The Ninth Victim – Excerpt 13

‘Yes, apparently he was her tutor when she was at the University, it seems that she was overawed by his knowledge and confidence, and he by her youth and beauty. It worked well for several years, during which time they married. But then she started writing and became an overnight success, her husband became jealous and resentful because he feared that he was losing her.’

‘She tolerated this situation for another couple of years, trying to slowly distance herself from him, neither of them were happy with the situation and eventually he suggested a divorce, which she agreed to.’ ‘ So, you met her on the rebound?’

‘I suppose you could say that, but at the time I had only just been released from prison and a relationship was the very last thing on my mind.’ ‘ But you slipped in to one?’

‘I admit it, I have no idea how it happened, but yes!’

‘Who made all the running, she or you?’ asked Valjean.

‘ I would like to think it was mutual attraction, but she was the one with the money, god, that makes me sound like a gigolo, but on reflection and without sounding pompous, she did seem rather eager.’

‘Was there any reason that she selected you, anything that you recall?’

‘Nothing, I was just sat at the bar and she came over and struck up a conversation with me, I couldn’t believe my look.’

‘And to your knowledge you had never seen or met her before that day?’

‘No! she was a complete stranger to me, until she introduced herself, I knew the name I had read several of her books whilst in prison.’

‘I wouldn’t have thought that historical romance would have been your thing?’

‘Normally, I would agree, but they were about this area so I was interested.’

‘And, did you rate her as a writer, was she accomplished?’

‘I thought so, although her work is fiction, the historical aspect was very thoroughly researched, I think it could be said that I admired her work.’

‘So what was your reaction when she offered to mentor you?’ queried Valjean.

‘Naturally, I was both thrilled and grateful, that a writer of her stature would be interested in mentoring someone like me.’

‘And, was she aware of your criminal past, had you been totally open with her?’

(C) Damian Grange 2021

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