Nestled in a dark corner of downtown North Bay the Chicago Club glows like a hot ember in a dying fire. Music brings people in, and the gaming tables keep them there. It's a place Private Eye Percy Slate knows well, and despises. He's been summoned there by the clubs manager Salvatore Collisetta many times to work off his debt. Like a trained dog, when Sally Calls, Percy walks.
Until last night.
Percy missed a meeting and knows showing his face at the club means certain death, but when the case he's following leads him there he has no choice but to keep digging.
He makes it past the door man only to be confronted in the men's room by the club's muscle. He's saved by a charismatic stranger who shares Percy's traumatic history and holds a clue to finding Percy's missing doctor. The stranger is willing to part with a substantial bribe in order to keep Percy from being pulverised, but does this random act of kindness hold a barb? Percy is invited back to the stranger's table and soon finds that he's mixed up in a crew of killers more dangerous than Salvatore Collisetta and his collection of mob enforcers.
Will this new development lead Percy to close the case, or to a dead end in front of a firing line?
Read Chapter Six of Skeleton Unburdened today at 3pm to find out. Look for the title "would you save a strangers life? Second Saturday Stories" under the black and white title card of Second Saturday Stories.
Fans and new readers alike can familiarize themselves with the story here
Prologue and Chapter 1 - Percy Slate and Harry Clemens were best friends. After a falling out Harry's returned to seek Percy out. Does he want to make amends, or has Harry come back to put Percy in Jail?
Chapter 2 - After meeting Harry, Percy needs to skip town fast. plagued by a guilty conscious, Percy remembers his dead wife and the detective agency they once ran. Convinced he needs something from their old office before he can leave, Percy returns. Will he find peace, or will his fears catch him with no where to run?
Chapter 3 - Caught in memories, Percy stalls. He feels a strange connection to his past in his old office and can't shake the feeling of being watched. While reliving his glory days he feels a strange presence in the room. Is he jumping at shadows, or is Percy Slate being haunted by something?
Chapter 4 - When a mysterious woman finds him in his office Percy is haunted by memories of his wife. The stranger wants Percy to find her husband, but will the death of his wife prevent him from helping anyone ever again? Or will the opportunity to take advantage of a love struck woman be enough to entice Percy to use her for his own gain?
Chapter 5 - Percy makes his way to the university where he find Doctor Carruthers' office in shambles. Confronted by a cantankerous custodian, Percy discovers the doctor has abandoned his work. Percy learns of two other people who may be implicated in the Doctor's disappearance and where to find them: a club where he'll be killed on site if found. Deception got him past the university secretary, but will it be enough to keep the cross hairs off his back?