"The Right Man" is a crime/detective fiction short story.

            “Who said I killed him?” He got up from the chair. He put one foot forward as if he was going to move forward, but then hesitated.

            “It was done in your office. Sure, you washed the place with ammonia, but there’s still a bloodstain in your carpet. The police didn’t fall off the turnip truck yesterday; they’ll put two and two together.” The wit of my Southern adage threw Tomas off a bit, but he got the message. He didn’t like it.

            “What f—ing turnip truck?” He said. He began to walk forward, raising the gun as he went. He stopped inches in front of me and stuck the barrel of the gun right under my nose. I sincerely hoped he couldn’t tell I was about to piss my pants.

            “They’ll know, Tomas. Mark’s gonna go missing and Mary will be the first one to fold. You kill her too and they’ll come straight for you.” I was acting brave, but I had a reason to. When Tomas put the gun under my nose, I took a quick whiff; there was no sulfite smell. If Tomas had shot Mark, it wasn’t with this gun. The gun was to scare me; and I think Tomas knew I was on to him.

            “I didn’t f—ing kill anybody!” He shouted. “It was all him! I’m not getting pulled down with that f—er!” James was scared. He wasn’t looking to scare me away; he was looking for a way to get himself out. I wanted to get him out of my apartment.

            “You don’t want to kill me, James; you haven’t killed anyone. Put the gun away.” He exhaled slowly, and all his courage went out with him. He slipped the gun back into his pocket and looked at me with a sad expression.

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  • Sam Clemens on May 1, 2010

    If Raymond Chandler had been born one hundred years later, this is what he would have written. A very well done piece.

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