"Why? Marc? For God's sake, why?' Kendall's voice was filled with anguish. ' was your fault."! I told you. It was an accident! I ... "I'm not talking about the accident. I'm talking about you! The big successful wife who was too busy to find time for her husband.' It was as though he had slapped her. ''s not true. I ..." you ever thought about was yourself, Kendall. Everywhere we went, you were always the star. You let me tag along like a pet poodle."'s not fair!' she said. ''t it? You go off to your fashion shows all over the world so you can get your picture in the papers, and I'm sitting here alone, waiting for you to return. Do you think I liked being "Mr. Kendall?" I wanted a wife. Don't worry, my darling Kendall. I consoled myself with other women while you were gone.' Her face was ashen. ' were real flesh-and-blood women, who had time for me. Not some damned made-up empty shell.' "Stop it!' Kendall cried. ' you told me about the accident, I saw a way to become free of you. Do you want to know some- thing, my dear? I enjoyed watching you squirm when you read those letters. It paid me back a little for all the humiliation I've gone through."'s enough! Pack your bags and get out of here. I never want to see you again!' Marc grinned. ''s very little chance of that. By the way, do you still plan to go to the police?" out!" Kendall said. '!"'m leaving. I think I'D go back to Paris. And, darling, I won't tell if you won't. You're safe.' An hour later, he was gone. At nine o'clock in the morning, Kendall put in a call to Steve Sloane. ' morning, Mrs. Renaud. What can I do for YOUT ''m returning to Boston this afternoon,' Kendall said. ' have a confession to make." She was seated across from Steve, looking pale and drawn. She sat there frozen, unable to begin. Steve prompted her. ' said you had a confession to make.". I ... I killed someone.' She began to cry.

"It was an accident, but ... I ran away.' Her face was a C, of anguish. ' ran away . and left her there: T Ake it easy,' Steve said. ' at the beginning., She began to talk. Thirty minutes later, Steve looked out his window, thinking about what he had just heard. ' you want to go to the police?'. '. It was what I should have done in the first place. I ... I don't care what they ao' to me anymore.' Steve said thoughtfully,'Since you're giving yourself up voluntarily and it was an accident, I think the court will be lenient.' She was trying to control herself ' just want it over with." about your husbandt She looked up. ' about him?" is against the law. You have the number of the account in Switzerland where you sent the money he stole from you. All you have to do is press charges and -"!' Her tone was fierce. ' don't want anything more to do with him. Let him go on with his life. I want to get on with mine.' Steve nodded. ' you say. I'm going to take you down to police headquarters. You. may have to spend the night in jail, but I'll have you bailed out very quickly.' Kendall smiled wanly. ' I can do something I've never done before.' ''s thatt "Design a dress in stripes.' That evening, when he got home, Steve told Julia what had happened. Julia was horrified. ' own husband was blackmailing her? That's terrible.' She studied him for a long moment. ' think it's wonderful that you spend your life helping people in trouble.' Steve looked at her and thought, rm the one m trouble. Steve Sloane was awakened by the aroma of fresh coffee and the smell of cooking bacon. He sat up in bed, startled. Had the housekeeper come in today? He had told her not to. Steve put on his robe and slippers, and hurried down to the kitchen. Julia was in there, preparing breakfast. She looked up as Steve entered. ' morning,' she said cheerfully. ' do you like your eggst ' ... scrambled.".

Scrambled eggs and bacon are my specialty. As a matter of fact, my one specialty. I told you, I'm a terrible cook.' Steve smiled. ' don't have to cook. If you wanted to, you could hire a few hundred chefs." I really going to get that much money, Stevet ''s right. Your share of the estate will be over a billion dollars.' She found it difficult to swallow. ' billion. ? I don't believe id"'s true."

"There's not that much money in the world, Steve.", your father had most of what there was." ... I don't know what to say." may I say something?, ' course." eggs are burning."! Sorry.' She quickly took them off the stove. ''ll make another batch."'t bother. The burned bacon will be enough., She laughed. ''m sorry." Steve walked over to the cabinet and took out a box of cereal. ' about a nice cold breakfast?",' Julia said. He poured some cereal into a bowl for each of them, took the milk out of the refrigerator, and they sat down at the kitchen table. ''t you have someone to cook for yout Julia asked. ' mean, am I involved with anyonet She blushed. ' like that.' . '. I was in a relationship for two years, but it didn't work out."'m sorry." about yout Steve asked. 525 She thought of Henry Wesson. ' don't think so. He looked at her, curious. ' aren't sure?"'s difficult to explain. One of us wants to get married,' she said tactfully, ' one of us doesn't." see. When this is over, will you be going back to Kansas?' - ' honestly don't know. It seems so strange, being here. My mother talked to me so often about Boston. She was born here, and loved it. In a way, it's like coming home. I wish I could have known my father.' No, you don't, Steve thought. ' you know him?". He dealt only with Simon Fitzgerald.' They sat there talking for more than an hour, and there was an easy camaraderie between them. Steve filled Julia in on what had hippened earlier - the arrival of the stranger who called herself Julia Stanford, the empty. grave and Dmitri Kaminsky's disappearance. ''s incredible!' Julia said. ' could be behind thist ' don't know, but I'm trying to find out,' Steve assured her. ' the meantime, you'll be safe here. Very safe.' She smiled, and said, ' feel safe here. Thank you.' He started to say something, then stopped.

He looked at his watch. ''d better get dressed and get down to the office. I have a lot to do.' Steve was meeting with Fitzgerald. ' progress yeff Fitzgerald asked. Steve shook his head. ''s all smoke.

Whoever planned this is a genius. I'm trying to trace Dmitri Kaminsky.

He flew from Corsica to-Paris to Australia. I spoke to the Sydney police. They were stunned to learn that Kaminsky is in their country.

There's a circular out from Interpol, and they're looking for him. I think Harry Stanford signed his own death warrant when he called here and said he wanted to change his will. Someone decided to stop him. The only witness to what happened on the yacht that night is Dmitri Kaminsky. When we find him, we'll know a lot more.', ' wonder if we should bring our police in on thist Fitzgerald suggested. Steve shook his head. ' we know is all circumstantial, Simon. The only crime we can prove is that someone dug up a body - and we don't even know who did that." about the detective they hired, who verified the'woman's fingerprints?" Timmons. I've left three messages for him. If I don't hear back from him by six o'clock tonight, I'm going to fly to Chicago. I believe he's deeply involved.' ' do you suppose was meant to happen to the shires of the estate that the impostor was going to gett ' hunch is that whoever planned this had her sign her share over to them. The person probably used some dummy trusts to hide it. I'm convinced that we're looking for a member of the family ... I think we can eliminate Kendall as a suspect.' He told Fitzgerald about the conversation he had had with her. ' she were behind this, she wouldn't have come forth with a confession, not at this time, anyway. She would have waited until the estate was settled and she had the money. As far as her husband is concerned, I think we can eliminate Marc. He's a small-time blackmailer. He isn't capable of setting up anything like this." about the otherst - ' Stanford. I talked to a friend of mine with the Chicago Bar Association. My friend says everyone thinks very highly of Stanford. In fact, he's just been appointed chief judge.

Another thing in his favor: Judge Stanford was the one who said that the first Julia who appeared was a fraud, and he was the one who insisted on a DNA test. I doubt he'd do something like this. Woody interests me. I'm pretty sure he's on drugs, and that's an expensive habit. I checked on his wife, Peggy. She isn't smart enough to be behind this scheme. But there's a rumor she has a brother who's bad business. I'm going to look into it.' Steve spoke to his secretary on the intercom. ' get me Lieutenant Michael Kennedy of the Boston police., A, few minutes later, she buzzed Steve. ' Kennedy is on line one.' Steve picked up the phone. '. Thank you for taking my call. I'm Steve Sloane with Renquist, Renquist, & Fitzgerald. We're trying to locate a relative in the matter of the Harry Stanford estate.". Sloane, I'd be glad to help if I can.", you please check with the New York City police to see if they have any files on Mrs. Woodrow Stanford's brother. His name is Hoop Malkovich. He works in a bakery in the Bronx." problem. I'll get back to you.".' After lunch, Simon Fitzgerald stopped by Steve's office. ''s the investigation going?' he asked. ' slow to suit me. Whoever planned this covered his or her tracks pretty thoroughly." is Julia holding upt Steve smiled. ''s wonderful.' There was something in the tone of his voice that made Simon Fitzgerald take a closer look at him. ''s a very attractive young lady." know,' Steve said wistfully. ' know.' An hour later, the call came in from Australia. '. Sloanet '. ' Inspector Mcphearson here from Sydney.", Chief Inspector." found your man.' Steve felt his heart jump. ''s wonderful! I'd like to arrange immediate extradition to bring him ...", I don't think there's any hurry. Dmitri Kaminsky is dead.' Steve felt his heart sink.

'91hat?" found his body a little while ago. His fingers had been chopped off, and he had been. shot several times." Russian gangs have a quaint custom. First they chop off your fingers, then they let you bleed, and then they shoot you." see. Thank you, inspector! Dead end Steve sat there, staring at the wall. All his leads were disappearing.

He realized how heavily he had been counting on Dmitri Kaminsky's testimony. Steve's secretary interrupted his thoughts. ''s a Mr. Timmons for you on line three.' Steve looked at his watch. It was 5:55 P.m. He picked up the telephone. '. Timmonst ' ... I'm sorry I couldn't return your calls earlier. I've been out of town for the past two days. What can I do for yout A lot, Steve thought. You can tell me how youfaked thosefingerprints. Steve chose his words carefully. ''m calling about Julia Stanford. When you were in Boston recently, you checked out her fingerprints and .. '. Sloane ..." ''ve never been in Boston.' Steve took a deep breath. '. Timmons, -according to the register at the Holiday Inn, you were here on .. ' has been using my name.' Steve listened, stunned. It was the final dead end, the last lead. ' don't suppose you have any idea who it is?, ', it's very strange, Mr. Sloane. A woman claimed that I was in Boston and that I could identify her as Julia Stanford. I'd never seen her before in my life.' Steve felt a surge of hope. ' you know who she 1st '. Her name is Posner. Margo Posner.' Steve picked up a pen. ' can I reach hert ''s at the Reed Mental Health Facility in Chicago., ' a lot. I really appreciate this."'s keep in touch. I'd like to know what's going on myself. I don't like people going around impersonating me.".' Steve replaced the receiver. Margo Posner. When Steve got home that evening, Julia was waiting to greet him. ' fixed dinner," she told him. ', I didn't exactly fix it. Do you like Chinese foodt He smiled. ' it!". We have eight cartons of it.' When Steve walked into the dining room, the'table was set with flowers and candles, "Is there any newst Julia asked. Steve said cautiously, ' may have gotten our first break. I have the name of a woman who seems to be involved in this. I'm flying to Chicago in the morning to talk with her.

I have a feeling we may have all the answers tomorrow." would be wonderful!' Julia said excitedly. ''ll be so glad when this is over." "So will I,' Steve told her. Or will P She'll be a real part of the Stanford fainfly - way out of my reach. Dinner lasted two hours, and they were not even aware of what they were eating. They talked about everything and they talked about nothing, and it was as though they had known each other forever. They discussed the past and the present, and they carefully avoided talking about the future. There is nofuturefor us, Steve thought unhappily. Finally, reluctantly, Steve said, ', we'd better go to bed., She looked at him with raised eyebrows, and they both burst out laughing. ' I meant ..." know what you meant.

Good night, Steve." nigh t, Julia."

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