As County Attorney, it was J. Edmund Wakefield’s job to officially determine people dead. It was never a tough job, and this case was no exception.
“So the wife cuts her wrists in the bathtub and the husband comes in and finds her,” an officer whose name Wakefield could not place, said, reading from his notes. “Then, as near as we can tell, a struggle ensues, she runs him through with the towel wrack – that must have taken some muscle – he falls on the bed in their bedroom and she crawls out into the living room and bleeds to death. The paperboy saw her body this morning.”
“So we’ve got blood in the bathtub?”
“A dead husband on the bed?”
“The towel wrack was circular. That’s why the stain is an oval like that.”
“And she dies in the living room?”
“Yup. That’s the mess you’re looking at now.”
“Nope. Seems pretty open and shut to me.”
Wakefield had a nasty feeling start in his intestines and spread like a stain.
“Open and shut,” he said. “I guess so.”