Mary Brennan was silently suffering. Her husband, Martin had been killed many, many months before, in the basement parking garage of his office building.
It had been a gruesome and painful death. Oh, Martin’s second in command Brandin had tried to hide the truth from her, in the beginning to save her pain she was sure. However, you don’t stay the spouse of a government intelligence group member without learning a few tricks of your own. She had the autopsy report, she knew her husband had died in pain. More pain than she would allow herself to consider.
Martin had been her rock. The man she was going to live the rest of her life with. They had plans to retire, to a beach or at least, some place warm. She loved the coast, but it was still too cold and miserable too much of the year for her preference. Martin had promised her … he had promised her. Now, she had no way to track down who had killed him or why.
She finished putting on her makeup like she did three times each week. Every Sunday, Tuesday and Friday she would get ready to visit Martin. She would prepare the one rose she had picked out the night before from the corner market and get into her eight-year-old Mercedes Benz. Like Martin, the car was her rock, dutifully getting her from place to place.
She wiped a tear from her eye as she picked up the rose and left for her drive to the cemetery.
It took her twenty-two minutes exactly. She had timed every trip. She left at 8:15 AM every time and arrived at 8:37 AM. Occasionally she would be a couple of minutes late if she got behind someone slow but you could usually set your clock by her punctuality.
She parked in the same spot for every visit. If it had snowed, the parking spot would have been helpfully cleared by the caretakers. Those same caretakers had noticed her arrival every week, month after month.
Reaching over to the passenger’s seat, she picked up this morning’s rose.
The morning was crisp and cool, all of the sounds muted on this side of the cemetery. Rarely, if ever, did she meet anyone as she walked around the path between the bushes which separated different areas.
She came around the final turn and looked up the lonely little hill towards Martin’s gravestone and stopped in her tracks. Martin wasn’t alone. She looked around and noticed a couple of men standing about fifty yards away. They were big guys, they looked professional and they seemed to be watching over the woman.
Her eyes drew back to the woman standing with her back to Mary. The lady was dressed in slacks, a full length black winter’s coat came down to her knees. She seemed to be wiping tears away from her face, her shoulders hitched a little. The lady was crying. If Mary was any judge, she had been crying for a while.
Mary started walking, a little faster this time. Who was she and why was she crying at her husbands grave? She approached the woman, slowing down, making sure she would hear Mary’s footsteps and not surprise her.
Mary watched as the woman put a tissue to her eye one more time and turned to face her. Mary’s eyes opened in shock.
A dead woman was crying for her husband.