Move Your Blooming Corpse

Move Your Blooming Corpse by D. E. Ireland Read Free Book Online

Book: Move Your Blooming Corpse by D. E. Ireland Read Free Book Online
Authors: D. E. Ireland
going into the stall.” He pointed at Rose. “And as soon as that woman wakes up, bring her to me. But try to get some tea or coffee in her first.”
    Relieved to be out of the stables, Higgins enjoyed the brief seconds of walking to the other building. Too soon, he found himself seated at a square oak table in what was apparently a conference room for racing officials and managers. The air was redolent with the smell of leather, pipe smoke, and tobacco, which he found comforting.
    After everyone was seated in the spindle-back chairs, Jack shut the door behind him. He walked over to the head of the table and smoothed back his hair. It did little good. Jack had a mop of black unruly hair that only a zealous barber could tame. Higgins also noticed that Jack’s left eye was clamped down in a squint, which the detective only did when he was troubled.
    â€œI have been told that Miss Price was last seen by some of you in the parade ring,” Jack began. “These individuals are the Turnbulls, Lord and Lady Saxton, Miss Doolittle, and Professor Higgins. After her husband went off to place a bet, Miss Price decided to visit the stables on her own. The Gold Cup race began about twenty minutes later. I need to know exactly where each of you was during that time period, as well as during the race. Who would like to go first?”
    Everyone looked down at the table or stared back without expression at Jack.
    Eliza cleared her throat. “The Professor and I were making our way back to Lord Saxton’s private box. It took longer than planned because we ran into Billy Grainger. You remember Billy. He’s a bookmaker now, but in the old neighborhood, he was a yob.”
    Higgins was afraid to ask what a “yob” was.
    Alfred Doolittle chuckled. “Billy Boy has straightened himself out. Makes his money now without having to steal it. And with a gift of gab to set your ears bleeding.”
    â€œI concur,” Higgins said. “He was an alarmingly voluble gentleman.”
    â€œAnyway, he near talked our heads off so we couldn’t get to the box until right before the race started. And you were there when we arrived, so we watched the Gold Cup with you.”
    Jack nodded. “That you did. As for Mr. Doolittle, we’ve confirmed that until the Gold Cup began, several racing officials were in his company. Apparently they were trying to keep him away from the parade ring.” He paused. “And the champagne.”
    Alfred winked at Higgins, who couldn’t help but grin back at him.
    â€œAnd during the Gold Cup, Mr. Doolittle and his wife watched the race while these same officials stood behind them.” Jack looked at the others. “As for the rest of you…”
    The Duchess of Carbrey shook her head at her fellow syndicate members. “I shall go next, since everyone else seems to have lost their tongue.”
    Higgins noticed Jonathon Turnbull’s face growing red in anger. But not even Turnbull dared cross the Duchess. It wasn’t only her wealth that gave Turnbull pause. Minerva Richardson Cox boasted a self-confidence that could lay waste to his customary arrogance. And as her two late husbands—and several discreet lovers—could attest, she was also a handsome woman. Although she was past sixty, her ash brown hair bore only a few strands of gray. Minerva was an apt name for her. He could easily see her as the Roman goddess of wisdom she was named after. All she needed was a sacred owl sitting atop her shoulder.
    â€œBefore the Gold Cup began, I went to the paddock to confer with my trainer.” The Duchess adjusted the enormous plumed hat tilted above her coiffure. “One of my horses is set to run in the last race today. My trainer and I also watched the Gold Cup from the paddock.”
    Jack scribbled that down along with the name of the trainer. He then turned to an older gentleman sporting old-fashioned Dundreary sideburns and a drooping

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