"I'll Think You Dead!"
By Paul W. Fairman (1909-77).
First appearance: Imaginative Tales, September 1956.
Short story (15 pages).
Online at Archive.org (HERE).
(Parental note: Mild profanity.)
"So what do we have at the moment? Six devoted, law-abiding husbands brutally murdering their wives last night."
Sometimes solving a murder requires concentrating on what doesn't fit . . .
~ Sam Courtney:
"As stated, the whole massacre makes no sense. The connecting link isn't there — and it's got to exist."
~ Bart Henderson:
"Then let's say, rather, that the data is incomplete, and it's up to you to find this link you speak of."
~ Clarence Smith:
"I must have gone crazy."
~ Wilton Michener:
"We'd planned to do so much together. You'll capture the swine, won't you officer? You'll get him?"
~ Peggy Carson:
"I never saw him before."
~ Hally Andrews:
"She stood out like a signal flare in a dark sky."
- A publisher as well as a writer, Paul Warren Fairman enjoyed a 27-year SFF-nal career; see Wikipedia (HERE), the SFE (HERE), and the ISFDb (HERE).
- Subliminal suggestion (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE) presupposes an intention to deceive;
hypnosis (Wikipedia: HERE and HERE) has had a long and checkered history.