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Predicting Murder is the third episode of Series 1 of Death in Paradise.

When a woman not only predicts her own murder but also gives a description of the murderer, it all feels too easy for DI Richard Poole. Can a case from the past help solve the present day murder? And more importantly, can Richard convince the team that it has nothing to do with voodoo spirits?
―BBC

Synopsis Edit

Detective Inspector Richard Poole comes across a strange case where a woman not only predicts her own murder but also gives a description of the murderer. Richard smells something fishy, and investigates the probability that not all predictions are made in total truth. A sudden turn of events and a similar past case could help uncover what really happened. Meanwhile Poole tries to persuade the team that the case has nothing to do with voodoo spirits.

Plot Edit

Voodoo priestess Angelique Morel is on the beach, chanting and commanding the spirits to speak to her in front of an audience of both tourists and locals, one of which is an off-duty Officer Dwayne Myers. “The truth is in the bones!” she says. She exclaims the spirits have arrived and says they warn her of a scarred man, who is a killer. “He’s killed before!” she gasps. “And he will silence me!” And then, to the horror of her audience, she says, “I am to be murdered!”

The next morning, in Honoré Police Station, Detective Sergeant Camille Bordey is on the phone with the paramedics, while Richard is sighing about the heat and asking if they’ve any ice cubes, so he can put them in front of the fan so it won’t simply be pushing the warm air around. Dwayne enters the station as Camille hangs up and says they should go. Richard leaves and, confused, Dwayne asks what’s going on. Officer Fidel Best replies that a body was found at the Notre Dame School.

At the school, Molly Kerr, the secretary, lets Camille and Richard into the chemistry lab and informs them the headmaster is out. Camille examines the body, observing signs of rictus and blood around the lips and concluding that they were poisoned. Dwayne gasps and moves closer to the body, because he’s recognized the woman as Angelique, and remembers the warnings of her impending death from last night.

Fidel is taking pictures of the body while Richard looks around the rest of the room, noting a model skeleton, and asks what Angelique was drinking. Camille replies that she was drinking rum, and Richard questions why an old lady was drinking rum in a school classroom, and with whom, as well as where the bottle went. At this, Fidel remarks that Nicholas Dunham, the headmaster and science teacher, used to keep some in his desk, and they find that he still does. Dwayne then reveals what he heard Angelique say last night, but Richard is disbelieving and skeptical.

They are interrupted by Nicholas asking what’s going on. When they explain, Nicholas says she was his mother-in-law, though he is now widowed. He also says that Angelique came to see him earlier this morning, but they only talked briefly before he left.

Fidel says he can smell almonds on the glass, so Richard asks Nicholas if he has cyanide. Nicholas says they do, but it’s kept in a locked cupboard and only he has the key. Nicholas insists there’s no way Angelique could have been poisoned by this cyanide and Richard suggests they conduct the Prussian Blue Test to find out. Richard begins a narrative on the making of the test, but Camille rolls her eyes and asks Nicholas who else was at the school, finding that only Molly, Tom Hilton, the handyman, and Father Charles Dean, who found the body were there that morning.

Richard finds that there is indeed cyanide in the glass and asks Nicholas if he knows how it got in there. As they leave the building, Nicholas says Angelique only came to borrow some books and then he left to run some errands - buying fruit from the market. He didn’t get any, though, because he then get Molly’s call to come back. Molly arrives and says she let Angelique in that morning and was in her office when Father Charles told her Angelique was dead.

As they leave the school, Richard goes over what they’ve learned: Angelique came at 10:30, Nicholas left around 10:45, and Angelique was found dead by 11. Camille says it’s got to be the headmaster, as he’s got the scar. Dwayne agrees and an annoyed Richard says they should stop mentioning the prophecy and focus solely on the scientific facts. Camille and Richard go to Angelique’s house, to Camille’s amusement, as this isn’t the correct procedure, leaving Fidel and Dwayne to write the reports of everyone’s whereabouts from this morning, as well as check Nicholas’s market alibi.

Angelique’s house is filled with dried herbs, beaded curtains, a pickled lizard, and old books, leading Richard to question why she would go to the headmaster for books. Camille finds pictures of Angelique’s dead daughter, Delilah. Richard also finds a half-burned picture of the headmaster. Camille wants to talk to the headmaster again, but Richard says they should talk to Father Charles, as it’s the correct procedure.

Father Charles thinks Angelique died of natural causes, old age and is surprised to find that she was poisoned, or at least suspected to be. Father Charles says he was writing a sermon in his office that morning when, at 11, he went to join the headmaster for a coffee, passing Tom on the way, and found Angelique’s body. He says he didn’t know Angelique well, but that he did know Nicholas’s relation to her and that Nicholas’s wife died in a suicide.

Camille and Richard leave the school and Camille says that Angelique must have known her killer, and either she was indeed in contact with spirits or that she feared for her life and this is how she decided to tell people. Camille then says they should speak to her mother, as she knew Angelique.

At Catherine’s bar, they find out from Catherine that prior to Delilah’s death, Nicholas had found out that Delilah was having an affair. Nicholas had begged her not to leave him, but she was torn between both men until one night, she took a walk along the cliffs and threw herself into the ocean. The body was never found. Lastly, they find out that Delilah’s lover was Charles Dean.

When they arrive back at the station, they find that everyone, save Tom, has clean backgrounds, but even Tom’s lacks previous charges of murder. Dwayne reports that no one recalled seeing Nicholas at the market that morning, meaning he lied to them.

Richard and Camille find him and ask him to come to the station for questioning. When he refuses, Camille arrests him for the murder of Angelique. At the station, Richard questions if it really is Nicholas, because although Nicholas wasn’t honest with them, he may not be stupid enough to kill someone in his own classroom. Commissioner Selwyn Patterson arrives then, telling the team that Nicholas used his one phone call to call him and that he hopes their case against him is irrefutable. When they go to question Nicholas again, he reveals that at the time of Angelique’s death he hadn’t been in the market but doing charity work in an orphanage.

Realizing they made a mistake in accusing Nicholas, Camille and Richard go back to question Father Charles about his relationship with Delilah. He reveals that they meant when Delilah, on a bicycle, had hit his car. The accident resulted in her breaking her arm in two places. Father Charles visited her in the hospital, and as the visits became more frequent, their affair began. However, Delilah soon admitted to her husband that she was planning on leaving him as, Father Charles recounts shamefully, he put a lot of pressure on her to do so. Father Charles says he never believed that Nicholas was responsible for Delilah’s death, but Angelique had suspected him.

As they leave the school, Richard wonders why Nicholas called the Commissioner, as that implied he did not just want to be proved right but embarrass them in the process. Embarrassing them would make them back off, but he would have no reason to, as he had an alibi for the time of the murder. Richard wonders if he’d worried about them finding something out - making him suspect Nicholas as the killer, much to the annoyance of Camille.

Richard stops by a hardware store to get a fish tank and a few other things. Back at his house that night, Richard prepares the materials - a light bulb, super glue, foil, and the gloves Fidel found in a trash bin at the crime scene.

The next morning, Camille comes to pick him up for work and sees his work with the fish tank - or, the cyanoacrylate fumigation tank as it has become. He explains that the light bulb heats the foil, which heats the super glue, which then evaporates. When it becomes a gas, the molecules will only stick to the proteins and fatty acids found in fingerprints, thus allowing him to find out who wore the gloves.

Once they arrive at the station they go over the facts of the case, and, because everything points back to the headmaster, they decide to show Nicholas that his intimidation tactic hasn’t worked. They find Nicholas at his house, with Molly. Nicholas finally reveals that Angelique actually visited him yesterday to accuse him of the murder of Delilah, and to urge him to confess or she’d curse him with a voodoo spell.

Camille and Richard go with Dwayne to Catherine's Bar, where Richard wonders why they still haven’t found a motive. He takes a sip of a lime-flavored drink and this triggers a thought regarding the case. He looks through papers, muttering to himself as he works out the mystery, then tells the team to round every suspect, as well as the Commissioner, up in Nicholas’s classroom.

At the classroom, Richard clears both Tom and Father Charles, who he mentions brought up Angelique’s failing health. She had told Father Charles she was dying of ‘a broken heart’, yet her death was not a coronary, but cyanide poisoning, as the autopsy showed. That leaves only Molly and Nicholas, but Richard explains that all the evidence pointing to Nicholas as the killer was just a set-up - set up by Angelique herself. There is only one way she could have known she would die 24 hours of her prophecy, and that the circumstances would incriminate Nicholas; she set everything up, and then killed herself.

Richard reveals that she couldn’t, in fact, have obtained cyanide from Nicholas’s cupboard, but as she studied all sorts of plants and knew their properties, she used cassava, which, if boiled and drained, produces cyanide.

She poured the glasses of rum to set up the scene, laced hers with cyanide, crushing the vial of cyanide down the sink and disposing of the gloves, which had only her fingerprints, in the wastebasket. Then, she drank the poisoned rum and killed herself.

Richard says they can all leave as the investigation is closed, but then he handcuffs Nicholas and says he’s arresting him for murder. Nicholas is confused, as Richard clearly stated Angelique killed herself, but Richard clarifies: He’s being arrested for the murder of his wife, Delilah.

Nicholas and Molly are outraged, adding that Richard can’t prove anything, but Richard assures them he can. “Anybody can commit murder,” he says. “Murder is the easy part. But how to dispose of the body?”

Richard reveals how the cocktail had lead him to this - the taste was off, though there were only a few simple ingredients, one of which was lime. This reminded him of the patio Nicholas had built after his wife’s death. He’d ordered sand and cement, but, as Richard had remarked earlier in the episode, he’d ordered too much lime. If water is added to it, calcium hydroxide is produced, which is capable of quickly dissolving flesh off of human bones.

Returning to his original question of disposing of the body, Richard muses that perhaps a man who demanded respect, who played games and humiliated police officers in front of their superiors would not hide the body but display it - stopping by the model skeleton in the front of Nicholas’s classroom.

Richard then asks Father Charles which bones Delilah had broken - the humerus and the radius - and Richard indicates the fractures on the humerus and radius of the model skeleton, meaning that this is the remains of Delilah’s body. As Fidel escorts a handcuffed Nicholas out of the classroom, Richard remarks that the prophecy was right in one respect - the truth was in the bones after all.

As they leave the school Camille makes a prophecy in regards to Richard: that if she asks him out for a drink with the team, he’ll decline. Richard first says he’d love to, but he has errands to run and meals to prepare adds that they could do something together another time, much to Camille’s exasperation.

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That evening, Richard is testing out various canned pet foods on Harry, his reptilian co-tenant, when Camille walks in, amused by what is going on. She tells him that he’s invited for dinner at Catherine’s bar, as her mother’s making a special dinner in celebration of catching Delilah’s killer consisting of roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, roasted potatoes, and horseradish sauce. “You had me at roast beef,” Richard says, and joins the team and a few others, including Father Charles, for lively dinner at Catherine’s bar.

Quotes Edit

1-3-BBC-2
Richard Poole (upon spotting a model skeleton): Ah, Dr Hudson, my old school science teacher. The years have improved him, if anything.
Fidel Best: And if you want to commit the perfect murder, can’t do better than a school science lab. Poisons in that cupboard there, and reference books and equipment here for mixing up recipes.
Richard Poole: So that’s how you spent your time at school, is it Fidel? Planning the perfect murder?
Richard Poole: So, what happened here?
Dwayne Myers: She was murdered.
Richard Poole: Well you can have a point for stating the blindingly obvious, Dwayne, but I think in order to bring someone to justice, we may need a little more.
Richard Poole: All right, that’s enough! No one’s to mention this prophecy again, do you hear me? We’re detectives! We deal in physical evidence and forensic science! We do not stick pins into dolls and dance naked around a campfire!
Camille Bordey: That I’d like to see.
Richard Poole: It will not, I repeat: not, have anything to do with spirits or crystal balls. Is that perfectly understood? Nobody, and I mean nobody, is to mention that word again.
Fidel Best: Which word?
Dwayne Myers: Voodoo.
Fidel Best: Oh.
Dwayne Myers: Look, whoever it is, Fidel, we’ll catch them. Because that’s what we do! We catch killers. And I look cool on bikes!
Camille Bordey: You are the most annoying man I’ve ever met!
Richard Poole: Well, it’s a very small island.
Catherine Bordey: You know what my father used to say?
Richard Poole: Oh, please let it not be home-spun in any way.
Catherine Bordey: If you can’t find the right answer, you’ve probably been asking the wrong questions.
Richard Poole: It’s as if all the wonders of the universe have been suddenly revealed!

CastEdit

Guest Stars Edit

Music Played Edit

  • My Native Woman performed by Gregory Isaacs
  • Dreadlocks in Moonlight performed by Lee "Scratch" Perry
  • Red Up performed by Aswad
  • The Big Boss of Dubs performed by Tommy McCook and The Aggrovators

Gallery Edit

External Links Edit

Discussion Edit

To improve this article, discuss it on the Talk page.

Death in Paradise
Series 1

Arriving in Paradise
Wicked Wedding Night
Predicting Murder
Missing a Body?
Spot the Difference
An Unhelpful Aid
Music of Murder
Amongst Us

Series 1Series 2Series 3Series 4Series 5Series 6Series 7Series 8

Notes Edit

  1. BARB, 7 day data