Shamrock Shenanigans (Zoe Donovan Mystery Book 19)

Shamrock Shenanigans (Zoe Donovan Mystery Book 19) by Kathi Daley Read Free Book Online

Book: Shamrock Shenanigans (Zoe Donovan Mystery Book 19) by Kathi Daley Read Free Book Online
Authors: Kathi Daley
hadn’t hooked up. I hadn’t established an alibi for Piper, but I really didn’t think it was her. Millie didn’t seem like the sort to kill a man, but she had made some interesting comments about Brent having odd energy, so I intended to leave her on the list for the time being. As for Armand, I couldn’t see why a world-renowned scholar would kill a Hollywood actor, though stranger things had happened.
    “No,” I admitted. “The only person I feel confident in eliminating at this point is Lord Dunphy. I guess our next move is to have a chat with the guy to see what he knows.”
    “Do you still want to go check out the stable?” Zak asked.
    “Might as well. I don’t think there’s much for us to learn here, and so far the rain seems to be holding off. Who knows when we’ll get a clear spell again?”
    I took one last look around the cottage. Based on the fact that Brent had been facing the door when he was shot in the back, I was going to assume he’d never made it inside. That would indicate that the killer had intended from the beginning to kill him as he approached. From the way he’d fallen, it seemed the killer had been hiding in the trees just beyond the clearing. The problem I had with the whole scenario was that the door had been unlocked when Zak and I arrived. Later, when we’d returned, it was locked. Was it normally unlocked and the killer had opened it, intending for Brent to meet him inside? Or had the killer locked it later, after removing the body?
    I discussed this paradigm with Zak as we walked toward the stable. Could there actually have been two different people involved that evening, with the person Brent went to the cottage to meet being a totally different person from the one who’d shot him? It seemed like a long shot, but Zak agreed it was possible that someone was waiting inside the cottage for Brent and a different person came from out of the woods and shot him before he arrived at his destination. If that was what had happened, the person who was waiting inside might know who had pulled the trigger.
    “Yeah, but why wouldn’t the person in the cottage come forward?” Zak asked as we made our way along the narrow path that led to the stable.
    “Fear. If they saw what happened they probably don’t want the killer to know they saw it. We’re trapped here at the castle. All of us. With a killer. There’s no way to escape or to call for backup. If you think about it, we’re all sitting ducks. I can imagine the person waiting inside the cottage, if there was someone there, would have hidden when Brent was shot and then returned to the castle after the killer left. Admitting to anyone that there was a witness to the murder wouldn’t be a life-sustaining move.”
    Zak and I hesitated when the stable came into view. The horses must all be inside; I didn’t see any in the pasture.
    “How should we play this?” I asked.
    “We’ll just wander over to the barn and look around. If anyone asks, we were walking Charlie and decided to stop by to check out the horses.”
    “Okay; that sounds like a good plan.” I slipped the leash on Charlie. He was a well-behaved dog in most situations, but I didn’t want to run the risk of him getting too close to a horse’s hooves.
    The barn was warm and smelled of hay and wild grains. It was spotless, which led me to the realization that even if Liam was a killer, he was also an excellent stable hand. There were four rows of stalls with four stalls in each row, each containing a large horse. I didn’t know a lot about horses, but it appeared that the stock was all from excellent lineage. If Lord Dunphy wasn’t able to find the money any other way, I was willing to bet he could raise a few bucks selling off part of his stable.
    “These really are beautiful horses,” Zak commented.
    “It’d be fun to ride on the beach. I hope the rain clears before we have to leave.”
    Zak and I continued to discuss horse riding, horse breeding, and

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