“You see, Chief, it seems, under advice of counsel, I am unable to answer your questions at this time.” Dean said, smugness in his voice.

A thin stripe of white foam collected at the corner of the police chief’s flattened lips. The firm line of contempt remained that way for another nanosecond, before the older man straightened to his full height of near six feet as he addressed the entire group.

“A young girl is lying in critical care and all I see before me is a bunch of selfish people. You disgust me.” He turned and stomped back toward the stairs, pausing before his foot descended to the first step. Looking over his shoulder, he added, “Your mother bragged about her brilliant children, all grown up and professional like. It seems to me you all fell quite short of her assessment. Seems your father was right about you kids in the end. You’re all worthless pieces of shit.”

His hollow boot steps echoed in the silence left by his parting words. Their crunching on the gravel drive, like mortar and pestle pulverizing any souls the McElroy offspring were beginning to develop again.

Dean walked to the edge of the porch steps, his line of sight focused on where his father’s friend now stood – the front end of Dean’s car. When the Chief reached into his shirt pocket and pulled out a cellphone to snap a picture, Dean’s heart raced inside his ribcage. His throat tightened as if the noose was already there.

What did the Chief find?

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2 thoughts on “An Excerpt from a Work in Progress

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