Malice

Malice by Keigo Higashino Read Free Book Online

Book: Malice by Keigo Higashino Read Free Book Online
Authors: Keigo Higashino
Detective Kaga.
    â€œWell, we’re really just getting started,” he said softly, as if trying to suggest they weren’t supposed to talk about it.
    â€œOn the news,” I said, “they were saying it might have been a happenstance murder. That someone might have just broken in, found him there, and had to kill him.”
    â€œWell, it’s not entirely out of the question,” Detective Kaga said.
    â€œBy which you mean it’s out of the question.”
    â€œPretty much.” Detective Kaga had one eye on his partner. “Personally, I feel it’s highly unlikely.”
    â€œWhy’s that?”
    â€œWell, typically, someone breaking and entering with intent to steal will go in through the front door. That way, if they’re discovered, they might be able to talk their way out of it. They also tend to leave via the front door. But as you know, the front door to Mr. Hidaka’s house was locked.”
    â€œAnd thieves don’t generally lock up behind themselves?”
    â€œThe dead bolt on the front door can only be locked from the inside when it’s closed, or from the outside with a key. The Hidaka house had three keys, and Rie had two of them. The third one was in Mr. Hidaka’s trouser pocket.”
    â€œBut some robbers still come in through the window, don’t they?”
    â€œThat’s true, but they tend to be the ones who’ve done the most prior planning. They case the place first, learning when the residents are out, making sure they can’t be seen from the street, and so on, before they act.”
    â€œAnd nothing suggests that might’ve happened?”
    â€œWell”—Detective Kaga smiled, showing white teeth—“if anyone had cased the place, they’d have realized there was very little left in that house worth stealing.”
    My mouth opened in a perfect O . Detective Makimura was smiling slightly.
    â€œPersonally…,” Detective Kaga began, then stopped as though hesitant to say more. He started over. “I think it was someone who knew him.”
    â€œWell, that’s troubling.”
    â€œJust between you and me.” He raised a single finger to his lips.
    â€œOf course.” I nodded.
    He glanced at Detective Makimura. The junior detective then picked up the check, stood up, and headed over to the cash register.
    â€œOh, no, I’ll get it.”
    â€œNo need.” Detective Kaga held out a hand to stop me. “We were the ones who invited you out after all.”
    â€œBut they don’t pay for your meals, do they?”
    â€œNo, not for dinner, unfortunately.”
    â€œSorry about that.”
    â€œNo worries.”
    â€œStill.” I looked over at the cash register. Detective Makimura was paying.
    Something about what he was doing was strange. He was talking to the woman at the cash register. She glanced over in my direction, then turned back to Makimura and said something.
    â€œSorry,” Detective Kaga said without even glancing toward the cash register. He was staring directly at me and his expression hadn’t changed. “We’re just checking your alibi.”
    â€œMy alibi?”
    â€œYeah.” He nodded. “We already checked with Mr. Oshima, your editor at Dojisha Publishing. But we have to corroborate as many details as we can. That’s just how we do things. I hope you understand.”
    â€œIs that why you wanted to come here?”
    â€œIf we didn’t come at the same time of day, there might be a different person working the register on that shift.”
    â€œI see,” I said, deeply impressed.
    Detective Makimura returned. Kaga nodded to him. “They overcharge us for anything?”
    â€œNot a thing.”
    â€œThat’s good for a change,” Kaga said, looking toward me, his eyes narrowing in the suggestion of a smile.
    When I told him I was keeping a record of the last couple of days, Detective Kaga

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