فصل 09

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فصل 09

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  • زمان مطالعه 9 دقیقه
  • سطح ساده

دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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Chapter nine

The Divorce

Sweeney and Grimshaw visited Patrick. They photographed him and took his fingerprints. Then the two men joined Cutter in his office, where an FBI fingerprint man was waiting for them. When Pepper’s gun was found in Patrick’s cabin, Grimshaw had taken fingerprints from it. The fingerprint man compared those with Patrick’s.

“Several of these are perfect matches,” he said. “The gun was covered with Lanigan’s prints.”

Certainly good news, they thought.


Patrick demanded a different room for all future meetings with his attorney, and Dr. Hayani quickly made the necessary arrangements. Patrick also requested a wheelchair. A nurse pushed him to the room where Sandy was waiting.

“Did you get the machine for finding bugs?” Patrick asked.

“It’ll be here in a few days. You should relax a little. You’ve lived in fear, always looking over your shoulder. But those days are over. They caught you. Relax.”

“They’re still out there. They have me, but not the money. And the money’s much more important. They won’t rest until they have it. The people who lost their money have spent a fortune trying to find it.”

“How do you know? Who are they?”

There was a long pause. “Sit down,” Patrick said.

Sandy removed the thick file Leah had given him four hours earlier, and Patrick recognized it immediately. “When did you see her?” he asked anxiously.

“This morning. She’s fine, sends her love, and says nobody’s following her yet. She asked me to deliver this.”

Patrick opened the envelope, pulled out a three-page letter, and read it. Sandy looked through the file and took out pictures of Trudy and Lance.

When Patrick finished reading, he said, “I have another letter for her.” Then he saw the photos on the table. “Good work, isn’t it?”

“It’s amazing. I’ve never seen so much proof in a divorce case.”

“Well, I learned about Lance after we’d been married almost two years. Trudy was going to have a baby, so I said nothing. But a year later, I started gathering evidence. I wasn’t sure when I’d need it, but I knew the marriage was over. I left town every chance I could. She never seemed to mind.”

“I’m meeting with her lawyer at 5 P.M.”

“Good. Threaten everything, but get a settlement. She has to give up all rights, Sandy. She gets nothing of mine.”


Trudy’s lawyer, J. Murray Riddleton, politely welcomed Sandy. “So how’s Patrick? Have you found the money yet?” he asked, with a broad smile.

“Didn’t know I was looking for any,” Sandy said, and Riddleton laughed. “I saw your client on TV last night,” Sandy continued. “We have no problems with her desire to get a divorce, and she can have the child. In fact, my client has no plans to visit the child.”

“Smart man. After leaving her four years ago.”

“There’s another reason,” Sandy said, as he opened the file and picked out the DNA test. He handed a copy to Riddleton, who’d stopped smiling. “Read this.”

Riddleton read the report slowly and then looked up with an empty expression. “I’m sure this can be explained.”

“I’m sure it cannot. Under Alabama law, the DNA test is enough evidence. If this is printed in the papers, it could be embarrassing for your client.” He paused. “She can have the divorce. The kid, too.”

“Oh, I understand. You’re threatening us. If she stops demanding his money and property, he won’t give this information to the press. He’s crazy, and so are you.”

Sandy looked through the file and took out another report and two large photos of Lance and Trudy without clothes. “These were taken by the pool at my client’s home while he was in Dallas. Do you recognize these people?” Riddleton was silent. “There are more,” Sandy promised. “And I have three other reports from private detectives. Your client would surely be embarrassed if these were on the news.”

Riddleton breathed heavily. He knew he was defeated. “What does he want?”

“He wants her to stop talking, to get her divorce and go away, and to drop all future claims against him.”

“Let me speak to her.” Riddleton smiled sadly.

Sandy left, and Riddleton went to see Trudy and Lance. He told them Patrick knew she’d had a lover. Trudy acted shocked.

“Do you deny it?” Riddleton asked.

“Absolutely,” she said.

“Of course,” added Lance. “The man’s lying.”

“Patrick hired investigators,” Riddleton told them, handing them one of the reports. Trudy and Lance looked at each other. They’d been caught, but they weren’t ashamed.

“Can these investigators talk in court?” Lance asked.

“We’re not going to court,” Riddleton said.

“Why not?” Trudy asked.

“Because of these.” Riddleton put the photos in front of them. They were shocked. Trudy started to cry. “He’s not getting my daughter,” she said.

“Relax,” Riddleton said. “He doesn’t want the kid. He’s not the father.”

They both thought about that while Riddleton got out a report. “He had a DNA test done.” He looked at Lance and added, “Congratulations.”

Trudy was angry. “So what do we do?”

“It’s simple. You give up your right to his money and property, and he gives you the divorce and the kid.”

“But I’m going to lose everything,” she said. “Look what he’s done to me. I got two and a half million when he died, and now the insurance company wants to take it all back. Can I sue him for mental cruelty?”

“No. Look, it’s very simple. You get the divorce and the kid, and Patrick keeps whatever money is out there. And everything is private. If you don’t agree, he’ll give the reports and photos to the press.”

“Where do I sign?” she asked.


It was past time to leave for the day, but Dr. Hayani stopped to see his famous patient.

“Welcome to my office,” Patrick said. He was sitting at a small table, which was now his desk. A pile of legal papers was in one corner.

“Nice,” Hayani said. “How are you doing?”

“I’m fine,” he answered, as he always did. Patrick sat on the edge of his bed and looked at his doctor. “Can I tell you something?” he asked sincerely.

“Certainly.”

“When I was a lawyer,” Patrick began softly, “I had a client who got caught stealing money from his bank. He was arrested at home, late at night, taken to jail, and put with some rough guys. They beat him. You can’t let that happen to me, Doc.” His eyes watered.

“Don’t worry, Patrick, I won’t. I promise.”

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