The man sitting in front of him was clean-shaven, his hair freshly cut, and yet, Officer Bennet did not think he had ever seen a more disheveled man in all his life. His eyes were sunken, great pouches beneath the bloodshot sockets, as if he had spent days sobbing, rather than sleeping.
Given the circumstances, he supposed it wouldn't be a terrible assumption to believe that he had.
Spreading some papers across the desk that lie between them, Bennet looked over them briefly and then peered at the man. "William Cole Cedar, right?" The man nodded, his head moving slowly, jerkily as if his head were held to his neck on rusty hinges. "You were dating Miss Cheyenne Lindsey Richards, am I correct?"
A bright sheen came over William's eyes, and Bennet mentally located the Kleenexes upon the desk, just in case. "We're engaged," he muttered.
Bennet shook his head slightly, massaging his thumb between his furrowed brows, dismissing William's response. "And during the past week, you've been..."
"Away," William finished, "on business."
Nodding, Bennet continued, "We called you in because we have more information on your fiancé's case. We found a notebook of Cheyenne's, writing through five days, ending on the day you got home." He opened a desk drawer and pulled out the notebook, sitting it on top of the papers sprawled over the desk. "We've already pulled it for fingerprints and scanned its contents into our computers. We figured you could have it now."
William looked down at the notebook, then back up to Bennet. His gaze did not quite meet that of Bennet, and yet the officer found himself chilled by the haunted quality of the man's stare. "Is that all?" William croaked after a few moments.
Bennet nodded, pushing the notebook toward him. "You may leave."
William grabbed the book and stood from his chair, moving toward the door. As his hand gripped the knob, Bennet found himself blurting, "Cedar."
William turned to him, silent. After a few moments, Bennet said softly, "She's better off where she is now."
Immediately, William's eyes shimmered wetly, and he dropped his gaze, grunting huskily before hurrying out of the office.