“I bought a variety of cold meats, lettuce, tomato, and such for the sandwiches and some snacks.”
“How ’bout we take this stuff back to the house and make up some sandwiches for the kids. We can join them at the beach for a bit.”
“That sounds like a plan.” Within forty minutes, they were heading out the door when the phone rang. Paul stopped to answer it. “Hiya Joan, what’s up?”
“Paul, we just received a fax from the Port Hardy Detachment involving Ms. Martin. The Manager of the building where she lives called the detachment because it was unusual and he knows ew an officer. Since you spoke with her earlier, I figured you might want to hear the latest.”
“Excuse me, Eilea, I’ll be back in a minute.” He disappeared down the hallway to his bedroom. “Shoot.”
“Apparently, someone has offed the cat, with poison.”
“Oh shit!” he exclaimed.
“Evidently, it was pretty gruesome. The Manager has cleaned up the mess, but they need to be told before they get home. The officer also said the situation there has escalated, which is what they expected, but get this, he thinks the perp might have found out where they are. ”
“Yeah. Some repairman spoke to the manager and said he was hired to repair some antique furniture, when he couldn’t reach her, asked the manager to let him in. In any event, he refused the guy entrance, but he did let slip that she’d gone down island.”
“The officer has spoken with the husband and wife team in depth who say they haven’t noticed anything unusual, that the family are good tenants, mind their own business, and are pretty quiet.”
“The perp is pretty sick.” Joan added.
“Yeah, you can say that again.”
“Yep, no problem, talk to you later.”
He returned to the kitchen and said, “Let’s drop the lunch off with the kids, and then we need to talk.”
“That sounds ominous or serious,” she chided.
“Unfortunately, it is.” The hint of seriousness crept through his voice even though he tried to keep his voice light and immediately wiped that pretty smile from her lips.
“Well, what is it, what’s going on?”
“I’ll explain a soon as we have delivered lunch to the kids.”
“Paul, you’re scaring me, what’s happened?”
“Since you’ve been so concerned about involving your kids, I’d rather give you the details when we’re alone and you have had time to digest it before deciding what comes next.”
Driving to the spot they’d last seen the riders, Paul honked the horn capturing Theresa and Cliff’s attention and they trotted toward them.
Paul hopped out. “We’re going to take a short drive. We’ll be back later. Here’s a key to the garage door in case you get back to the house before us and here’s the lunch I promised you. Make yourselves comfortable, and don’t forget to wipe the horses down, alright? We’ll plan dinner for about six thirty. I don’t think anyone is going to get too hungry before then,” he smiled as he handed their packed lunch over.
“Is something wrong, Eilea? You look worried,” the observant Theresa asked.
“Nothing to worry about, we’ll see you later.”
“I’ll pass the message on to the others,” Theresa promised.
“Thanks. Have fun.” Eilea forced a bright smile on her face.
The instant Paul was back in the truck, unable to contain her curiosity a moment longer, Eilea gave him a playful shake, “Alright, what’s up?” she asked giving him a playful shake.