Swinging the Camaro into the Courthouse parking lot, Edna and the boys stopped by the Deer Park Police Station as promised.
“When we get there, we need to locate the Police Department. You two need to answer the Detective’s questions, quickly. We have to get home for dinner.”
“OK, Mom.” Sean and Randy mumbled in unison.
“Remember, the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. No colorful story-telling, you hear?”
“Hey, Mom. We didn’t do anything wrong or illegal”, said Sean.
“Right. We just ran away before they got there. There’s no law against that, is there?” Randy added his defensive two cents worth.
“Not that I know of, besides I already explained that to them. I told them you ran away because you were spooked by the body.”
Parking the Camaro in front of the Courthouse, Edna announced,
“OK, we’re here. Make your answers honest and short. Don’t answer any questions they haven’t asked.”
The large intimidating entrance doors to the Courthouse opened into an even larger rotunda. The ornate hemispheric stained glass dome above lit up the place adding to it’s overall feeling of impending importance. Once inside, they found a directory on the anterior wall. The Police Department office number and arrow directed them to the City Jail and Ben Perrini’s office.
Coming out of the door, Perrini, greeted them,
“Thanks for coming in. Mrs. Running Eagle you need to wait here. We want to talk to the boys alone.”
“I understand. Sean, go with Detective Perrini and Randy, you go with the other man. Let’s not spend too much time on this. I’ll need to feed you guys on the way home.”
In the first interrogation room, Ben pointed Sean to a chair at the table and began the questioning.
“Sean, can you tell me what you were doing in the old apple orchard?”
“We just like to runaround and hunt for stuff, like squirrels, rabbits, rats or whatever. We got BB guns for Christmas.”
“How did you happen to find the body?”
“I saw it first. Looked like a blanket covering a pile of brush. Didn’t know what it was.”
“How did you find out what it was?”
“I told Randy to lift the blanket.”
“When he lifted one edge, I saw it. At first, we thought he or it was asleep.”
“What made you think that?”
“It or he was propped up leaning against the tree and when Randy told him or it to open his eyes, I told Randy the eyes were already open. That’s when I decided he must be dead.”
“Do you remember seeing any blood, wounds or weapons.?”
“I didn’t want to get that close but Randy said it looked like a drunk Indian. And that’s when he called 911.”
“What happened next?”
“We were scared and I knew we were late meeting up with Mom. I wanted to run.”
So that’s what you did?”
“Not exactly. When Randy said the 911 operator said stay where you are help’s on its way, I told him, No, we’re already late, lets get to hell outta here”
Meanwhile in the other interrogation room, Mac was asking the same questions and getting the same answers. Over an hour of more or less intense and threatening grilling produced nothing of use. When they compared notes it became obvious they were barking up the wrong tree and Edna and the boys couldn’t get out the door fast enough.
Mac with all the discretion of a bull moose, checking in with Ben for direction,
“Dr. Rice, I presume. . . . . . .Where now for a clue ? ”