Originally posted on The Writers Desk:
CHAPTER 1 The telephone rang. I picked it up. “Hello?” On the other end of the line came a flurry of Italian. I knew instantly that it was Mike’s uncle calling from Italy. I…
Originally posted on The Writers Desk:
Pop on over to https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxOEBgfcBTOmprraynv_cPw, I did and, it was well worth it, wonderful videos that are very enjoyable and make you smile, you will too.
I am working to grow my subscriber numbers on YouTube. Here’s an example of my page and a link to subscribe. Will you subscribe and help me out?
He tried to purchase it from Clem, but he wouldn’t sell. He knew Jeffery didn’t show that much interest in the property and was hoping he could talk him into selling.
Clara and Lena spoke with Gloria at dinner. She seemed sincere and they apologized for snooping through her belongings. Gloria also told them that Clem said he was going to tell Jeffery about her being his half sister but he needed some time because there was friction between himself and his son. He wanted Jeffery to take over the B&B, however, Jeffery didn’t have any interest in it. He liked living in California. Jeffery never mentioned it to her, and, she felt awkward asking him. She told the sisters that he also showed some interest in her and that made her think that Clem hadn’t told him yet.
“It was difficult for me because although I was happy about knowing who my father was and that I had a brother, I didn’t want to put more of a strain on their relationship. When Clem passed I was sad and knew I would have to tell Jeffery myself and thought he wouldn’t believe me. I tried to make friends with him but with all that had happened, it was not an easy task. I was waiting until after Clem was buried, but, it was hard for me too. I finally found my dad and lost him before we could become a family. I guess it just wasn’t meant to be for me”. Gloria was crying now and Clara and Lena were too.
“That does put you in a difficult situation”. Clara said. “But, legally the property is still half yours, however, you might want to seek legal advice”.
“I don’t care about any inheritance, I just wanted my father’s name on my birth certificate. It will never happen now”.
If you like Gloria, Lena and I will talk to Jeffery for you and explain it all to him. He should know he still has a family, you both do”. Clara advised. Gloria smiled and thanked the sisters for being so nice to her and offering their help. She asked Clara why she thinks someone murdered her father, but Clara told her she wasn’t sure and that’s why she and Lena were suspicious of her. “Maybe Clem did have a heart attack”. Lena said.
“I don’t know, I just can’t believe that”. Clara answered. “I will speak with Jack on Sunday and tell him everything I know so far. Maybe he can help”.
“Who is Jack”? Gloria asked. Lena replied.
“He is the coroner for Cape May”. Clara interjected quickly.
“I have to speak with him on Sunday and ask him some questions about Clem’s autopsy, but, I have to be sure about certain things. I could be wrong and Clem might have passed from a heart attack. I just don’t want to accuse anyone without proof”. Gloria looked shocked. “You think someone murdered Clem”?
“I don’t know Gloria and please don’t mention this to anyone. If someone did kill Clem I don’t want them bolting before we have proof”.
“Do you work for the police”?
“No, Lena and I have helped solve a few cases in our day. But, we like to keep a low profile”. She looked at Lena and winked.
“Ha”! Was Lena’s only reply.
“Alright, I will keep quiet about our conversation, if you promise to keep me up to date on what you find out, deal”?
“Deal”. Clara said. The three of them cleaned up the kitchen and Gloria said she had some laundry to do.
“Why don’t we all go to the Drift Wood later for a drink and listen to some music”. Lena suggested.
“Sounds good to me”, Gloria replied.
“Me too”. Clara smiled. “Is nine o’clock too late for you Gloria”?
“No, that’s fine, as long as we don’t get back too late, I have work tomorrow”.
“Nine o’clock it is then”. Gloria headed up the stairs to her room. The sisters went out to sit on the porch.”What do you think Lena”?
“I think she’s telling the truth”.
“I hope so, Lena, I hope so”. Clara called Marcus, she wanted to speak with him the following day but he said he would be busy, she could come in on Monday and he would listen to whatever she had to say. Friday night all three went to the Driftwood and had a nice evening. They arrived home near twelve and Gloria went straight to her room. She had work the next day and was working a double shift, which meant she wouldn’t get off until after ten pm. and home close to eleven. Lena and Clara had a cup of tea and retired for the night.
Saturday Clara was sitting on the front balcony and noticed Jeffery pull in his driveway about noon time. She waved and said: All was quiet Jeffery, your house is still safe.
“Thank you Clara”, he replied as he headed into the house.
“Would you like to come to dinner tonight Jeffery”?
“Thank you Clara, but, Marcus is treating me to dinner tonight at the Surf and Turf”.
“Wow! Fancy”. Clara replied.
“Yes, can’t pass that up”, Jeffery smiled. “Talk to you soon, have a nice dinner”.
“Thanks, Clara, I’m sure I will”, as he entered his house. Clara went back inside and started working on her computer. Lena was busy calling the people that usually worked for the sisters in the summer and the day passed slowly. The sisters were sitting on the front porch and saw Jeffery leave about six pm. They were having a glass of wine and talking about the upcoming season. They went back in the house about nine pm. and shortly after heard Jeffery’s truck pulling into the driveway. Clara said she was tired and so the sisters went into the house and were in bed by ten pm. The telephone ringing woke Clara, she looked at the clock it was 2 am., she picked up the phone. “Hello”.
“Hello, this is Nurse Sandy Dunn I am calling because a patient by the name of Gloria Mandel was brought in and we found your number in her belongings. She was brought in by 911 paramedics and is in pretty serious condition, are you a relative”?
“Oh my God Gloria!, I am not a relative but she lives here with my sister and I. Is she going to be alright? What happened?”
“Can you come down to the ER, we will need some paperwork done”.
“Yes, yes, of course, we will be there in fifteen minutes”.
“Thank you, come straight to the ER and ask for me”
“Sandy Dunn, right”?
“Yes, I’ll be waiting, your name”?
“Oh, I’m sorry, Clara Hayes and my sister Lena Hayes will be with me”. The ringing of the phone woke Lena as well. “Get dressed fast Lena, Gloria is in the ER and seriously hurt, or something. I just spoke to Sandy Dunn, she is the nurse in charge and they found our phone number in her belongings, hurry”.
“Oh My God Clara, I hope she’s alright”.
“Just get dressed now”! Clara had been sleeping in sweat pants and sweatshirt so she ran downstairs to start the car and waited for Lena. They arrived at the ER and entered the main waiting room. Clara went to the desk and asked for Nurse Sandy Dunn. “Please tell her Clara and Lena Hayes are here for Gloria Mandel”. The receptionist told them to go right through the doors to the left. “Just hit the pad on the wall the nurse’s station is on the left about half way down the hall”. The sisters did as they were told. There was only one nurse at the station. “Excuse me”, said Clara, are you, Nurse Dunn”?
“No, she is in with a patient, she should be right back. What is the patient’s name you came for”?
“Gloria Mandel”. Just then Nurse Dunn came walking out of one of the rooms.
“Here she comes now”, replied the nurse at the station. Clara and Lena started walking toward her. “Nurse Dunn”?
“Yes, Ms. Hayes”?
“Yes, and this is my sister Lena. Is Gloria alright”?
Today I would like to introduce a lovely lady, her name is Catherine De Wolf. She is an internet friend of mine for several years now. She writes beautiful poetry and designs jewelry. Her talent is amazing and her work is superb. Cathy is a kind and generous woman is married and lives in Oregon.
One day I received a package from Cathy and couldn’t imagine why? When I opened said package it contained a beautiful necklace. I did, of course, get in touch with her through Facebook and thanked her for the wonderful gift. She has a bright and sunny disposition and loves her chosen field, which of course is designing jewelry. Her prices are reasonable and her work is beautiful. There are no two pieces the same, a definite plus for her customers.
The following are some examples of her products. All were designed and made by Cathy.
This is my necklace and I love wearing it. It is beautiful and delicate. And, it is one of a kind. I have had many compliments on my custom necklace and hope you enjoy viewing Cathy’s designs.
The following are pieces that are available. Cathy will also design a necklace especially for you. There are no two the same. They are reasonably priced and also one of a kind. Wouldn’t that be a great gift to give someone you care about?
The Medalion and pearls on this one are also favorites of mine.
Cathy can be reached at;
Cathrine De Wolf Custom Jewelry Design
Phone #; 541 344 0229
If you call EST please remember there is a time zone difference.
“Oh, my goodness. Is he sure”?
“Lena, he’s a certified coroner, he knows what he’s talking about”.
“What does that mean. Is there going to be an inquest”?
“I don’t know, I am supposed to meet with Jack on Sunday at the Tea Room for lunch. I have something I want to run by him, but, I could be wrong and don’t want to create any problems”.
“What is it, Clara”?
“I’ll tell you tomorrow, I don’t want anyone else to know about it. I also want to speak with Jeffery when he comes back tomorrow. I want to know if he knows that Gloria is his half sister. I would also like to know if Clem changed his will”.
“Do you think he’ll know”?
“I don’t know Lena, I don’t know. Right now we need to go up to Gloria’s room and calm her down about questioning her. I tend to believe what she told us. What about you Lena”?
“I think she’s telling the truth”.
“Let’s go and get this over with Lena”. The sisters headed up the stairs. Gloria heard a knock on her door. “Come in, it’s open”. Lena and Clara entered her room.
“Gloria, we are sorry if we upset you, but, Clem possibly did not die from natural causes”.
“You think I killed him”?
“It did cross our minds. We found the lab report and the prescription slip. You have to admit it does raise questions”.
“I didn’t kill anyone, I was just trying to make sure my mom was right about Clem being my father. And, as far as the prescription it was something my mother’s doctor left in error and I just added it to my memories. It might sound stupid to you, but, you have no idea how my mother suffered and how much I loved her, so who are you to judge me”?
“Would you mind if we asked you just a few more questions”?
“Not right now if you don’t mind. And, if you want me to move out, I’ll start packing”.
“Please don’t do that Gloria, we believe you, but, we just need to know a couple of more things. Why don’t you rest a while and come downstairs when you feel better and we can have some tea or coffee if you like and if you want we can talk some more. Maybe you can even help us solve this”. Lena and Clara left the room and closed the door. They could hear Gloria crying as they walked away.
Marcus knew Jeffery would return on Saturday and wanted to speak with him. He had arranged to take him out to dinner at the Surf and Turf, it was located at the edge of town and not too many locals dined there, the food was good but pricey. He was sure Jeffery didn’t want to keep the B&B and hoped he could purchase it from him. It had been a dream of his for many years. This was his chance.
Clara returned to the table. Gloria and Lena were enjoying the meal and chatting about what a beautiful day it was going to be. “Well, ladies looks like I did a good job with breakfast. Gloria was the first to reply. “Everything is delicious Clara, you are a wonderful cook”.
“Thank you, Gloria”. Lena noticed that Clara looked a bit pale.
“Are you feeling alright Clara”?
“Yes, I’m fine Lena, why do you ask”?
“You look a bit pale”.
“Nonsense. I’m just hungry”. She sat down and started eating. When all three were done and were enjoying another cup of tea Clara looked at Gloria and asked.
“Gloria, why didn’t you tell us that Clem was your father”? Gloria’s face turned red and Lena looked shocked.
“Clara”! Lena said. The three of them sat there looking at each other in silence.
“How did you find out”? Gloria asked. “Did Clem tell you”?
“No, he didn’t. We sort of found out on our own. Clara replied. Then Clem knew before he died that you were his daughter”?
“Yes. I told him”.
“When”? Tears welled up in Gloria’s eyes.
“I wasn’t really sure if my mother was telling me the truth so I sent a napkin that he used hoping there was some DNA on it and a swab with my DNA to a laboratory for analysis. I didn’t know if I would get any results but it came back positive. I told him about it when I got the positive results. He was shocked, to say the least. He didn’t know because my mother never told him about me. He wanted another test done so we went to a lab together and the results were positive again”.
“Well that’s quite interesting”, replied Clara. “Do you know if he told Jeffery”?
“No, I don’t think so he passed a few days later and Jeffery never mentioned anything to me. I assume he doesn’t know. The only thing I wanted was for him to add his name to my birth certificate. You can’t imagine what it was like growing up with unknown typed in the space where it asks for Father’s name”.
“Was he willing to do it”?
“Yes, but it does take a while and now it will never happen because he’s gone”.
“You do realize that Jeffery is your half-brother I’m sure. Have you spoken to him about this”?
“No Lena I haven’t. I don’t know if Clem told him or not, he never brought it up so I assumed he doesn’t know”.
“What about this? Clara put a copy of the blank prescription pad on the table.
“Where did you get that? What were you snooping in my belongings? Is that why you offered me a room here rent free so you could snoop around and dig up information that is none of your business? I thought you both really were sweet and kind ladies but I guess I was wrong”.
“Not true Gloria”, replied Clara.
“We do like you and I found this information quite by accident while cleaning your room as we were waiting for the plumber”.
“Are you going to tell me it just fell out of the dresser drawer by accident, I wasn’t born yesterday Clara”.
“You have every right to be upset, Gloria”. Replied Lena.
“But Clara feels that Clem was murdered and we are trying to find out if we are right or wrong. Maybe Clem did die of a heart attack or maybe someone had a motive to kill him”.
“Well, it wasn’t me! Why would I want to kill my own father? He didn’t even know I existed. I couldn’t hold that against him”.
“Can you explain why you have a blank prescription pad sheet”?
“Yes, I can, not that it’s any of your business but the doctor left it there one day after he came to see my mother, and I never returned it to him because my mother passed shortly after and then I just kept it for sentimental reasons”. Lena and Clara looked at each other. “I believe her Clara”.
“So do I, the question now is who killed Clem”? The sisters apologized to Gloria for snooping and told her they truly liked her and this was all a coincidental misunderstanding. Gloria was crying, she took the prescription paper and went up to her room. Lena got up to follow her but Clara told her to leave Gloria alone for a while. They could talk to her later. “That phone call I received was from Jack, there was a needle hole in Clem’s jugular vein”.
Thursday night Gloria found the note that Lena and Clara left inviting her to have breakfast with them. She showered and fell into her warm comfortable bed happy to have such a beautiful room. She fell asleep almost instantly, she had a long day at work as the Tea Room was busy and she was exhausted.
Clara rose early as usual and headed to the kitchen to start baking biscuits and muffins. She would also have bacon, eggs and hash brown potatoes, coffee and tea for her and Lena. As she was preparing everything she couldn’t help thinking about the conversation she had with Jack Peterson on Thursday afternoon. She saw him as she was driving past the Beauty Bar and pulled over to speak to him. He was dropping his wife Millie off for her appointment as she didn’t drive since she had a heart attack last year. It was not that she couldn’t drive but she was quite frail and was afraid to get behind the wheel for fear something would happen. So Jack or one of her friends drove her where ever she wanted to go. Clara greeted Millie before she entered the salon. “Hi, Millie going for some relaxation I see”.
“Oh, Hi Clara and they hugged, yes, I have to keep my man happy you know, don’t want any young chicken catching his eye”. They both laughed and Millie entered the salon. Jack was just starting to leave when Clara called out to him to wait a minute. He stopped and she walked over to the driver side window. “Hi, Jack, do you have a few minutes to spare”?
“Hi, Clara. Yes, but I’m heading to work. Is everything alright”?
“Yes, yes, Lena and I are fine. But, I need to inquire about something and I need your expertise, do you mind”?
“No, not at all as long as it doesn’t take too long”.
“If someone was given an injection in the jugular vein would you be able to tell while doing the autopsy”?
“Did you check Clem’s jugular vein carefully and if you didn’t could you”?
“I could but what reason would I have to do that”?
“I think he was given a shot of Potassium Chloride and that’s what killed him. You said there was a small cut on his neck. If someone gave him a shot in the vein and then scraped the needle on his neck wouldn’t it look like a slight cut”?
“Well, yes, but that’s pretty far-fetched, Clara”.
“Could you please check it before you release his body to Jeffery. If you don’t find anything then my gut feeling is wrong and I can lay this to rest.
“Clara, Clem was an elderly man, a heart attack is not unusual”.
“I know Jack, please do this one thing for me. I knew Clem for many years and I just have a bad feeling about this. You know I have been right in the past, please. You can call me and if I am right it’s a kudos to you, and if I’m wrong we can lay him to rest in peace”. Jack agreed. That was yesterday Clara thought and Jack hadn’t called her yet. She heard Lena and Gloria coming down the stairs to the kitchen. “It smells delicious from here”. Gloria said as they headed into the kitchen.
“Yes, it does, Clara is an excellent cook”, replied Lena.
“Come and sit down you two before everything gets cold”.
“All of a sudden I’m starving”. Gloria replied. Just then the phone rang, Clara said; “You two start eating, I’ll get it”. It was Jack.
FATHER’S DAYThe photo is of my brother August (Augie) and my dad William (Willie) they are together in the photo and are together again, my brother passed in 2003 at the age of 57, he was also a wonderful dad.
There are many ways we remember our fathers. My dad was a quiet man who along with my mom raised six children, five girls, and one boy. My oldest sister born in 1939 my youngest sister in 1958. Life was not easy for my parents, yet they managed to keep a roof over our heads, food on the table and made sure we all attended school. My dad was a truck driver, my mom a homemaker. I used to think she didn’t work, boy was I wrong. What we did have an abundance of in our home were love and guidance. My parents were not educated beyond the eighth or ninth grade but had many talents. Daddy could fix or build anything from painting to building a house and my mom who was of Italian decent (Neopolitan) was a great cook and baker.
Today, however, we are celebrating Father’s Day and although my dad passed at a relatively young age (67) he left a legacy of love, respect, honesty, joy, loyalty, unity, and fun. I have dedicated the following for him on this special day and know that he is smiling down upon us all. Happy Father’s Day daddy, you may not be here but will never be forgotten. We will always remember.
DAD By: Patricia Kruck-Salamone
A quiet man but very wise, hair like silver and gray-blue eyes.
His stature small but very strong, he taught us all right from wrong.
He labored hard throughout the years, this quiet man shed so few tears.
Through all the hard times he stood tall, working and teaching and loving us all.
He taught us to hold our heads up high and do our very best, to think for ourselves not follow the rest.
He never complained that his life was tough, he never complained about not having enough.
He made me feel safe and happy and free, he made me feel I’d be all I could be.
If I could just see him one more time, I’d say “Dad you did great we all turned out fine.”
With much love from your third daughter Patti. xoxo
“It’s a doctor’s prescription pad but it’s blank”.
“I see that Lena but what is Gloria doing with a blank prescription paper.
Is this the only one she has or could she have had more than one”?
“Don’t jump to any conclusions Clara.”
“I am not jumping to conclusions Lena, but, there is something fishy going on here and I intend to find out what it is. I wonder if Gloria confronted Clem about their relationship and if Jeffery knows he has a half sister. I left a note on her dresser that if she is off on Friday we would enjoy her company for breakfast”.
“Clara, she seems like such a sweet girl, don’t go giving her the third degree while we’re eating”.
“I won’t, I’ll wait until she is finished, smiling at Lena. I also just remembered something that is bothering me”.
“What is that”, replied Lena.
“Isn’t Marcus’s wife a nurse at the hospital”? In a sarcastic like tone, Lena said,
“Yes she is, has been for over twenty years, why? Do you think she could have killed Clem too”?
“Not really but, there might be some sort of a connection there”.
“You do beat all Clara, you have a twisted mind, did you know that”?
“It’s not twisted Lena, I am just inquisitive, always have been”.
“You don’t have to tell me that Clara, I live with you remember”. Just then the doorbell rang. “I’ll get it”. Lena said. It was Jeffery Bristol. “Why Jeffery, what a pleasant surprise, do come in”.
“Thank you, Miss Lena but I’m on my way to the airport, I will be gone for a few days and was wondering if you ladies would just keep an eye on my house while I’m gone. I should be back by Saturday”.
“Yes, of course, Jeffery, have a safe trip and we’ll see you soon”.
“Thank you, the house is all locked up but it’s always nice to know someone is keeping an eye on it. And, if you see anything just call the police don’t take any chances I would hate to see you or Miss Clara get hurt”.
“Alright, we’ll be careful, I promise”. With that, he left.
“Who was it, Lena”?
“It was Jeffery, he asked us to keep an eye on his house, he is going out of town for a few days”.
“Really. Did you tell him Clem had given us a key to the place years ago in case anything happened while he was away”?
“No, I forgot about the key”.
“Well, I didn’t”. Clara replied with a smile.