Cold Case

“Yeah,” the reporter said.

Bill sighed. He ran over the story once more in his mind, gathering the steam needed to tell it.

“Well, it started Tuesday,” he began. “I was here, in my office, drinking a cup of coffee and reading over the reports from the night before.”

That wasn’t entirely true. He was drinking coffee, alright, but he was actually surfing the internet, looking up discount rooms on Hotels.com; a long week in Florida sounded good about now. The reporter didn’t need to know that. It’d make him look bad. The reporter, from Pittsburgh, wouldn’t understand how a cop could have the time to surf the net at work. In the city, someone was always doing something. Here, in Maspeth, population three hundred, no one did anything, expect farm and go to church. Of all the rural villages dotting the northern Pennsylvania highlands, Maspeth was probably the smallest and the most isolated; surrounded by densely forested hills, it was accessible by one highway and one highway only: US26. The interstate was only ten miles to the south, but there were no signs for Maspeth along its length; unless you knew where Maspeth was and meant to get there, you’d never find it.

Bill’s job, then, was more sitting than running, and the only shots he’d ever made in his three years as sheriff involved a wad of paper and a wastebasket. That was fine by him, though. He was a patrolman in Philadelphia for almost twenty years, and had had more than his fair share of excitement.

“It was...eight or nine, I think. I was just about to get up and go on patrol when I got a call from Old Man Jamison out on Deer Ridge Road.”





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