The Blood Promise: A Hugo Marston Novel

The Blood Promise: A Hugo Marston Novel by Mark Pryor

Book: The Blood Promise: A Hugo Marston Novel by Mark Pryor Read Free Book Online
Authors: Mark Pryor
smile. “Although I don’t know why seeing your face would stop me pulling the trigger.”
    “You’d never destroy such a thing of beauty. Now, go back to sleep, I’m here to protect you from any intruders. Any more intruders.”
    Hugo sat on his bed, more than happy to oblige but a thought struck him. “Tom, did you go into every room in this hallway?”
    “Of course, I had to.”
    “Had to?”
    “Your names aren’t on the door.”
    “Right. Good night, Tom. And please don’t snore.”

    Hugo and Tom were eating breakfast when Henri Tourville entered the dining room. He stopped in surprise and Tom quickly rose to introduce himself.
    “Tom Green, a friend and colleague of Hugo’s. I arrived late last night, Hugo was kind enough to let me in and share his room.”
    Tourville shook his hand but his eyes were on Hugo, his look clear. What’s going on?
    “Tom used to work with me at the FBI,” Hugo explained. “He still consults here and there. Seeing him was something of a surprise to me, too.”
    “A pleasant one, of course,” Tom said. “Anyway, now that we’re together it might be a good time to let you know precisely where at the murder scene that fingerprint was found.”
    Tourville moved to the large table that carried the food and drinks. He poured a cup of coffee and stirred in some sugar. When he spoke, his voice was level. “Some of us have no interest in any fingerprints, monsieur, and if you came into my house to try and persuade me otherwise, you may leave immediately.”
    “The print,” Tom said casually, “was found inside the armoire where the jewelry was hidden. We believe it belongs to the person who broke in, stole from the old lady, and then killed her.”
    Tourville smiled. “Please, Monsieur Green, have some breakfast before you leave. And Monsieur Marston, I suspect since the Guadeloupe talks appear to have been indefinitely postponed, you will be leaving, too. Am I right?”
    “Well,” Hugo said, “if I can’t change your mind, I suppose I might as well. But before I go, may I speak to everyone who is here?”
    “I already have and no one wishes to have their prints taken, thank you very much.”
    “I’m sure you have, but I wouldn’t be much of an investigator if I let a . . . well, technically a potential suspect, run my investigation. And you may refuse me, of course, but then I’ll have to follow people as they leave the premises and catch them unawares. In the village, in public.”
    Tourville narrowed his eyes and shook his head. “Why are you doing this? You know that nobody here committed that crime. Is this some kind of political stunt?”
    A new voice, from the doorway to the dining room. “If it were, Monsieur Tourville, I wouldn’t be here, that’s for sure,” said Capitaine Raul Garcia.
    Tourville turned on his heel and glared. “Fine,” he said after a moment, “talk to whomever you want. Waste all the time you want. Then get out of my house.”

    They let Garcia run things. It was technically his investigation and he was their official liaison with the police handling the murder near Troyes. And the staff, if not the family members, would be more likely to talk to a Frenchman than an American. So Hugo and Tom hovered in the background, Tom’s nervous energy making him pace the kitchen floor where the interviews were done. So keen was he to remain busy, he shook everyone’s hand and offered a glass of water to each person who came in and sat down. But, without exception, they didn’t sit for long. Each politely declined to provide fingerprints, most shaking their heads while not meeting the eyes of the capitaine, his treaties and endearments falling on deaf ears.
    They were done in thirty minutes. Garcia and Tom went outside to enjoy a balmy day while Hugo headed upstairs to pack his bag. He sought out Tourville one last time, determined to leave on a positive, if not friendly, note.
    “I’m very sorry things turned out this way, and you have

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