Mrs. Jeffries Defends Her Own (A Victorian Mystery)
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She keeps house for Inspector Witherspoon...and keeps him on his toes. Everyone’s awed by his Scotland Yard successes—but they don’t know about his secret weapon. No matter how messy the murder or how dirty the deed, Mrs. Jeffries’ polished detection skills are up to the task...proving that behind every great man there’s a woman—and that a crimesolver’s work is never done.
When the general office manager of Sutcliffe Manufacturing is murdered, no one is really surprised. Ronald Dearman was anything but a dear man. The tyrannical bully had more than enough enemies to go around. But who hated him enough to walk into his office and put a bullet between his eyes?
For once, Inspector Gerald Witherspoon doesn't get the case; it's given to another inspector. Then someone from Mrs. Jeffries' past—someone she'd hoped to never see again—shows up and begs for her help. Now Mrs. Jeffries must step into the fray and stop a terrible miscarriage of justice…
understand why you’re going on and on about this. I explained it to that other policeman. Unfortunately, I’d forgotten that John was out of town on business, so it ended up that the porter had to let us in after all. It was most inconvenient.” “Did your husband have any enemies? Had he had any recent trouble with anyone?” Witherspoon asked. Lucretia looked down at her hands and then back up at the two policemen. “He wasn’t a well-liked person,” she said, “but I wouldn’t say he had enemies.”
answered and told us she was home. Mrs. Dearman was a bit miffed at the constable as well.” “Constable Barnes doesn’t like people to take advantage of your good nature, sir. Did anything else transpire when you were there?” He told her about the rest of his interview with the widow. “But as I said, we didn’t stay very long. After that, we went to the Sutcliffe offices and had a word with the staff. I spoke with both John Sutcliffe and Henry Anson. That was quite interesting. Anson admitted
Sutcliffe’s solicitor’s office. That worked real well. “I don’t ask you how you get your information, and I’ll thank you to mind your own beeswax when it comes to mine.” “Really, madam, there’s no need to resort to unkind remarks.” “You started it,” she shot back. “I’ll go next,” Mrs. Jeffries interrupted. “I remembered what it was that David said that night after he’d seen Fiona.” She smiled self-consciously. “As I told you, he went to see her after he’d learned of her engagement to John
house in mourning, and I’d like you both to leave.” “As you wish, sir.” Witherspoon, who’d been holding the key ring, put it into his pocket. “We’ll be taking Mr. Dearman’s keys with us. They are evidence.” “You don’t know they are Ronald’s keys,” Sutcliffe snapped irritably. “As a matter of fact, now that I think of it, they’re mine”—he stuck out his hand—“and I’d like them back.” “Don’t be absurd, John.” Fiona gently pushed her husband’s hand down. “These men are only doing their job.”
motioned for her to follow, turned, and went back the way she’d come. Moving quietly, they went upstairs. Once inside, Mrs. Jeffries sat down on the chair by the secretary, and Fiona sat down on the end of the sofa. “What is so urgent?” Fiona asked softly. “John hasn’t been sleeping well, and I’m worried about him. He almost woke up when the maid came to get me.” “I know why Ronald Dearman was trying to blackmail you.” Fiona drew back slightly. “You do?” “Yes. Your husband didn’t invent the