THE CALLISON HOME - REGINALD'S
don't know why you think you have to barge into a person's home and just rummage
through things like they were yours!" Hannah said angrily as she trailed
along behind Jim and
Russ as they started inspecting every nook and cranny of the
"We're investigating a
murder," Jim reminded flatly as he pulled upon the draws
of Reginald's nightstand and began to sift through his personal papers.
"He have to look everywhere we can to find out the answers we
"Well, it's just
disgusting!" Hannah stood with her arms locked firmly across her
chest. "These are people's lives that you're trying to destroy!
How can you sleep at night?"
you think Annabelle
Lake's life was destroyed?" Russ asked honestly.
"That woman is dead. How well do you think her daughter is sleeping
knowing that her mother's killer is still out there?"
"Honestly, I don't care
about that wretched Annabelle or her trashy little daughter. Neither one
of them has done anything to endear themselves to this family." She
furrowed her brow as she kept her eyes trained on Jim and Russ' every
movement. "As far as I see it, whatever happened to Annabelle was her
own making. She's the one who set the wheels into motion and then tripped
and fell right under them."
"That's a rather cold
outlook on the situation, Miss Meadows," Jim spoke up and turned to eye her
"Well, that's how I
"You've been with the
Callison family a long time, haven't you?" Russ asked as he walked over to
"Ever since Reginald
Callison was an infant." She paused and smiled as a warm memory
flooded over her. "He is a dear, dear boy and I just refuse to
believe that he could be guilty of anything so heinous as murder! That's
not the boy I know!"
"Well, that remains to be
seen," Jim muttered as he returned to his search. "Miss Meadows,
do you have any family of your own?"
"The Callisons are my
family," she confessed softly. "My...own parents died when I was
only a teenager and I...I never married. The Callisons are the only family
that I know."
"I see." Russ
eyed her curiously.
"Well! What do we
have here?" Jim smiled broadly as he reached into the back of one of
Reginald's dresser draws.
something?" Russ questioned and then walked over to the detective.
"I think we've found
exactly was we're looking for," Jim nodded as he pulled out the beautiful
and elaborate scarf that they'd been searching for. "I had a
suspicion that this would be something that he'd hold on to."
Hannah's voice trailed off as she caught herself.
"T-that's a beautiful
scarf," she muttered awkwardly. "Why...were you looking for
"You just leave this
investigation to us," Jim smiled as he slipped the scarf into an envelope
and then tucked it under his arm.
see you've found what you were looking for," the voice of Larry Rawlings
came from the doorway of the room.
"Rawlings, what the hell
are you doing here?" Jim snapped as he glared at the annoying reporter
"I just wanted to make
sure that you boys didn't uncover something news worthy and then conveniently
'forget' to tell me about it." Larry paused and turned to
Hannah. "I knocked, but the front door was open. I hope you
don't mind." Not that he really cared.
"I can't believe that you
people have turned this house into a three ringed circus," Hannah muttered
"So...detective, what do
you have there?" Larry asked as he caught a glimpse of the envelope that
Jim was struggling to keep hidden.
"It's nothing," Jim
spoke firmly in an attempt to keep Larry as much in the dark as possible.
"Now, gee, what could you
possibly be looking for here?" Larry paused and rubbed his chin in
exaggerated thought. "It wouldn't be that mysterious scarf that
Stella Wagner saw, would it? Makes sense, after all. Stella saw the
scarf on the woman who probably killed Annabelle, I saw the scarf in the
possession of Reginald Callison after the murder, I told you about it just
today, and now you're here looking for something that you've obviously
"Stay out of this,
Rawlings," Russ ordered as he stood by Jim's side in an attempt to present
a united front.
"It is the scarf isn't
it?" Larry grinned broadly. "You know, if you don't tell me
what's going on and keep your end of our deal, I'll just have to print what I
think is going on. I can see the headline now! 'Incompetent
Albanyville Police No Closer to Solving Murder'..."
Rawlings," Jim sighed as he hung his head in defeat. "We found
the scarf. It's exactly like Stella described it and, just like you said,
it was in Callison's possession."
"I thought so,"
Larry grinned smugly.
"The only question now is
'who is the woman that this scarf belongs to?'" Jim slowly began to
pace around the room as he thought over the possibilities. He paused in
front of Hannah and spoke to her directly. "Do you know whose scarf
stammered awkwardly and looked away. "I've...never seen it before
As Jim questioned Hannah,
Larry carefully walked around the room, surveying his surroundings. He
paused for a moment at the nightstand and reached down to pick up a picture of
Reginald and Jillian that was housed in an elaborate golden frame. He
couldn't help but smile because of how happy they looked in the picture.
The golden couple were dressed in formal attire and clearly at some lavish
society event. As he examined the picture, he furrowed his brow. The
setting of the picture seemed so familiar.
Larry's eyes grew wide with
realization when he suddenly recognized the background---The Grand Sunset
Room. It was then that he realized exactly where he'd seen the picture
before---on the front page of The Daily Post. It was the same picture used
for Reginald and Jillian's wedding announcement on that day's morning
edition. It was also a picture that had, according to the caption that had
accompanied it, been taken at the ill fated party where Annabelle Lake had died.
"Boys, I just thought of
something," Larry smiled as he handed them the photograph. "This
picture was taken the night of the murder. Obviously there was a
photographer there. I'm sure that this couldn't be the only picture that
he might have taken."
Jim took the photo from Larry
and inspected it carefully. "I...think I see where you're going with
this. What if...the mystery woman who wore the scarf was caught on
Larry's eyes nearly danced
with joy at the prospect of finally learning the woman's identity. "I
see we think alike."
"Don't count on it,"
Russ muttered sharply.
"C'mon, Leeds, we've got
a few things to check out." Jim began to walk out of the room with
Russ close behind. "Miss Meadows, send our apologies to the Callison
family about our intrusion and the mess."
"Hey! Where are you
going?" Larry called out as he raced after them. "You're not
doing anything without me!"
As Jim, Russ, and Larry raced
out of the house, Hannah stood silently and surveyed the mess that was left in
their wake. With a worried sigh, she realized that the joyous day might
have just taken a turn for the worse.