The First Suspect of Lake Derry

Jefferson stood, resolute, disgusted. He spoke to the fishermen in low tones. “We got ourselves a heap of trouble, and I ain’t sure who we dealing with here yet. Junebug been shot three times, reckon somebody wanted him good and dead. When’s the last time you boys saw him alive?”

“Weren’t he at Faye’s barbecue Sunday?” slurred Ralph, leaning against a tree.

“Couldn’t tell ye,” said Jefferson, “I’s out of town myself. Larry? You was there, wasn’t ye?”

The mayor placed his hands on his hips and stared at the body in silence. He was trembling like a moth in the spotlight, nervous beads of sweat forming across his forehead. He wiped them away with a shaky handkerchief.

“Lar’? Was you or wasn’t you at Faye’s barbecue?”

“No!” erupted Larry. “I mean yes! I mean he weren’t there, Junebug, said he had business up in Brent, he did stop by, but I didn’t see him or nothing, but …oh hang it all Jefferson, I don’t know nothing! Just let me be!”

The mayor took two quivering steps backward and collapsed on the sand.

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