فصل 04

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فصل 04

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CHAPTER FOUR

Alice Maclennan

For the second time that day Grant opened the door when Logan arrived at the Maclennans’ house in Polwarth Gardens. He followed her through the house to the living room.

‘Johnstone’s gone home and will be back tomorrow,’ said Grant. ‘I didn’t tell him you were coming.’

‘Good. Have you found any black clothes?’ asked Logan.

‘A black pullover and some black trousers,’ answered Grant. ‘They were Alex Maclennans. Mrs Maclennan doesn’t have any dark clothes at all.’

‘Well, that’s interesting,’ said Logan. ‘Of course, she could easily wear her husband’s clothes. Get those clothes to the scientists as soon as possible. We really need to know who was climbing in or out of…’ She stopped speaking as they arrived at the living room door.

Alice Maclennan was standing behind a beautiful antique desk and studying some papers. She looked up when Logan and Grant came into the room.

‘Inspector Logan,’ she said. ‘What can I do for you?’

‘I’m sorry, but I’m afraid I have some more questions,’ said Logan.

‘That’s all right, Inspector. Shall we sit down?’

Alice Maclennan walked across the room and sat down on the large green sofa. She was wearing light grey trousers and a white blouse. Logan sat in an armchair close to the sofa. Grant stood by the door.

‘As Sergeant Grant found out, I have no dark clothes,’ said Alice Maclennan. ‘People usually wear black after someone has died. But Alex will have to be happy with grey.’ She smiled sadly.

‘I’m sure he won’t mind,’ said Logan softly.

Alice Maclennan looked up. ‘Anyway, you must ask me your questions.’

Logan looked round the room at the beautiful antique furniture and the old pictures on the walls.

‘What happens to all this now?’ asked Logan. ‘Who gets the house and your husband’s money? What happens to the restaurant?’

‘Well, that’s easy,’ said Alice Maclennan. ‘He left everything to me. I get the house and the money - everything except the restaurant.’

‘Not the restaurant?’ asked Logan.

‘No, the restaurant is different. The restaurant was always Alex’s and Ian’s. Ian didn’t have any money when they started so Alex paid him to be the manager. But Alex always said that the restaurant was theirs. Fifty-fifty. So now Alex is dead, I will get half of it and the other fifty per cent will go to Ian.’

‘Did Mr Ross know about this?’ asked Logan.

‘Of course, Inspector,’ answered Alice Maclennan. ‘He and Alex talked about it when they started the restaurant.’

‘So they were very good friends?’ asked Logan.

‘That’s right.’

Logan’s dark brown eyes studied Alice Maclennans face carefully.

‘They were good friends when they started the restaurant. I know that,’ said Logan. ‘But did they stay good friends? I mean, I’ve heard that Mr Ross did all the work and Alex didn’t do very much. It was Alex who was famous. Everyone came to see Alex’s friends. How did Mr Ross feel about that?’

Alice Maclennan looked away from Logan. Her fingers started playing with a ring on her finger. She looked back at Logan and met her eyes.

‘I really don’t know, Inspector,’ she said. ‘You’ll have to ask him. I don’t often go to the restaurant these days. I don’t see Ian very often.’

Logan was quiet for a moment.

‘You didn’t answer my question this morning,’ she said.

‘What question was that?’ Alice asked quickly - almost too quickly.

‘Were you and your husband happily married?’

‘Of course we were,’ said Alice.

‘Mrs Maclennan,’ said Logan. ‘I don’t believe that is true. And you know it isn’t true.’

Logan looked into Alice Maclennans eyes.

‘Please, Mrs Maclennan. I’m looking for the person who murdered your husband. I know this is a very difficult time for you. I don’t want to make it more difficult, but you must help me.’

Alice Maclennan started to cry.

‘No, we weren’t happily married,’ she said. ‘When we first got married we were. We were so, so happy. We were in love and everything was wonderful for a few years. Then Alex and Ian started the restaurant. It took more and more of Alex’s time. It was stupid really. He didn’t do any of the hard work, but he spent more and more time at the restaurant. Sometimes we didn’t see each other for days. I became bored… and angry.’

‘Were you angry with each other just before he died?’ asked Logan.

‘No. Things were beginning to change. So no, we weren’t angry with each other.’ Alice Maclennan looked out of the window. She thought carefully as she spoke. ‘We were starting to be happy again. About six months ago we had a long talk about our marriage. Alex said he was sorry I was so angry. He said he wanted to spend more time with me. He wanted to try and make me happy again.’

‘Mrs Maclennan, when your husband was spending a lot of time at the restaurant, did you have a lover?’ asked Logan.

Alice Maclennan looked at the Inspector. This time she did not look away.

‘No,’ she said.

Logan looked at her, but said nothing.

‘No, Inspector, I did not,’ she said.

Logan stood up.

‘Well, thank you for your time, Mrs Maclennan,’ she said. ‘I hope I don’t need ask you anything else, but if I do, I know where to find you.’

‘What do you think, Grant?’ asked Logan. They stood outside the house in Polwarth Gardens.

‘What do you mean, madam?’ asked Grant.

‘Did she have a lover or didn’t she? You were watching her. Do you believe her?’

‘You still don’t?’

‘I’m not sure,’ answered Logan. ‘I believe what she said about her marriage. But I think she had a lover… or maybe still has a lover.’

‘And the lover could be the murderer?’ asked Grant.

‘That is very possible, Grant. But if there is a lover, nobody knows who it is at the moment. Alice Maclennan certainly isn’t going to tell us. So let’s think of something else to do.’

Logan told Grant about her visit to the restaurant and what she had found out from Tam. She asked Grant to send Alex Maclennans clothes to the scientists and then go to the restaurant. She wanted more information about Ian Ross from the people who worked there. She wanted to know how Ross felt about Alex Maclennan.

Logan started thinking about Donald Johnstone. He needed lots of money and he needed it quickly. His brother-in-law was dead and his sister was now very rich. Was he just lucky or was he too lucky? She decided she had some questions for him.

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