Don of the Dead

Don of the Dead by Casey Daniels

Book: Don of the Dead by Casey Daniels Read Free Book Online
Authors: Casey Daniels
Tags: Fantasy, Mystery, Occult
but, hey, how often did I have the advantage of professional input? I used Quinn's confession to my advantage. "So indulge me," I said. "Pretend it all just happened and that it's your case.
    How would you investigateScarpetti's death?"
    Quinn was still hanging on to the autopsy report. He tossed it into the box. "Nothing to investigate.
    Never is when it comes to these sorts of organized crime killings."
    "But wouldn't you wonder? About who was behind the shooting? And why? How would you find out what really happened?"
    "I'd do exactly what I'm sure the cops did back then. Talk to all the usual suspects. And I guarantee I'd find out exactly what they found out—nothing. They never could prove who ordered the hit. As to why… " Quinn dropped back into his chair. He tucked the rest of the papers into the box and folded the top closed. "Back then, they probably figured it didn't matter who issued the orders. One dead mob boss was as good as another. And I bet that's exactly what happened. One bad guy whacked another bad guy. End of story."
    I knew it wasn't but there was no way I could tell Quinn. Not without looking like a certified nutcase.
    I stuck to the facts. Always a better choice than dabbling in possibilities. Especially when one of those possibilities was that the dead guy was definitely dead but not gone. And that this same dead guy was convinced that there was more to his murder than a simple mob hit.
    "So you think there's a possibility that Gus's death wasn't investigated as carefully as it could have been?"
    I asked Quinn.
    He held out one hand, palm out, the gesture so authoritative I wondered if at one time he'd been a traffic cop. "I never said that. I said—"
    "That one dead mob boss is as good as another. That it doesn't matter who killedScarpetti . Doesn't justice figure into this anywhere?"
    "Hold on!" Quinn studied me, his eyes narrowed. "Are you a reporter or something?"
    "No."
    "Then a relative? Do you know theScarpetti family?"
    I sighed. It was a genuine enough reaction to my frustration, and I hoped the rise and fall of my breasts might distract Quinn long enough to make him notice my body. And forget his accusations.
    It didn't work.
    Apparently, a cop could be as single-minded as a research scientist.
    I sighed again.
    "Look, I might as well tell you the truth," I said, even as I prepared for another lie. "I got interested in Scarpetti because of my work at the cemetery. And now I'm thinking I might want to write a book about him. That's why I'm doing this extra research. I thought I could make the story more interesting if I could find out—"
    "Something juicy that no one else knows."
    "Yeah. Something like that. I thought if I looked through the records, I might come up with something that wasn't mentioned in the newspapers. You know, something that will make my manuscript stand out.
    Maybe even get it turned into a movie."
    "I hate to burst your bubble, but I don't think it's going to happen. You saw the reports. Gunshot wounds, blood and guts, blah, blah, blah. There's nothing new here."
    "Then I guess I'll have to look somewhere else."
    Quinn jumped out of his chair, reached for my hand, and dragged me up alongside him.

    "I want you to make me a promise," he said.
    The comment came out of left field and I hesitated.
    Quinn's eyes glittered. "I don't like the way you're talking, Pepper. I want you to tell me that you don't have any crazy ideas about poking around inScarpetti Family business."
    "But—"
    "These are dangerous people. If I didn't have an appointment with my union attorney in… " He checked his watch. "… exactly twenty minutes, I'd give you chapter and verse about just how dangerous they are.
    You understand that these aren't ordinary, everyday folks, don't you?"
    "Sure, but—"
    "And they're not going to like somebody asking questions. Even when that somebody is as innocent-looking as you."
    "Am I?" I stepped closer. "Innocent-looking, I mean?"
    The spark in Quinn's eyes

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