This excerpt is from the book entitled The Black Hill Hotel Mystery an English Murder Mystery book set in the winter countryside, starring two policemen who have been working together for a few years and get along well.

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 “I agree, I will ask uniform to put in an appearance at the farm, three should be plenty. I will ask about Mr James’s son who is in the prison system, just in case he’s done a runner. I should also ask about the Benson’s daughter, who might be trying to slip out of the country to get to Egypt undetected.”

 

“Should I ask about Mr James’s son?”

 

“No, you find out if there is any more information on where Mr Wooster was last seen, he wasn’t in the hut, was he, so he has to be somewhere.”

 

As he walked out of the door, Barnes noticed something in the undergrowth, almost hidden by a tree branch.

 

“What is that?” he asked, pulling an evidence bag out of his pocket. The glove was folded over and lay under a small branch. Barnes found a small twig and hooked the glove, before placing the item into the bag. He sealed it in carefully.

 

“Well spotted, Barnesy, that might be a vital clue. You should show everyone at the hotel your find and see who claims it.”

 

Knowles and Barnes walked to the road. It was beginning to snow again. Knowles put up his hand and they both stopped.

 

“Do you hear that, Barnesy?”

 

“I don’t hear anything other than the wind. Oh hold on, running water, it must be slightly warmer here, the snow is melting, at least here it is.”

 

Knowles smiled – Barnes was getting more aware of his surroundings.

 

They walked in the middle of the road. The sound of the running water stopped after about 50 yards as the road approached the top of the hill where it was more exposed to the elements. The snow was blowing into their faces as they crested the rise. The view of the river was beautiful, although the clouds hung like curtains across the landscape and obscured the furthest horizon.

 

“Signal acquired,” said Knowles standing on an outcrop with a view over the slate roofs of Peatling Astley about a mile away. He started to talk. Barnes had to walk a further fifty yards before acquiring his signal. He stood looking at the river before writing down some details into his notebook. He was so pleased he had acquired a Bluetooth. He repeated what he had written down, just so there were no mistakes.

 

When they’d both finished their conversations, Knowles and Barnes both frowned at each other.

 

“After you, Barnesy,” said Knowles.