Ziggy: The mobile detective
“So let me be sure I am clear on these points,” I ask, making comments in my notebook as I go . “Greta Daly was found standing over the body holding the murder weapon, dripping in blood, saying ‘at last, she’s dead’ over and over again.”
“This is correct,” replied detective chief inspector Graham. A tall, aging man who looked at me as if I was carcass. This is, of course, nothing unusual. I would probably be suspicious of a DCI who found my presence at a murder scene either helpful or welcome.
“The victim being Victoria Daly – Greta’s mother?”
“This, also, is correct. They had a, what you might call, strained relationship,” said DCI Graham. He stamped his feet in the cold. I felt only hunger having missed my breakfast in order to arrive as quickly as possible.
“I don’t doubt that for a moment,” I said, using what I considered to be my most professional tone. “As I understand it Greta was the product of incestuous rape – Victoria’s brother, Winston, being the father. To compound this already vile circumstance, the entire family, blessed with aristocracy as they were, decided to treat Greta as an outcast and pariah. Victoria, I have been led to believe, being the worst of the bunch. An odd show of malevolence when you consider their links to Nazi sympathy during the 2nd World War and the famous scandals during the 50’s.”
“In a nutshell, Ziggy. You are astoundingly well informed for an unqualified charlatan.”
DCI Graham lifted the cordon tape for a bustling constable, busy on an errand from within the Daly estate.
“Indeed,” I replied, utterly underwhelmed by DCI Graham’s insult. “So Greta was abused, insulted, humiliated, disregarded, hated, hounded and victimised every day of her 43 years by her closest family and their inner circle of friends, most notably by her mother.”
“Just put it over there would you,” barked DCI Graham at the same unfortunate constable who had passed them moments before. “And you there! Put some gloves on! Correct again, Ziggy.”
My notes contained only the DCI’s name and the supposed time of death, but in order to maintain an enigmatic air I circled these few words several times as I muttered, “So she was at the scene, she was holding the murder weapon, she had a cast iron motive, she confessed and she was covered in the victim’s blood?”
“On all counts, correct.”
I scratched a few more phantom lines into my notebook and finally looked DCI Graham square in the eyes.
“Greta Daly is not the murderer. Of that I am 100% sure.”
DCI Graham glanced at the heavens in despair and let out a tired sigh.
“Why is it you always say that?” Asked DCI Graham, exasperated.
“I only make outrageous claims if I know them to be true. And I am always correct.”
“Hmm,” said DCI Graham, with little commitment. “I’m sure you are. Now, you have no legal imperative to be at this murder scene. Kindly leave or I will have you arrested.”
“Of course,” I replied, unconcerned. “What I think I need to do is interview the suspect. Unless you want to arrest me for paying a perfectly legitimate visit to a person bailed by your own good service?”
DCI grunted and stomped off to shout at somebody who wasn’t cleverer than him.