In the previous episode, Vera cozied up to Marta and despite getting a weird vibe from fellow party-goers, she couldn’t quite understand why she had enough trouble making friends that she needed to hire Vera. As they talked, readers voted she tell Vera the murderer is Cliff.
“I made Cliff the killer,” said Marta, very nonchalantly. “He’s my ex, after all. I had to get some revenge on him.”
“By assigning him the fake murderer role at a mystery party?” Vera wasn’t convinced this was all that vengeful. Of course, Marta was pretty young. She had a lot to learn when it came to getting back at exes.
“I know, right? I’m too nice. Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks and let you know why I did this.”
Vera and Marta headed back out to the party.
For the next couple of hours, the party guests picked apart each other’s body language and combed through back-stories to try to figure out who the murderer was. Celeste continued to watch Vera with a keen eye.
“Cooking class, huh?” she said.
“I’m sorry. My name is Eloise Cader.” Vera was referring to her murder mystery character. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Oh, c’mon. Who are you really?”
“I’m . . . Amy Dunne.” Vera had a lot of characters to keep track of.
“My sister does tennis 24/7. She lives and breathes it. She doesn’t have time for cooking classes.”
Even though they were all supposed to be figuring out whom the “killer” was, Vera felt like she was the one on trial.
Eventually, after loads of questions and character facts shared around the room, it all became clear, with Cliff being the last to figure it all out.
“Oh, man—I’m the killer,” he said. Everyone applauded.
“Great,” said Celeste. “Now we can go home.”
“I’ll get your coat,” said Heron, before venturing upstairs.
As the party guests started to disperse, Cliff was still scratching his head after the revelation.
“I didn’t think my character had it in him.”
“It’s OK,” said Marta, with a pat on his shoulder.
“We have a match on Friday,” said Lillian to Marta.
“I know.” Marta helped Lillian with her coat.
“A photographer’s coming, so make sure I look good.”
“I mean you look good.”
Vera was the last one to leave.
“Other than the grilling from your sister, this was fun.”
“Really?” Marta’s eyes lit up.
“Yes, really. I’ll have to check our contract, but it would be kind of cool if we became actual friends.”
“I’d like that,” said Marta.
The next morning, Vera was having brunch with Greg Goodman.
“Why won’t you tell me what you did last night?”
“It was just work stuff,” said Vera, pushing a strand of hair behind her ear.
“Yeah, well, I like you. And when you keep stuff from me, it makes me think you don’t like me.”
The truth was that Vera really liked Greg, too. But she worried he’d judge her for this occupation, especially when he had his career and life so together as an e-book publisher (even if it did betray her soul to care for someone in charge of e-books).
Just as Vera was about to speak, Cole, Vera’s unfortunately attractive co-worker, and his girlfriend Jill walked in to the coffee shop. Vera’s mouth hung open in irritation. They spotted her almost immediately.
“Vera,” said Cole.
“Cole,” said Vera.
Things had always kind of been weird between them, especially since they had made out on her first assignment in order to avoid being caught out of “character.”
“Glen,” said Cole.
“Greg,” said Greg.
“No, my name’s Cole.” He smirked. Greg and Cole had met before and didn’t get along very well, especially since Cole knew Vera had met him on an assignment—which is a company no-no.
“This is Jill,” said Cole. Jill was tiny, blond, and petite. He looked like he walked around with a life-size Barbie.
“Well, this was nice,” said Vera to Cole. “Let’s do this again sometime.”
Just then, a cell phone rang. Greg, Cole, and Jill looked around their pockets and purses to see if it was them. Eventually, they looked to Vera.
“Oh, that’s me.” She dug her phone out of her purse and as soon as she clicked “Answer,” Bruce Kitchen’s voice filled her ear.
“She’s gone. Her house was broken into, and there was only one item found at the scene.” Vote below on what will happen next or if reading in email click Take our Poll.