Amanda’s statement that she gives to the police after she’s taken in.
A new man in a suit was asking most of the questions. She was going back over the evening’s events for what felt like the tenth time.
“I left work around a quarter to six. I went to Miss Marjorie’s house to pick up Little Tom and Krissie.” She asked her questioner, “By the way, who are you?”
He frowned and after glancing at the young man taking notes beside him, introduced himself for the third time as Frank Adams, Nashville Police, Homicide division.
“Does this Miss Marjorie watch your kids all the time?”
She answered, “Only for the past three weeks, since I started working. I was lucky to find her. She goes to my church.” He said something else, which Amanda asked him to repeat.
“No. There was nothing wrong with them. They argued all the way home, just like always.”
They had not arrived home till a little before eight o’clock, because she stopped at a family diner. Did they eat there often?
She smiled wearily, “The diner serves a child’s meal free with the purchase of an adult meal. You look for bargains like that Mister, when you have chil…” At that point her voice choked off. She whispered, “I couldn’t handle the thought of cooking.”
There was a respectful silence from Frank.
“When we got home, I stopped in the driveway. The kids weren’t arguing any more. I think they had just been hungry and cranky. We stopped in the driveway just to look at the house. There was still a little of the sunset left behind it. Krissie commented on how pretty our little house was. I thought things were looking up.”
Frank gently urged her to go on. “Take your time, but try to remember all you can, Mrs. Delaney.”
She was finding that concentration thing to be harder every minute. “I parked in the garage. As soon as I turned off the car, I shut the overhead door. Junior got out and turned on the garage light. Then the kids went inside. I had to gather the food and my stuff. There was a carry-out box left.”
There was a long pause while she tried to focus. “I put my things on the counter in the kitchen. I put the food in the fridge. An extra key was on the counter and I put it away. Then I started to go through the bills. There were so many. Junior and Krissie came back in.”
Her voice began to falter. “They were arguing about who would pick the show to watch. I guess the food wore off.”
She began to cry.
“It was okay that they argued. I did not mind. They are really good kids. Really! We started to talk about it. The room started doing crazy things. … Then I was lying on the floor. I smelled onions, so I guess I am not that good at cleaning. Then you guys came.”
The detective waited patiently for her to calm down again. He asked her to go over the evening again. He needed to know if anything had been out of place.
Amanda began to cry. “I am absolutely positive. I did not hear or see anything different or wrong before I passed out.”
Frank asked if she felt an intruder had hit her.
“There is no way anyone attacked me. My kids were looking right at me and there would have been no way for anyone to get behind me. The doctor said the bruise and lump on my face are from hitting the counter on the way down.”
Again she told him, “We were talking, and then I was lying on the carpet. Why do you keep questioning me? I need help and all I am getting is questions. Why don’t you believe me?
Where are my kids?” He moved up beside her, prepared to support her upright if needed.
“Mrs. Delaney? We took your children to the hospital. They have been dead for quite some time.”
The present went away again.
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