The First 750 Words

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Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by William “Roy” Pipes

Fiction – Murder Mystery


Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

Chapter One

My wife, Betty and I are lying on a blanket in our yard in Athens, Georgia, on a crisp cool night watching the stars twinkling. My wife is reciting the poem; twinkle, twinkle little star, how I wonder what you are, up above the world so high, like a diamond in the sky.

We had tears in our eyes as we were both remembering the past, almost a year after the terrible incident where we lost two close friends in what then was called a murder-suicide.

“Who would have dreamed the ending,” Betty said.

“Not me in a million years,” I sighed.

At the date this story begins, Edgar and Faye Grant were best friends to my wife and me, and never a week went by when we didn’t get together for some reason.  Faye and Betty talked daily, had lunch together often, and baby sat each other’s children. Edgar and Faye had two children, both girls, Lauren, age one and Cate, age three.  Betty and I had two children, both boys, Alan; age six months, and William, age six years. Faye called her youngest daughter Lauren, ????? ????? ???? ????, Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, in Arabic.

Faye was from Suez, Egypt, a seaport city that sits astride the Suez Canal. Edgar met her while at a criminology conference in nineteen ninety-nine. She was the twenty-two year old, a beautiful, green eyed Egyptian, and daughter of two medical doctors.

Faye seldom talked about Egypt, but once told Betty and me, “Hosni Mubarak needs to be replaced due to economic conditions and the lack of freedom for most of the people of Egypt.”

Edgar was from Greenville, South Carolina. He earned his Ph.D. from Harvard University in nineteen ninety-nine, at the age of twenty-five. He was in Suez, Egypt at a criminology conference as part of his studies, when he first met Faye, who then went by her Egyptian name, Femi, meaning love.

Edgar and Faye married in April, two thousand-one, and moved to Clark County, Georgia where Edgar had taken a teaching position with the university.

Edgar and I taught at the same university, Edgar in the Criminology Department and I in the Education Department. While we occasionally played a round of golf, our togetherness was most often at school, or at one of our homes. We often had lunch together in the school cafeteria, where sometimes we talked about school issues, but mostly about our families.

Edgar, in late June, two thousand-six, during lunch told me he was concerned about something he had overheard that morning in his Contemporary Criminology class, between two of his graduate students, William Carpenter and Joel Jones. “Joel, the shipment arrived this morning.  Come over tonight?” Carpenter said.

“I couldn’t hear Jones’ answer, but when he saw I might have overheard gave me a harsh and sort of an inquisitive look,” Edgar said.

In the cafeteria that day as Edgar told me about the incident, I could tell he was upset and I asked, “What about the rest of the class, were other students present?”

“These were the only two students in attendance as the class was just forming,” he acknowledged.

“In a few minutes I began the class, but Jones kept giving me a hostile, officious look,” Edgar said. “Perhaps it was just my imagination, but it bothered me enough that I had to dismiss class early. I am probably over reacting, but I can’t get the incident off my mind.”

“It probably wasn’t anything,” I said. “I would just put it out of my mind and forget it, and move on.”

We talked about other things. I told him Betty and I are taking him and Faye to dinner this weekend. “I remember, Faye mentioned it this morning,” he said. “We’re looking forward to it.”

We finished our lunches, said our goodbyes, and went back to our separate departments. 

Chapter Two

The next morning, arriving at the university, I was greeted by a colleague who said, “Have you heard about Edgar Grant and his wife?”

“No, what’s up,” I asked.

“They, along with their two daughters are dead, seemingly murdered,” he said.

Startled by this news, I ran to my car and drove home, hoping Betty wouldn’t  hear the news before I could be with her. On my way home my cell phone rang. It was Betty telling me, “Something is wrong over at Faye’s. I called her and a policeman answered. He wouldn’t tell me anything, but he did take my name and telephone number and promised someone would get back to me. Did you see Edgar this morning?” 

“I am on my way home,” I told her, “I’ll be there within a few minutes.”

Once home, I told Betty what my colleague had passed on to me. Betty fell into my arms, in shock, crying, and in disbelief. “Murdered,” she wailed. “That can’t be. I had lunch with Faye yesterday and she was so happy,” she cried. “She had just found out she was pregnant, and she was going to tell Edgar during dinner last night. The reason I called her this morning was to find out his reaction. I didn’t tell you because I wanted Edgar to tell you the good news at school.”

The police did not call Betty back, but I called a friend on the police force and he confirmed that the entire family was murdered in what was seemingly a murder/suicide.  “The evidence points to murder/suicide in that apparently, Mrs. Grant killed her daughters and husband, and then herself,” The police officer said.

I told Betty what the policeman was saying, and she almost passed out. I was trying to ask more questions but the officer said, “I have given you as much information as I have at this time, a full investigation is underway and more information will be forthcoming soon.”

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          Dr. Pipes puts his gift of storytelling into a murder mystery full of intrigue, danger, and espionage. A novel taking place on the international scene – covering, not just the United States, but also Egypt and Iran.
       A couple, and their two small children, was murdered in what was made to look like a murder/suicide. Two friends, not believing the murder/suicide theory, sought to solve the mystery, and found themselves in the middle of a terrorist situation possibly involving the Iranian government.
       This is the second of three novels I have written. The other two, Doodlebug, Doodlebug, Your House is on Fire and Darby. These two have not yet been published. I am presently writing a fourth novel, Elizabeth. A paranormal novel.
I am a retired school administrator and college professor. I received my doctorate from the University of Georgia.


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2 Responses to Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

  1. jaxgrampy says:

    Man, you really know how to get a guy reeled in, and then cut him off at the knees! I gotta get this book, ASAP.