Posted in daily prompt

Death in the park (fiction)

Write a post in the style of (or simply inspired by) a favorite author.

Simply inspired by. I cannot dream to imitate the style of any author.

A young man  passed by the back door of a huge apartment building walking his dog heading to a small park. The doorman was working with the trash cans and said hello. He liked the dog. He used to call him “rex” although he knew his real name was other.

The young man used to do it every night at the exactly the same hour. It was snowing and everything was silent. Some neighbours complained about the dog barking and howling. The doorman decided to go to check what was happening and found the rich man stabbed to death, and a homeless red-handed over him. He ran away and call 911, his heart pounding, taking cover in his building until the police arrived.

The suspect didn’t try to escape. The police found him in the very spot the doorman found him with his hands covered by blood and looking frightened at the corpse and repeating “it .. was… was trash”, “it was…was trash”. Of course said he was innocent, but nobody would believe him. He was a young polish immigrant  called Jerzy Kowalowski.Desperate, he asked please to call for father Marconi to assist him.

Father Marconi was a visiting Roman Catholic priest in the Parrish of St. Thomas  More. Detective Smith laugh at the idea and told him he was not going to die yet to need a priest, but Lieutenant Hirsch had heard about father Marconi’s reputation solving crimes and  decided to call him because he had curiosity and wanted to meet him.

The victim was John Seymour a pretty well established estate agent with no known enemies besides his competitors. The police thought that the crime was a robbery that ended in a fight with the result of Seymour’s death. But they didn’t find the weapon.

When Father Marconi arrived, Smith almost laugh at the comical appearance of the little priest with his clerical suit his old hat and his umbrella.

He began to talk with Lieutenant Hirsch and with the witness and after half an hour emerged with a tired look and said: “look for a man named Van Tratch  or Van Traz making business with Seymour. If he has marks of dog bites he is your man. Jerzy is innocent”.

– “You say so because Jerzy is one of yours” protested Smith

– “I say so because Jerzy cannot be the killer”

They found a  Ross Van Traz among Seymour’s clients and question him. He denied every involvement but when the knife was found in a gutter, a partial print was coincident. After an examination they found in his legs dog bites

– “how did you know?” asked Hirsch to father Marconi

– “Oh! it was easy I only talked to the doorman.”

– “I also talked to the doorman. He swears our Jerzy is the killer”

– “He said so but he told me a very interesting story that convinced me to the contrary.”

– “Tell me, please”

– “A young man well dressed walks his dog every day at the same hour and passes by this back door when the doorman is working with the trash of the apartment building. The doorman loves dogs and likes this dog. This night is snowing and all is silent. The young man, Seymour, passes by like every night with his briefcase and his dog. But something strange happen. He doesn’t come back in time. There is a sound of a car stopping. Someone approaches Seymour and attacks him. The dog try to defend his master and bites him, goes after him grunting and barking. But the man manages to steal Seymour’s briefcase. You didn’t find any briefcase on him did you?”

– “No. Continue”

– “The killer throws the knife. Starts the car and leaves in a hurry. Then the dog stops barking, returns by her master and begins to howl. A homeless arrives and tries to help the dying man without success but hear his last words. The dog doesn’t attack him so doesn’t find him as a threat. He cannot be the attacker. The neighbours begin to complain and the doorman goes to check and find what we all know. Only your police officers didn’t understand Jerzy’s words and heard ‘it was was trash’ instead ‘it was Van Traz’.”

– “Do you want to know why Van Traz killed Seymour?”

– “I’m so tired. I suppose is about some dirty business. I’m satisfied enough knowing that Jerzy is no longer a suspect.”

Daily Prompt: Imitation/Flattery.

Author:

Journalist. In my fifties. I've worked for 26 years in a newspaper in Spain. I worked for two years as a stringer and correspondent in the US, and went as a special envoy to other places like the Balkans. Sea lover. Avid reader. Classic Music enthusiast.

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