Mudcat Café message #2445651 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #113933   Message #2445651
Posted By: Lonesome EJ
20-Sep-08 - 12:04 AM
Thread Name: Fiction : The Dead Man's Guitar
Subject: RE: Fiction : The Dead Man's Guitar
Rulon Howell waited for Sheila Huber to bring the coffee from the kitchen. It was pretty plain to the detective that her husband was the likely killer. It had taken a lot of talking and a lot of waiting for the woman to get her self back under control, but the story of the affair had come out, of her husband's discovery of it, and his accusation. She detailed his strange behavior, and told him the bizarre tale of the black guitar.
His cell phone rang.
"Yeah, Sean."
"I'm at the Peery Hotel. He's registered here, and the bell hop showed me his car in the side lot. The tread marks are a match. I tried his room, but there's no answer."
"Keep an eye on the place in case he tries to leave. Did you call for search warrant?"
"Should be here in an hour or so."
"Good. I'll meet you in the lobby after I finish up here."
Mrs Huber brought the coffee, her hands shaking as she poured him a cup.

Sean Hession sat in his sedan and watched a woman walk by shepherding a tiny ghost and Batman down 200 South. He sipped his Mountain Dew and hoped he would get home this evening in time to see his kids in their Halloween costumes. The woman turned her face away from a breeze that dashed a scatter of tiny snow flakes at her, making the kids cling tightly to their masks. He glanced at the window of room 313, pausing to stare at what seemed to be a figure in the dimness beyond the window. A hazy form seemed to be staring back at him, distorted, almost like a trick of the dim afternoon light on the furniture within the room. Just when he had decided that the figure was a carelessly hung towel, the opening that seemed to be a mouth gaped open, as if laughing.
       Hession glanced at the picture on the passenger seat. No, what he had seen did not resemble Mike Huber in the least. He looked to the window again, and the shape was gone. "What the hell?" he said aloud. Was he staking out the wrong damn room? Hession crammed the styrofoam cup into the holder and opened the door of the Pontiac.
       He rode the elevator up, and walked down the hall to the room, counting the doors. One window per room. Nope, he definitely had the right window. He was surprised to hear the sound of someone playing guitar inside. He listened for some time, the strummed chords oddly out of tune. He touched his forehead, and was surprised to feel a thin veil of sweat had formed there.
"Mr Huber?" He said. There was no response, but the sound of the guitar continued. And then he heard a low, muffled laugh. He knocked again, then tried the door knob. The room was unlocked. Hession reached down and unsnapped the holster of his revolver as he slowly opened the door. "Mr Huber?" he said again, "Police." There was again no response, but this time the guitar stopped, leaving the room completely silent. And dark. The sky outside had grown leaden with the coming snow, and the shades had been drawn so that even that stale light failed to penetrate the gloom.
Cautiously, he entered room 313.