The Alibi (A John Chance Mystery) – Chapter 35


The Alibi – Chapter 35

Tony Morelli let his car roll forward to a patch of pavement clear of onlookers and reached over the center console to the Impala’s glove compartment.

Ed Vox’ booted feet snapped against the car’s floorboards as he pushed himself back into the passenger seat. “Brake!”

Morelli’s eyes returned to the road. A pudgy-faced, middle-aged, overweight man, long black greasy-looking hair, wraparound Ray-bans and needing a shave stopped in front of the Impala, and stared at Vox. His Arrest-Me-Red jogging suit, white racing stripe up the right leg and continuing on to the ill-fitting jersey top, gave him a bad “Saturday beer and burgers football with the boys” look.

Morelli stopped and honked his horn.

The man cocked his head and continued to stare at Vox. Every few seconds he’d quickly shake his head as if gnats encircled him.

Morelli pointed. “Is that Ron Jeremy and is he refusing to move?”

Vox blinked. “He’s not refusing, he’s remembering, shaking a memory loose.” He opened the glovebox. “What do you need?”

Morelli’s gaze went from the man to Vox. “How do you know that?” He reached into his pocket, pulled out a badge, lowered his window, and called to an idle patrolman watching the crowd. “Officer? A little assistance, please?”

Ron Jeremy scratched his head as the officer approached.

Vox nodded the man then at the crowds and emergency vehicles. “Must be the government plates. How long ago did this happen?”

Morelli held his shield up for the officer and pointed. “Mind removing Ron Jeremy from our path and telling the rest of the BPD we’re coming through?” He turned back to Vox. “And unh-uh. He’s staring at you, not the car. This went down about an hour ago. Came while I was on my way in. You were on the way.”

“Convenient. You plan it that way? And Ron Jeremy the porn star?” He took a long second look. “Yeah, kind of. I guess.”

The officer looked at the man who hadn’t stopped staring and shook his head as he shuffled towards him.

Morelli watched. “There’s a Federal ID in a plastic sheet in there. Mind handing it over?”

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