A Case of Homicide can be found in

Keyhole Mystery Magazine

JUNE, 1960

VOL I, NO. 2

When the rich old gentleman
decided to cut his jive shiftless
relatives out of his will, he was
simply asking to become



HENRY was beginning to realize the price all successful murderers must pay. Silence. He found it extremely difficult to restrain himself from shouting his success, from jumping up and down with glee, from taunting Captain Bonner.

It was a perfect murder. It had gone off with only one hitch, and that had really made it more perfect, Uncle Fred having that seizure during dinner and having to be helped up to bed where the murder weapon was already set. That way, all five suspects were present when Fred Granview died.

In fact, they were all in the bedroom or standing in the doorway when the knife came through the mattress and through his chest, to protrude startlingly into sight through his shirt front. They all gasped at the same time. A second or two later Audrey screamed. During Audrey's scream Margaret fainted, and while her husband, Theodore Hanson, bent over her Reggie suggested nervously that the police ought to be called—which was really a laugh because Reggie was the one Henry had chosen to be the fall guy.

A perfect murder. The rich uncle who was going to change his will in the morning leaving all his money to charity, and the five heirs, invited by the uncle for a Last Dinner during which he officially announced to all of them that in the morning they would be disinherited.

And a freak weapon. An invention.

What made it perfect was that Reggie, one of the five suspects, was the only one who could be called an inventor. Plus the fact that when the police investigated Reggie's basement machine shop they would find plenty of evidence that the murder weapon had been made there.

Right now the police were in the dining room, Uncle Fred's bedroom, all over the house, and even searching the grounds, judging from the occasional flashlight beam that cut across the library curtains from outside.

In the library Henry and the other four suspects, and Margaret's husband, Ted, waited under the watchful eye of a uniformed policeman who stood by the door to the hall.

Captain Bonner had told them that as soon as he and his men finished their preliminary investigation he would question each of them. That had been almost an hour ago. The questioning should begin soon.

Henry had been a little in doubt about himself before the murder. He had been half afraid he might get nervous and panicky when the deed was actually done. Instead, he had felt a surge of triumph, an almost orgiastic pleasure at seeing the knife leap into sight and Uncle Fred jerk spasmodically in death.

Henry actually looked forward to answering Captain Bonner's questions when the time came. Meanwhile, to pass the time, he reviewed again and again every step of the crime, looking for a possible flaw that he knew couldn't be there.

The murder was perfect.

And why shouldn't it be? Henry had planned the murd...

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