Detective Brady looked at the woman sitting across the table. She was staring down at the scratched, beat-up, filthy table top. After twenty years of police interrogations of some of the worst scum of the earth criminals the city had to offer up, the table was covered with their filth.
She stared at it, but left her hands in her lap as if she was scared to death she would pick up some disease if she touched anything in this room. Her eyes darted around and she saw the peeling paint on the walls, the broken and worn linoleum on the floor, and the dents in the steel door where some detainee had tried to punch his way out of the room. The only new and modern items in the room were a TV monitor and a DVR on a pedestal stand behind Brady.
Detective Brady looked at his notepad and scanned his scribbled notes on the case. He thought about how the crime may have played out. He knew he had her and would break her before they left this room.
The crime was simple. Her husband was dead, dead by her hand. At least that is what the evidence pointed to. Brady was a twenty year veteran with a dozen in major crimes. He had the nose and could smell a perpetrator from a mile away. And this, he thought, was a first class perp.
He cleared his throat to get the perp's attention. The liquid blue eyes snapped up to stare into his. The luscious red lips trembled awaiting him to say something.
He looked at her quickly wondering how a woman of such beauty could be a murderess. She was a vision with long blonde hair, those beautiful eyes and lips, a trim body with ample breasts. She appeared toned from many hours at the gym.
Brady snorted, yeh, all those hours at the gym, many of which she spent fucking her trainer in his office.
He tapped his fingers on the thick file folder sitting on the table. It had taken eighteen months of hard investigation to compile all of the damning materials. He would only present the minimum necessary to break her to a confession. Save some for the trial to solidify the conviction.
For some unfathomable reason, she had waived her right to counsel. Maybe she felt it would make her look guilty to hide behind an attorney. She was a MENSA member with an IQ of 174 on their standardized test. A brilliant mind lay behind those beautiful eyes. That mind was tabulating all of the odds for each action she now took.
Brady had never had to deal with such a combined force before. He had some misgivings about his success. But he was a hard ass detective with a proven track record. And she ... she was just another killer. No matter how good she looked or how smart she was.
He cleared his throat again and pulled the file in front of him. Opening it, he reviewed the first three or four papers and set them aside. He still had not said a word. The silence usually made the perp uncomfortable. He could see a similar reaction in the back of her eyes. He read the next item and suddenly said, "Mrs. Hastings, I need answers to many questions. Those answers will decide how we proceed. Got it?"
She nodded in the affirmative and a slight smile played at the corner of her mouth.
She thinks she can talk her way out of this. Good! Not many can. No matter how smart they are, Brady mused.
"Now, Mrs. Hastings, let's discuss the night of your husband's death. You stated you were home all evening, I believe? You were no where near the alley where your husband's body was found the next morning?"
"That's right. I watched American Idol, then the news, and went to bed."
Brady nodded and scribbled a note on his pad.
He continued, "You watched all of the evening news? Not just a portion?"
"Yes, all of it. I fell asleep probably twenty minutes after it ended -- around eleven twenty probably."
"You said that the one of the news anchors was away on vacation?"
Brady nodded and made note on his pad.
"Now, let's move on to my next subject. When was the last time you talked to your husband that day?"
"I talked to him on his cell phone around ten. We talked about the Idol show and that he was meeting a client for a late drink to discuss a new contract."
"What happened on Idol that night?"
"Oh, I don't remember. I think one of the girls was voted off, but I really don't remember who."
"Okay, good." Brady replied as he made another note on his pad.
"Now, let's move on to my next subject. How well did you know Eric Snyder?"
Her eyes snapped up and she inhaled a shallow breath. He could tell the name meant something to her.
"I ... I was having sex with him." She mumbled.
"What was that, Mrs. Hastings? I couldn't hear you." Brady prodded.
"One or two nights a week -- when I went to the gym. We'd go in his office and we would have sex."
"So how long had this affair been going on?" Brady queried.
"It wasn't an affair!" She declared in raised voice.
"No? Was your husband aware of this 'sex'?"
"Oh, God, no! He'd have been crushed. I did love him."
"What did you tell your husband about your relationship with Eric Snyder?"
"I ... I told him that Eric was giving me some private sessions to improve my body tone quicker."
"And, he bought off on that?"
"Sure, I never gave him any reason to think otherwise." She replied with assurance.
"Really?" Brady snorted. "When did you find out your husband had hired a private investigator to dig up the dirt on you and your boyfriend?"
She looked confused, "A private investigator? I didn't know! Oh my God, he knew about Eric? Oh my God. He must have hated me! But it wasn't an affair. I didn't love Eric. It was just sex. Just some wild, uninhibited sex that I was too embarrassed to ask my husband to provide."
Brady scribbled another note.
He said, "Did you know the PI reported to your husband that you had many lunches with Eric Snyder and would then go to a local motel for several hours?"
She seemed shocked. "Well, I told you I had sex with him a couple of times a week."
Brady looked at his note pad. "What you said was that you two had sex in his office one or two times a week. Now what is the correct story? Sex only at his office or sex more than a couple of times a week at his office and at the motel after a lunch at one of the more romantic restaurants in the area."
She stared at the table top, "The latter."
"Well, let me see, you were fucking your trainer many times a week. You lied to your husband about it. You met Eric Snyder for romantic meals. You did things with Eric Snyder that you wouldn't do with your husband. Do I have the facts correct?"
"Yes." She said in a small voice as she saw a chink in her defensive armor forming.
"I'm glad you admitted all of these facts because we already had this information from Mr. Snyder."
"Now, let me ask you one more time. Was this an affair or not?"
"No! It was just sex!"
Brady looked through his notepad for a page. "Well, let me read you a definition of an affair from the dictionary, it is defined as a romantic and sexual relationship, sometimes one of brief duration, between two people who are not married to each other."
"So what part of the definition did your involvement with Eric Snyder not describe?" Brady pushed.
"Okay, okay ... It was an affair" She sobbed.
"And how long had this affair been going on?" Brady asked quietly.
"Over a year." She sobbed again.
"Good, Mrs. Hasting. You told the truth. That is exactly what Mr. Snyder told us."
"Now, let me ask you again, when did you find out your husband knew about your affair."
"I ... I didn't."
"Oh come, come, Mrs. Hastings. His PI indicated he received a call from your husband the week before his death that he was going to confront you with his evidence. The PI gave us copies of what your husband was given." Brady stated as pulled a manila envelope from the file folder.
He unclasped it and scattered several pictures of Mrs. Hastings in some very compromising situations. Two audio tapes fell out of the envelope. "Mrs. Hastings, the audio tapes were made in your own home when you brought your lover to your house and did him in your marital bed. There are some very interesting conversations between you and your lover."
"You belittled your husband both as a husband and man. You called him the 'little dick wimp' that you wanted to get rid of. You told Mr. Snyder that your 'pussy belonged to him', I believe your exact words were."
She placed her face in her hands and wept. "But it meant nothing. I was just doing bedroom talk to make Eric hotter. He loved me to make him seem so much better than my husband. He'd always do me harder when I said those things. It meant nothing. I didn't mean them!"
"Okay Mrs. Hasting. Let's say I believe you about the demeaning remarks about your husband. How do you explain the statements about wanting to get rid of him?"
"It was all the same thing. Eric was possessive. If he thought for a second that I didn't ever plan to leave my husband for him, he'd have dumped me for one of the million younger women in the gym. They were always throwing themselves at him. I'm thirty-nine years old. This was my one fling in life and Eric was giving me the ride of my life. But he was never husband material."
Brady made another note in his pad.
She volunteered, "You know, Eric was so possessive, he may well have killed my husband."
Brady looked up as if he had never given serious thought to Eric Snyder. She felt a relief that maybe she could mend the chinks forming in her armor.