Friday, October 19, 2012
Now Playing: The Silent Child
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Episode Nine concluded with:
“Say, Rance,” Clarence spoke as the detective started to walk off. “How’s that kid doin’?”
“I saw her about an hour ago. Pixie isn’t talking yet, but she looks more relaxed. Being with the Harpers seems to be doing her a lot of good.”
“Bring her by again, soon as you can,” Clarence implored. “She might be wantin’ some more candy.”
Dehner shrugged his shoulders. “She didn’t want any today.”
“Yeah, but you paid for it!” Clarence raised an index finger. “That’s what counts!”
“Businessmen has got to put first things first!” Rupert declared in an officious manner.
Dehner laughed as he continued his walk to the livery. The sense of merriment stayed with him until he drove the buckboard out of town. He then remembered that he was off to retrieve a burnt corpse.
Enoch Harper lay in bed and listened carefully to his wife’s breathing. He was certain she was now asleep.
The day had been long and the night even longer. He and Kate had been saddened and shocked to hear of what had happened to the Thompsons. For such fine people to be brutally murdered was a horrible tragedy.
Kate had said nothing to him yet, but Enoch knew that his wife wanted to keep the child. It made sense in a way. While in the store buying things, Gerald Thompson had said that neither he nor his wife had family living back in Indiana. That was one reason they had come west.
What would become of Pixie? Kate had been fussing over her all evening, listening to make sure Pixie was sleeping and getting up to sing to her on the many occasions the little girl woke up.
Enoch sighed. Why hadn’t he and Kate been able to have children of their own? He wanted a daughter as well as a son but, Enoch admitted to himself, he didn’t want a silent child, a Pixie, who might remain a strange creature for the rest of her life. But there were Kate’s feelings to consider, what--”
Enoch suddenly became tense. He thought he heard the sounds of an intruder. Lack of sleep can do things to a man’s imagination, he mused, but it sounded as if someone had forced open the side window and crawled inside.
The store owner remained frozen, his ears alert to any foreign sound. A faint squeak wisped from the store area. Enoch pegged it as someone slowly opening a drawer.
He slipped out of bed and into the pants which were lying on a nearby chair. As Enoch picked up the Henry that was propped in the corner behind the chair, he turned and saw his wife sitting up. Her eyes were questioning and alert.
He placed a finger to his lips, then pointed toward the store area. Kate nodded her head, quietly left the bed and rushed over to the pile of blankets where Pixie was sleeping. She gently awoke the child and then pulled back part of the rug, revealing a trap door. She lifted the door, wrapped Pixie in a blanket and carried her into the basement.
Enoch knew his wife wouldn’t be down there long. She would make sure Pixie was comfortable and then come back up. He needed to act fast. Enoch entered the store area where an intruder awaited him.
Monday: Episode Eleven of The Silent Child