Officer Graham Watkins grabbed the stale coffee, tossed the paper cup into the metal basket in the corner of the room, and turned to face the witness.  He plopped down a fresh cup of brew in front of him and took a seat.

“Good morning, Mr. Mills,” he started, reading the name from the page in front of him, “We believe that you may have information pertinent to an ongoing criminal investigation.  We – “

The other man cut off Watkins in mid sentence.  “I confess, I killed her.  Lock me up.”  Spencer Mills buried his head in his hands and began to weep uncontrollably.

The rookie officer was fortunate that Mills wasn’t able to see him as Watkins’ jaw dropped completely to the floor.  What the hell?  This was supposed to be a cookie cutter interview regarding an embezzlement case against one of Mills’ co-workers.  Now we were talking about murder.  Watkins hadn’t the slightest clue what killing Mills might be talking about.

Watkins wondered if it might be best to get a more seasoned investigator into the room to finish the interview.  Watkins decided against it, preferring to strike while the iron was hot.  By the time he tracked down a detective, Mills might stop talking.  Better to keep the ball rolling.

“Thank you for your cooperation, Mr. Mills.  Your confession will undoubtedly bring some closure to the family of the victim.  Before I go further, I should advise you that you have certain rights.”  Watkins pulled out his pocket copy of the Miranda rights and made sure that he recited them clearly and correctly.

“Now, do I understand that you wish to waive these rights and speak freely about this crime?”

Mills wiped tears from his face and nodded in agreement.

Watkins pulled a sheet of paper from one of the folders in front of him.  “This form is a waiver of your Miranda rights.  If you wish to waive your rights, read this carefully and then sign and date the form at the bottom.”  Watkins uncapped his pen and handed it to Mills.  Mills gave the document a cursory glance before scribbling his signature.

Watkins breathed more easily.  Sometimes the mere mention of Miranda could make criminals think twice about confessing.  He had cleared the first hurdle.

Typically, the interrogator has most of the pieces of the puzzle and needs just a few details from the perpetrator in order to complete the picture.  In this case, the situation was completely flipped.  Watkins had just a couple of pieces and needed to extract the other 498 from Mills.  He decided to get the ball rolling with an open ended question.

“Why did you do it?”

“I just got tired of waiting, you know?  I picked her up at a bar near the stadium.    Alex Brady had a good game, and we won, so everyone was in a pretty good mood.  Afterward, we went back to my place.  I just wanted to get in her pants, but she wanted to watch the Bombers game.  So we’re watching the stupid Bombers game.  The whole time, I’m just thinking about sex, but she keeps talking about baseball.  She just won’t shut up, you know?  Finally, she’s yammering on about the DH, and I just snapped.”

Watkins took a long sip of coffee from his cup.  He needed to tread very lightly.  It was critical to avoid tipping off Mills to the fact that he had absolutely no idea what murder Mills was confessing to.  Asking for the name of the victim was sure to make Mills clam up.  He decided on an indirect approach, hoping that useful information would spill out.

“This is my first murder case,” admitted Watkins.  “I’ve always wondered – what does it feel like?”

Mills grinned back at the rookie.  “It was the ultimate high, copper.  Like the perfect trip.  Better than blow, better than ice.  Feeling her neck snap was the best feeling I’ve ever experienced.”

Want to know what comes next?  It’ll cost you!

As you know, the vast majority of the content on The Soap Boxers is free.  A couple of times each year, I bundle up the fiction stories that have accumulated since the last publication, add in a bonus story, and tie them up in a nice bundle and attach a price tag.

How much will it cost you?  Well, you have 3 purchasing options:

  • The 96 page PDF Tip of the Iceberg and Other Stories.  The PDF contains 31 stories consisting of about 27,000 words.  I’m pricing this at 15 cents per story – $4.65 for the collection.
  • The title story is also available as an audio book with a run time of about 28 minutes.  Your cost is $1.99.  Note that this is just the one story, not all 31.
  • You can also purchase the combo pack that contains the PDF as well as the audio book.  Normally the price is  $5.79 – but for the next two weeks, you can get it for $4.65.  That’s the same price as the PDF, so you might as well buy the combo pack.

You can find these products and many others, at the Hyrax Publications store.  I hope you think the pricing is fair and will buy a copy to support an independent writer.

As an added bonus, the first three people to buy the combo pack will receive a free copy of The Cell Window combo pack.  If you are one of the first three people, I will try to notify you within 24 hours.  If you aren’t among the first three, you can still get a good deal on The Cell Window Combo Pack – it’s currently on sale for just $3.65.

I will also allow you to share any product with a friend.  In reality, there’s very little I can do to prevent you from sharely freely, other than rely in the honor system.  However, in this case, you can share with a friend with no guilt whatsoever.  All I ask is that you tell the friend about The Soap Boxers.

Thank you for your continued support.

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Kosmo is the founder of The Soap Boxers and writes on a variety of topics. Many of his short stories have been collected into Kindle books.

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