“She was attacked as she was passing the alley of the Tea Room. She was stabbed and she has a slightly fractured skull. Apparently, she had the sense to fight back and scream. The Porter Henry that was finishing the cleaning at the Tea Room heard her screams ran out the back door and saw Gloria and the man that was attacking her. He started running and yelling at the assailant and apparently scared him off. Gloria was laying on the ground and Henry called 911 on his cell phone. Thankfully the responders were there within minutes and the police arrived shortly after that”. Clara saw a police officer sitting outside Gloria’s room.
“Is Gloria going to be alright”? Lena asked.
“Right now she’s unconscious, but, the doctors think she will pull through”.
“Did they catch her attacker”? Clara asked.
“The police can’t question her yet, but, the First Responders said she kept saying the word chef”.
“Chef? The chef from the Tea Room”?
“I don’t know, but, I think they went to question him”.
“You said she was stabbed, where”?
“She was lucky, apparently he tried to stab her in the stomach area but she put her purse which was quite large in front of her and the wound is not that deep. We are more worried about her head injury”.
“Did anyone call the police chief Marcus Kent”?
“I don’t know Ms. Hayes”.
“Can we see her”?
“I let you in for a few minutes but be prepared her face is pretty bruised up”. Nurse Dunn took the sisters into Gloria’s room. Her face was badly bruised and swollen, she was on oxygen and had several I V’S hooked up to her arm. Lena and Gloria were shocked. Lena started to cry. Clara put her arm around her sister and said; “Let’s let her rest, she’s going to be fine”. Nurse Dunn said there was some paperwork that had to be filled out and was hoping they could help. Clara told her not to worry she and Lena would take care of the hospital bill if Gloria didn’t have any insurance. The nurse asked for the nearest relative and Clara told her that it was an aunt but she didn’t know her name or where she lived, and, her mother had passed about two years ago, her father had also passed. Lena started to say something but Clara shot her a look and she stopped. Clara gave their address as Gloria’s home address. Nurse Dunn said she would call them if there was any change in her condition. The sisters left. In the car Lena asked Clara; “Who would want to harm that poor girl? Do you think Jeffery did it”?
“I don’t know Lena, but, I am going to call Marcus”. The sisters arrived home at five am., but neither one could go back to sleep. Lena put the kettle on and made tea. Clara called Marcus, but, was told he was not there. She left a message for him to call her. The ladies showered and dressed. The phone rang about eight am. It was Nurse Dunn letting them know that Gloria had come around and was going to be fine, but the doctors wanted her to rest and they could come and see her later in the day. Jack called right after Lena hung up with the nurse. He asked her if he could meet her about three pm., at her home, there was something important he had to do. She asked if he heard about Gloria, he said he had, and, would discuss it when he saw her.
Jack finally arrived, Lena let him in, they went into the kitchen where Clara was. “Sit down ladies I have something to tell you”.
“What is it Jack, you look ashen”.
“The reason I had to cancel earlier is that I called the state police to take over this case”.
“Why”? Lena asked.
“Because Marcus Kent is under arrest for the murder of Clem and attempted murder of Gloria, it’s a long story. I saw Kate Kent a couple of days ago and while we were chatting she mentioned that she was worried because there was a bottle of Potassium Chloride missing from the medicine cart. She was in charge that night and they can’t find it. I asked her what night it went missing and she told me it was the night Clem passed away. She remembered that Marcus had visited her that night and she had unlocked the cabinet and only stepped away for a few minutes to help one of the nurses with an emergency, but she wasn’t worried because Marcus was right there, however they didn’t discover the missing bottle until the change of shift. All of the narcotics were accounted for and she was thankful for that. She asked her husband when she got home if anyone came by the cabinet because it was open. Marcus told her he didn’t notice anyone, but, he was on his telephone and had his back to the cabinet while he was speaking. They made everyone check their pockets and looked everywhere but the Potassium Chloride was never found.
I knew Marcus wanted to buy Clem’s house. He’d been saving his money for years and figured when Clem was ready to retire he would sell it. Marcus knew Jeffery didn’t have any interest in it. Then Clem told Marcus about Gloria being his daughter but told him not to say anything to anyone especially Jeffery because he hadn’t told him yet. That’s when I really suspected Marcus. He visited his wife at the hospital which was not unusual, only this time he got his hands on a bottle of Potassium Chloride. He knew that injecting an overdose of it could cause a heart-attack because his wife was in the medical profession for years. The night he took Clem home he had the Potassium on him. He also had taken a syringe. He thought with Clem gone Jeffery would be more than eager to sell the house to him. He knew Clem would be at the Driftwood that night and when Clem got too drunk to drive he offered to drive him home, when Clem passed out on the sofa he injected the Potassium Chloride into his jugular vein, And, that, dear ladies is premeditated murder. That’s when I called the State Police. I gave them the information and they came over to talk with Marcus.
“How do you know he attacked Gloria”? Lena asked.
“Because when the state police questioned him he broke down and confessed everything.
I also met with Jeffery and told him about Marcus, and, about Gloria”.
“About an hour ago”.
“How did he take it”?
“He was shocked, to say the least. I told him I was coming over here and I would see him as soon as I told you and Lena. If it wasn’t for you ladies Marcus would have gotten away with the perfect murder”.
“I knew Clem was too healthy to just have a sudden heart attack. Marcus’s family must be devastated. Poor Katie and the children”.
“You probably saved Gloria’s life as well”.
“I must confess I did consider her a suspect for a short time”.
“A short time”? Lena replied.
“Oh, hush Lena, you had your suspicions too”.
“Well, I guess that’s it for now. I am going over to see Jeffery, would you like to tag along? I think Jeffery would like to speak to both of you”.
“Yes, and we would like to visit Gloria if she’s up to it”.
“Jack, can I ask you a question”?
“Nurse Dunn told us that first night at the hospital that the First Responders said Gloria said the word chef several times before she went unconscious”.
“What she was trying to say was chief, nurse Dunn, relayed that to the officer that was guarding her room and he called me. Between what I found after you insisted I re-examine Clem’s body, and then with nurse Dunn’s information. I started to put two and two together, so I called in the State Police. It’s the proper procedure in a case like this. And, I didn’t want him to bolt before he was questioned”.
Jack and the Hayes sisters left their house and walked to see Jeffery.
Jeffery and Gloria had a long talk. Another DNA test confirmed they were related. Jeffery was happy to know he had an older sister and Gloria was happy that she was part of a family. Jeffery and Gloria now run their Bed and Breakfast. Clara and Lena helped get them get started and brother and sister are doing fine.
Marcus Kent waved a jury trial, his family was devastated, and, his wife moved back to New York.
There is a new Police Chief in Cape May and the Hayes sisters are getting to know him, much to his dismay.