“That is not my intent,” Kate said. “You didn’t answer the question.”
“Of course not, he never did anything to worry me. Just last week he arrived early for one of our meetings and helped set up the chairs and tables. Saved me an hour’s worth of work. A good, solid man. And yes, before you say it, I know he has a prison record. But God believes in second chances, and so do I.”
Mazur knew how clever these monsters could be. They hid in plain sight and either went unnoticed or were pillars of the community until they were arrested. “Do you know where we could find William Bauldry?”
“If he’s not here, he’s working or at home.”
“Where does he work?” Kate asked.
“At Sanchez Motors. He has a job in their body shop. Gloria sponsored him when he got out of prison, and I suppose she referred him to our church.”
“That job lasted only six months,” Kate said. “It ended over the summer.”
Mrs. Lawrence shook her head. “That’s not what he told us. He said he was still working there.”
“Was William close to Ms. Kendrick?” Mazur asked, shifting the conversation.
“Friendly. Nothing romantic.”
“And Gloria?” Kate asked. “What was her relationship like with William?”
“They got along very well. Seemed to get each other’s jokes when no one else did.”
“Did they talk about anything in particular?” Mazur asked.
“They were always quiet. I could never hear.”
“And was Ms. Kendrick seeing anyone?” Mazur asked.
“She was, but don’t ask me who. I heard her on the phone a couple of times. I could tell by her voice it was a romantic partner.”
Mazur thanked Mrs. Lawrence and left his card. Outside with Kate, he stared up at the cloudless night sky filled with bright stars.
“I need to get my car back at the station,” Kate said.
“Finding a new hotel?”
“I’m going to see my mother.”
He didn’t speak for a moment. “I can take you straight there.”
“Just drop me at my car.”
They were on the road before he commented, “Mrs. Lawrence had pretty nice things to say about Bauldry.”
“The William I remember was a very clever, charismatic man,” Kate said. “And now he is out of prison, once again charming everyone around him.”
“With what end in mind?”
“Self-serving. If Church Lady only knew what was walking among her flock. If anything, guys like him get more dangerous in prison. They learn from other prisoners to hide their thoughts and to become the person they need to be to get what they want.”
“What else do you remember about William?” Mazur asked.
“I’m remembering how it was when I was in high school. After I broke up with him, he followed me everywhere. He called me all the time. He turned our family inside out. He enjoyed the harassment, the toying. So killing me today would be too easy. He doesn’t want the game to end.”
Scowling, he shook his head as he stared at her. “Jesus, Kate. How can you be so calm?”
“Between you and me, I am not calm. I’m scared. But I don’t have the luxury of hiding. If I don’t catch this guy, he will kill again.”
His phone chimed with a text. “Palmer has footage from multiple security cameras that shoot directly on Rebecca Kendrick’s coffee shop,” he said. “She says William appears on yesterday’s footage.”
“We need to find William,” she said.