In BURNT on June 15, 2010 at 10:52 pm


This booth is ridiculously close to the highway.  I grab the phone almost before it rings.

“You heard right, Jay. It was Phoebe.  I talked with the Saratoga police, told them I was following up on a similar M.O. here in New York.   Lacerations on face and hands…it’s ugly…you want to hear this?”

“I want it all.”

“Death was either by strangulation or blood loss.  She had marks on her neck, but then again, her throat was slit…all of it?”

“All of it.”

“Recent sexual activity.  Possibly rape.”

“It’s all bad.”

“Not everything.  The state police took over the case.  They are taking an interest in this, Jay.  Dead hippies are piling up all over the state.  As much as they’d like to ignore Phoebe’s murder, they can’t.  At least, not yet.”

“What do you mean?”

“They’ll keep looking for her killer for as long as they don’t have a suspect.  But given a way out, like, say, an abandoned husband who was in the vicinity of the murder…they’d drop the investigation in two seconds flat.”

I press my head against the glass.

“What do I do?”

“They don’t know about you.  Keep it that way.  Disappear.  Don’t show your face until they catch the killer.  You know a place?”

“Yes, I do.”  A truck clatters past, in low gear because of the grade.  Across the highway is a roadside bar and a sign reading “Welcome to Silverlode, Colorado.”

I cross the highway and begin the next chapter in my life with my father.

The Story So Far

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