Skip to main content

Story A Day--- Cross and Martin, part 31--- "Truth", 812 words.....


               “You see,” Cross shifted his position so that he was able to turn back and face me when he spoke. “Once Mr. Dison had disposed of Corbet Adams’s body the way Jonathan Adell dictated, there was this information that Mr. Dison had about what happened.” Cross kept his back to Miss Mary as he spoke.

                “I’m sure that Jonathan Adell never expected a fellow greenery lover to turn into a blackmailer like he did.” While Cross spoke, I turned to watch Miss Mary. Though her face was as unchanged as before, there was a slight tremor coursing through her frame.

                “What a price to pay for the services of such a man.” Cross drew a low hiss of breath through his clenched teeth.

                “I was to marry him before the year was out.” Miss Mary’s voice fell into the conversation. Her words fell at her feet. “You’ve no idea how horrible it all felt. I couldn’t marry him. I didn’t love him. And, yet, I couldn’t allow my father’s name to be drug through the courts.”

                “Even though he had arranged for the murder of the man that you loved?” My heart went out to her.

                “Even then.” Miss Mary released a soft sigh. “You see, no matter how much I loved Corbet, I still loved my father. And, though Corbet was gone, my father was still here. Seeing him disgraced would break my heart.”

                Cross clucked his tongue against his teeth. “So, you planted the cutting of African Milk Plant in Corbet’s pocket because you wanted people to know he didn’t commit suicide, and the clue would have been vague enough that perhaps the connection to your father may never be discovered.”

                Miss Mary nodded.

                “How is it that Manuel Dison came to be poisoned?” My mind tore at the improbability of it all. “Surely he would have been most careful anytime he was on the estate, never taking tea, as it were.”

                “Ah,” a twinkle flashed, for a moment, in Miss Mary’s eye. “The ego of such a man is easily wielded when the right words are spoken.”

                “The dutiful host and fiancée,” Cross murmured.

                “Quite.” Miss Mary nodded. “You are right, Mr. Martin, Manuel never took tea with my father. But, there are other means, other treats that can house a poison.” Her voice fell to a whisper.

                “I am sorry, Mr. Martin, that you suffered for your visit yesterday. I do promise that it was never intended that you should have taken any of the poison. I’m afraid that silly girl of a maid didn’t follow my instructions on disposing of the tea.” Miss Mary rose from the chair. “I do hope you’ll forgive any injury.”

                Cross stood, “So, one suitor ends the life of another suitor, only to have his own life ended. That’s quite the little complication.”

                “What do you intend to do, Mr. Cross? Now that you know the truth?” Miss Mary, her tremor still slightly visible in her arms.

                “You mean, will I go to the police and lay everything before them?”

                Miss Mary nodded.

                “I don’t really know. On the one hand, I don’t work for the police, but on the other hand, there are two murders that must be answered for.” Cross walked to the sitting room door and opened it. “Good day, Miss Adell.”

                When Miss Adell had moved far enough from the door to prevent her overhearing, I turned to Cross. “Surely, you’re going to police. We can’t just let that family get away with murder.”

                “Can’t we?” Cross’s face had a dark weariness about it, like the weight of the universe had suddenly planted itself between his eyes. “There’s more to this than a simple murder, more to it than who was right and who was wrong. Where do we draw the line on self-defense?” Cross plopped back into the armchair. “No, I need to think this one through.”


                The day passed as agonizingly slow as the night before. When Cross finally did move from the armchair, it was to fetch the evening edition of the paper. It was upon his return that I knew something was horribly wrong. Never had I seen his face so stricken.

                “What is it? What’s happened?”

                Cross dropped the evening paper in my lap before falling into the armchair. There, printed across the front page in bold print, the main headline read:  Three dead at Adell Estate, investigation underway.

                The article went on to say that, the deaths were believed to be accidental as Mr. Adell was an avid gardener who enjoyed dabbling in his own tea mixes. It was further believed that their last collection of leaves were mistakenly mixed with the highly poisonous Belladonna.

                Cross sighed, his whole frame sinking against the back of the armchair. “There is no stronger poison, nor one any deadlier than desperation mixed with passion.”


  1. Awesome ending! Congrats on completing the challenge. :)

  2. Thanks!!! Congrats to you as well.... Would still love to read that Ghost Adventures-inspired story of yours :-)

  3. Well done, E! I was just about to have a cup of tea haha Think I will have coffee instead! You must be exhausted.

  4. Awww, thanks, Niki! :-)
    Yeah, sorry.... didn't mean to put you off your cuppa, lol


Post a Comment

Share your thoughts!

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…