At 7:30 pm on Saturday, Pierce Hale was escorted to the back of Club Dahlia. Sitting on a table made of mahogany, Pierce pours out of a slender green bottle, occasionally leaning back to smoke a ring, waiting patiently for his dinner. It was South Beach in Miami in 1945. Tropical plants decorate the room opposite the spacious archway, leading to the rooftop ballroom. The blue-and-white light from the hotel sign across the street faithfully bounced off the wall, cigarette smoke permeated the room, and the sirens screamed on the street below. They screamed, but not as often as Pierce was used to when he was working as a detective in the Boston Police Department's murder case.
Police chief Davin Laport failed to retain him, only months after Pierce had retired from Boston after working for 20 years. He spent a dark night in a tough city, and he missed the days of chasing the bad guys without having to fill out all the paperwork. Boring paperwork. That was the main difference between his work in Boston and becoming the owner of his own investigative agency in downtown Miami, and paperwork never seemed to end. Yes, sometimes he can take to the streets with his twenty-something investigator Johnny Batinni, but most of the time he is trapped in the second floor of a crumbling building Rented old brick house in downtown Miami.
He did not retire early, so he could realize his dream of owning an investigative agency, although he often convinced himself that was the reason. Pierce Hale retired so he could get closer to the woman the doorman had just ushered in. She wore a black felt hat, a long black dress, a red printed shirt, glossy red lipstick and black high-heeled open-toed shoes. Pierce's jaw dropped. He has known her for five years and his chin always falls down.
"Elizabeth!" Pierce shouted as he waved a fedora above his head. "I'm here!"
Elizabeth Booth was the most beautiful and intelligent woman he had ever seen. She didn't look like a 53-year-old woman at the time. Somehow, all the stresses of those years did not make her as old as most women. There were no wrinkles under her eyes, and her skin tone made her look 15 to 20 years younger. She is about five feet seven feet tall and weighs fifteen dollars.
Elizabeth strolled to Pierce, her heels approaching on the heavy wooden floor as she approached.
Elizabeth shouted, "I don't think I've been here since 1942, this is going to collapse." She moved a half-empty beer glass to the side.
"Don't be silly, Elizabeth. Less than six months ago, when I told you I was going to retire, we drank here," Pierce replied.
She leaned over and kissed Pierce and said, "That might be true. However, I still don't understand how these places were still left unattended in 1945." His cheek. "How are you, Pierce?"
"Oh, now that you're here, I'm better off than I was a few minutes ago." Pierce said, trying not to get excited about seeing her.
The truth is, Pierce has a lot in his mind today. Johnny Batinni had brought him a troublesome case, and he seemed overwhelmed.
"Actually," Pierce continued, "I'm feeling too hard for my lucky assistant. In the past two weeks, two women have been killed near Winter Beach. They are on their honeymoon and their husbands seem No connection at all. "
Elizabeth can tell when Pierce started talking and when he was actually struggling with the case. When he encounters work problems, the salt and pepper beard he always seems to pump slightly.
"It reminds me of a case I had in Boston in 1940, when three teenage boys were all drowned at the same place in Boston Harbor. These boys were not linked in any way except age. Find any Clue. In the end, the guy turned in because he felt the inner gui. It turned out that he was dismissive of his childhood and needed to take away someone who really enjoyed his youth. "
Pierce stopped for a moment, hoping that Elizabeth would provide some encouragement, which was her usual practice.
"So, do you think this might be some sort of random violence against newlyweds?" She responded.
"Indeed, the only problem is that I don't know where to start looking for this man. In both cases, the husband left the hotel for a few minutes, and when they returned, the wife was shot in the head. Caliber was 0.22. There is absolutely no evidence left. No fingerprints, no identification, nothing, "Pierce informed her.
"Where did all this happen, Pierce?" Elizabeth asked curiously.
It took Pierce a minute to remember the names of the two hotels where the murders took place. This was mainly because Pierce had stared at the long, windy black hair that had fallen off and hung completely from Elizabeth's brilliant hazel eyes. In the late 1930s, he returned to the day they met on a passenger ship in New York Harbor.
"One at the mangrove hotel and the other at the hurricane hotel," Pierce answered the question after recalling the content of the conversation. "Why are you asking this?" He continued.
Elizabeth replied, "I know the owners of most hotels on Winter Beach." "In fact, Lisa Potter is the owner of the two hotels you just mentioned. Have you talked to her?"
Pierce shook his head. He failed to get in touch with Mrs. Potter, though not for lack of attempt. Every time he dialed the dial on the phone and called her, he could hear nothing but ringing at the other end.
"She doesn't seem to be in the city, and I can't contact her," Pierce said. "You own two hotels that are the scene of two homicides. How do you prevent the local police from using their property?"
"Well, maybe you just didn't try your best to pierce Pierce," Elizabeth said with a smile. "Come to my office at 1.30 am tomorrow and I will call her."
Pierce wasn't the kind of person who would trust others to fulfill their promises, but he always knew he could count on Elizabeth. In addition, she has connections with almost everyone in southern Florida.
As the conversation ended, Pierce and Elizabeth spent the rest of the evening watching all of their favorite movies, politics, and postwar news.
The next day, at exactly 1:20, Pierce Hall arrived at the local university where Elizabeth Booth was a professor of English. When Pierce entered Elizabeth's office, he noticed that it was easy to go through security and find her office. This was very different from when he first visited Elizabeth in her apartment. The security of South Beach was impassable during the war, especially where Elizabeth lived. Not only were the police on both sides of the street, but military uniforms were found in most corners near her.
When Pierce walked into Elizabeth's office, he started to say something, but noticed that she was calling.
Elizabeth said to the phone: "He's Lisa, he just walked in. I'll give him the phone, and I believe he has a few questions to ask you." She went on and gave the phone to Pierce. "That was the hotel owner Lisa Porter you told me last night. She went to a beach house in Carolina, but I was able to find her phone number. The phone number of one of my colleagues."
"Hello, Mrs. Porter, how are you?"
"Well, Mr. Hale, if I knew that my investment was the birthplace of the two murders, I would have done better. When I heard that the police showed up and ransacked my hotel, I couldn't bear it. Imagine What will it look like when I come back! "The other end of the phone made a sound. Pierce could hardly hear Mrs. Potter's too loud voice.
"Mr. Potter is sorry for all this commotion, but I want to know if you can help us. Do you know who this might be? Can someone use the rooms in both hotels?"
Lisa replied: "The only person who can enter my two hotels is a clean boy. Well, he is not a real boy. His name is Skip Daniels. He is 35 years old and very bad. Very strange. But he It really makes those rooms sparkle. "
After a few minutes of conversation, Pierce collected contact information for Skip Daniels and thanked Mrs. Porter for her help. Pierce then thanked Elizabeth and told her he was looking for a cleaning boy. Pierce and Elizabeth argue over the next few minutes because Elizabeth thinks she needs to do this task, and Pierce never wants to put women, especially Elizabeth, in danger . However, as usual, Elizabeth won the debate and they headed to Piers' 1938 Dodge Coupe Downtown Skip Daniels apartment.
When they reached the run-down building complex, which seemed to be part of the Nazi German bombing, Pierce and Elizabeth walked to Gate 5, which skipped the apartment where Daniels lived.
Pierce knocked on the old wooden door for several minutes without any answer.
Elizabeth emphasized, "Break it down, Pierce." In doing so, she tried to kick the door and knock it off the hinge.
"I think that's the solution," Pierce said, somewhat surprised at his strength.
As they walked through the apartment, Pierce ensured easy access to his .38 police pistol. He didn't notice it, but as Pierce walked towards the bedroom, Elizabeth walked a path through the kitchen.
The apartment seemed empty until Pierce walked into the messy bedroom. Black and white photo of beautiful woman lined on cracked wall in bedroom. Pierce was almost disgusted by the number of posters. Each of them had a note written on it, which seemed to be the love message of a mentally insane person. As Pierce continued through the bedroom, he heard someone breathing from the closet. Pierce opened the closet and saw a man, wearing only shorts, who huddled in the corner.
"Skip Daniels, I think?" Pierce asked.
"You have nothing for me!" The man yelled. "You don't know me! You don't know what I went through! Those men don't deserve those women!"
Then, without warning, Skip Daniels jumped to Pierce Hall and grabbed the gun from the holster. Fighting ensued and the gun was loosened. Pierce used to be able to deal with criminals, but his body has begun to age. He hooked his right eye with his right hook, and immediately felt the bone fractured.
It was at that moment that he heard Elizabeth shouting: "Get off! Get off! Slime get off! Get off or I'll shoot!"
Pierce had never seen Elizabeth holding a weapon, but she seemed to know how to use it. Apparently she heard the sound of the fight and ran to help Pierce. When she saw the gun lying on the floor, she picked up the gun and took control of the situation.
When local police dragged Skip Daniels to court for trial, Pierce was able to gather a wealth of information about the person's history in his apartment. It seems that Skip recently proposed to his longtime girlfriend but was rejected. She was obviously deceiving him with another man, and Skip felt he had lost what he deserved.
"I think he will leave for a long time," Pierce said excitedly, exhausted.
"Yes, and I want to thank me for being alive," Elizabeth told him in fact.
"You know, Elizabeth Booth, you will be a beautiful private detective, and your resistance is futile!"
Pierce said in these words, escorting Elizabeth to his car and taking her home. He hardly knew it would be the first of many cases in which he relied on Elizabeth Booth to help bring criminals to justice.