“One Child is Another's Child”
~~~Peacock Residence- Upstairs Balcony around the Hall-8:11 pm~~~
Mr. Tenné comes out of a guest room carrying some sheets, folded up. He walks carefully along the balcony but trips. The sheets slip out of his hand and unfold. Strings of pearls and diamond earrings fall out of the sheets.
“Ah!” he says gathering them quickly; he runs down the stairs.
On the floor where he trips lays a limb foot, sticking out of an open doorway. In the dark room the sea captain lays, plastic wrap sealed tightly around his face. Is his hand is a bloody earring.
Mrs. Copper passes by the room and peeks inside. She lets out a long, loud, piercing scream.
~~~Peacock Residence Grounds- Front Gates-continuous ~~~
The scream of Mrs. Copper is covered up by the crash of thunder.
“We need to alert the authorities.” Mrs. Peacock says
Vera points to Detective Pine.
“I’m going to need backup.” Detective Pine says
“What are we going to do?” asks Mrs. White
“I suggest we go back to the Mansion.” Mr. Green says
“I suppose.” Mrs. Greys-Cale says…
~~~Peacock Residence- Hall-8:13 pm~~~
Mrs. Alabaster, Mrs. Meadow-Brooke, Mrs. Peacock, Miss Scarlet, Detective Pine, Mrs. Greys-Cale, Mr. Green, and Mrs. White enter from outside.
Mrs. Peacock hurries into her study and closes the door. Mrs. Copper hers down the stairs.
“Linda?” Mrs. Alabaster looks at Mrs. Copper’s frightened look on her face.
“Someone’s dead!” she says, “Suffocated!”
“Who?” Detective Pine looks up at the staircase.
“I… I don’t know.” Mrs. Copper stutters, “I’ve never seen him before.”
Mr. Tenné comes out of the kitchen, “What’ll all the shouting?”
“Apparently someone was murdered upstairs.” Detective Pine says, “Actually two bodies upstairs… and one outside.”
“What!” Mrs. Copper says, “You must be joking.”
“Ma’am, I don’t joke about things like this.” Detective Pine says. Mrs. White looks at the floor.
The Drawing Room door opens and Sir Black and ‘Miss Curio’ come out.
“Oh God.” Sir Black gasps upon seeing Detective Pine
“Sir Black?” Detective Pine looks up, “Al!”
Sir Black hurries up the stairs and out of sight. Detective Pine rushes up after him, but becomes dizzy from the attack earlier and his foot slips from the landing. He catches himself on the railing, but in the turning attempt his foot slips out from under him. Mrs. Peacock comes out of her study as the Detective’s head smashes against the marble floor. A pool of blood spills from his head.
“Oh my God!” Mrs. Peacock says upon seeing the motionless body of Detective Pine.
~~~Peacock Residence- Hall- Half Hour Later--8:45 pm~~~
Two medics take a body with a sheet over it outside. Inspector Silverson talks to Sir Black, who is handcuffed over near the Library. Mrs. Peacock and Colonel Mustard embrace each other near the Study door. Mrs. White remains silent with Mrs. Alabaster, and Mrs. Greys-Cale. Prince Azure, Mrs. Meadow-Brooke, and Miss Scarlet stand near the stairs. Miss Curio and Mr. Green stand near the Drawing Room. Mr. Tenné and Mrs. Copper stand at the front door. Senator Peacock sobs quietly at the top of the stairs, Mr. Boddy stands near him.
Inspector Silverson steps away from Sir Black whose cuffs are unlocked. Black stands near Mrs. Peacock.
“Ladies and gentlemen, as you well know, four deaths have taken place here tonight. One of which is the death of Detective Benjamin Pine. His death was not murder as were the others.” Office Malachite comes over to Inspector Silverson.
“I would like all of you to remain in the mansion until told that you may leave.” Inspector Silverson says, “I will have some officer’s in the Drawing Room with you.” Inspector Silverson motions for an officer to lead the group into the Drawing Room. Inspector Silverson pulls Mrs. Peacock aside, “I won’t have the people here very long. I just need to get the general idea of what happened tonight.”
“Of course Inspector.” Mrs. Peacock says
“Is there any particular room I may use to ask people some questions regarding where they were tonight?” asks Silverson
“The Library is right through there.” Mrs. Peacock asks
“Wonderful.” Inspector Silverson smiles, “I’d like to start with you if you don’t mind…”
“Of course.” Mrs. Peacock leads him to the library and goes to a mini bar in the corner. She picks up a bottle of brandy, “Would you care for a glass?”
“I cannot while on duty, but a ginger ale would be fine ma’am… non alcoholic…”
“Of course.” Mrs. Peacock says taking a glass bottle from the cabinet doors of the mini bar. She fixes his drink as he admires the room.
“You have a beautiful home here, Mrs. Peacock. Really beautiful.” Inspector Silverson looks at the high book shelves
“Thank you. Please, make yourself comfortable.” Mrs. Peacock hands him his ginger ale and she takes her brandy glass
“Thanks.” Silverson smiles, sitting in a green arm chair, “Now, tells me about tonight. How did you expect things to go?”
“I expected to have brought Vera home and she would have had a wonderful time with my friends.”
“I see… were any of her friends invited?” asks Inspector Silverson
“One woman came… I believe her name is Rhoda Curio…” Mrs. Peacock thinks, “Never heard of her. She claimed to be the mother of one of Vera’s friends…”
“And did you suspect she was lying?” asks Inspector Silverson
“Considering the fact that she said the Vera personally invited to her own ‘surprise’ party… no I don’t believe her…” Mrs. Peacock says
“Did everyone come that was invited?” asks Silverson
“No, about ten people didn’t show up.” Mrs. Peacock says
“What about this sea captain?” asks Inspector Silverson
“What about him? He was never invited!” Mrs. Peacock says, “He must have sneaked in through the back door.”
“Is that an easy task? Slipping through the back door?” asks Inspector Silver, “And not being noticed?”
“Inspector, every room, sans the bathroom, on the ground floor has French doors leading outside.” Mrs. Peacock says crossing her legs and taking a drink.”
“Ah… so this captain may have slipped inside at any time? Meaning the killer could have axed Evelyne and slipped in any door, or went outside from any room?” Inspector Silverson asks in disbelief.
“Yes.” Mrs. Peacock says
“Who is the architect of this house?” asks Inspector Silverson
“Sir Black.” Mrs. Peacock says
“I see… so Black knows this house better than any guests…” Silverson says, “Interesting.”
“Inspector, is Sir Black going to be arrested for hitting my daughter and murdering my first husband?” Mrs. Peacock asks
“Sadly, no.” Inspector Silverson says, “He claims to have been with his lawyer and nephew’s bank accountant at the time of the murder. And to make matters even more complicated, his lawyer has struck ill and his nephew’s bank accountant is Mr. White… who is dead.”
“So Sir Black very well could be committing the murders here?” Mrs. Peacock asks
“If you think about it… it seems likely.” Inspector Silverson says, “Now, back to the sea captain…”
“Never heard of him.” Peacock repeats
“I understand, but do you know that your daughter was attacked by him.” Inspector Silverson says
“No I didn’t…” Mrs. Peacock bits her lip. She considers telling him the truth about Vera
“Well, Mrs. Peacock, that is all…” Inspector Silverson says
“Wait!” Mrs. Peacock says, “I have to tell you something that only two other people know about. Those people are Jayne Meadow-Brooke and Algernon Black.”
Inspector Silverson becomes interested, “And that would be?”
“Vera doesn’t know this but… she isn’t my daughter.” Mrs. Peacock says
“So you adopted her?” asks Silverson
“No.” Mrs. Peacock says, “She’s my little sister.”
Inspector Silverson’s eyes widen, “Please tell me about it.”
“I was 23 when my mother gave birth to her… she died at birth but the last things she told me was to pass the baby off as my own… If I didn’t, my mother’s abusive lover would try to take her away.” Mrs. Peacock is now in tears, “Vera shows hatred towards me as it is… but if she finds out that she doesn’t even need to show respect for me…” Mrs. Peacock buries her face in her hands, “Not only will she rightfully and legally be able to take half of the money I inherited from our mother’s death, but she’ll never speak to me again.”
“How did you pretend you were pregnant?” Inspector Silverson asks
“Who said I pretended?” asks Mrs. Peacock
“So you did give birth to another baby?” Inspector Silverson is in awe
“Kasandra Scarlet.” Mrs. Peacock says, “She is now the missing daughter of Anna Greys-Cale.”
“So you gave your daughter to Mrs. Greys-Cale?” asks Inspector Silverson, “Good God, Alice!”
“I had no choice, if I came up with two babies… I mean… I couldn’t pass them off as twins!” Mrs. Peacock stutters
“Mrs. Peacock, I have heard quite an earful.” Inspector Silverson says, “But I have one more question.”
“Yes?” asks Mrs. Peacock
“Who is Kasandra’s father?” Inspector Silverson asks
TO BE CONTINUED