t it?” Then he disconnected.
    Tuesday morning, Beverly and my daughter arrived at Rosebuds to deliver her cookies, where they found the twins minding the shop. When Karl took the box of cookies from Sylvia, He explained that she would not need to deliver more cookies until October after school started again. “My father has been released by his doctor, and mom has gone to bring him home. Then we are closing Rosebuds until our father had time to completely recover.”
    Sylvia gave him the bill for her cookies and even though she was disappointed she said. “I understand, and your daddy is so lucky to have you to take care of him. When he comes home please tell him that I will pray he gets well soon.”
    As Karl handed her the check he said. “Thank you, and that is a beautiful barrette my mom gave you, be very careful you don’t lose it.”

  2. #17
    joseph engraver
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    Shopping expeditions
    I was going over the photos I had taken of Scottīs home and was more than pleased to see the ones of him playing with my daughter had turned out so well. I was trying to decide which one was the best when my editor came in with coffee. He looked at the pile of photos and picked one of them up and said.” Bill these are exceptional, where did you take them?”
    It is not often that Ralph gives me compliments and brings me coffee at the same time, but it is nice when he does.
    When I told him that I took them at Little Lake Sunapee and they were of the Scott Pinkerton home to be possibly used for a real-estate ads. He picked up the whole pile and went through it one by one, when he finished he said. “This is exactly the kind of a place I want to live in when I retire, when you know for sure he is going to put it on the market let me know. By the way how is he doing?” I said he was better and was not sure if he would sell, but I would let him know.
    Sergeant Callahan called me at three P.M. When I answered his call the first thing he said was. “Today is Tuesday and I always deliver on Tuesday. How did thing go With Rosalie Gustavo?”
    I explained that she was not there, and that her husband was now recovering at home and the twins had told my daughter Rosebuds was closing until October.
    “Well, Bill as I said it was just a hunch. Thanks, and tell Scott to be patience and not to lose faith.”
    Later that week when we arrived at Scottīs home, he and Pamela were in the front yard stacking fire wood. Sylvia ran to him and said.” I have another reason for you to stay here. Last night I had a dream, and my Name Sister told me that she was now an angel and she needs you to have this home so she can visit you always.”
    Then she began picking up wood and putting on the neatly stacked pile. He took off his gloves, picked her up, kissed her on both cheeks and said. “And anytime you come here to visit there will be two angels in my house. The next time you dream of her, tell her that I love her, and I am never going to sell this house. Why don’t you go inside now and leave us men do the hard work, then if the sunshine warms the water we will practice more diving.”
    He handed me a pair of gloves, returned to the wood pile and picked up the axe as he said,” I split and you stack. Pamela is going to fix lunch Biloxi style, you better be hungry when it is ready.”
    I am not a very physically active man and was sweating and out of energy, when Sylvia finally came to tell us that lunch was ready to eat.
    As Pamela set the plates on the table she said there is a saying in Mississippi.
    “Every good wife knows that a well fed dog never strays far from his kennel, and always returns home when it is time to eat.”
    I believe it to be true, as proof, I have fixed a lunch of fried Maine oysters with melted Brie, Corn bread biscuits, Spinach greens with carrots, and for dessert Mississippi mud pie with chicory coffee.”
    As we ate Scott told us that he was taking Pamela on a two weeks tour of northern New England.
    “I want her to see how beautiful the fall colors are. Walk in snow, feel cold, go snowmobiling, ice skating and skiing and hike in the mountains. Then I will ask her to marry me.”
    I wish I had a photo of the shocked look on Scotts face when Pamela said. “But I can’t Scott; I don’t have any warm clothing to wear.”
    Beverly and Sylvia in unison laughed and declared. “We need to go Kittery; it is only forty mile away, and they have over thirty clothing outlets. We women will go shopping while the men stack fire wood and wash dishes.”
    It took fifteen minutes before they were on the way. Scott shrugged his shoulders and said. “Do want to do dishes or split wood?”
    By the time I had washed, dried and put them away the air was colder, and the sun was gone, hidden in a mass of grey arctic clouds. When I started stacking wood I said to Scott. “The Old Farmer’s Almanac was right, winter is on the way.” He looked up and said.” Perfect timing, in ten days the lake will be frozen over and ready for me to teach Pamela how to ice-skate.”
    It was late; Scott and I had finished the wood pile, when the women returned from Kittery with high spirits and the trunk full of bags and boxes of winter wear, soaps, candles and perfume that had no doubt been debited to our credit cards. As we said goodnight, I had never seen Scott as pleased when he said; “Thank you Bill, you, your wife and daughter have saved my life. I will see you in a couple of weeks.”
    The women were not the only ones who had been shopping. So were the Gustavo twins and their father;
    When Clarence Callahan answered the phone, Kenny Nelson introduced himself and asked if he remembered him... “Of course I do Kenny, don’t tell me you need a speeding ticket fixed?”
    “No sir, I am calling about the twins. I thought you would like to know that they were here this morning target practicing with their father, and they weren’t shooting 22 rifles. They said that they were going out to Massabesic and look for a deer. They bought two boxes of ammo, some targets, and they had two brand new stainless steel 357 magnum Blackhawk revolvers in shoulder holsters. I tell you sir, those twins are spooky, but they know how to shoot; i never seen anything like it. I saved the targets for you, if you want them you need to come out here today. This weather is getting too damned nasty and I am closing the club tonight.”
    Callahan said, “Thank you Kenny, I will be out to see you as soon as I can get there.” Then he called his cousin Chris.
    When he answered he said. “Chris, Bud Gustavo has recovered, and the twins are now armed with 357 magnum revolvers. Something is about to happen. I want you to be very careful if you should stop them. I am going out to the Chester Rod and Gun Club, meet me there at noon.”
    Chris was already in the clubhouse looking at the targets and talking to Kenny Nelson when Clarence stepped out of his car. The targets he was looking at were of two human silhouette figures with the word Marsha written in pencil across them.
    There were six holes in each. Five placed where the heart would be, and one in the center of the forehead.
    To be continued

  3. #18
    joseph engraver
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    Chapter 17
    Question and Answers

    I was watching the local weather report when my phone rang. Expecting it was Ralph Shoemaker, I said. Sorry Ralph the weather is too cold and I feel terrible; I am not coming to the office today. Then a woman laughed and said. “At least it is sunny and not snowing.”
    It was one of those rare embarrassing moment when I make a fool of myself, and to make matters worse I had no idea who I was talking to. Then Rosalie Gustavo introduced herself and asked to speak with Sylvia. I told her that she was in the kitchen trying out a new recipe and asked her to please wait and I will tell her you want to speak with her.
    Sylvia had the Kitchen Aid on, busily whipping egg whites. I had to shout for her to hear me.
    “Rosalie Gustavo is on the phone and wants to talk to you; do you want to call her back?”
    “No Daddy, you talk to her and I will be finished soon.”
    Making small talk to women I hardly know is not my favorite thing to do. I returned to the phone and said that the master pastry chef would be with her as soon as she was done whipping up eggs.
    I asked how her husband was feeling. It must have been the right question. She proceeded to tell me about the heart attack, the operation, Budīs convalescence and how wonderful her boys had been in taking care of their father. By the time Sylvia came to the phone I knew that Bud was going back to work at the Highway Department, he was taking a desk job. Rosebuds were going to open in a week, and her boys had gone target shooting and hunting with their father to Massabesic Lake.
    I said, Goodbye, it was nice talking to you misses Gustavo,” and gave the phone to my daughter.
    Misses Gustavo and my daughter had been talking for several minutes. Sylvia promised to deliver three dozen cookies to her just before Rosebuds opened, and she would bring her a sample of Rye Happy cookies to try.
    I was very surprised to hear her say.
    “Misses Gustavo, I have sad news. There is a girl at school who wants me to give her the barrette because it belongs to her. When she asked me about it, I told her that your son found it, and you had given it to me as a present for the first day of summer. She and her friend say that they were playing together when she lost it earlier that week. They want me to give it back .I do not want to keep something that belongs to her. What do you think i should I do?”
    Not knowing what her answer was, I waited until Sylvia said, “Thank you Misses Gustavo, I will tell them exactly that”, and then she hung up the phone. As soon as she did, I said. “Sylvia, please tell me what was her answer?”
    “Daddy, she told me that the girls were lying. That her son Kevin found the barrette on the fourth of April and I should tell them they could go to hell for trying to cheat me.”
    “Daughter dearest, you just confirmed what I have known all along, my genius has been passed on to you
    Detective Callahan was saying goodbye to Kenny and Chris was still looking at the targets when I called. I could hardly contain my excitement as I told him that Rosalie Gustavo had just told my daughter that her son gave her the barrette on May 4th.
    To be continued

  4. #19
    joseph engraver
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    Chapter 18
    The Final Hunt
    Bud parked his Buick under the oaks; his two sons jumped out and began looking for places to put up their targets, while he took the time to enjoy the freezing Canadian air that had engulfed the New England states. Feeling better than he had in over a year, he walked down to the snow covered ice on the lake shore; he loved being in the woods with his boys again. He raised his arms high and inhaled the scent of the forest deep into his lungs and exhaled his frosted breath into the afternoon air.
    As he stood there, his sons came to stand beside him. He put his arms around their shoulders and told them he loved them, and was pleased to have bought them each a new revolver as a present for their help at Rosebuds, and loving care during his convalescence.
    It was at that moment he saw a magnificent buck walk out of the willows on Loon Island.
    He whispered to his sons. “Look at the rack of horns on that buck .I have never seen one with so many points, I will bet you it might be a New Hampshire Boone and Crocket record. It is trapped on that small island and with this new snow it will be easy to track and find.
    What a trophy those horns would make mounted on the wall in your room boys.”
    Karl looked at his brother and said, “Let’s kill him.”
    Kevin embraced his brother, laughed and said.” Letīs kill it and cut of its head.” They raised their heads towards the sky and Bud saw for the first time his sons howl like wolves.
    When they started across the ice, the buck disappeared into the willows along the shore. They howled again, the eerie sound echoed across the frozen water sent a shiver of foreboding down their father’s spine. Then he saw how thin the ice was when he stepped onto it. In panic he yelled. ” Come back, come back, the ice is too thin.”
    But the Brothers of the Wolf did not listen. For that was the moment the buck stepped out of the willow branches to stare at them again. As they stood there transfixed at the sight of the buck they heard the crystal eggshell of ice around them begin to crack and when it began to shatter the buck simply vanished.
    The Gustavo twins fell together into the water. They clawed at the edge of the ice in hopeless desperation as the weight of their new revolvers pulled them under the ice. As they were sinking into the lake, they howled and screamed for God to save them.
    But, God did not hear them, for he was listening to the prayers of a thirteen year old girl asking that her Name Sister be found.

    When both Callahanīs arrived at the lake the first thing they saw was Bud Gustavo slumped on the ground next to his Buick.
    Tears were streaming down his pale grey face and his features were contorted in agonizing pain. Clarence knelt down next to him and felt his pulse.
    His heart was beating wildly, and it looked like he was going into shock.
    He said Chris. “Call for paramedics and get a blanket out of my car.” And then he asked Bud. “Where are you sons, I need to speak to them.”
    His answer was. “You can’t, they are at the bottom of the lake. They are dead now. If I had not seen that damned deer they would have never gotten out on the lake. It is my fault, they were everything to me, and now they are gone, all gone.”
    “What deer are you talking about Bud?” Chris wanted to know. “The huge buck we saw on Loon Island he gasped in torment and pain.” Then his body went into convulsions and his heart stopped beating.
    When the medics were loading Bud’s body into the ambulance; Chris noticed how the stones in part of the wall had been moved and poorly replaced.
    He said; “Clarence these stones have been recently been moved, some don’t have moss on them and the ones that do are upside down. This has to be where they buried Sylvia Pinkerton; she must be here under the stones.”
    It was when the grave site was being examined by a team of forensic experts that the vodka bottle was found with bloody finger prints etched on it in the blood of Eliza Sanchez.
    While the search and rescue team were recovering the twins bodies, Chris and Clarence searched Loon Island. They never found hair or a hoof print.
    The snow has gone; spring finally arrived and the tulips in front of the home on Little Sunapee Lake are blooming, it is the perfect setting for Pamela and Scotts wedding.
    Rosalie has sold Rosebuds and retired to West Palm Beach. . Sylvia and her mother Beverly are in the kitchen getting ready to deliver the wedding cake and Smile cookies. I am finishing the final editing of my new book, “The Mysteries under New Hampshire’s Stone Walls”.
    THE END
    Thank you for reading; I do hope you liked this story and will comment.
    Joseph Engraver

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