Friday, 1 April 2016

Murder Most Foul! - A is for Alert - Cozy Mystery #AtoZChallenge 2016


Welcome everyone, and thank you for dropping by on the first day of the A to Z Challenge. My theme this year is Murder Most Foul, which, for you, my blog visitors, means that you will be sharing in The Case of the Cursed House, or rather the bare bones of it. 

Everyday, I will be revealing more about my developing Cozy Mystery: descriptions of scenes; character details; locations; clues to the mystery. And, at the end of each post, you will have the chance to vote on whodunnit. So, without further ado, on with the case...



Story Notes Additional Details
PC Aisha Kakkar drives into the isolated village of Wittrenham on the Isle of Oxen on the Kent-Sussex border. She parks her car on the small gravel car park in front of the church of St John the Baptist and gets out. She waves to Debbie Fincher, wife of the publican, Dave, who is outside The Ewe and Lamb pub weeding a large plant pot. Debbie waves back.

Aisha is then almost knocked over by Jonathan Lee, another village resident, who is striding up past the church, his face set in a grimace, which is unusual for him. She says hello, but Jon ignores her and carries on in the direction of Court House, Aisha assumes, since that is the house of his number one client and best friend, author Bill Whethers. She and Debbie share a look of surprise, but then Aisha heads towards the local shop, just up from the church in the other direction to the pub.

In the shop, Aisha is greeted warmly by the owner, Janice Walker. Aisha asks her if her kids are at home. Janice immediately asks if this is about the fireworks. Aisha nods and says they received a complaint at the station. Janice goes to the back of the shop and yells up the stairs with disapproval for her children to get their bums downstairs now.

Lorri and Hal Walker appear a few moments later already looking guilty and that goes up a notch when they see Aisha. She tells them that Mr Whethers has complained about fireworks being aimed at his windows from Court Farm farmyard last night.

Lorri, a girl of no more than 10, replies that they didn't aim them at any windows, just straight up and it was a celebration. Aisha asks celebration of what and Lorri thinks for a moment, before answering triumphantly the birth of Mary Shelley August 30, 1797. Aisha does not argue, but she tells them no more celebrations. Janice then tells them they're both grounded for the rest of the school holidays and sends them back upstairs.

Janice apologises to Aisha and thanks her for not taking it further. Aisha tells her that's all part of the job as a community liaison officer, to stop things like this before they become more serious.

Janice tells her that it's been hard on the kids, what with their older brother Fred still at home with Lisa, his wife, due to the delay with the affordable housing project on Court Farm. They discuss the project, more specifically how Bill Whethers is blocking it with council red tape and all because the old farmyard backs onto his garden.

Janice is halfway through suggesting Bill deserved a few fireworks when Alice Ridgen, housekeeper at Court House, dashes into the shop. She's as white as a sheet and gasping for breath as she stammers out, "Come quick, Mr Whethers is dead!"


Aisha Kakkar
Age: 23
Gender: female
Ethnicity Code: M3
Job: Police Constable - Weald & Marsh Liaison Officer - an officer working with local communities, especially villages, in the Weald of Kent and Romney Marsh areas.

Debbie Fincher
Age: 41
Gender: female
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: publican of the Ewe and Lamb
Other info: married to Dave Fincher

Dave Fincher
Age: 43
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: publican of the Ewe and Lamb
Other info: married to Debbie Fincher

Jonathan (Jon) Lee
Age: 36
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: O1
Job: literary agent
Other info: best friend to Bill Whethers

William (Bill) Whethers
Age: 36
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: horror author
Other info: he opposes a new housing development providing affordable housing to local people.

Janice Walker
Age: 52
Gender: female
Ethnicity Code: B1
Job: shopkeeper, Wittrenham Stores
Other info: mother to Lorri, Hal and Fred.

Lorri Walker
Age: 10
Gender: female
Ethnicity Code: M1
Other info: set off fireworks and shows her intelligence talking about Mary Shelley

Hal Walker
Age: 15
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: M1

Fred Walker
Age: 22
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: M1

Alice Rigden
Age: 59
Gender: female
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: housekeeper at Court House

Wittrenham
Village on the Isle of Oxen on the Kent-Sussex border.
Population: ~1000
Main landmarks: Ewe and Lamb Pub, Court House, Wittrenham Manor, Wittrenham Court Farm, St John the Baptist Church





And now it's time to vote, who do you think killed Bill Whethers?

Who dunnit?

Aisha Kakkar
Debbie Fincher
Dave Fincher
Jonathan Lee
Janice Walker
Lorri Walker
Hal Walker
Fred Walker
Alice Rigden
None of the above
Do Quizzes

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30 comments:

  1. Hey, this is intersting. I like the place and the feel of the story.
    I hope you don't mind if I don't choose a culprit, at the moment, I don't think I have any clue who might be.
    See you tomorrow!

    @JazzFeathers
    The Old Shelter - Jazz Age Jazz

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At this point, I heartily agree that any choice would be a complete guess :)

      Maybe I should add in a 'haven't got a clue' option!

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Delete
  2. Hello! Oh this got my brain I gear lol Excellent! Really looking forward to B!

    Heather

    http://heathersstitchingstory.blogspot.co.uk/2016/04/a-is-for-atozchallenge.html#comment-form

    @xstitchchick

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi there :) Thanks for having a go!

      Delete
  3. Sophie, enjoyed the story and look forward to reading more. Think I'll wait a bit too before taking a crack at who the killer is.

    Mason
    Ninja Minion

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :) it is a little early to guess! ;P

      Delete
  4. Like the feel of this cozy, especially as I know the Isle of Oxen area and some of the villages around there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I grew up on the Isle of Oxney, where this is based, so the names have changed and I played around a bit with the layout of the village, but nothing major :)

      Delete
    2. Looking forward to the unfolding tale. Where on the Isle? Which village?

      Delete
  5. Yes, a I have no clue at this point selection would work, but it's also fun to vote and see if you change your mind as the story deepens. Good job!
    Happy A to Z ing!

    Thank you for posting for the A to Z!
    Ninga Minion @YolandaRenee from
    Defending The Pen
    Parallels
    Murderous Imaginings

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it is fun just guessing. I plan to keep a log of the votes as we go along to see how the voting changes with the story, and I'll publish it at the end. It will be useful to see if I'm doing my job properly and dropping in enough clues but not too many :)

      Delete
  6. Cozy mysteries is not a genre I'm interested in, but good luck with everything!

    A is for Anthology: Blogging for A to Z Challenge

    ReplyDelete
  7. I am on pins and needles. Cozy Mysteries are my all-time favorite genre to read. Am really looking forward to finding out who killed Mr Whethers

    Mary
    Twitter: @KnottyMarie
    Literary Gold
    Jingle Jangle Jungle

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love murder mysteries but rarely figure out 'whodunnit.'

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It depends on the murder mystery for me - I don't think I ever figured out an Agatha Christie before she revealed the murderer, although it's been so long since I didn't know whodunnit in her stories that I can't be sure ;P

      Delete
  9. Had fun guessing but no real clue!

    Mars xx
    @TrollbeadBlog from
    Curling Stones for Lego People

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :) - well I haven't really given you much to go on yet!

      Delete
  10. Greetings Blog Challenge neighbor! ;) And I am glad to be this close to you in the blog listing, because I know you have great posts all month long.

    Looking forward to it!

    Tim
    --
    Tim Brannan, The Other Side Blog
    2015 A to Z of Adventure!
    http://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is really clever, can not wait for it to unfold further!!


    @Samantha/samratkel from
    Shadow Realities

    ReplyDelete
  12. This is really clever, can not wait for it to unfold further!!


    @Samantha/samratkel from
    Shadow Realities

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love that you are doing this for the A-Z challenge! It's interesting to me that the housing estate is (so far) an underlying issue--I live in suburban west coast USA, and have seen some real ugliness over this question (but not murder!).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by - and homes can be a very prickly issue, so I thought it would be good as one possible current of plot :)

      Delete
  14. Great concept and setting, Sophie. Love the characters!
    Have a great weekend!
    Lori

    My A2Zs @ As the Fates Would Have It & Promptly Written
    Follow Me (Ravyne) Twitter|Facebook

    ReplyDelete
  15. That's quite the cast you have. I'm rubbish at guessing who-dun-it though. ^^;;

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by - I'd love to hear from you. :)