God Save the Child

God Save the Child by Robert B. Parker Read Free Book Online

Book: God Save the Child by Robert B. Parker Read Free Book Online
Authors: Robert B. Parker
Spenser. This is my town, and I decide whether or not we do any surveillance.”
    Healy let the front legs of his chair down slowly to the floor, put his folded hands on the tabletop, leaned forward slightly, and with no inflection in his voice said, “George, please keep your trap shut until we are finished talking.”
    Trask flushed. He opened his mouth and closed it. He looked hard at Healy for a minute, and then his eyes shifted away.
    “Now,” Healy continued. “George, here’s what I want you to do. I want you to go down to the town hall and get some maps of that area from the surveyor’s office and bring them back. And together we will go over them.” He turned toward the Smithfield patrolman named Paul. “Marsh, I want you to take these two items into Ten-ten Commonwealth and have the crime lab go over them. You know people in there?”
    Paul said, “Yessir, I been in there before.”
    Healy handed him the two envelopes. Paul started to leave, looked uncertainly at Trask, then at Healy. Healy nodded. Paul left, holding the two envelopes under his raincoat. Trask sat looking at his knuckles. The muscles at his jaw hinge were clenched. There was a tic in his left eyelid.
    “The maps, George,” Healy said. Their eyes locked again, briefly. Then Trask got up, put on a yellow slicker, and went out. He slammed the door In the kitchen it was quiet except for Margery Bartlett’s sobbing. Her husband stood about three feet from her, his arms hanging straight down as if he didn’t know what to do with them.
    Earl Maguire said, “We’d better get a doctor over here.
    He can give her something. Who’s your doctor; Rog? I’ll call him for you.”
    “It’s there by the phone,” Bartlett said. “Croft, Doctor Croft. Have him come over. Tell him what happened. Tell him she needs something. That’s a good idea. Tell him to come over and give her something.”
    Healy stood up, took off his coat, hung it over the back of his chair, loosened his tie, and sat back down. He nodded toward the chair Trask had left. “Sit down, Spenser,” he said. “We got some work to do.”

Chapter 5
    Margery Bartlett had gone upstairs to lie down, Dr. Croft had come over and given her a shot. Roger Bartlett had gone to a neighbor’s house to pick up his daughter. Trask had brought back the maps, and he and Healy and I were looking at them spread out on the kitchen table. A small slick-haired state cop in plainclothes and rimless glasses had hooked a tape recorder to the phone in the den off the kitchen and sat next to it with earphones, reading a copy of Playboy he’d found in the magazine rack. He turned it sideways to look at the centerfold.
    “Sonova bitch,” he said, “hair and all. You see this, Lieutenant?”
    Healy didn’t look up. “If you gotta read that garbage, read it, but don’t narrate it.”
    The little cop held the magazine out at arm’s length.
    “Sonova bitch,” he said.
    Healy said, “What’s up here, back of the riding stable?”
    “Nothing,” Trask said, “just woods. It’s the west end of the Lynn Woods. Runs for miles back on into Lynn.”
    “Hills?”
    “Yeah, low ones; it slopes up back of the stable riding ring.”
    “Can we put someone up there with glasses?”
    “Sure, the woods are thick. He could climb a tree if he wanted.”
    “You know the people at the stable?”
    “Can we put somebody in there?”
    “In the stable?”
    Healy said, “I don’t mean inside the stable. Can we have someone posing as an employee?”
    “Oh yeah, sure. I’ll set it up.”
    Healy made some notes on a small notepad he’d taken from inside his coat. He used a big red fountain pen that looked like one my father had used when I was small.
    “If they pick up the money here,” I said, “that’s northbound. Where’s the first place they can get onto Route 1 north?”
    “Saugus,” Healy said. “Here, by the shopping center.”
    “And the first place they can get off?”
    “Here, about two

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