Ice Run

Free Ice Run by Steve Hamilton

Book: Ice Run by Steve Hamilton Read Free Book Online
Authors: Steve Hamilton
Tags: thriller, Suspense, Mystery
will help.
    I had a couple more slices of pizza on my way back home. There were thick clouds in the sky, and it was already getting dark. Somewhere in the world it was warm, and the sun stayed out for hours at a time. But I was here on the long straight road back to Paradise, thankful that the county trucks had thrown down some sand. Even more thankful that I’d be giving Natalie Reynaud a call when I got home.
    I ran the plow down my road and back. When I got inside, I saw the light blinking on my answering machine. It was a quick message from Leon, asking me to call him when I got in. So I did.
    “I found out a few things about your man Mr. Grant,” he said.
    “Leon, I hope you didn’t spend too much time on this.”
    “Not at all,” he said. “It occurred to me, this is going to hit the newspaper tomorrow, so I just called my friend over at the
Sault Evening News.”
    “Yeah? What did he tell you?”
    “Just some basic stuff for right now. Simon Grant was eighty-two years old, he was born in the Soo and lived in the area his whole life. Two sons, one daughter. He had a hundred different jobs, from shoeshine boy to union representative. He worked on the old railroad docks for a long time, right on the river.”
    “Yeah, the woman at the hotel told me she thought he’d lived around here for a long time. He used to come into the hotel fairly often, it sounds like, but then he stopped a few years ago.”
    “He might have been in some kind of senior care,” Leon said. “Maybe he sneaked out and went back to one of his old familiar places.”
    “That makes sense,” I said. “That would explain why they hadn’t seen him for a while. There was one weird thing, though …”
    “What’s that?”
    “I thought the doorman at the hotel might be able to help me out. So I tried to find him. He seems to have disappeared.”
    “What?”
    I gave him the whole rundown. Chris Woolsey not showing up for work today, going to his apartment, and then his parents’ place.
    “That’s a little strange,” Leon said. “It might not be a coincidence.”
    “Well, I left a card at both places. Maybe he’ll call me.”
    “You know, Alex, for a man who has no interest in being a private eye, it sure sounds like you’re acting like one.”
    “I just want to know what happened,” I said. “If I don’t try to find out, it’ll just keep bothering me, why this man would go to all that trouble, thinking that he knew me. Wouldn’t you be doing the same thing?”
    “I’d be all over it, yes.”
    I couldn’t help smiling. “Yeah, I have no doubt about that.”
    “My friend at the paper said he’s working on the obit this evening, so he may have some more information. If he calls me, I’ll call you.”
    “You can stop, Leon. You don’t have to do any more.”
    “It’s no big deal, Alex. I’ll let you know what he says.”
    “All right,” I said. “Thank you.”
    “What are partners for?” It was an old line I had heard before, back when it meant something. It almost made me wish it still did.
    When I was done with Leon, I called Natalie. Her answering machine picked up before she finally got on the line herself.
    “Sorry,” she said. “I was going through the stuff in the basement.”
    “You’ve got a lot down there.”
    “A whole lifetime’s worth. It’s gonna take me a long time to go through it all.”
    “Just let me know if you want help. My rates are cheap.”
    She didn’t say anything.
    “What’s the matter, Natalie?”
    “It’s just too much sometimes. That’s all.”
    “Okay,” I said. “I can imagine.”
    “I’m sorry, so what did you do today?”
    “I gave the hat to Chief Maven. Then I wandered over to the hotel.” I gave her the same rundown I had given Leon—Chris Woolsey disappearing, and me trying to find him.
    “Maybe he’s just a little freaked out, Alex. This man was in the lobby all day, and then suddenly he’s dead.”
    “I hear what you’re saying. It’s just

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