A Will to Kill: Conclusion
“Don,” said Glen as he stood on the Grymski’s patio, “I’d like you to meet my neighbors Wanda and Steve, and their friends Teresa and Josh… good to see you again Josh.”
“Good to see you too,” said Josh as he extended his hand, “Teresa tells me you’re responsible for this festive gathering.”
“Nice to meet all of you,” said Don as he glanced around the patio and backyard.
“Actually if it weren’t for Don we wouldn’t be here tonight,” said Glen as he shook Josh’s hand.
“Is that so?” said Steve over his shoulder as he was cleaning the grill. “In that case, we at least owe you a beer. There’s Heinekens and Steam Whistles in the cooler by the door, help yourself.”
“Thanks,” replied Don as he walked over to the cooler. “Glen, you want one?”
“Veronica not joining us?” asked Wanda.
“She’ll be coming in a few minutes. Just having a few words with Athena. She got dessert from Kostas… Gala… galakto… bour… I can’t pronounce it. All I know it’s like a pie, and it’s still warm.
“Galaktoboureko,” said Don as he hands Glen a Steam Whistle. “If it’s from Kostas Greek Bakery at Warden and Ellesmere… I’ve heard they are quite good.”
“Looking forward to it,” said Teresa.
“Don, Glen please have a seat. Glen before you start telling us what happened I want to say thank you for everything you’ve done for Steve and me.”
“… and for reminding me of the importance of friendship,” chimed in Teresa. “As well as not to ask questions which are really none of my business. Not to rush you, but what did actually happen?”
Glen went over to the red Muskoka chair next to where Josh was standing and sat down. Don took a seat at the patio table with Wanda and Teresa. Glen could see Don would have probably preferred sitting where he was.
“In my line of work,” said Glen when Steve had finished cleaning the grill and sat down at the patio table, “gut feel is everything. Steve when you weren’t barbequing last Saturday I knew something was wrong and…”
“… and he just has to investigate,” interrupted Veronica as she walked through the Grymski’s backyard fence gate carrying a box imprinted with Kostas Greek Bakery.”
“Perfect timing!” said Wanda. “Your husband was about to lay out what happened to Steve and me.”
“It won’t take long… we can enjoy the galatob… the pie… in ten minutes.”
“Sounds good,” said Steve as he poured himself a glass of red wine.
“As Veronica rightfully just said, I had to investigate. When I came over you and Wanda were not feeling well. Seeing the basket of fruits on your kitchen table, along with the card saying you and Josh were apologizing for the falling out you had here over five months ago it didn’t make sense to me… why apologize after all this time? This is why I had a hunch the fruit basket made you ill. When the hospital confirmed you’d been poisoned with phenobarbital, my gut said the fruits did not come from Teresa and Josh, who would put their names on a gift basket of fruits they had poisoned?”
“Which I agreed with,” said Wanda to Teresa.
“Therefore,” continued Glen, “the question became who would have anything to gain from killing Wanda and Steve?” Glen then turned to Wanda. “While I wasn’t here for your Victoria Day barbeque Veronica told me, what happened between you and Teresa… over you and Steve having decided to leave your house to Tyler and not Adrian.”
“Not my proudest moment,” interjected Teresa. “I had too much to drink and let my emotions get the better of me.”
“Water under the bridge,” reassured Wanda. “As I said when you called, let’s move on. Glen, please continue.”
Glen took a few sips of his beer and then looked directly at Teresa.
“What happened here gave Gary the idea to frame you and Josh for the murder of Wanda and Steve. Thankfully, Gary didn’t know what he was doing, and Wanda and Steve only got sick. Basically, the Curso’s financial predicament, which is self-created, motivated Gary to conjure up a way to create the early demise of Wanda and Steve so Tyler would get their house.”
“What about Ann was she not part of this?” asked Josh.
“Not to excuse her part, Ann went along with Gary’s scheme, as did their son Eric, who watched the construction site for Don to show up with the fruit basket and then impersonating a construction worker accepted the delivery.”
“Gary’s scheme, as you call it, could have gotten me and Wanda killed!” blurted Steve.
“I’m not making light of what Ann and Gary did. You, Wanda and I can go to the police and file charges. I will collaborate what happened, and the results of my investigation, or Don and I can pay the Curso’s a visit.”
“Excuse me!” shouted Don.
“We drop by and convince Gary and Ann to turn themselves in. I can be convincing. However, it never hurts to have some backup.”
“Having Ann and Gary turn themselves in would be my preference,” said Wanda. “Steve, what do you think?”
“Poisoning us… actually attempting to kill us… is not something we can let them get away with. However, I agree I would rather Gary and Ann turn themselves in.”
“Okay, I’ll have a few words with them right now,” said Glen. “Com’on Don, let’s go, the Greek pie will have to wait.”
Twenty minutes later, Glen and Don parked in front of the Curos’s house. Gary was sitting on the front steps smoking a cigarette. Upon hearing Glen pull up, he glanced at the car, flicked his cigarette onto the gravel driveway and stood up. Glen and Don got out of the car. Don sat on the hood and watched as Glen walked towards Gary.
“You know why I’m here,” said Glen.
“Tyler told me you dropped by football practice and spoke with him.”
“I told you I would. He and Eric confirmed my suspicions. You created the financial situation your family is now in and instead of digging your family, out you concocted a plan to murder Wanda and Steve. Trying to kill the Grymski’s is bad enough… involving your sons and your wife… what kind of man does that?”
“A man who feels he has nothing left to lose,” muttered Gary as he reached for his pack of cigarettes in his shirt pocket. He lit a cigarette, closed his Zippo lighter and continued. “I was never good with money. I saw an opportunity, and I took it. I admit getting Ann, and my boys involved was wrong, it was a lack of judgment on my part. I should have been a better husband and father. What happens now, Glen?”
“Is Ann in the house?”
“Yes… and Eric too.”
“Call them out here.”
Gary took a few drags of his cigarette as he looked over towards Don, who gave a wave. He then turned towards his house. “Ann! Eric! Can you come out here?”
A few moments later, Ann pushed open the front screen door and walked out. Eric was following behind her.
“Mr. Panama,” said Ann as she and Eric stepped onto the driveway. “I can’t say I’m surprised you’re here.”
“As I was telling your husband, I know everything and now you, Gary and Eric have a decision to make.”
“We do?” said Eric.
“There are two options here. I can go to the police and hand over my notes, and you will be arrested, or you can turn yourselves in, which I strongly suggest you do.”
“If we turn ourselves in, will they go easy on us?” asked Gary.
“I can’t say. I presume you don’t have a criminal record and thankfully the Grymski’s only got sick. Turning yourself in is the right thing to do… maybe it’s time you did the right thing. Go to Division 43 on Lawrence Avenue. Before you do get yourself a lawyer.”
Ann looked at Gary, “We need to turn ourselves in.”
Eric looked at his parents, “Mom’s right we should turn ourselves in, what choice do we have?”
Gary nodded in agreement.
“I’ll call my brother for the name of the lawyer he used for his DUI three years ago. Okay, we’1l turn ourselves in tonight.”
“You can count on me checking first thing in the morning that you did. As for Tyler, start treating him better, I’ll be checking up on that too from time to time.”
“We haven’t been the best parents,” admitted Ann, “but I do love my sons.”
“Try loving them better,” said Glen as he turned to walk back towards his car.
“Everything okay?” asked Don as pushed himself off the hood of Glen’s car and reached for the passenger side door handle.
“I’ll know tomorrow morning,” said Glen as he opened the driver side door.
“Fingers crossed then?”
“Yes… by the way, are you free for Thanksgiving dinner?”
– The End –