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   Chapter 7 No.7

Dead Man’s Hammer By Christina Engela Characters: 5069

Updated: 2018-06-30 12:02

"There's a set of tracks that come awful close to the Jeepo." Said Okuda, gesturing with the scanner. "It stopped over there. Wheelbase measurements and track scans say it's a Targa 800 series."

"Who called it in?"

"Uh – a Mister and Mrs Martin. They own a farm somewhere in the valley. They were on the way to church this morning. The Reformed Puritan one in Dingle Street. They didn't stop, they just called it in."

"Y'don't say?" O'Donnell commented, still distracted. "What car do they drive?"

Intuitively, Okuda shook his head. "A Vax 427." He replied. "It's an old one, a kind of ute – and they said they didn't stop."

"Did they see anything?"

"Just a Jeepo that looked abandoned at the side of the road, no visible occupants. I was on patrol when dispatch called it in and I checked it out."

Ramalama was beating down on the hilly plains of Deanna. Sheriff O'Donnell put his hat back on. The badge on the front proudly proclaimed him to be a S.O.D. – but he wasn't really. He was a good cop, an upholder of the Law – a good guy. It pained him to see the end of a man like Gary Beck – a bounty hunter who was rumored to be so good at his job; he could find the missing day in a leap year. And now Beck the Badfeller was dead and only one thing was certain. Finding the cause of death on this one was going to be a real bitch.

* * *

Peggy-Ann Muller was not feeling at all well. It was ten thirty Monday morning and she'd just opened an email from a colleague in San Fedora. As could be ex

to pick at him about. 'Why in my office? My office! Get your own office!' She always ragged him. She still had a picture of the two of them. It stood on the corner of her desk. Well, they were in it, but so was practically her whole team of deputies. It was the night they all went bowling together. Big John had got his fingers stuck in a bowling ball and they had to use cooking grease from the bowling alley diner to get it off. She chuckled, blinking back the tears again. Gary was good with things like that. She wiped her eyes again, so no one would see she'd been crying, and walked through the rows of desks in the outer office. A blurry, vague looking deputy brushed past, carrying evidence bags.

"Hi, Sheriff." He muttered.

"Hi." She answered vacantly, numbly making the agonizing trip to the counter and out through the front door.

The fresh air outside was welcome. She inhaled deeply to fill her lungs with it, all the time acutely conscious that it was something he couldn't do anymore.

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