Jacinda wanted to bounce as she waited for the news articles to print. She grabbed them as they came out one by one.
She spun around to see Detective Merritt watching her from his perch on the desk. She glanced at the board the two men had flipped over, it had all the women’s information on it. She’d seen things like this in movies and always thought they were kind of neat, but to see one in front of her wasn’t a good feeling. She looked over it slowly; four women were now listed like pieces of a puzzle. She stared at the pictures of them and wondered how necessary it was to have a photo of each dead woman pinned up here. She would never forget their faces.
Detective Jordan spoke softly beside her. “It saves time going through files.” She just nodded but continued to look at the board. “What did you find?”
She turned and looked over at the other detective. and then down at the pages in her hand, almost having forgotten them. “Oh.” She held out the first page to him. “Desi Sloan liked to gamble, she won big four months ago.”
He glanced at it and handed it over to Brent, who was now standing beside him.
She held out the second page. “Clair White’s wealthy aunt passed away, also four months ago.” This time he took a bit longer to read it over before passing it to Brent. Glancing at the next page she frowned then handed it to him. “Theresa Woodward’s much older husband passed away six months ago and left her a huge estate.”
Detective Merritt nodded and handed the page to his partner. “Elaine Azaire had a trust fund?”
Jac nodded and handed him the last page she held. “So, now what?” She was very pleased with herself and couldn’t help wanting to rush to the next step.
Brent was holding the phone already. “We get bank records.”
Detective Merritt stood there looking down at her. “I’m impressed.” He said it quietly. She beamed a ‘told ya so’ smile at him. “We stopped after employment and credit searches, none of them seemed to be worth much.”
Jac looked at him for a moment. Was he pleased she’d found something he hadn’t thought of or did he just say it because he thought that was what she wanted to hear? She lowered her head and tried not to smirk and doubting he’d ever say something just because someone wanted to hear it. Clasping her hands in front of her she glanced back up at him. “It was a long shot.”
He picked up the pages she’d handed him and held them out to her. “Put your leads on the board.”
She gave him a startled look as she took the pages back. Deciding there wasn’t a proper comment to make, she said nothing.
As she was writing under Elaine’s news clipping, the Captain came through the door. “I didn’t intend the two of you to hold her prisoner down here.” He glanced at Detective Merritt. “Do any of you realize the time?”
Jac looked up at the clock. Sandy was going to be fuming, not only had she missed the reception, but the dinner as well. The Captain came and stood by her. He tapped the newspaper article. “Your doing?” She nodded. “Good work, Miss Brown.”
She tried not to show how pleased his praise made her feel. “Jac.”
He smiled at her. “Jac.” Turning towards Detective Merritt his smile faded. “Break for the night and let Jac go home and get some rest.”
The somber detective just jerked his head once acknowledging he’d heard.
Jac walked back over to get her purse and let the three men discuss the findings, her phone buzzed in her pocket. Probably Sandy unleashing the hounds of hell she thought as she answered the phone with a smirk.
“Yes.” The caller sniffled.
“It’s Mandy Azaire.”
Jac stopped in the middle of the room. “Mandy? Is everything all right?” Clearly, not the most intelligent thing to ask her with the circumstances. All three men turned to look at her. Another sniffle.
“Yeah, I’m just—I wanted to tell you I just feel better knowing you’re going to help.”
Jac put her head down and stared at the floor. “I’m going to try.” There was a long pause.
“I guess it’s too soon to ask if you know anything.”
Jac looked over at the men watching her and sighed. “Actually, I’m going to need some financial records of Lanie’s, if you could…”
“Hold on, Daddy just walked in.”
She listened to the muffled conversation on the other end and almost dropped the phone when the male voice came out of the earpiece.
“Miss Brown. It’s William. What do you need?”
She sent a pleading look to the three men. “I, we, believe the possible link may have something to do with your daughter’s trust fund Mr. Azaire.”
There was a long pause. “I was afraid of that.”
He sounded defeated. She glanced at detective Merritt, who was writing quickly on a file folder. He held up the folder, with a number scribbled on it. “Would you be able to fax any records or statements to the detectives?”
The man on the other end cleared his throat. “Yes, first thing in the morning. Let me get a pen.”
“I’m really sorry to …”
“Don’t be. Give me the number.” His voice was all business again.
Brent held up a piece of paper with the fax number on it. She gave it to him and was ready to hang up when a quiet little girl voice came back on.
“Thank you, for everything.”
“Try to get some rest, Mandy.”
“I will, Jac.”
She hung up the phone and stood there looking at the three men. Turning quickly, she busied herself with straightening up the notes she’d had beside the computer. She didn’t want them to know how hard this really was for her. She was helping find a killer, and she truthfully didn’t want to have anything to do with it. Sighing she picked up her purse. She couldn’t walk away now either, she had to help.