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Authors: Cindy Bell

3 Mascara and Murder (7 page)

BOOK: 3 Mascara and Murder
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Chapter S
even

 

When Bekki and Nick arrived at the Windward Mansion both Katherine and Phillip were out, but their eldest daughter Elizabeth was home. She was not much younger than Bekki and didn't seem to share her parents’ distaste for the town or the people who lived in it.

"Would you mind if we came in for just a minute?" Bekki asked in her most charming tone. But it was not Bekki's charm that got them invited in. It was a flash of Nick's smile, and a glimmer of his dark green eyes. Elizabeth led them to the sitting room.

"How can I help you?" she asked politely. Bekki was sure she must not have been raised by her parents. "I know all of this is causing my parents such distress. They've never dealt with something so dark before."

"Well
, we're here to try to clear it all up," Nick explained. "Can you tell me if you've ever known anyone named Meghan?"

Elizabeth laughed at that. "Of course I have. I grew up in boarding schools. I've met tons of Meghans. I even met a Meegan and Michigan, so yes. But
, why do you need to know about that?"

"Think about it," Bekki encouraged. "Was there ever someo
ne in your past named Meghan, she would have been an adult. Maybe someone your family knew?"

Elizabeth's eyes misted briefly and then she nodded. "
Yes, that would be Meghan, our nanny," she said quietly. "She was our nanny until I was about ten, and then she left," she picked up a framed photograph from the table beside the couch. "This is Meghan," she said and showed them the picture. In the picture, Elizabeth and her younger sister were each perched on the knee of a woman who looked remarkably like Lucy. "She left suddenly. I think because she was pregnant. And after that it was boarding schools for me."

"I'm sorry," Bekki said gently. "That must have been hard for you." It was clear that Meghan had made quite an impact on Elizabeth.

"Yes well, it was a long time ago," she shrugged. "Is there a reason why you're asking about her?"

"No, not really," Bekki said quickly.

"We're just going through old contact lists," Nick explained in a professional tone. "Just want to know who's who, that sort of thing."

"Okay," Elizabeth shrugged. "Well, like I said the faster you can get all of this cleared up, the better. My parents deserve a break."

As Nick and Bekki walked out of the mansion, they were both shaking their heads. It was hard to believe a daughter could grow up with no concept of who or what her parents were.

“I'm going to drop you by your place,” Nick said. “I really need to turn some of this information into the police.”

“Okay,” Bekki nodded as he drove them to her house. When they pulled up she hopped out, and Nick headed for the police station. Neither of them noticed Trevor's car parked down the road. Trevor himself was standing at the door when Bekki came walking up.

“Trevor,” she said with surprise. “What are you doing here?”

Trevor met her gaze with that determined look that had begun to really irritate her.

"Can we talk inside?" he asked with a slight frown.

"I guess," Bekki nodded as she unlocked the door and let him follow her in. Once they were inside Trevor perched on the edge of the counter top in the kitchen while Bekki rummaged for a couple of sodas. When she gave Trevor his, he sighed and closed his eyes.

"Sammy is not doing too well
, Bekki, I think she's given up on the idea that she can be found innocent," he frowned deeply before taking another sip of his soda.

"Don't worry Nick and I are on the case," Bekki said firmly. "I'm not going to let Sammy spend one minute more than she has to inside that cell."

"Good," Trevor nodded, and then set down his soda. He stood up and moved closer to her, so that she was pinned in the crux of the two sides of the counter coming together. "Now about us," he began.

"There is no us," Bekki said sternly. "We're
over, we've been over for a very long time."

"So what, you want to be with that small town cop?" he shrugged mildly. "I can get my hands on some handcuffs and a badge if
that's what you're looking for."

Bekki rolled her eyes. "No
, that's not it. Yes, Nick and I are together. And I'd like to keep it that way.”

"You won't really know until we try it again," Trevor insisted and moved as if he might kiss her again.

"No," Bekki growled and swept his legs out from under him. In the blink of an eye Trevor was looking up at her from his back on the floor. "It was over for me the day you cheated on me, Trevor. It's never going to happen again. You lost your chance with me, and it's time for you to move on."

Trevor glowered at her as he got to his feet and brushed off his expensive pant legs.

"Well, in that case, you can figure all of this out yourself," Trevor said coldly. "Don't call me for help again."

"I don't plan to," she replied, and she believed it.

Trevor stormed out of the house and slammed the door shut behind him. Bekki stared after him, realizing that Sammy's greatest defense had just disappeared. It made her sick to her stomach to think that Trevor's presence was never there to help, but to seduce. It also made her even more certain that Nick was the one for her, as the idea of losing herself to Trevor again was a repulsive one.

She sighed as she sat down at the kitchen table. She felt more helpless than ever. So they had figured out that Lucy was the nanny's daughter. But that didn't tell them too much.
Why would Lucy want to get to know Phillip? Then Bekki started to do the math. It was quite possible that the baby the nanny had been carrying when she left might have been Phillip's.

“That's it!” Bekki announced out loud despite being alone. “Phillip is the father, and Lucy was trying to get to know him. That was why she died. But who killed her?”

Bekki had enough. She was tired of the Windwards getting away with everything because of their wealth and circumstances. She wanted to make a point, that if you hurt someone, you pay for it, regardless of your bank account. As she climbed behind the wheel of her car, she knew that what she was about to do would increase the tension between herself and Nick. But, she couldn't let that stop her. Sammy's life was on the line, not to mention the life of a young girl who had only been trying to find her roots.

She didn't know if it had been Katherine Windward, or Phillip Windward, or even if they had worked together, but one of them had decided that Lucy was too much of a problem to have hanging around, Bekki was certain of it. They had no right to put their reputation above the value of a human life. When she pulled into the circular driveway it was already crowded. There was a large limousine, as well as two smaller sports cars that were glimmering in the afternoon light. Bekki could see that Annabelle was standing beside the l
imousine, having pictures taken. Then her group of friends gathered around her for more photographs. The professional photographer was having a hard time getting them all to stand still long enough for him to take the photograph, but he was certainly trying.

You would never guess that
one of Mr. Windward’s daughters had recently been murdered in his very own home. To the outside world they looked like a family that was picture perfect, that deserved to be on magazine covers and interviewed for television shows. But Bekki knew better. She knew that the Windwards had some very dark secrets, and she was not about to allow Sammy to pay for them.

When Bekki rang the doorbell it was the maid she had spoken to not long before
who opened the door. She looked a little surprised to see Bekki.

“Weren't you just arrested?” she asked with a slight laugh.

“I have good connections,” Bekki explained with a mild shrug. “Listen, I need to speak with the Windwards, are they in?”

The maid nodded slowly. “Yes they are, but they've asked me to be sure not to let you in.”

Bekki frowned as she realized this might be harder than she thought. Then the maid stepped aside and held the door open for Bekki. Bekki arched a brow, mouthed a thank you, and then headed for the sitting room.

Both of the Windwards were in the front sitting room just off the entrance of the mansion. They had glasses of wine in their hands, wine that Lucy would never have the chanc
e to drink. They had smug smiles on their faces, smiles that were probably about getting away with murder. Bekki was so furious inside that she could barely contain herself but she knew that she had to try. She couldn't show her hand right away, or she would lose her chance to get them to admit the truth. It was Sammy's only chance of escaping a lifetime in prison and her reputation ruined for the rest of her life. As Bekki walked into the sitting room, they both looked up with surprise.

"What are you doing here?" Katherine asked snootily. "You have no reason to be here."

"Oh, I do," Bekki said sternly as she looked at Katherine. "I have every reason to be here. I think it's time I told you both the truth."

'The truth?" she asked with a haughty laugh. "What truth could you possibly have to tell us?"

"The truth about this woman," Bekki said quietly as she held out the photograph of Katherine's young children and their nanny.

"The nanny?" Katherine laughed dismissively. "There a
re no secrets about the nanny.”

Phillip shifted uncomfortably in his chair. He frowned as he studied the photograph.

"Just what is it that you think you know, young lady?" he asked sternly, his steel eyes damning at they met hers.

"I know that she didn't leave because she was pregnant with her husband's child," Bekki explained calmly. "I know she left because she had been having an affair, and she was c
ertain that the baby wasn't her husband’s."

"You can't be serious," Phillip insisted as he continued to glare at her. "Meghan would have told me the truth."

"What truth?" Katherine challenged Phillip. "What are you trying to say?"

"All I'm saying is that the people
who we think we know the best, are sometimes the ones who betray us the most,” Bekki explained, each word she spoke fell like a bomb before the yet unruffled couple.

“Why don't you just make your unfounded accusation Bekki,” Katherine instructed
in a very harsh tone.

“Well Katherine, I don't mean to air dirty laundry, but I think under the circumstances, it should be said,” Bekki said as she took a slight step back. Nick's warning was not lost on her. She knew that the Windwards could be dangerous. “It seems that the autopsy report has found an interesting connection between Mr. Windward, and Lucy.”

“What?” Mr. Windward gasped. “I never did anything to that girl! Her friend…”

“Phillip!” Katherine snapped loudly. “Do not say another word you fool! No one wants to know about your tawdry affairs.”

Phillip's eyes were still wide as he stared at Bekki. She could see in his expression that he was beginning to put things together.

“It's nothing quite like that,” Bekki said as she studied both of them. She knew she was wading into some very dangerous waters. She had no actua
l autopsy report to prove what she was about to declare. But she hoped the impact of her words would be enough to draw a confession out of one of them. It was her last chance.

“Then what is it?” Mr. Windward demanded as he finally stood up from the couch. “If it concerns me, then tell me,” he insisted.

“Don't encourage the girl,” Katherine growled and began to step between the two.

“It looks like you and Lucy had matching DNA,” Bekki said swiftly before Katherine could get between them. “I'm no science buff, but I can guess it means she was your daughter.”

Bekki's eyes keenly observed the reaction of both of the Windwards. To her surprise Phillip looked genuinely shocked, and then crestfallen.

“Oh no,” he gasped out, his face getting paler by the moment. “I didn't know, I never knew,” he sank back down on the couch. Katherine on the other hand was livid.

“What right do you have coming in here and disrupting our evening?” she demanded as she lunged towards Bekki. “This is nothing more than a pack of lies!”

“Katherine,” Phillip said sadly as he stared at the carpeted floor beneath his feet. “It's true,” he said quietly. “Meghan and I were in love. It broke my heart when she went away, but it never crossed my mind that the baby was mine. We were careful, and it was only a few times
…”

Katherine shifted mid lunge and shrieked at her husband. “Shut up! Shut up! You're going to ruin everything. Don't admit to anything!”

“Admit to...” he started to say as Bekki checked to make sure that her voice recorder was on. “Oh my God, Katherine, you didn't, did you?” he asked as he stared up at his wife, his eyes as large as saucers. “Please tell me you didn't.”

Katherine fell silent as she stood between the two, her husband seated on the couch, Bekki between her and the door of the sitting room.

“I did what I had to do,” she said reluctantly, “to protect our family. I wasn't about to have our fortune squandered, all because you couldn't keep your hands off the nanny,” Katherine gulped out and shuddered at the thought.

BOOK: 3 Mascara and Murder
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