The Midnight Moscow Murder: A Short Story by Andrew Cerne


I stood in the Russian apartment bedroom  with the dead Senator Garland Peet. A man who use to be famous for his work in bringing countries at peace with each other, is now pale faced and dead.

“Was anyone else in the room the night this happened?” I questioned.

“Not that we know of. His bodyguard Val was standing right outside the apartment room said no one entered the room,” said Detective Chase.

“All other detectives say it was suicide.” This didn’t make any sense to me.

“Why would Senator of Massachusetts Garland Peet come all the way to Russia just to kill himself? It makes no sense,” I responded.

“Then what do you think happened Logan?” Chase said after taking a sip of his coffee.

“I think it was murder,” I stated while looking at the cold dead senator lying on the floor.


I walk over to Val. She has tears streaming down her face.

“Were you good friends Garland?” I ask.

“Yes, I have know him for 6 years,” Val responds while breathing heavily. I begin to ask her some questions.

“When he came home did he look upset or sick?”

“N… no but he was very drunk. His friend An… Anatoli brought him home.”

“Have they known each other for a long time?” I questioned.

“No, they just met a few days ago when the Senator arrived at the apartment,” Val said.

“Do you think Anatoli could have killed Garland?” I asked.

“Anatoli seemed like a good man. While he could have murdered Garland… I doubt he did. He was not in the apartment when Garland died.” I walk back to the cold dead body lying on the floor thinking about how he might have died.


7 hours later

Chase and I walk into the crime lab ready to learn new information about what happened to Garland. We quickly walk up to the Henry the forensic scientist investigator who is drinking coffee sitting in a chair. “I think I know what happened to Garland” declared Henry.

“Good, do you know when he died too?” I ask.

“Yes, he died around 11:10 from a poison called bilge,” Henry responded while cleaning his glasses with his shirt.  

“What does bilge do?” Chase questions.

“It burns the heart the heart and lungs causing the body to stop when it can’t fight the bilge off anymore,” I respond, turning from Henry to Chase. Henry seems surprised that I know what bilge is. He shouldn’t be. I took a course in forensic science in college.

“How long does it usually take for bilge to kill someone?” Chase asks.

“Usually about 5 hours, which means he had the bilge enter his body around 6:10” I respond.

“Well it looks like you don’t need me anymore!” Henry says quicky walking away kicking a table.

“He’s got a temper,” Chase says.

“He must have had the bilge at the bar. We should investigate them” I exclaim.

“What about Anatoli?” Chase asks.

“We will question him later” I respond. We both ran out of the lab into the parking lot, got into the car and drove away.

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