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Authors: James Patterson

Tags: #Mystery; Thriller & Suspense, #Teen & Young Adult, #Mysteries, #Mysteries & Thrillers

Confessions of a Murder Suspect

BOOK: Confessions of a Murder Suspect
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A Preview of
The Private School Murders

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I have some really bad secrets
to share with someone, and it might as well be you—a stranger, a reader of books, but most of all, a person who can’t hurt me. So here goes nothing, or maybe everything. I’m not sure if I can even tell the difference anymore.

The night my parents died—after they’d been carried out in slick black body bags through the service elevator—my brother Matthew shouted at the top of his powerful lungs, “My parents were vile, but they didn’t deserve to be taken out with the

He was right about the last part—and, as things turned out, the first part as well.

But I’m getting ahead of myself, aren’t I? Please forgive me.… I do that a lot.

I’d been asleep downstairs, directly under my parents’ bedroom, when it happened. So I never heard a thing—no frantic thumping, no terrified shouting, no fracas at all. I woke up to the scream of sirens speeding up Central Park West, maybe one of the most common sounds in New York City.

But that night it was different.

The sirens stopped
right downstairs
. That was what caused me to wake up with a hundred-miles-an-hour heartbeat. Was the building on fire? Did some old neighbor have a stroke?

I threw off my double layer of blankets, went to my window, and looked down to the street, nine dizzying floors below. I saw three police cruisers and what could have been an unmarked police car parked on Seventy-second Street, right at the front gates of our apartment building, the exclusive and infamous Dakota.

A moment later our intercom buzzed, a jarring
that punched right through my flesh and bones.

Why was the doorman paging
? This was

My bedroom was the one closest to the front door, so I bolted through the living room, hooked a right at the
sharks in the aquarium coffee table, and passed between Robert and his nonstop TV.

When I reached the foyer, I stabbed at the intercom button to stop the irritating blare before it woke up the whole house.

I spoke in a loud whisper to the doorman through the speaker: “Sal? What’s happening?”

“Miss Tandy? Two policemen are on the way up to your apartment right now. I couldn’t stop them. They got a nine-one-one call. It’s an emergency. That’s what they said.”

“There’s been a mistake, Sal. Everyone is asleep here. It’s after midnight. How could you let them up?”

Before Sal could answer, the doorbell rang, and then fists pounded the door. A harsh masculine voice called out, “This is the police.”

I made sure the chain was in place and then opened the door—but just a crack.

I peered out through the opening and saw two men in the hallway. The older one was as big as a bear but kind of soft-looking and spongy. The younger one was wiry and had a sharp, expressionless face, something like a hatchet blade, or… no, a hatchet blade is exactly right.

The younger one flashed his badge and said, “Sergeant
Capricorn Caputo and Detective Ryan Hayes, NYPD. Please open the door.”

Capricorn Caputo?
I thought.
“You’ve got the wrong apartment,” I said. “No one here called the police.”

“Open the door, miss. And I mean
right now

“I’ll get my parents,” I said through the crack. I had no idea that my parents were dead and that we would be the only serious suspects in a double homicide. I was in my last moment of innocence.

But who am I kidding? No one in the Angel family was ever innocent.


Open up,
or my partner will kick down the door!” Hatchet Face called out.

It is no exaggeration to say that my whole family was about to get a wake-up call from
. But all I was thinking at that particular moment was that the police could
kick down the door. This was the
. We could get
for allowing someone to disturb the peace.

I unlatched the chain and swung the door open. I was wearing pajamas, of course; chick-yellow ones with dinosaurs chasing butterflies. Not exactly what I would have chosen for a meeting with the police.

Detective Hayes, the bearish one, said, “What’s your name?”

“Tandy Angel.”

“Are you the daughter of Malcolm and Maud Angel?”

“I am. Can you please tell me why you’re here?”

“Tandy is your real name?” he said, ignoring my question.

“I’m called Tandy. Please wait here. I’ll get my parents to talk to you.”

“We’ll go with you,” said Sergeant Caputo.

Caputo’s grim expression told me that this was not a request. I turned on lights as we headed toward my parents’ bedroom suite.

I was climbing the circular stairwell, thinking that my parents were going to kill me for bringing these men upstairs, when suddenly both cops pushed rudely past me. By the time I had reached my parents’ room, the overhead light was on and the cops were bending over my parents’ bed.

Even with Caputo and Hayes in the way, I could see that my mother and father looked all wrong. Their sheets and blankets were on the floor, and their nightclothes were bunched under their arms, as if they’d tried to take them off. My father’s arm looked like it had been twisted out of its socket. My mother was lying facedown across my father’s body, and her tongue was sticking out of her mouth. It had turned

I didn’t need a coroner to tell me that they were dead. I knew it just moments after I saw them. Diagnosis certain.

I shrieked and ran toward them, but Hayes stopped me cold. He kept me out of the room, putting his big paws on my shoulders and forcibly walking me backward out to the hallway.

BOOK: Confessions of a Murder Suspect
13.4Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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