Skip to main content

Story A Day--- Cross and Martin, part 28--- "Intent", 536 words.....


                 The worn expression that Miss Mary carried with her spoke of her own sleepless night. Though, I am sure her sleepless evening had nothing to do with waiting for an answer to a note that was sent out.

                Cross came to sit at the very edge of my sofa, as close as possible to our visitor. “Miss Adell,” he began, a softness in his voice that I had never heard before. “Thank you for coming at such short notice.” A sincere and apologetic smile did enough, in my opinion, to convince Miss Mary that he had no ill intentions where she was concerned.

                “As you say, Mr. Cross, it was short notice. But, how could I truly stay away when I received your note.” She pulled a folded bit of paper from the inside of her left glove. “I had to know what it was you wished to share with me and what this—how did you phrase it—important information regarding your safety, life and freedom.” She pushed the note back into the lining of her glove. “Such ominous words must surely be meant to attract attention and you most assuredly got mine.”

                Cross leaned forward, placing his face squarely in line with Miss Adell’s. The smile dissolved and a stern expression of analyzing concentration swept his frame. “Tell me, Miss Adell, do you know what it was that killed your first fiancé, Corbet Adams?”

                There was little change in Miss Mary Adell, so little in fact, that I wondered what Cross might be able to make of her. I, for my part, saw nothing. Her expression wasn’t cold, it wasn’t sympathetic, it most certainly wasn’t distraught. It was nothing, not even surprise at Cross’s question.

                “I believe at first the death had been ruled suicide by gunshot, but, that ruling was quickly overturned by your own insistence that he had met his death by other means,” the only change in Miss Mary’s expression was the opening and closing of her mouth as she spoke, the lack of change was quickly became disturbing. “African Milk Plant, wasn’t it?”

                Cross nodded, “The coroner even found a piece of the plant in Adams’s pocket.” I could see that Cross was holding his breath as he watched Miss Adell. “I wonder, who would go to such trouble to murder someone with the intention of having it look like a suicide—who was careful enough in all other details—but, who intentionally or unintentionally left a piece of the murderous plant to be discovered in the pocket of the victim?”

                “Surely, no one.” I blurted, before I realized what I’d said.

                Cross clicked his tongue, a quick smile flying to his lips and then disappearing just as quickly. And, for the first time since her arrival, a change came over Miss Mary. Her breathing, which had been so focused and calm, was now shallow and quick.

                “Ah,” a blinding realization came from Cross’s question. “The piece of poisonous plant was deliberately tucked into Adams’s pocket. Someone wanted it to be known that his death was no suicide.”

                “Exactly,” Cross focused his attention back on Miss Adell. “Someone wanted it to be known that he had, in fact, been murdered.”


Popular posts from this blog

Y is for Yeth Hound.....

Yeth Hound--- one of the incarnations of the "Black Dog" myth, this one located specifically, in Devon, England.

"Black Dogs" appear in myths across the world, most are associated with death and bad omens... i.e. Hell Hounds.

The Yeth Hound is said to be the spirit of an unbaptised child that takes the form of a headless black dog. The Hound wanders the woods at night making pitiful wailing sounds (though, I'm unclear as to how it makes wailing sounds without having a head).

The Black Dogs were possibly one inspiration from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's ghost dog in The Hound of the Baskervilles-- "an enormous coal-black hound, but not such a hound as mortal eyes have ever seen."

Heed Not, the Lonesome Cry
Heed not, the lonesome cry, the baleful wail echoing through the woods. Seek not, the black hound's sigh, look not where the headless creature stood.
One sound, your limbs will shake, your heart filled with the deepest dread. One glimpse, your sou…

B is for Banshee.....

Irish bean sidhe and Scottish Gaelic bean sith, literally, woman of fairyland.

The mythology and legend surrounding the Banshee is a bit mixed. The most readily accepted story is of a hag-like creature wailing the impending death of someone nearby-- most ancient Gaelic families, especially the more well-to-do families, had their own Banshees that attached themselves to the lineage of the family name. I suppose it was a sign of station for a family to be able to claim their own Banshee--- I mean, who needs an exciting/ tongue-wagging-inciting skeleton in your cupboard when you've got a Banshee wailing in your rafters?
The origins of the more familiar Banshee may have stemmed from the ancient Keeners-- women who were employed to sing a lament at a funeral. The best Keeners were in high demand to "wail" and "weep" for the great personage who had fallen.

The Great families would boast a bean sidhe or bean sith-- a fairy-woman Keener--and having foresight, the Keene…

S is for Siren.....

Sirens--- the beautiful, the terrifying.
Vicious, but, seemingly opportunistic creatures who lured sailors to their deaths by the sound of their captivating songs. Whether the stories of these creatures were a result of surviving sailors attempting to explain their near-miss in an effort to divert the fault of their shipwreck from their hands, or whether as a warning for those leaving to ensure their fidelity to the women they left behind, is unclear...

Considered the daughters of Achelous(river god), and though they have been blamed for the death of many sailors, they were not, however, sea deities. They have sometimes been called Muses of the lower world, their sad song causing the body and soul of those sailors who hear them to fall into a fatal lethargy.

In early myths, Sirens were the combined form of birds and women. Sometimes with a large female head, their bodies covered in bird feathers, their feet...scaled. Later myths show them as female figures with the legs of birds, tho…