They paused for a moment.
‘Do you think Andrea was the kind of girl who did that kind of thing, anal sex?’ asked Peterson.
‘That’s a little judgemental,’ said Isaac.
‘Yeah, well you know, we can be politically correct here, or we can say it like it is. Doesn’t just a certain type of girl go in for anal sex?’ asked Peterson.
‘I don’t like that train of thought,’ said Erika.
‘But we have to think like this,’ said Peterson.
‘You’re saying, only slutty girls love it up the arse. Ones who put themselves in dangerous situations?’ asked Moss.
‘Do you think this was al fresco sex gone wrong?’ Erika asked Isaac.
‘As I say, it’s not my job to hypothesise who a person was. When they come to me, I have to make my conclusions as to how they died. You can see here that her hands were tied with a cable tie. It cut into the skin quite deep. Also her legs were tied, and the ankle of the left leg has a small hairline fracture.’
‘This wasn’t naughty outdoor sex that went too far. This was an abduction,’ said Erika. ‘She could have had sex earlier in the day with the fiancé, and then . . . Jeez. We’re going to have to ask the fiancé. Is there any other DNA evidence at all?’
‘If there was, it was most likely destroyed by the water, when she was under the ice,’ said Isaac.
When they had finished, there were a few minutes of down time before the Douglas-Browns were due to arrive and identify Andrea’s body. Moss and Peterson took the opportunity to have a cigarette, and Erika found herself accepting an offer to join them, even though she had given up years ago. They stood in the doorway of a fire exit, looking out over the back at an auto-repair shop. They could see inside the long row of garages where the cars were jacked up, men working in glowing pits underneath.
Erika had dealt with more cases of rape and murder than she could remember. As they smoked in silence, she regarded the young men working opposite. They were young and strong. How close did the average man come in his life to raping women, killing them? How many held back? How many got away with it?
‘The key is Andrea. Was it someone she knew?’ asked Erika, exhaling cigarette smoke into the cold air, the long-forgotten rush of nicotine roaring through her blood.
‘Do you think she was lured into the museum grounds, or did she go of her own free will?’ asked Peterson.
‘There’s so little evidence to go on. No DNA. The CCTV cameras were down.’
‘Could that have been arranged?’ asked Moss. ‘The CCTV. Could it have been someone on the inside? Someone who’d a grudge against Sir Simon or the family?’
‘That’s government cutbacks, the crappy CCTV. And if it were a professional kidnapping and execution, would they really leave her phone and her ID at the scene? That seems messy,’ said Peterson.
‘They could have wanted her to be identified fast. Sending a message,’ said Moss.
‘She got plenty of male attention. What about a scorned lover?’ asked Erika.
‘It’s possible. But who? She was engaged. She seemed to have turned into a nun since she met this Giles Osborne. We need to talk to him,’ said Moss.
Isaac appeared at the doorway.
‘The Douglas-Brown family have just pulled into the car park,’ he said.
‘I hate this part of the job,’ said Moss, stubbing out the half-smoked cigarette on the bottom of her shoe, and replacing it in the packet.
Simon and Diana Douglas-Brown arrived with their daughter, Linda, and son, David. It seemed strange to Erika that she was seeing Andrea’s brother and sister for the first time. She felt she knew so much about them from Andrea’s Facebook profile.
Diana and Simon were immaculately dressed in black, and Diana looked as if she had to be held up by Simon and David. David was very tall and thin and wore a fashionably tight black suit and glasses. Linda was next to her father, and appeared very matronly in a black A-line skirt and a thick winter coat. They all had red eyes from crying.
‘Good morning. We’re ready for you through here,’ said Erika, taking them to the door of the identification room.
Simon put a hand over his wife’s. ‘You stay here, David, and Linda, you too. I’ll do this.’
‘Dad, we’re here. Together,’ said David. His voice had a rich forceful command, like his father’s, which contrasted with his geeky appearance. Linda chewed her lip for a moment and then nodded in agreement. Erika showed them through. The identification room was small and institutional, with two chairs and a wooden table decorated with a hopelessly cheery bunch of plastic daffodils.
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