A Message from Parker Knowles from “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake”

I have not been too active in the past couple of chapters, but do not think for a second I’m not paying attention to what is going on in my story, “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake.” It is important for you to read chapters 1 – 19 for free before the story ends. It has been a long winding road with many heartaches for me. I have not been sleeping well as I worry as each new chapter is published to find out what will happen to me.

I have re-read all 19 chapters published so far. I want to remember where I have been and if it is possible I end up with jail time. I hope this turns out better than it looks at this time. I have my fingers crossed that the truth will come out. Well, maybe not all of the truth. Some things are personal.

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“Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake” Chapter Nineteen

Monday morning at 10:30 a.m. Victoria locked her Subaru dropped her keys into her purse and walked up the steps to the police station. She received a call from Sarah McFadden on Sunday afternoon while at the Blue Moon Restaurant. She’d asked her to come in for a follow-up interview.
Victoria felt perturbed, but confident, having to go through another round of questions regarding Hallie’s murder. She already passed a lie detector test, so this seemed like another waste of her time.
She walked up to the front desk, “Hi, I am Victoria Rutledge. I’m here to see Detectives Drake and McFadden.”
“One second,” the desk sergeant held up one finger while picking up the phone.
“Detective, I have a Victoria Rutledge here to see you.” He hung up the phone.
“Third floor, elevators right around the corner.” He said.
“Thank you, I know the way,” Victoria said.
A minute later, she shook hands with both McFadden and Drake.
“Miss Rutledge thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to come down and assist us in our investigation,” Max smiled.
“Anything I can do to help.” Her smile was genuine.
“Interview room 2, right this way,” Max said.
Victoria took her seat on the folding metal chair while Max sat down. Sarah came in.
“Can I get you a coffee, soda or water Miss Rutledge?” Sarah asked.
“No, I’m fine, thanks.”
Sarah sat down next to Max and directly across the table from Victoria.
“Miss Rutledge, we are recording this interview. You have a right to a lawyer if you so choose.” Max said.
“I do not need a lawyer.” She smiled again.
“Miss Rutledge let’s go back to last Wednesday. We want to go over your previous statement. On Wednesday afternoon did you leave The Blue Moon Restaurant at all?”
“No.”
“Are you sure?” Max asked.
“Yes, ask my employees, I was there until after we closed at 2 a.m.”
“Did you have a phone call from Hallie that afternoon?” Max asked.
Victoria’s eyes darted first right than left. She looked down for a split second, then back at Sarah and Max, “Not that I recall.”
Max knew she was lying. He opened a folder and took out Hallie’s phone call records and slid it across the table in front of her. “Is this your phone number?”
“Yes.”
“At 1:30 p.m. Hallie’s phone called you. Can you recall that conversation?”
Victoria looked down at the table, her blank stare made it evident she was surprised at the question. Sitting quietly staring at the cell records meant she did not know what to say next.
“Hallie called me and told me we needed to talk. She wanted to try and restart our friendship. I told her that I was busy and that maybe later on in the week we could talk.”
“Was there any argument at that 1:30 p.m. call?” Sarah asked.
“No, it was uncomfortable, and I felt she was begging to have that talk. I mean we have been friends a very long time.” Victoria added.
“Can you tell us about a phone call you made around 4:00 p.m. that upset you,” Max asked.
“I did receive a call from a vendor we had a disagreement over a couple of invoices, why?”
“What is this vendors name?” Sarah asked.
“I don’t recall right now detectives; I have a lot of business going on. I would have to go back on my records to find that out. I don’t see what this has to do with anything about Hallie and why I’m sitting here right now.”
“Let me make it easier for you Miss Rutledge, your 4 o’clock phone call was not to a vendor but in fact to Hallie’s cell phone. You argued with her about something, but whatever it was it upset you enough to slam the phone receiver back on the phone. Shortly after that, you left the Blue Moon.” Max added.
It got quiet, very quiet and Victoria sat back in her chair and folded her arms across her chest. She was being cornered, and she knew it. Victoria could not know what else was coming her way.

*****

“Excuse me.” Sarah stood up and left the interview room. She walked next door to interview room 3 and walked in with a folder tucked under her arm.
“Mr. Knowles, thank you for coming in this morning.” Sarah sat down.
John Knowles, forty-two years old, sat in the folding chair which was backed into the corner of the small interview room since Max and Sarah turned the table the opposite direction making the room appear narrower. John was six-feet tall. His hair was turning gray on the sides. He wore wire-rimmed glasses and a short goatee. He smiled at Sarah exposing perfect white teeth. His blue eyes sparkled, but there was a nervous energy surrounding John that Sarah picked up on.
“Anything I can do to help our finest solve this horrible death of my sister in law, Hallie.”
“We appreciate that Mr. Knowles.”
“Call me John.” He smiled.
“Okay, John,” Sarah smiled, “we are recording this interview. Also, at any time you can retain the services of a lawyer.”
“I do not need a lawyer,” John smiled again.
“Tell me about your relationship with your brother Parker and also with Hallie.”
“Well, it’s widely known that Parker does not want me or my other brother, Kenneth to have any say or part in our family business. Hallie, I thought Parker was really lucky to find a beautiful woman like Hallie. I believed that marriage would help him. He is a lonely man without someone in his life. Parker has a tendency to go into a deep depression now and then. I was hoping Hallie would help lift him up. She was so right for him.” John sat back in the chair.
“Did you attend Parker and Hallie’s wedding?” Sarah asked.
“No Parker did not want Kenneth or me there. It was a small wedding and as I said we are not on good terms.”
“What do you do for a living Mr. Knowles?” Sarah stared at him already knowing the answer.
“I receive a stipend every month from the business as well as Kenneth. Why?”
“Just getting a baseline on our conversation. Do you feel you are owed more money or that you should be a part of the business?”
“Not anymore, I’ve tried several times to get Parker to let me help and contribute, but so far he has utterly refused.”
“Does that upset you?”
“No. I’ve worked through that part of my life, so I live with my stipend and look for opportunities where I can contribute to society,” John smiled, but his eyes said that was a lie. Sarah let it go.
“What is your relationship with Victoria Rutledge?”
“Victoria, well I know who she is. I mean I’ve seen her around and met her a couple of times. I know she owns the Blue Moon Restaurant.”
“Have you been to her restaurant before?” Sarah asked.
“Not that I recall, or at least not in a long time,” John smiled.
“Well, then can you explain to me why you were there last Wednesday late evening having a few drinks with Victoria?” Sarah said.

*****

Okay, this is what I recall about last Wednesday. I did get another call from Hallie maybe around 4 p.m.” Victoria said.
“Miss Rutledge, you called Hallie. We have the records.” Max said
“Alright, so I might have called Hallie. I started thinking about what she had said about getting back together and I kind of thought maybe it would be worth talking it through.”
“So you left the Blue Moon and went where?”
“I met Hallie in the Target parking lot. Look it was a very busy time, but it was bothering me so I decided to take a few minutes and meet Hallie face to face. If that went well, we could maybe set up a time to come together and actually discuss this whole thing.”
“You are saying you met in a Target parking lot.”
“Yes.”
“Why there at Target?”
“It is close to my restaurant.”
“You did not go to Hallie’s home, but a Target parking lot.”
“Yes, why do you keep asking me about that. I told you we met in the parking lot. We talked for about 30 minutes, and I left. I went home and changed my clothes. I went back to the Blue Moon and got ready for the busy evening.” Victoria said.

*****

John snapped his fingers, “That’s right. Yes, I was at the Blue Moon that night. We talked about several things. I had called her earlier in the week before and asked her if she was interested in investing in another restaurant opportunity and to work with me as a business partner.”
“You are lying Mr. Knowles,” Sarah said.
John leaned back in his chair. He seemed surprised. His eyes widened.
“Why don’t you ask Victoria if that was what our conversation was about,” John said turning from all smiles to glaring at Sarah.

*****

“Can you tell me about what your conversation with John Knowles was about late Wednesday evening or early Thursday morning. You two had a very long heart to heart talk.” Max said.
“Yes, we were talking about purchasing a restaurant on Main Street and becoming partners.”
“Miss Rutledge, you are saying officially you never went to Hallie’s home last Wednesday.”
“That is correct.”
“One last question for now. Can you explain why your DNA is found inside the work gloves recovered at the dumpster behind Knowles Imports?” Max asked.
“DNA? What DNA are you talking about?”
“Your DNA was found inside of the gloves that strangled Hallie in her home.”
Victoria sat there not saying anything for a long time. Max knew she was looking for a backdoor answer. Max knew her mind had to be racing for a reason to be at Hallie’s home.
“Do you mind if I smoke?”
“This is a non-smoking facility, but I don’t care as long as you tell me the truth, Miss Rutledge.”
Victoria picked up her sizable leather purse and sat it on the table. She opened it and dug around inside. She pulled out a cigarette pack and her wallet. Then she said, “I need a smaller one of these I am tired of this huge thing, I cannot find my lighter.” Her eyes darted up and looked at Max with a nervous smile. Next, she pulled out a set of car keys and continued to dig.
Max watched as she pulled a few more personal things out when he noticed the keys.
“Miss Rutledge what kind of car do you drive?”
“A Subaru why?”
Max reached over with a pen and pulled the set of keys across the table without touching them. “Then Miss Rutledge why do you have a set of Honda keys in your purse?”

“A Conversation between Max Drake and Sarah McFadden”

Max pulled into the Starbucks line for his morning coffee. While in line he picked up his cell phone and called Sarah McFadden.
“Good morning partner. I’m at Starbucks do you want me to bring you a cup of coffee?” Max asked.
“What time is it?” Sarah asked.
“Six thirty.”
“Max you woke me up. What are you doing at Starbucks on a Saturday morning? It’s too early.”
“Well, I got a phone call from our author, Willard E. Ceccarelli. He told me Chapter Nineteen is about ready to publish. He said this upcoming chapter you and I play a big part in the ongoing story in, “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake.”
“Did he tell you what is going to happen?”
“No, he never whispers any secrets about what’s coming up next, which I find frustrating, but he is the author, so I don’t argue with him about what is in our future.”
“Well now that you woke me up and told me that, I think a cup of coffee would be great. Pick up a couple of muffins and come by the house and we will review where we are and see if we can guess where our story is going.” Sarah said.
“I’ll be there shortly if this line ever gets moving,” Max said.

“Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake” Chapter Eighteen

“So Elba for the record what is your full name?” Max asked.
“Elba Waters.”
“What is your position here at the Blue Moon Restaurant?” Max asked.
“I’m the head bartender.”
“How long have you worked for Victoria Rutledge? Max asked.
“Hmm, getting close to six years,” Elba said.
“Do you like working for Miss Rutledge?” Max asked.
“Yes, she is a great boss. She is very fair with her staff. It is obvious she cares about all of her employees.”
“So Miss Waters you wanted to tell us something that could help our investigation,” Sarah said.
“Look, I’m a bartender and have been for most of my adult life. I didn’t go to college and get a degree, but being a bartender; I have learned to listen to people. Listening over the years has given me the ability to read people’s personalities. I usually can read a person as soon as they sit at my bar. You cannot pour drinks for people without reading them like a book.”
“Okay I get that, but how does that help our investigation?” Sarah reiterated.
“I know something about last Wednesday that I did not tell you previously you’re your were here shortly after Mrs. Knowles was murdered.”
“Okay, we are here now, what do you have?” Max asked.
“Last Wednesday I started my shift at about 4 p.m. Victoria was in her office I happened to pass by and stopped at a cupboard to grab some stir sticks for the bar. The door was open. She was on the phone. She seemed upset while talking. She had the receiver to her ear and her right hand holding her head up.”
“What did you hear?” Sarah asked.
“She was clearly pissed off. She said something like, ‘what do you mean you want to do something different? It’s been a long time, and we have done very well working together. That’s going to blow up in our faces. No, well then promise me this, don’t do anything until we have time to talk face to face.’ There were a few seconds of silence then all I heard was ‘Thank you.’ At that point, she slammed the phone down and was whispering a couple of sentences with a lot of curse words.”
“Who was she talking to?” Max asked.
“I do not know, but it was someone close to her,” Elba said.
“Any guesses?” Sarah asked.
Elba’s mouth twitched before saying, “If I were to guess, it was Hallie.”
“Did she use her name in the conversation?” Max asked.
“No, but my gut says it was her.”
“Why would you think it was Hallie?” Sarah asked.
“The person she talked to was someone close to her. I know that Hallie and Victoria were having some issues between them. The tone of voice, I don’t know, I am sure it was Hallie.”
“What else you got Miss Waters?” Sarah asked.
“Victoria left shortly after that,” Elba said with no emotion.
“She left?” Max said.
“I went back to work, and maybe five minutes later I had gone into the kitchen to get the snacks for the bar. Mickie walked over to the large refrigerator, and we talked for a second while he handed me the snacks. That is when I saw her, with her purse over her shoulder, open the back door and slip out kind of stealth-like.” Elba said.
“Wait, you are saying she left the Blue Moon?” Sarah said.
“Yes.”
“The staff swears she was here the whole time,” Sarah added.
“As I told you, detectives, I notice things. The employees are so busy at that time getting ready to open. It’s entirely possible they thought she was here. She is always here before we open. Pretty much seven days a week, that woman is a work alcoholic.”
“You are positively sure she left? About what time would you say it was?” Max asked.
“We were about fifteen minutes from opening the restaurant. There a few people waiting outside. It looked like it would be busy for a Wednesday. Later I went upstairs for something in the storage, and I noticed her office door was open, the light was on.”
“And she wasn’t there,” Max added.
“That is correct,” Elba said.
“You said you were talking with Mickie when you saw Victoria slip out the back door. Did Mickie see her go as well?” Sarah asked.
“I don’t think so, but you can ask him. Like I said it was really busy, and everyone was moving pretty quickly.” Elba said.
“Was there any other chef’s in the kitchen area when you saw her leave?” Max asked.
“Yes, but they were at the stoves and grill. Mickie was with me nearest the back door.”
“Did you see Victoria anymore that night?” Max asked.
“Yes she was visiting with the late patrons I would say around 10:30 that night. I just happened to notice.”
“Anything else that might be significant to our case?” Sarah asked.
“Let me think about it. I really need to get back to work.”
“Well thank you for your time, Miss Waters. If you think of anything else, please see us before we go or call me. My number is on this business card.” Sarah handed her the card and smiled.
Elba slid out of the booth. Stood up straight and looked down at both detectives before saying, “For what it is worth there is no way Victoria would ever hurt anyone never the less murder them. Hallie was her best friend for as long as I’ve been working here. I just thought it was important for you to know what I saw.” Elba added.
“You’ve been most helpful, thank you, Miss Waters,” Max said.

*****

Mickie Wade, the head chef was slightly over 5’7” sporting a barrel chest and sideburns down past the bottom of his ears. He had an oversized nose, and his eyes were more like faded brown marbles. Max figured he was getting close to sixty years old. His chef hat actually made him appear taller. He wore a white, stained apron that circled around his meaty body. Max and Sarah walked up to the table where he was cutting vegetables.
“Mr. Wade.”
“Call me Mickie and I know who you are and why you are here.”
“Can we ask you a couple of questions, I know you are busy, but Mickie it is important,” Sarah said stepping slightly in front of Max.
“I am Sarah McFadden and my partner Max Drake.” Sarah dived into her questions before Mickie got more irritated. He was chopping faster and more aggressively.
“Mickie, you were working last Wednesday afternoon and into the evening is that correct?”
“Yes, since my sister passed away three years ago I have nothing at home, so I work. I work seven days a week.”
“Can you tell me if you had a conversation with Elba on Wednesday afternoon?” Sarah asked.
The chopping stopped and Mickie for the first time looked up at McFadden. “You’re kidding right?” He said gruffly.
“No, I’m trying to connect the dots of our case, Mickie. Did you. . .” Mickie cut Sarah off.
“I have conversations with all the staff every day. How would I remember some conversation with Elba?” The chopping started up again.
“Mickie, Elba said she was with you getting snacks for the bar when she saw Miss Rutledge go out the back door of the kitchen. Did you happen to see her leave at all last Wednesday?” Sarah asked in a soft voice.
Mickie sat the knife down and wiped his hands on a towel before tossing it back on the table. He turned to face Sarah face to face. “Detectives, I mind my own business, I am very busy here, and I do not pay attention to who is coming and going. So, no I did not see Victoria leave last Wednesday.”
“Are you sure?” Sarah added a little more aggressiveness in her tone.
Mickie turned away and mumbled something that Sarah or Max could not understand.
“What?” Sarah said.
“I have nothing more to say to you two. I love working here, and Victoria has been nothing but gracious and kind to all of her staff. She is like a daughter to me. Also, I will tell you Victoria is here almost as much as I am. I have no idea when she comes and goes on Wednesday or any other time. So, I have told you what I know as fact. Now I ask you to leave my kitchen before one of you sneeze on my vegetables.”
Max bumped Sarah’s elbow slightly. “Well thank you for your time. As you know sir, we are investigating a murder, If we find you are bullshitting us in any way, you will find your ass down at the station in not such a friendly environment.” Max said slightly over Sarah’s shoulder.
Mickie pointed the knife at the door, “Leave.”
Max and Sarah stepped out of the kitchen and stood near the door. Max turned to her, “This guy, if he knows anything, he would never give it up. Put him in jail or cut his fingers off one at a time. He is not going to say anything.”
“So let’s head back to the job and lay out all the facts we have so far. Hopefully, we will have some good luck with the gloves Robin is working on.” Sarah said.
Both detectives turned to leave and not more than six feet away Elba stood quietly. Her eyes focused on both of them.
“Something else I remember detectives. Later that evening I did see Victoria was back she was wearing a different change of clothes.”
“Can you describe what she was wearing before and after you saw her leave,” Max asked.
“One more thing she sat in one of the booths and had three or four cocktails and had, in my opinion, an intense conversation with John Knowles.”
“John Knowles, not Parker?’ Max said.
“That’s right John Knowles, his brother.”

A Message from Max Drake

I am one of the main characters with a lot of responsibilities in the story, “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake.” I am not sure where the story will end, but I am confident I will play a big part in solving the problems. There are seventeen chapters available to read in our story. For those following “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake,” This is a great time to read Chapter Seventeen if you have not read it yet. I am hearing that Chapter 18 is going to be released this weekend. Read about me and all the other characters at,
https://wilbyswritersdiner.wordpress.com

“Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake” Chapter Seventeen

Sarah McFadden and Max Drake glanced at each other while standing up and hurrying out of interview room 2. They walked back to their desks and sat down. Sarah picked up the receiver on the phone.
“Detective McFadden.” She said
“Detective, this is Robin at the lab. I have finished the DNA swabs from a Parker Knowles, and a Victoria Rutledge. Of course, I already have the victim, Hallie Knowles.”
“Okay, and what do you have for me?”
“I can confirm Hallie Knowles blood is in fact found on the splatter on the workbench and on the floor swabs. I confirm Miss Knowles DNA is in the Honda trunk and the drop on the console in the car also belongs to her.”
“I can probably guess, but what about all the other evidence?” Sarah asked.
“I found Miss Knowles DNA on the outside of the gloves. Found her DNA on the towels, and hammer as well.” Robin said.
“Any chance there is any other person’s DNA on any of this evidence? Sarah asked.
“There is no mixture of anybody’s DNA on any of the evidence so far,” Robin said.
“What about the inside of those workmen’s gloves anything there?” Sarah said.
“Working on that as we speak, but I wanted to update and confirm what we have so far,” Robin said.
“The inside of those gloves may provide us with a kill shot on the person that committed this murder,” Sarah said.
“If there are skin cells inside those gloves I will find it, detective,” Robin said.
“Call me as soon as finish with the gloves. “Detective McFadden hung up the phone and looked over at her partner.
“We need some DNA on the inside of those gloves,” Sarah said.
“You know if Parker ever used those gloves his skin cells are probably inside them. That will be a problem in proving he killed Hallie. Glanville Vance has probably already worked on that theory for the preliminary hearing. So far, our evidence is circumstantial at best. Hopefully, we can get to a Grand Jury Indictment.” Max said.
“We need more proof. Where are we going to get it? If all we have is Parker’s gloves, Vance will turn this into an O.J. Simpson glove case.” Sarah said.
“Okay let’s go over what we have right now. First, we have Hallie Cook-Knowles telling her best friends and her ‘husband’ she is pregnant. The father magically gets a contract with the Italian Government. It appears Julian and Hallie had the DNA test to prove he was the father. Did we check where they had the DNA test done? Moreover, the bigger question is, how did Hallie convince Julian he was a father when she was not even pregnant. Somehow Julian promises to start paying her money for support.” Max said.
“Let’s call Julian again and ask him where the DNA test took place,” Sarah said.

*****

Max hung up the phone, “As you heard Julian was not happy. It was midnight in Italy, and I woke him up. He did say that on the way to have the DNA test He and Hallie got into an argument, and she made him pull over the car and let her out. She walked away down some dirt road. He said he did not know what to do so he called Parker and told him to go pick her up.”
“So there never was a DNA test.” Sarah nodded.
“Makes sense Max, there was no way Hallie could go through with the test she wasn’t pregnant. She manipulated the situation. She managed to get Julian to pay her fifteen hundred bucks a month without even a DNA test. Is it possible that Julian found that out and had someone else kill her for lying? We know he was in Italy, that’s verified, but it doesn’t negate the fact he could have had her killed.” Sarah said.
“I’m ruling that out, Sarah. Julian doesn’t fit that type or mold of vindictiveness. We need to look another direction. The day before Hallie is to finalize her divorce from Parker she winds up in a ditch with her head bashed in and strangled to death. She’s killed at home; we can prove that we have blood evidence from the garage, the master bathroom sink drain and in her car. We soon will have the evidence that the gravel and dirt on the Honda’s tires are from the dumpsite where Hallie’s body was discovered. We also have all of this evidence found in two dumpsters behind Knowles Imports.” Max stopped, and both Sarah and Max stared at each other.
“What are we missing?” Sarah said.
“Crime Investigators found no evidence at Victoria Rutledge’s home. We have an alibi for Victoria; she was at work on Wednesday afternoon and late evening. We only have Parker’s word he was at his office at that same time. We have checked cell records, and it appears Parker’s cell was pinging off the tower closest to his business until approximately 1 a.m. as he stated.” Max added.
“True maybe he left the cell at the office. Perhaps he and Hallie met at the house, or he surprised her and showed up,” Sarah said.
“We checked Hallie’s and Parker’s cellphones. We cannot find any text messages or calls between them that afternoon or evening,” Sarah said.
Max reached for Hallie’s cell records from one of the stacked files on his desk. He opened the file up and with a pen looked at each line.
“Sarah there is one call to Victoria from Hallie’s phone at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.”
“What! Are you kidding me?” Sarah said as Max handed her the report.
“How the hell did we miss that?” Sarah sat the report down.
Max shook his head back and forth. “I have no idea. There it is in plain sight.”
“Did Victoria say anything about talking with Hallie at her interview?” Sarah asked.
Max reached for his notes. “I asked her late in the interview that night if she had any contact with Hallie on Wednesday. She said she did not recall any communication either text or calls.”
“How long was that call from Hallie to Victoria’s office phone?” Sarah asked.
“Just a few seconds short of two minutes.” Max looked up at Sarah.
“You’d think Victoria would have remembered a two-minute call from someone that was a best friend, wouldn’t you?” Sarah said.
“You would think so,” Max said.
“I believe we should back up our investigation slightly and see if we missed anything. Let’s go back and re-interview Victoria’s employees about last Wednesday.” Sarah said.
“What time is it?” Max asked.
“3:30.”
“If we hurry we could catch the employees before the restaurant gets busy,” Max said.

*****

A few minutes later Max Drake and Sarah McFadden pulled into the parking lot of Blue Moon Restaurant. Max checked his watch it as 3:52 p.m. Both detectives walked in the front door, and a young woman walked up and met them. Her white button shirt was crisp. She had the long sleeves unbuttoned and rolled up almost to her elbows. She wore jet-black pants. Her black hair pulled back in a ponytail.
“Welcome to Blue Moon, my name is Teresa we are not quite open yet, but how may I help you?”
“Teresa you probably don’t remember us,” Max pulled his jacket back revealing his detective badge clipped to his belt. “This is my partner Detective Sarah McFadden.”
“Yeah you were here a few days ago about Victoria’s friend that was murdered,” Teresa said.
“That’s correct. We have a few more questions for the staff we met with the other day. How many of them are here this afternoon?” Sarah asked.
Teresa’s eyes darted back and forth while thinking, “Elba is here and of course Mickie is here, he’s our head chef.” Teresa smiled.
“Is Victoria here now?” Max asked.
“No we don’t expect her probably until about 5 or 6 p.m. Two more wait staff will be here at about the same time, but I don’t think they were here on Wednesday’s shift.”
“We would like to ask a couple of questions do you think Elba would have a few seconds as well as you to talk. We sure would appreciate it.” Max smiled.
Teresa looked around, “We are kind of busy getting ready for the rush in about an hour. However, I guess we can give you a few quick minutes. Can you just sit over there and I’ll let Elba know you are here?” Teresa pointed to a booth past the cash register and in the corner.
Max and Sarah walked over and sat on one of the bench seats. In a minute, Teresa showed up and sat down. She folded her hands.
“So how can I help you?” Teresa’s smile looked genuine. It reminded Max when he met Hallie Knowles just over a week ago. Teresa was attractive, and her demeanor resembled Hallie’s.
“Teresa, the other day when we were here we asked you if Victoria was here on Wednesday afternoon and through the evening. You said that she was. Please think really hard. Do you remember seeing her every once and awhile through that time frame?” Max asked.
Teresa thought for a moment. “I remember talking with her about linens while she worked in her office upstairs.”
“Do you remember if you saw her say every hour or with customers that evening?” Max asked.
Teresa raised her eyes and in deep thought lasting a few seconds she said, “I’m sure I did, but thinking about it I do not remember talking with her, and I cannot say for certain that I actually saw her. We were so busy that night I literally was running.” Teresa gently shook her head up and down and smiled. “You want to ask Elba that question she is the bartender.”
“One last question, can you remember if Victoria was here late at night say before you closed the restaurant?” Sarah asked.
“Yes, she was here I remember that for sure.”
“Thank you, Teresa, for your time. Can you ask Elba if she could spare us a couple of minutes?” Max asked.
“Sure.” Teresa got up and turned away then stopped. “Detectives you don’t think Victoria had anything to do with this horrible murder do you?” She asked.
“No, this is just a routine visit. We always circle back on our interviews. Sometimes people remember things they didn’t think about the first time.” Max smiled.
In another minute, Max looked up and saw Elba walking towards them. Max guessed Elba was pushing close to thirty years old. A tall black woman with a 1960’s afro she walked towards them with confidence. Her dark eyes matched her hair and skin. It was obvious she spent time in the gym. Her fit body looked like a suit of armor. She wore the same white shirt and black pants, as Teresa did. Elba slid into the booth. She did not smile, but Max sensed her natural seductiveness. She looked first at Max than Sarah.
“Detectives I know why you are here, and I have something I want to say,” Elba said.

Message from Max Drake on June 10th

Hello from Max Drake. I am a character in the story, “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake.” I hear that Chapter Seventeen is coming this weekend. Things are heating up at Wilby’s Writer’s Diner in the story I’m involved with. I cannot believe the twists and turns that involve me. Take a few minutes and read the story or other blog writings from our author. Check out two important posts, “I Am Convinced Their Is Magic” and “A Bucket List Dream Now Is Checked Off.”  Meet us this weekend at

https://wilbyswritersdiner.wordpress.com

Parker Knowles Message for June 4th

Hello, my friends. I am passing along a message from Wilby’s Writer’s Diner that Chapter Seventeen of the story, “Secrets Behind A Wedding Cake,” is scheduled to publish next weekend. For those of you waiting to find our what happens next, this is a perfect opportunity to catch up on other blog posts at

https://wilbyswritersdiner.wordpress.com

I should warn you that I am feeling a lot of pressure in the story. I have spent the past week hardly sleeping, and I’m depressed. Besides, I am spending a fortune on lawyers. I hope wherever Wilby decides to take me it turns out well for me.  What do you think is going to happen next?