The Halfback by Night (PG-13)

A stewardess pushing the snack cart down the aisle was smiling without conviction at Kolchak and he paused in his recitation until she moved on.

“Clayton Shoemaker is survived by a dazzling record on the college gridiron and by the heart of a woman named Valerie Martin who loved him in life and who suffered by him in death. Though she is now confined to a hospital bed, recovering from horrors she may never be able to reconcile with the memories of happier times, per­haps she will take comfort that at the very least the mystery of what became of her beloved halfback has been – as she herself put it – ‘laid to rest.’

“For her sake, and for that of us all, I hope it remains so.”


After a moment’s reflection, Kolchak set the tape recorder aside and pushed his seat back to its farthest stop. He yanked his hat down over his eyes and quickly succumbed to sleep. He dreamed of being very high off the ground, sitting at a desk by a window at the New York Times.

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