Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Murder Most Foul! - W is for Willful - Cozy Mystery #AtoZChallenge 2016

Welcome to my contribution to 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...

Previous parts:

Story Notes Additional Details

Early morning, Barnwell and Williams are in the morgue waiting on the pathologist's conclusions.

Dr Ian Elves had a blood alcohol limit that meant he would probably have been falling-down drunk, so it might have been possible he set the fire himself. He was dead, though, before the fire really got going - there is no smoke in his lungs. He died from a massive dose of arsenic, the same composition as that which killed Bill Whethers.

The rat poison is the source of the arsenic, and it was administered in the whiskey.

Could it have been suicide?

Possible, he could have had convulsions in response to the poison and knocked over the bunsen burner that was the source of the ignition. It could have been back luck that there was spilt alcohol on the bench and a cannister of petrol under the desk that took the place up. However, the broken glass found with the whiskey bottle actually comes from two tumblers. Conclusion: Elves might not have been alone in his office.

Barnwell checks to see if they found Elves' laptop in the fire. They are shown a burnt wreck of a computer, but there is enough of it left for Williams to recognise that it is not the one he saw Elves with when he interviewed him in the office. Conclusion: maybe that was Whethers' missing laptop and maybe that is the bad thing Elves was raving about in the pub.

DCI Mags Barnwell
Age: 44
Gender: female
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: Detective Chief Inspector Kent Constabulary Serious Crime Office

DS Kevin Williams
Age: 27
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: Detective Sergeant Kent Constabulary Serious Crime Office
Other info: DCI Barnwell's bag man.

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. As well as an environmental survey, was also using the private access road to Court Farm, which he part owned, as leverage in the issue of the affordable house. he's a drunk. Suspected of taking part in black masses by Alice Rigden and half the village.
He had a smoking pouch that he carried around with his refills and e-cigarette in it. He sometimes left it lying around, but mostly he kept it in his pocket.
Bill had a fight with Andrew Parthing about the environmental survey. But according to Andrew, Bill came to see him the day of his death and promised to withdraw all his objections and help the affordable housing project along. This was not confirmed by his solicitor, but Bill did want to talk to the solicitor about his objection to the access road being made into a public highway just before his death.
Bill left everything to Jon Lee in his will. However, he did say he was writing a new will.
Death: broken neck from falling down stairs, but was being poisoned by his e-cigarette with arsenic, and it was convulsions that caused him to fall down the stairs. He was dying of lung cancer.

Dr Elves
Age: 29
Gender: male
Ethnicity Code: W1
Job: Environment Scientist
Other info: he is performing the analysis of the Court Farm yard to see if it is appropriate for development; the village thinks he is 'in' with those who oppose the affordable housing development. He says he is impartial, but he has possible grounds for making the site one of Special Scientific Interest, which would mean the affordable housing could not go ahead.
Killed in a fire in his office. He was getting very drunk in the pub and appeared to be very frightened the evening before his death. He was afraid because of what he had done wrong, although he did not say what that was, and he was scared of retribution, apparently from the ghost, Lady Elizabeth.
He died from arsenic poisoning, possibly suicide, but there might have been someone with him in his office the night he died.

And now it's time to vote again - just take a punt - who do you think killed Bill Whethers (and yes, every character is listed - you never know ;P)?

Who dunnit?

Aisha Kakkar
Debbie Fincher
Dave Fincher
Jonathan Lee
Janice Walker
Lorri Walker
Hal Walker
Fred Walker
Alice Rigden
DS Kevin Williams
DCI Mags Barnwell
Lord Michael, Earl of Oxen
Lady Emma, Countess of Oxen
Dr Elves
Rev Sally Tawks
Graham Turner
Bethany Mortby
Lady Elizabeth Ryeman
Vic Walker
Andrew Parthing
None of the above, we haven't met them yet
Don't be silly, I don't know enough yet!

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  1. Uh oh. Is the killer getting nervous or tying up loose ends that might get them caught?

  2. Hmmm can't decide today, too much choice! I hope Z is going to be epic so you can tie it all up ;)

    Mars xx
    @TrollbeadBlog from
    Curling Stones for Lego People

  3. Besides, that the fire had been accidental and it happene just when Bill's study was ransacked would be too much of a coincidence, in my opinion ;-)

    The Old Shelter - Jazz Age Jazz

  4. Somehow, I don't think it was suicide. I can't wait for Z to find out who did it.

    I'm going to have to go back and catch up on the past few installments to see what clues I've missed. Not have a working computer for a few days is interfering with my mystery solving :-)

    Cheers - Ellen

    1. I think I would have a small melt down if I didn't have a computer for days at a time.

    2. Mine was a rather large meltdown :-)

  5. Ick on how Dr. Elves died! Makes you never want to drink whiskey again.


  6. Hmmmm, that burnt laptop in the fire sounds suspicious.

    Meet My Imaginary Friends

  7. I'm looking forward to the conclusion!


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