Gregson shined his flashlight on the bushes, hoping his intuition was wrong. “Who’s that!”
“I think you know who it is.”
And the park officer rode into view.
“You’ve been behind these murders?”
“I’ve been at every crime scene. You were a good detective, but you really should retire.
“But why have you been killing people and leaving chess pieces at every crime scene?”
“I spent hours in the castle library on my lunch break. One day I was listening to the guys who drink scotch and they spoke of a treasure in Chess-field park that has never been found. I did my research on the third floor and discovered that the lady who ruled these parts had her fortune buried with her. Her treasure has gone untouched because of its voodoo power. I’m not a superstitious man, but I’m a cautious one, so I did my research. I couldn’t smuggle the books out of the library, so I had a construction worker lower them down from the roof. The one you chased would’ve been caught if I hadn’t pushed him to his death.”
“But what about the guy who got a lance through the chest and the other one whose skull was crushed?”
“When I located the grave site in Chess-field Park: A History, I wanted to take every precaution. It said that Queen Helfrich could only be exhumed if the proper sacrifices were made. A bloodied lance and balistice should point to the south while the proper rituals were read. I did these things very carefully and the treasure is greater than you can possibly imagine.”
“But why leave chess pieces at every crime scene?”
“Well, I like to play chess and the thought just occurred to me. It was better for the police to think they were chasing a madman, than somebody who was just after treasure.”
“But what about your career and your duty as a police officer?” Gregson asked.
“You really think somebody can be satisfied passing out parking tickets for the rest of their life? My dad was a police officer and my grandfather before him. They served the state and died without a penny to their name.”
“There are things more valuable than money,” Gregson said.
“Yes, I know; real estate and stocks that pay dividends.”
“No, that’s not what I was thinking; courage and honor.”
“Let’s see the size of your courage and honor when it’s put to the test, Frank said”
“Excuse you! Choose your weapon!”