iMurder 23: I Confess

I confess
I deserve some type of punishment
I confess
If it’s all the same to you I’ll stay indifferent

English Beat, “I Confess”

Sosa knocked on Tom’s door. He lived on the top of Liberty Hill in the neighborhood on the edge of the Castro, with sweeping views of downtown, the bay, the islands, and East Bay.

Sosa buzzed a few more times and finally heard a buzz from inside and old Victorian door unlocked, and lurched inward. Tom was at the top of the stairs, holding the wall lever that opens the door. “I love using this, it’s like I’m a prisoner guard.”

Sosa climbed the two floors of directly vertical steps, into a large, white painted flat. Tom had his back to Sosa, in the kitchen. “Hello, Detective Sosa. I’m making some espresso, want some?”

“Sure.” Sosa said, and walked into the living room. He sat on a couch that was brilliantly red, but hard as monk’s bed.
Tom walked in barefoot, serving Sosa a tiny cup.

“Very nice of you.” Sosa took a sip. “So how can you afford this furniture, a house with a view, all on writer’s earnings?”

Tom sat on the floor, cross legged. An expensive sound system for his iPod nestled in the corner of the floor collecting dustbunnies. He took the iPod out of the dock and started flipping, with audible clicks, through the collection. He settled on Miles Davis’ Blue.

Oh, let’s see, I have money from my old Dot Com. I made some investments on companies I think are promising in Web 2.0- everything kosher, don’t worry. And then I’m in healthy American debt.”

“How much, you suppose?”

“Let’s see,” Tom rattled off a list on his fingers. “Ivy League school, check! Masters program. Check! Nice car, check! Living in SF. Check!”

Sosa wrote this down. “How well did you know Jelly?”

Tom sighed. “I’ve told you all this before. I knew of her, I didn’t know her.”

“Did you ever read her blog?”

“I couldn’t tell you if I had or not.”

“Did you know Joe Standish?”

“Again, this is a repeat.”

“Just trying to nail down these facts.”

“Yes, who hasn’t?”

“Did you know Jelly and Joe were working on a story about your company?”

“No, I didn’t.”

“You own all of this house?”

“Well, me and WellsFargo.”

“Why don’t you rent out part of it?”

“I don’t like living with people.”

“Some folks in the city don’t even have a car. You write from home, right? Or that cafe. Why not let the car go?”

“What are you, a financial advisor?”

“OK, remind me- you didn’t know about the article they were working on.”

“No.”

“Did you know what it was going to expose?”

Tom started to circle his small espresso cup, swirling the contents. “No, had no idea.”

“Do you know that Jelly had evidence of it?”

“Evidence? Like what?”

“Photos.”

“Those can be manipulated.”

“Someone tried to cover up evidence, too. Did you know that’s a crime in itself.”
“Do you know someone by the name of Elfin?”

“Who? Sounds like some kind of gamer.”

“The note on Jelly’s daytimer, saying that she was meeting you at Fort Mason, don’t you think that proves that you know Jelly?”

“There are lots of Toms in the world.”

“Why did you want to meet Jelly. To tell her you knew about the article? To try and intimidate her out of it?”

“I didn’t have to meet Jelly at some designated spot, I see her at these industry parties all the time.”

“But it’s a little harder to intimidate someone in a room full of their friends.”

“OK if I’m the murderer, how, or why did I kill poobar?”

“You didn’t. You realize, Tom, I have enough to arrest you. I’d like to give you the chance to cooperate. I think you’re smart enough to know how that will help you.”

Tom looked out the three large paned windows out to the Bay.

“I didn’t kill poobar.”

“I didn’t say you did.” Sosa offered Tom two sheets of paper. “I printed it out for you, just in case you forgot.”

“Where’d you…” He turned red, and shaking, put down his espresso cup. He ran a hand through his short haircut. “I didn’t think she’d written it yet. I thought I got her, before…”

“I got this from Joe’s computer. It was scheduled to post in a week.”

Next: Gai Lan

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