“Life science was not our forte, B.J.’s or mine. The only way we would pass the stupid course was to borrow the exam questions ahead of time. And we had to pass. They don’t like it when Saddle Tramps fail courses, you know what I mean? Especially B.J. He was to be president the next year. Anyway, we met that night to get the exam, had most of it copied when she showed up. Stupid girl. Like I said, she must have followed me.
He looked at her hard, trying to decide exactly how much she knew, what she’d figured out from the stupid yearbook. It was his one main fear. Now he’d have to deal with her just like he dealt with all the rest. He frowned, remembering the night 25 years ago. “She was going to turn us in and wouldn’t listen to reason. Started getting loud, hysterical ... I was just trying to get her to calm down, keep her quiet, you know what I mean?” He shrugged and then continued calmly. “So I slapped her. She fell back and must’ve tripped on something ... her head hit the corner of the lab table ...
“And me what? Oh, the exam? Well of course I used it, but just enough to pass so as not to raise suspicion. Always thinking, always thinking, you know what I mean?” He was tapping his head again.
Maggie shook her head angrily and gave him a direct stare. “I meant, hasn’t it bothered you all these years?”
“You embezzled university funds?” Maggie asked incredulously, forgetting for the moment the danger she might be in, desperately wanting to get all the facts.
Maggie was horrified, looking at the man she thought she knew so well. “But a man died, Windy!”
“Oh, yes, my dear. My fault, entirely. I’d locked the office, but halfway through dinner slipped back in to set the timer and neglected to lock it again. That was too bad, but really helped with the sympathy angle. And he was just a waiter, nothing more. And we’ve set up that trust fund for his family. I’m sure it’s more than he would have ever made as a mere waiter. No real loss.”
Winston’s eyes flew open wide. “He was alive? He spoke to you!”
“The bastard. If I’d known that, I would have had to let you die that night, too, my dear. I hate loose ends,” he said flatly.