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The Short Form

“Murphy Bed”

William Walsh

Excerpt

What Jay didn't know at the time was that the whole romance was a set up thing from the start. He found out later on, after his arrest, that Val Corda had been following him for something like three weeks, trying to effect a chance encounter. She had read about Jay in the paper. She knew he had been brought in and questioned about the six dogs that had been killed in Ampersand that summer.

When she put the plan to Jay–burn the kennel where the inherited dogs were boarded and collect on the insurance policy her father had taken out on the dogs–he didn't consider saying no.

“I can't afford to keep these dogs,” she said. “There's all kinds of fees and registrations and racing certifications, not to mention the vet bills.”

“But when they win you get all that money,” Jay said.

“They're losers, these dogs.” She began crying. Jay hadn't seen tears in her eyes before. He told her he'd take care of it for her.

We read it in Ampersand, Mass..