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Attorney Bartholomew Crane doesn't belong in the small town of Murdoch. And the town of Murdoch doesn't want him there. Even Crane's client, a teacher accused of killing two girls, his own students, doesn't seem to care if Crane gets him off or not. But Bartholomew Crane has come to Murdoch to try his first murder case -- and he intends to win at all costs.
That is, until the case takes an unexpected turn. For as Crane begins to piece together a defense for his client, he finds himself being drawn into a bizarre legend at the heart of the town's history -- a legend that is slowly coming alive before his eyes.
Unnerved by visions he sees on Murdoch's dark streets, by the ringing of a telephone down the deserted hallway of his hotel, Crane is beginning to suspect that what is happening to him is happening for a reason. And that the two lost girls of Murdoch may be intricately tied to the town's shameful history ... and to a dark episode in his own long-forgotten past.
calm. But there he is, real as anything else. Arrived the morning after he pulled me out of court and was knocking at my door before I’d gotten out of bed myself although it’s difficult to say who looks worse between the two of us. Apparently he wasn’t kidding about being allergic to the country air. Pulling a nasal spray out of his breast pocket every couple of minutes to give each nostril a swift blast followed by an automatic Pardon me under his breath. “Would you like some Kleenex?” I offer
office, and then a man with papery skin and a bald head mapped with burst capillaries steps out into the dull marine light. “What can I do you for?” he asks, the inside of his mouth caked with sandwich residue. “You can do me for a room. Something large, with generous natural light. And quiet, if you can manage that.” “They’re all the same. ’Cept for the honeymoon suite.” He lifts his eyes to mine, but there’s nothing in them. “It’s got a TV, phone, separate shower?” “Ever been in a hotel
word. “There are some things you can’t fight, Mr. Crane.” “By ‘things’ I take it you mean ‘urges’?” “I mean the will of others.” “Are you telling me—are you trying to tell me that there’s another party involved here? If so, I need you to tell me now. Give me a name.” The tears have been stemmed once more, but Tripp’s head now hangs down to meet his chest and his arms have fallen inward so that he takes up as little space as he can, as though he would pull his entire body up into himself and
the messenger’s footsteps to recede back down the stairs I squint over the note’s childish print, made less readable by the almost dried-out purple marker used in its execution: Dear B. Crane, “Honey. Suite”: Brian Flynn on phone. Says “Sorry didn’t call back sooner.” Says “Can meet today.” He lives at 212 Grange. He says “10:30 a.m. would be good.” THE MANAGEMENT. Brian Flynn. Ashley’s father, with whom I spoke briefly at the same time I contacted McConnell, telling him how I’d like to
body language of obligation—rounded shoulders, chin raised, eyes pulled wide. But as he takes the steps up into the stand his lower half gives him away. An aggression betrayed by A-frame thighs, inflexible knees, his shoes grinding into the carpet as though extinguishing someone else’s dropped cigarette. When the Bible is produced he lays his hand on its cover and raises the other with a rehearsed solemnity, and I imagine him standing before his mirror in the master bedroom at home, training for