A slice of murder
Antonio Rossi embraced Detective Sergeant Abby Sweet and kissed her on both cheeks.
“Ciao bella!” he sang happily. “I have your usual table all ready for you.”
Antonio’s was Abby’s favourite Italian restaurant. An evening spent there alone with delicious food, incredible wine and a good book was her idea of heaven.
She settled into the candlelit corner booth and Antonio rushed over with a glass of Chianti.
“How’s your evening going?” she asked him.
“Not so good,” he sighed, shaking his head. He leaned in closer and whispered, “I have to fire someone tonight.”
“That’s rough,” Abby sympathised.
She ordered the carbonara and Antonio dashed off again.
Abby was halfway through her pasta when she heard a bloodcurdling scream coming from the kitchen.
She leapt up as Valentina, Antonio’s wife, ran towards her.
“Antonio’s dead!” she cried.
There was a faint smell of burning in the air as Abby followed Valentina through the kitchen to a room at the back that housed hanging salamis and hunks of prosciutto.
Antonio was sprawled out on the floor in a pool of blood; his throat had been slashed with a pizza slicer.
As Abby stood over him, she felt incredibly sad. She’d been eating at Antonio’s for nearly 10 years and had very much liked the man.
Then she remembered his final words to her: I have to fire someone tonight.
It seemed that whoever it was hadn’t taken the news well.
“I want to speak to everyone who was working in the kitchen tonight,” Abby said.
Soon three young guys – Pepe, Gianni, and Carlo – were gathered before her. Abby asked them about their movements that night.
“I’ve been making pizza dough all evening,” Pepe said, holding up his hands to show they were covered in flour. “We’re so busy, I haven’t stopped.”
“I’ve not stopped, either,” Gianni sighed, gesturing with a sauce-covered spoon. “Antonio’s marinara sauce needs to be stirred constantly. I don’t leave the pot for a second!”
“Same with the pizza oven,” Carlo said. “The pizzas go in for 10 minutes exactly – no more, no less. And we had so many orders tonight, I was working like a dog.”
“So none of you saw Antonio?” she asked.
“Of course we saw him,” Gianni said. “He was always coming in and out of the kitchen, he spoke to all three of us. But I never left my station.”
“Nor did I,” Pepe said.
“Me neither,” Carlo added.
One of them had to be lying.
Abby walked around the kitchen. She looked at the flour-covered benchtop, took a sniff of the gently simmering marinara sauce on the stove, and peered inside the pizza oven. Then she took her cuffs off her belt. She knew what the motive was, now she knew who the killer was, too.
Who killed Antonio?
- A) Pepe
- B) Gianna
- C) Carlo