Frank had exhausted all the leads
that the senator had given him, and talked to everyone he thought she had contact with in a little over a day. The senator didn’t give him much to go off of, and everything still leads to suicide, or at least nothing points to murder. Frank didn’t know where to start next. The only thing he could think of is to watch the campaign building and see if anyone going in and out of the building was someone he didn’t talk to. May be they have a connection to April.
So the boring part started. Three hours had gone by, and he was contemplating calling it quits not only for the day, but completely. Call John up and explain to him that it really was a suicide and there was no other alternative. Then he spotted her. She was a middle-aged, attractive red head, who looked very out of place in her surroundings. He had never seen her before. He took a quick picture on his cell phone. He immediately sent the picture to the senator with the message “Recognize her?”
Within seconds, Frank’s cell phone chirped. Opening it up, he viewed the reply message from the senator. “That’s Cindy Shell… I have a restraining order out on her.” Bingo, Frank thought.
Frank got out of his car and walked calmly over to Cindy. She had positioned herself on a fountain wall, trying to look busy with her phone. Frank walked up and sat down beside her. Carefully, he tried to make small talk with her.
“Nice day out today, huh,” he began. Trying to ignore him, she continued fiddling with her phone, so he continued. “I can’t believe the presidential candidate works here. I would love to work in an office in a beautiful area like this.” Still no reply, so he tried one last ditch effort. “Hi, I’m Frank,” reaching out his hand for her. Finally she looks up at him and extends her hand, probably out of sheer politeness. Although may be she didn’t know another way to get out of it.
“Cindy,” she replied shaking his hand.
“Do you work for Senator Humbledon?” he asked probing for her answer to why she was there.
“No I just like having my lunch here,” she responded before she realized she didn’t have any food with her.
Trying to act like he didn’t notice, Frank replied, “Sure is a nice place for lunch. The place must be interesting to people watch being campaign central and all.” She simply nodded, so he proceeded. “Did you hear about the awful death of the campaign manager April Glass?”
Suddenly Cindy’s facial expression changed. Frank could see the fear in her eyes, but there was something else he couldn’t figure out. Sadness may be? No, it was pain, but why. She got up to leave, so he followed. “Cindy,” Frank called from behind, “What really happened two nights ago?”
Frank was finishing his report to the Senator. He was summing up his conversation with Cindy and the events that passed after she had been arrested for the murder of April Glass. John had been completely unaware that April had been in a relationship with Cindy. One of those fluke things that happened, when April had been trying to get her to leave an event the senator had attended. At first it was merely a friendship, but it soon blossomed. They really had so much in common. Cindy explained that the restraining order was just a misunderstanding. She would never have harmed the senator. She was somewhat of an amateur writer and wanted to write a story about his race to the candidacy.
April understood Cindy’s drive. After all, she was once the same way. They truly had a lot in common, but more than that, they fit together. The last night the senator saw April on the phone, she had been on the phone with Cindy. April was trying to explain that introducing her to John as her girlfriend was difficult, and wasn’t going to look good for him in the presidency. Cindy became angry. April always had put him first. Cindy was tired of it, so she came down to visit her hoping he would still be there with April. Finally the truth could come out once and for all, but when she got there, April was the only one left. She became enraged at Cindy for risking everything.
April told Cindy if she couldn’t respect her wishes they were through. Cindy became angry again, and this time she remembered the revolver April kept in her desk drawer for her late nights alone in the building. She reached for it. April realizing what she was doing also dove for the gun. Struggling the gun went off. Cindy didn’t know what happened at first. April had gone limp and the fighting had ceased. Then she realized, scared of what would happen, she ran.
Cindy never thought they would think the death a suicide. She became torn between the truth and her life. Frank recalled the pain in her eyes when he first asked about April. Now he knew the whole reason.
To be continued…