Blue Butterfly: A Detective John Bowers Mystery
Critics and readers welcome a promising new
series with veteran Detective John Bowers of the Portland, Oregon, Central
Precinct Robbery-Homicide Division:
"Minnie squatted and slipped her hands in her pockets. Rule of thumb sizing up a homicide scene: mouth shut, eyes and ears open and hands holstered. The first thing that struck Minnie as she stared through her designer dark glasses was how pale the woman was. Black moles speckled her flesh like a toad’s belly. She wore bordello lingerie: a black satin corset with scarlet ribbons. One shoe was on, a bright red, needle pump with a gold bow. The knees on both black mesh stockings were shredded. The toenails were painted with orange flame enamel. Flecks of blood peppered the upper lip, and dried mucus plugged both nostrils. A half-open stare reflected a frantic fight for breath. What looked like a mild measles rash scattered in a bandit-mask pattern across the woman’s face was in fact a sign of asphyxiation. Death had not been a sudden escape – she had time to comprehend what was happening to her.
Minnie’s first impression was a trick gone bad. This victim had no obvious defensive wounds so whoever had betrayed her trust had been swift and purposeful. There were no signs of remarkable savagery on the corpse: no cigarette burns, stab wounds, bite marks or missing body parts – all private perversions Minnie had seen practiced on prostitutes before, the ones thrown out in the woods to rot like garden mulch. In the beginning, this must have been a compliant victim.
Sergeant Raye stood up and traversed the
same path back across the parking lot to avoid unnecessary contamination
of the scene. No closer examination of the victim was possible until the
ME and his team arrived to process the body.
Gehla Knight 2006-2014 All Rights Reserved