He should have known better than to assume the pie was baked by Donna Lee; closer inspection revealed Mrs. Smith’s engraved on the underside of the tin, which was conspicuously free of fingerprints. Regardless of the source of the gift, Jefferson Trestlehorn never was one to turn down a free dessert.
The knife had scarcely penetrated the crust when it scraped against something hard and metallic within the pie.
A bullfrog on the doorstep interrupted his fascination with a loud harumph. It wiggled through the gap under the screen door and leaped into the living room with stark disregard for what kind of day the old man was having.
One more terrific hop landed the critter on Jefferson’s lap, or more accurately, sinking in the hot apple goo square in the center of the pie on Jefferson’s lap, its legs curled clumsily around the grip of a sticky .357 magnum Colt revolver.
It recoiled in shock and jumped into a darkened corner.
Jefferson peered at the mess on his legs and noticed a rolled-up note for him, tucked into the gun barrel.