The Case of the Bleeding Tree

By Kenetha J. Stanton

The four of us were sitting at a booth along the back edge of room having a few beers to celebrate the end of Jake’s last shift as a police detective. He was retiring after 40-some years, and he had more stories to tell than most of us could even dream of at this point in our careers, but we always had to pry them out of him.

“What’s the weirdest case you ever saw?” asked Kurt, the newest of us on the force, and therefore the one most willing to ask the questions we all wanted to know.

Jake stared at him for a moment, then took a deep drink from his mug of beer stared off through the smoky pub, clearly thinking it through. The muscles on his jaw worked steadily as he ground his teeth.

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