“Bingo!” I screamed from the kitchen.
“Whatcha got?” asked Stephen, hurrying in with Abigail’s high school yearbook.
“Look what I found behind the bulletin board.” I was chanting with glee, waving a well-worn, slightly smearing envelope in which were tucked a half dozen photos.
“The happy couple?”
“In better days,” I nodded.
“You guys are real sensitive,” said Nancy. “Let’s see.”
I laid the photos down on Abigail’s glass-topped table.
“It looks like they were in Cape Cod,” said Stephen, examining each snapshot.
Abigail and Ken Eberhard sat at the same small table we’d seen in the missing photo.
“Only in this one there’s no shadow.”
“Her girlfriend’s a better photographer,” said Stephen. “They didn’t even know she was there, much less taking their picture.”
“They do look very involved.”
“That’s putting it mildly,” I said. Ken and Abigail were so hunched over the table heading in each other’s direction, they had to be readying for a kiss.
“Wonder where the next frame is,” said Stephen. “Even if there were only twelve shots on the roll, that’s a couple missing.”
“Four,” said Nancy. “Four are missing.”
“Maybe Ken has them,” I said. “Or the buddy here. Maybe they took a few of her—"
We were so engrossed in speculation, no body heard the front door open or Judith walk in, “Hello! Is anyone here?”
Quick as a black jack dealer, Stephen scooped up the photos and collapsed them into his the pouch of his sweatshirt.
“Excuse me, but do any of you have a reason to be here?”
“My blender,” said Nancy.
“I said it was ok if they took their blender.”
“Abigail borrowed it last week,” said Nancy.
“She had a daiquiri party,” said Stephen. “It was fun.”
“Mnn.” Judith wasn’t buying it but I was impressed with their quick thinking. They were like something in a Saturday Night Live skit: Jane and Chevy.
“We wanted to ask for it sooner, but it just never seemed like a good time,” said Nancy.
“So tonight it just seemed the better part of discretion to just take it back and let them move on.”
“You’re leaving for Seattle tomorrow, then?” asked Judith.
“First thing,” said Nancy.
“I know it’s awkward,” said Stephen, “but is it okay with you if we just take it now?”
“ I suppose,” she said, raising her eyebrows at me. I’d never seen Judith hold her temper so tight.
“It is their’s,” I said. “I’ve seen it in their apartment.”
“I’m sure it is, Nora,” she said. “You and I will talk tomorrow and set up some processes for the future.”
“Sounds like a plan,” I said. “You got it?” I asked Stephen, who was in the kitchen replacing the photographs behind the bulletin board. “Having a little trouble with the plug,” he said, ripping it from the wall with a brisk yank. The blender was a brand new Hamilton Beach. Ah well, I’m sure Susan would never miss it. What I didn’t know was why he replaced the photos. I wanted to take them with us.
“Evidence,” he whispered as we followed Judith and Nancy out the front door. Judith waited until we were into the townhouse next door before pulling Abigail’s door to and locking it. “Can’t remove it from the scene.”