With the many interruptions to
her already loaded schedule, when would she find the time to kill Rita?
Margo Kawalski let herself into
the house, blocking the cat with one foot and balancing her grocery bag
against the doorjamb. She squeezed inside without the cat, only to face
Dick’s tennis bag abandoned next to the stairs, Tina’s coat slung over
the banister, and Corky’s Rollerblades askew at the bottom step. Maybe
she’d become a serial killer.
Margo tossed the No Sugar Added
Fudgesicles and Hot Pockets into the freezer and stashed the bag of
Oreos on the top rack in the dishwasher, where the kids wouldn’t find
them. She needed every Oreo to make the dirt for the flowerpot dessert
to wow their Dinners-of-Eight club Saturday night.
That brought her back to her
problem. Rita had to be dead before Saturday night. She opened the can
of peanuts she pulled from her shopping bag and leaned her elbows on
the counter. She selected a peanut and studied it before popping it
into her mouth. Maybe Rita was deathly allergic to something like
peanuts. Lacing Matilda Henry’s coleslaw with peanut oil at the Women’s
Mission luncheon on Thursday would be easy.
Rita always ate seconds of
Matilda’s slaw. If the police discovered Rita had died of an allergic
reaction, the investigators might believe it was an innocent mistake.
What a brilliant idea. But what if someone else was allergic to
peanuts? She didn’t intend to murder anyone other than that nasty,
overbearing, gossipy Rita Dugwig.