– 0 –

“Polo?” SDI Carl North offered the pack to his partner, DS Linda Roberts. The pair were sat in her Ford Mondeo, the engine having just stopped.

“Maybe later.” Linda replied, drawing her keys out of the ignition.

Carl popped the circular mint in his mouth and tucked the pack back into his jacket. “Best take a look at this. Wouldn’t want our victim to go anywhere.”

“If he went over that cliff, I don’t think he’ll be walking anywhere.” Linda replied, slipping out of the car. The local police had already set up a cordon and were speaking to witnesses at the small beauty spot on the coast near Hastings. She watched her grim-faced partner wander over near the edge of the cliff to where a small white dog was sat on its haunches, peering across the ocean. He sat down besides the dog and petted its head. With a sigh, she went to find the officer in charge.

She found her nursing a cup of tea by a police van. “DS Linda Roberts,” she introduced herself, “My Partner, SDI Carl North’s over by the scene of the crime.”

“SIS are here?” The policewoman blinked. “I’m not sure why.”

“You know what SIS are like, they’ll jump on any case that interests them. What’s going on? Much of what I heard was rather sketchy.”

“I’m betting suicide or stupidity.” The woman in charge replied. “We’re collecting witness statements at the moment, but we’re getting a lot of consistent information. Male, mid-thirties. Rucksack over one shoulder, bouquet of flowers in his hand, some people are saying he had an MP3 player going. Just walked straight towards the edge and off it, not a single reaction from him, even as he fell.”

“What’s with the dog my partner’s… doing I don’t know what with.” Linda said with a sidelong look, Carl busy petting and fussing over the furry mutt.

“We’ve got animal control coming over soon to collect it, belonged to the man apparently. Was biting at his trousers and barking as the man walked over. It’s got a collar on, no leash though. If it’s been chipped, we might be able to get some more information on the man.”

“Alright, I’ll go relay that to SDI North. Thank you for your time.”

“No problem, take care by the edge. It’s a long drop.”

“Fool.” Carl said as she approached.

“Excuse me?”

“Not you. This one.” He said with a gesture over the cliff.

“Well, they suspect suicide or an accident, so either way it’s a fair word in some people’s opinions.”

“Not what I meant. Polo?” He offered the pack again, as well as something else.

Linda looked down at the item pressed into her hands, then the dog, then off the cliff. “Carl, what the hell is this?”

“I said already, Linda.” Carl said, sucking air through the hole in his mint. “Fool.”

Author’s Note – Just a snippet today, but it came about after finding and sorting through my Rider-Waite tarot deck. I do love the artwork, from the Minor to the Major Arcana. Don’t ask for a reading though, I’m useless at it.

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