George Coverdales: Head of the Coverdale family, 57 years old, remarried Jacqueline Coverdales: George's second wife, Children of George and Jacqueline Gilles: Son of Jacqueline Melinda: Daughter of George (Peter) Joan and Eunice Parchman: killed the Coverdales family (Eunice Parchman = illiteracy) In the beginning of the story, Jacque went to London to interview a housekeeper, called Eunice Parchman. After the short interview, Jacque was almost sure that Eunice Parchman was the exactly housekeeper that she was looking for, so she decided to accustom her. Eunice Parchman was a plain and calm woman. She had a one weakness: she was an illiteracy, which means she couldn't read or write.
And because she was illiterate, she spends most of her time in her house doing cleaning. She didn't want people to discover her secret. The Coverdales family was very satisfied with Eunice because Eunice did her work very well. Eunice got her own room, bathroom and a TV. However, Eunice Parchman got addicted with the TV set in her bedroom because she had never watched TV before.
So she spent most of her spare time in her bedroom-enjoying cops movies. No one in the family knew that she was illiterate but George was already aware that she had a lack of emotion. One day during a walk in a village nearby, she met Joan Smith who lived in a village store and owned a post-office. Joan Smith was married with Norman. She had a complicated background. Before she was married to Norman she was a liar, fugitive and a prostitute.
However, she confessed her sin and became a member of a religion. Since then she had regarded herself as a tool in God's hand and she wanted to punish anyone who had done something wrong against the Bible. Because George was married twice, and this was against the Bible, Joan found him a disrespectable man and she hated him a lot. Joan and Eunice Parchman became friends and they started to go out together every Sunday. One day, Joan visited Eunice but George who had just come home saw them. George told her that Joan were not allowed to come to visit her anymore and Joan got angry and hate him more and more.
George had always disliked Joan because she always says things about him and Jacqueline. George also suspected her for opening his mails because when they got a letter, the letter was opened and sealed again. Meanwhile, almost a year had past and the secret of Eunice remained unknown although there had been some suspiciousness. One day Melinda who was asking her to read something out of a magazine finally discovered the secret.
Eunice didn't say anything but Melinda was sure about her problem because that would explain a lot of things. Melinda told this to her parents and her parents fired her and give her one-week to prepare for her new job. After a week she should leave. The Coverdales didn't tell to anyone else about Eunice's secret.
When Joan heard that Eunice had been fired, she was even angrier because she thought that the family fired her because she was insolent. Then the day came when the family got killed. After a meeting in a church, Joan followed Eunice to the Coverdales house. They entered the house quietly through the gun room.
Joan saw the guns and took one of them off the wall. She started playing with them but Eunice only looked at her. But then Eunice also took a gun and played with it. Then Eunice loaded her gun and Joan followed her.
Joan suggested to kill the Coverdales and Eunice didn't really mind as this was not her first time to kill someone. George who was listening to an opera heard something in the kitchen and went to the kitchen to take a look. When he walked threw the door he saw Joan and Eunice with his guns. He wasn't scared because he thought that the guns weren't loaded. He told the two women to put the guns away.
But the two women refused his command and Joan opened fire and shot him through his neck and his blood spilled over the kitchen floor. The other members of the family who were listening to the opera heard the shot but they thought it was Joan's car. But it couldn't be the car because the car was still there and nobody was in there. So his mother asked Gilles to take a look, he started to walk to the kitchen.
But just at that moment, Joan and Eunice came out of the kitchen and entered the room. The two women saw Giles, Melinda, and Jacqueline and shot them down. They all died in the space of fifteen minutes. After that Eunice started to clean up bloods so that the police wouldn't find out who did it. Joan went home but before she left she took the tape recorder with her. This tape recorder was Melinda's and it was meant to record the opera that the family was watching (it was a present for Christmas).
She took it because the tape recorder that contained the voices of her and Eunice on it was like a proof for her achievement, which was apparently to wipe out the Coverdale family. Eunice never saw that Joan took the tape recorder before she left. However Joan didn't come far with the tape recorder. After riding a few kilometres a bird flew into the front window of her car and she couldn't control the steer anymore.
She rode into a tree and got into coma. When the police investigation started a few days later. Eunice remained calm and stayed in house, as there was no place for her to go. The head officer Vetch liked Eunice very much and never thought she could kill these people.
Eunice had to answer a lot of questions to help Vetch with his investigation. Eunice was also a bit lucky because at the same time when she and Joan killed the family, there were also two strangers in a caf'e nearby. Vetch thought that these two strangers could kill the Coverdales. But he soon found out that this was impossible because the time wasn't right.
They had too little time to kill the Coverdales and ran away. So it had to be someone else. Another few days had passed and Norman, husband of Joan found the tape recorder in Joan's car and took it home. After a few days a journalist bought the tape recorder. Norman had never listened to that tape recorder because he thought it wasn't important. The journalist took it home and listened to the tape.
The journalist was astonished and brought the tape to the police station and the police gave it to Vetch and so he found out on the tape that Eunice and Joan were the killer.