Monday, January 7, 2013
Ernie described the last two and a half weeks as a living hell, having failed his friends Dan and Patricia by allowing Wes to be kidnapped. He detailed the days and nights of searching the ranch inch by inch for something with which to redeem himself. "But your diligence paid off," Stevie interjected. "Had you not kept looking for clues you might not have gone to the lake, and Wes might not have had a chance. At least he's alive right now."
Ernie studied the woman's face thoughtfully for a moment. Then he leaned closer and spoke with the obvious intent of secrecy. "I need to tell you something about Wes. It's something that's been nagging at me for a while, but I just couldn't pin it down. When I discovered the truck missing it occurred to me that possibly the Denherders, the Bellardis' caretakers, had borrowed it for some reason. But then I was told they were on vacation—out of the country, as a matter of fact. That seemed rather odd to me, as close as they're supposed to be to the senator and all. You'd think they'd stick around for the election."