Do Unto Others

Do Unto Others by Jeff Abbott Read Free Book Online

Book: Do Unto Others by Jeff Abbott Read Free Book Online
Authors: Jeff Abbott
Narrows the field a tad, don’t it?”
    “I should tell you,” I said, “that I was here last night, around ten, for about three minutes. And something creepy happened.”
    That brought him forward on his haunches and I explained about forgetting Mama’s medicine.
    “Did you see or hear anything unusual?”
    “No. Nothing. I just came in, got the pills, and left. I can’t explain it—but I just had a funny feeling thatsomeone was watching me. I just thought it was nerves.”
    Junebug judged me with his eyes and scribbled in his notepad. “I want you to come to the station with me, Jordy, and sign a statement. Okay?” His tone was almost friendly again.
    “Sure. Let me tell Candace—”
    “She’ll be at the station. I’ll need a statement from her too.”
    I paused. “So who do you think did it? You have to be pretty damned cold-blooded, killing someone with a baseball bat.”
    Junebug smiled a know-it-all smile. “Lots of people are cold inside. We just never see it.”
    I myself felt a little bit frosty and I didn’t argue.
    “Your mama’s keeping you in town for a while, right, Jordy?” Junebug sounded more casual than he meant.
    “Yes, she is.” My voice was like stone.
    “Good. I don’t think you should go anywhere till this is all over.”
      Before we left, I sat in my car, found a gasoline receipt, and scribbled down the list of names and Bible verses. I thought I’d gotten them right. I hoped so.
    As I followed Junebug’s car the two blocks to the police station at the corner of Loeber and Magnolia, I thought about that list. Why did Beta hide it on her person? She wouldn’t have wanted someone to see it, perhaps. And why did the list exist anyway? Why those eight names? I’d give my statement, then get home as quick as I could. Mama kept a Bible at her bedside, although she didn’t even look at the pictures anymore. And maybe, if the foggy veil lifted from her mind for a while, she could tell me why Beta Harcher would have her on such a list. That wasn’t likely, though.
    Providing my statement was easy. I was finished in twenty minutes. Then I waited for Junebug’s secretary to type it up. The whole time Billy Ray Bummel looked at me like I was a cross between Jack the Ripper and Joseph Goebbels. (I’m giving Billy Ray far too much credit in knowing criminal history. He probably thinks Jack the Ripper is someone with a gas problem and Joseph Goebbels is a turkey tycoon.) Despite his law degree (undoubtedly granted by one of the finer mail-order institutions), Billy Ray has carried on the fine Bummel tradition of denseness. Education doesn’t erase high-quality stupidity like Billy Ray’s; it just makes it more dangerous.
    Junebug’s secretary, Nelda, announced to him that she’d reached Beta’s niece in Houston. Junebug got up to take the call. I signed my statement. Billy Ray took the document and examined it critically, as though hoping to spot a confession somewhere in there. His black eyes, larger than most, widened as he caught what looked like a clue. It must have been waving to him. He set his bony, knobby hands on his beer belly and chewed his bottom lip. I’ve seen cows masticate in the exact same fashion. Cows aren’t bright either.
    “So you were there last night after ten? Wouldn’t surprise me if that’s about the time the coroner says Miz Harcher met her dee-mise.”
    I gave him the withering look that Mama and Sister taught me when I was young. You narrow your eyes, raise your brow, and flare a nostril like there’s a rank smell. It’s also important to maintain a demeanor of indifference to what the other person’s saying. “Excuse me, Billy Ray, but you ought to wait until you have a few more facts before you start making accusations.”
    “You had the murder weapon. You run the place where she was killed. And you had both opportunityand motive.” Billy Ray must’ve had a pit bull at home for inspiration.
    “You’re being ridiculous. She had a

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