that looked like a horse blanket and threw it around him. Furia clutched it to him, shivering. His bugged eyes passed over Malone, Ellen, Barbara without recognition, it was Goldie Vorshek they were hunting. They located her in the grip of three troopers in the Chrysler and in a flash he became Man-Mountain Furia, hero of his dreams, too-big underwear, skinniness, goose pimples and all, in a last struggle for status. He kicked and bit and butted and threw himself from side to side with troopers hanging on to his arms and legs, spinning out an endless line of dirty words, the spin whirled up to a screech, it was laughable and somehow sad, too. A trooper finally ended his nonsense with a well-placed sap and they pushed a cooled-off bad man into a state police car, threw the blanket in after him, and sped off. Another police car pulled up and they transferred a sullen Goldie Vorshek to it and then they were gone, too, along with Chief Secco, who gave the Malones a neighborly wave.

Leaving Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Malone and daughter on the empty corner of the empty street facing the empty Green. It never looked so empty, not even when the film stopped cold.

But then Wallace L. Bagshott creeps through the entrance to the upper floor of the bank building into the lobby, he’s been hiding upstairs in Judge Trudeau’s law office. He peers out at the Malones, shakes his head, hurries into his bank, and locks the doors. He’s headed straight for the bottle of Canadian Club parked in the bottom drawer of his desk that he thinks nobody knows about.

Jerry Sampson opens the doors of his drug store and sticks his head out timidly. He’s been hiding behind his prescription counter. He waves over at the Malone family and then wipes his balding head as though it were an August day.

Arthur McArthur Sanford in his Nehru jacket and oriental carpet slippers reopens the stationery and book store, he keeps a running stock of at least three dozen books on display behind an amber translucency, Arthur is a one- man committee to push culture in New Bradford and not getting very far.

Lew Adams with his Theodore Roosevelt mustache preceding him comes out of nowhere and begins taking down the ironwork in front of his jewelry shop. He keeps looking over his shoulder.

On Grange Street running all the way down to Freight stores are reopening, the proprietors were on the premises all the time.

Beyond the Green First Selectman Russ Fairhouse bursts out of the town hall followed by a crowd, they stream over the grass past the bandstand that hasn’t heard a tootle in forty years but it’s kept in a nice dress of paint for old times’ sake, ditto the World War I tank.

Toward the Malone family.

A herd of cars comes running down Main Street from the north alongside the Green to the accompaniment of bawling horns. Cars shoot up to curbs, people pile out even on the Positively No Parking At Any Time side.

Headed for the Malones.

Racing across the bridge from the other side of the Tone-keneke come Young Tru (Hyatt), Edie Golub, old Ave El-wood, and Marie Griggs (she’s Ave’s night countergirl but she’s been filling in today for a day girl who called in sick).

Seems like the whole town’s massing, all sizes and shapes and ages (including the Don James family and New Bradford’s nine other families of color, they’re beginning to move in and some people are getting worried). Including Joe Barron of the Army-Navy Store who’s been trying to organize a Human Relations group, he’s pretty new in town, and Marie’s boy friend Jimmy Wyckoff, and fat Dotty from the beauty salon, and Father Weil striding along in his cassock and collar (there’s really nothing going on at the Romish church this time of day on a Tuesday but the good Father has a flair for drama, it keeps the Church in the public eye, like that’s why clergymen in films are always Roman or at least Episcopalian, the Episcoloopians’ high church boys wear turned-around collars too, the Prottier ministers are the forgotten clergy)… the whole town has come out for the tar-and-feathering or the bazaar or the auction or whatever it is that’s going on. And they’re all bearing down on ex-Officer or is it still Officer Wesley Malone and his girls asking questions, how did they find out so fast, you can’t keep anything hushed up in New Bradford but this one breaks all the speed records, while Ellen drinks it up like a thirsty grunt after a dry duty and Malone watches her with wonder, to listen to Ellen chattering away you’d never know what she’s just been through.

And Malone is feeling a sneaky glow himself. Like when he took a couple too many belts at the wedding and they spent the first three hours of their honeymoon night in the motel bathroom while Ellen held his head over the toilet bowl. Malone is feeling the sneaky glow that you feel like when you have first dug the Sermon on the Mount or some of that Golden Rule stuff the priests and ministers and rabbis are always spouting on the desert air, or learned about no man being an island or however it was the guy said it, or in other words when you have joined the human race.

It is not late enough in the day for old Sol to be going down over the People which would sort of symbolize Wes Malone’s sneaky glow, it is still barely past the halfway mark between sunrise and sunset.

So we just count our blessings and fade out.

About The Author

Ellery Queen is a collaboration of Frederic Dannay and Manfred B. Lee, whose total sales in various editions published throughout the world are estimated at more than 100,000,000 copies. Ellery Queen popularized the dramatic mystery on radio, in a program called The Adventures of Ellery Queen, which was on the air weekly for nine years, and in 1950 TV Guide awarded the Ellery Queen program its national award for the best mystery show on TV. Ellery Queen has won five annual Edgars (the national Mystery Writers of America awards, similar to the Oscars of Hollywood), including the Grand Master award of 1960, and both the silver and gold Gertrudes awarded by Pocket Books, Inc.

Ellery Queen’s most recent successes are Q.E.D.: Queen’s Experiments in Detection, The House of Brass, and Face to Face. He is internationally known as an editor-Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine is now in its 29th year of continuous publication.

Anthony Boucher described Queen best when he said, “Ellery Queen is the American detective story.”

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