she felt compelled to try.
Pazziniwas late. He’d gotten caught up in more interviews with folks who’d known Dr. Hamilton. This guy seemed to have no enemies whatsoever except for his ex-wife. Interestingly enough, she was overseas in Monaco, of all places. He couldn’t help but wonder how she could afford that kind of vacation on alimony. Sure, doctors made a very good living, but not the kind that afforded the items the ex-Mrs. Hamilton seemed to have. At least not these days.
The ex had to have moved on to something, or someone, bigger and better—someone with a substantial bank account. Simmons was still trying to reach her. Pazzini had a few pointed questions to ask. A woman with that kind of money could easily hire out a hit. But then why bother? She was divorced, clearly well off…what was the motive?
Then there was the teenage daughter. She was staying with friends while her mother was cavorting in Monaco. Tony had yet to speak to her, but she could be an excellent source of information. He’d had one of the female officers break the news to her about her dad, and take a statement. However, Pazzini figured it would be vital that he also have a word with the kid. From what he heard, she was pretty distraught, and even more so because her mother was incommunicado. Another odd thing…if the ex-wife was out of town, why was the sixteen-year old daughter staying with friends and not her dad? That didn’t add up. Nothing was adding up for him with this case. Maybe the doc could provide more insight.
Dr. Morales met Pazzini at a Starbucks around the corner from the hospital. She gave him a slight wave and a tentative smile when he came through the door. It appeared she’d forgiven his heavy hand from the evening before. Her face was drawn with exhaustion but she still looked lovely.
“Sorry I’m late,” he said as he sat down.
“It’s fine. I got you a coffee. Black. Didn’t know if that was okay, but…”
“Live off the stuff. Thank you. Black is perfect.”
She smiled again, erasing some of the fatigue from her face. “I grabbed a sandwich…this is my dinner break,” she said. “Hope you don’t mind. If you want something, I can wait.”
“No. I’m good. Hoping to get a home-cooked meal tonight.”
“Your wife is a good cook, I take it?”
He didn’t respond for a moment. “Actually, my mother. She takes care of my son while I’m at work. My wife passed away a few years ago. Cancer.”
“Oh! I am so sorry. I didn’t mean…” She shook her head, looking chagrined. “I would love a home-cooked meal. I really should eat better. Doctors’ schedules and all.”
“We all should….eat better, that is. And you don’t need to apologize, but thank you.” She had lost the anger, but seemed jumpy, anxious—something was off. He clasped his hands together. “You called, which is good because I wanted to ask you some more questions.”
She took a sip from her coffee. “Ask away.”
“Why don’t we tackle what you wanted to talk to me about first, Dr. Morales. Maybe we can kill two birds with one stone.”
“Sure. By the way, you don’t have to call me Dr. Morales, Detective. Kelly is fine.”
He hesitated for a second. Yes, there was a definite edginess to her, which put him on alert. “Okay, then, Kelly. Please call me Tony.” If she wanted to try and make things comfortable, he’d follow her lead.
“You may think I’m a lunatic—and I may be, I don’t know—but, here goes. I think that Jake’s murder ties into something more sinister and complex than a revenge plot, crime of passion, or whatever the police might think is going on.”
“Really?I don’t know that anything of the sort has been concocted. What are you getting at?” How had she come up with an idea about revenge? She knew more than she was letting on.
“I believe someone wanted Jake dead because he knew something that…that someone didn’t want him to talk