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Chapter 42

Sorry I took so long, said Markham, hopping into the Trailblazer. But weve got some work ahead of us.

Cathy awoke from her nap disoriented. It was as if time had suddenly leaped forward, and she could not be sure how long the FBI agent had been gone.

What did you find?

Quite a lot. But who knows if any of it is going to help us. Best thing to do now is to get back to the computer-or better yet, get to the library before it closes.

Why?

Well, Markham began, driving off, first thing I found out is that Shirley Manzeras late husband is the connection to St. Barts-the Gambardelli Piet`a was donated in memory of his mother. Mr. Manzeras family was originally from the Silver Lake area of Providence, where St. Barts is located. I dont know the details, but Shirley Manzera said her husband used to own some kind of construction business. Dont have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that he made quite a killing back in the 1950s, and moved his whole family out of Providence and into upscale East Greenwich. I didnt want to ask how Mrs. Manzera met her husband, but she was adamant about wanting nothing to do with the Catholic Church-particularly St. Barts and her husbands old neighborhood, as she put it. Shes a bit of a snob, quite frankly.

How did her husband die?

Not what you think. I saw some pictures of him on the mantle and asked. Emphysema, the old woman told me. Four years ago.

I see.

But hang on. The Manzeras had four children-three daughters and a son named Damon. Damon was the youngest, and judging from the family photos, probably about a ten- to twelve-year spread between him and his oldest sister. All the daughters are married.

Wait. You said Damon was the youngest? Did something happen?

I couldnt ask, Cathy. Couldnt pry because of the reason I was there-the stolen art ring. But, did you see the swimming pool, the tennis court out back?

Yes.

Again, I dont know the exact details-but Mrs. Manzera told me that her son Damon drowned in that swimming pool ten years ago.

And you think his death is somehow connected to The Michelangelo Killer?

I dont know, Cathy. But we should look for something in the newspapers first-an article about the drowning, the young mans obituary. If anything seems out of whack, I can get Sullivan on the police and coroners reports for Damon Manzera next. I may be totally barking up the wrong tree. It may all be just a bizarre coincidence-

You dont really think that, do you, Sam?

The FBI agent gave only a weak shrug of his shoulders as the black Trailblazer emerged from the leafy canopy that was the Manzeras neighborhood. The silence was long and awkward, but by the time Markham reached Route 95 they were talking again-trading theories as to what to do in the event of a dead end.

Neither one of them noticed the blue Toyota Camry that had entered onto the highway a short distance behind them.


Chapter 41 | The Sculptor | Chapter 43