True Grey

True Grey by Clea Simon

Book: True Grey by Clea Simon Read Free Book Online
Authors: Clea Simon
didn’t recognize. She tried to sit up, but the EMT had his hand on her upper back. ‘Melinda! Help!’
    â€˜That’s what I was trying to tell you.’ Dulcie turned her head to address the EMT, but he was already clambering to his feet.
    â€˜Mellie! Darling!’ Even from the back, Dulcie recognized Dean Haitner. He’d changed into a suit, probably for the reception, but his tie was already askew, his jacket rucked up. With his hands up in the air – then in his thick hair – he appeared to be dancing.
    â€˜Please, sir. Step back.’ The EMT moved him aside and knelt by what Dulcie knew was a dead body. ‘Sir, please.’
    â€˜Darling?’ Dulcie knew she wasn’t at her best, but she didn’t think that ‘Darling’ was one of the names in the visiting scholar’s long list. No, there was something else going on here, and suddenly Dulcie knew for sure why this particular guest had received special attention. ‘Darling?’ She turned to find Lloyd staring at her. ‘So the rumors about him are true? He was going out with her?’
    â€˜Dulcie, I thought you were sick . . .’ He seemed a few steps behind her. ‘I thought you couldn’t go up the stairs.’
    â€˜I couldn’t, Lloyd. I had the worst headache you can imagine.’ Sitting up, she brushed her hair out of her face – and felt the sticky wetness on her fingers.
    â€˜But you came up here. You came up here.’
    â€˜Oh my God! Oh my God!’ The EMT was talking to the dean now, trying to turn him away from rug, from the sight of Melinda Sloane Harquist lying on the floor. ‘Oh my God.’
    â€˜Nobody was supposed to have access.’ Rafe, the tutor, was staring at Dulcie. ‘I told Lloyd. There had been threats.’
    â€˜I know.’ Dulcie tried to wipe the stickiness off her cheek. ‘But the door was open. I thought I’d ask her—’
    â€˜The door was
open
?’ Rafe was leaning in toward her. ‘Or unlocked?’
    â€˜I just wanted to leave a note.’ Dulcie couldn’t wipe it off. The stickiness, the dark crimson stickiness was everywhere.
    â€˜Where is it?’ The dean’s focus had changed. ‘Where is it?’ His voice was growing louder.
    â€˜Where’s what?’ Rafe turned toward the dean in confusion.
    â€˜Her book – her thesis! The reason for all the precautions!’ The dean was still gesticulating madly, sweat popping out on his brow. ‘She was convinced someone was going to try to steal it.’ He paused and seemed to see Dulcie for the first time. ‘And you – you’re covered in her blood.’

FIFTEEN
    â€˜O ne more time, Ms Schwartz.’ The big detective gestured with his pen. ‘Let’s just go through it again, together. OK?’
    â€˜I’ve done that – we’ve done that – already. Twice, at least.’ Dulcie was sitting in the university police office, in a small private room she’d never seen before. In front of her, with the pen, the pad, and the exasperated look, was her old friend, Detective Rogovoy. But any sense of comfort she should have gotten from the familiar face was gone – dissipated by his utter lack of reasonableness.
    â€˜I can’t tell you anything more.’ Dulcie tried once again. ‘You’ve written it all down.’
    Rogovoy sighed, a heavy exhalation that made his not inconsiderable bulk rise up and collapse again. For a moment, Dulcie thought he might deflate entirely, a thought that she found a little scary. Then he inhaled, and she found herself relaxing.
    â€˜Ms Schwartz?’ He didn’t sound any happier though. ‘Dulcie?’
    She nodded, a prickling feeling beginning in the back of her head. That headache – the one that had laid her low after section – was coming back again. Or, no, this felt like pinpricks, sharp claws digging into the base

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