Rachel strolled into the living room, hips swaying with her back ever so slightly arched, smiling to acknowledge Officer Foster’s admiring look. He watched her glide across the room in a form fitting hot pink dress which warmed up her caramel skin. She walked past him and brushed back long, naturally curly sandy brown locks over one shoulder to look at him through amber eyes framed by long lashes.
Officer Foster took it all in and smiled appreciatively. She was definitely easy on the eyes. He was going to enjoy this interview. Her gaze was bold and a little flirtatious. Their eye contact lingered a moment longer than it should have. Was she flirting with him? Rachel sat down and he found it hard to resist the urge to look down and watch the short skirt ride up and unveil her smooth upper thighs. The dress left very little to the imagination. She was a tasty little morsel. He was willing to bet good money the sexy hellion was wild in the sack. With considerable effort, he forced himself back to the present. He had a job to do. Foster self-consciously cleared his throat and averted his gaze, silently reminding himself to keep his mind on the business at hand.
After all, she was Richard’s sister. Allowing her to beguile him would be a big mistake. He wouldn’t put it past Richard to have told her to distract him with her amazing rack. Every time he looked at Rachel, he was tempted to look down at the cleavage peeking up at him from the low neckline of her dress. Officer Foster decided to take control of the interview by applying a little pressure.
He needed to throw her off her game. She was just a little too confident that her looks gave her the upper hand. He had to put her in check, so she understood that no matter how good she looked…and she was hot…it would not make him go easy on her. He gazed at Rachel intently, allowing several uncomfortably silent moments to tick away. Rachel’s coy smile slowly grew brittle. She gave him an expectant look, as her patience began running out.
“You going to ask me something or just sit there gawking,” she blurted.
“Are you in a hurry? Is there someplace else you need to be?”
“No, not me. It’s you who needs to be somewhere else investigating instead of wasting time harassing us,” spat Rachel.
“As I explained to your brother, I have to interview you all because you’re the last folks who saw your mother alive.”
“So, you’re gonna just pin a murder rap on us, instead of doing some real police work and finding the actual killer? What about those bastards at the nursing home? I’ll bet you never even bothered to interview them.”
“Rest assured, I will also interview them. But they weren’t in the room, when your mother lost consciousness.”
“What’s that supposed to mean? Any one of the staff in that sorry excuse for a nursing home could have poisoned her.”
“What makes you say that?”
“Makes me say what?”
“That your mother was poisoned.” Foster said sitting forward and gazing at her keenly.
“Don’t look at me like that. Are you saying my mama was poisoned? Oh my God, she was poisoned!” Rachel shrieked.
“Whoa, calm down. That’s not what I’m saying ma’am. I was just…please calm down. I’m not saying that’s how she died. I haven’t even received the autopsy results yet. I just find it interesting that you would mention poison…”
“So, you think I poisoned my own mother! I see the writing on the wall. You’re going to frame me for my mother’s death. Did the nursing home put you up to this? How much did they pay you for this frameup?” Rachel snarled.
“I’m not saying that at all. Look, I think we got a little off track here. Let’s start over. Why don’t you tell me what was happening, right before your mother lost consciousness.”
“There’s really not much to tell. It was a typical visit.”
“What do you mean by a typical visit,” prompted Foster.
“Well as usual, Joshua was kissing up to mama. He smuggled in some candy for her.”
“Why did he have to smuggle it in?”
“She wasn’t supposed to be eating sweets, because she is…was a diabetic.”
“I see, did she eat any of the candy he brought?”
Rachel didn’t like the sneaky look on his face. Did he think she was too stupid to see that he was attempting to get her to implicate her brother or worse was he under the impression that she would willingly do it? She was pleased to be able to say, “no the jar fell on the floor and shattered. I had to crawl around on the floor with my sister and brothers trying to pick up the glass and candy.”
Foster looked disappointed and Rachel suppressed a smile. He slowly transcribed her words on his notepad. Without looking up he said, “go on. What happened next?”
“Mama started coughing. She had a cup of water on her nightstand and Joshua told her to drink some of it.”
Foster looked up quickly and Rachel instantly regretted saying that Joshua had been the one to urge her mother to drink. She wanted Foster stop wasting time trying to frame one of them and go find the real murderer. It wouldn’t go well for Joshua, if Foster decided to put the screws to him. Her brother did not deal well with stress. A little pressure from Foster and her brother would collapse like a cheap tent. He would start babbling and dig an even deeper hole for himself than the one Foster seemed intent on digging for him. She would have to choose her next words carefully.
Tired of waiting for Rachel to continue Foster asked, “and did she drink any of the water?”
“Yes, she did.”
“Did it help?”
“It seemed like it did, but then she coughed so much that she couldn’t seem to catch her breath.”
Foster’s eyes crawled all over her face, hoping that she would betray even the slightest hint of fear or uneasiness. Rachel’s face was a placid mask. Foster let the silence roll on for a few moments, but she was unfazed.
“So, what did you all do,” asked Foster.
“Richard turned on her call light, to get help. But no one came. The nurse was nowhere to be found. So, he had to go and find her. It must have taken him twenty minutes to find her. Those people are constantly going outside to smoke or hiding out in the break room making personal calls. We never could find anyone actually working. The whole staff always seemed to disappear, as soon as we arrived. Maybe if that bitch had been doing her job, she could have saved mama. We lost precious time trying to find help. If that’s not neglect, then I don’t know what is. If anyone poisoned my mother, then it was one of those bastards. That’s probably why they all disappeared. They wanted her to die. While you’re here wasting time trying to pin her death on us, those assholes are over there destroying evidence!”
“Ma’am no one is destroying evidence. The quicker y’all answer my questions, the quicker I will hopefully be able to eliminate y’all as suspects. Now, tell me what happened next.”
Rachel threw her hands up in exasperation and snapped, “you’ll have to ask them what happened next. That nurse pushed us all out hall and slammed the door in our faces. No telling what the hell she was doing in there. About five minutes later, we heard her making a code blue announcement over the intercom. Another nurse came rushing down the hall with a crash cart. Mama’s aide came running towards us from the opposite direction and the nurse with the cart told her to call an ambulance. That’s all I saw, before they forced us to go out into the front lobby.”
“Thank you, ma’am. I know it wasn’t easy for you to talk about this. I won’t trouble you anymore today. Can you please let your brother know I’m ready to interview him now?”
Rachel nodded and forced herself to get up slowly, not wanting to let on how badly she wanted to get away from him. There were shady things in her past about which she had feared he would confront her. Rachel did not relax, until after she looked in on Joshua and told him that it was his turn on the hotseat. Climbing the steps to her room, she breathed a sigh of relief and smiled slyly. Her little dress had done its job.