Eye Of The Beholder Essay, Research Paper
A Wrongful Death
The theme of the book, Eye of the Beholder, by Jayne Ann Krentz, is to stop and take a breath before jumping to conclusions.
Twelve years ago, Trask’s father was killed in a car accident. He had driven his car off Avalon Point. Because of the sharp curve, this was not unusual. Everyone in town just believed that Trask’s father was another fatality. Trask knew it was more. He believed his father’s death was murder.
Trask believed Kenyon had killed his father because of a business deal gone bad. Trask’s father, Kenyon, and Guthrie had been working on the deal for months. Trask’s father had found a problem and believed the plan would cause the men to go bankrupt. With this information, Trask’s father decided to take his money and get out of the deal.
Immediately after Trask found out about his father’s death, he went to Kenyon’s home. Trask went with his gun in hand. He wasn’t sure of his own plans; he only knew that someone was going to pay for his father’s death. Probably for the best of them all, Alexa walked into the room in time to see Trask pull out his gun. Trask left when Alexa got to the phone and threatened to call the police.
The opening of the newest of the Avalon hotel chain couldn’t have been planned more perfectly. Trask knew it was perfect. He had been in the business for years and was quite good. So far, all of his hotel’s had been a great success. He was unsure of this one though. Most of the town believed that if Trask ever did come back, it would be for revenge. Trask had left the night of his father’s death and hadn’t been seen since. Many had heard of the successful business man he had become and praised him for it.
The night of the opening ceremony, Alexa was upstairs by herself. She knew Trask would be at the hotel and had done her best to avoid him. Everyone in town believed Trask was back for revenge and had chosen this sight for a hotel as an excuse. Alexa felt she would be the last person Trask needed to see. If there was any contact, she hoped Trask wouldn’t recognize her.
While upstairs, Alexa looked over the artwork. Trask, who recognized Alexa immediately, entered the room. They talked briefly before Trask commented on how she had changed. Alexa couldn’t believe it. She had hoped and prayed Trask wouldn’t remember her. To her surprise, he asked her out. She agreed, but only because she hoped to get information about what he was really in town for.
At dinner, Alexa tried to bring back the past. Every attempt was unsuccessful until the last one. Trask finally explained to her that he did still believe his father’s death wasn’t an accident but had accepted it. If he could find out the truth, he would.
While walking out of the restaurant, a limo pulled up. It was Guthrie. Guthrie expressed his feeling for Trask by telling him to get out of town. There was nothing seriously threatening
about it, but the two felt threatened.
Alexa and Trask went back to the hotel to talk things through. Deciding to work together, the two shared and analyzed the information they had compiled. Trask now knew that Alexa’s father had nothing to do with the murder but instead blamed Guthrie. Alexa wasn’t so quick to blame Guthrie. She had found evidence leading to Webster Bell. He was the man who owned the Dimensions Institute. She had just recently discovered that the business deal was one supporting Bell’s Institute. She was also good friend’s with Webster Bell’s sister, Joanna. Joanna had been acting weird since Trask had returned home.
Alexa headed home that night with a lot on her mind, and she was still up when the phone rang at 2:30. She contemplated answering the phone but decided to. It might have been Trask. The voice on the other end was raspy and harsh. It warned her to stay away from Trask.
The next morning, Alexa and Joanna finished their tea and got ready to open their shops. They each owned a little shop in the Avalon Mall. Alexa told Joanna about her dinner with Trask and about the late night calls. She skipped a few details about the plans to work together and solve the problem she and Trask had encountered.
A few days went by. Alexa and Trask decided to have dinner again. This time they prepared and ate the dinner at Alexa’s house. After dinner, Trask was sitting on the back porch when he heard a loud crash. Together, Alexa and Trask headed toward the sound of the accident. A car had gone over Avalon Point. It was Guthrie. The police took statements from Trask and Alexa.
Guthrie was dead and had driven off the same point Trask’s father had. Upon discovering this, Trask didn’t know what to think. He was sure Guthrie had had something to do with his father’s death. Alexa had decided it was time to tell him everything that she knew about Webster
Bell. She explained how angry he had been when he discovered the men were thinking about backing out. Trask immediately jumped to conclusions. He wanted to find out all he could about Guthrie and Bell.
Alexa continued to get phone calls between two and three o’clock in the morning. Each had threatened her to stay away from Trask. She finally decided to tell Trask about the calls. He assumed they were some how tied into the deaths.
One morning before work, Alexa got a call. It was Joanna asking Alexa to take care of her shop. Alexa agreed but was worried. At her lunch break, Alexa called Joanna and got no answer. She decided to drive to Joanna’s home.
Alexa knocked without a reply and decided to peek in the windows. Joanna was passed out on the floor. Alexa found the key and car inside. The smell of gas filled the room. Alexa called 911 and dragged Joanna outside. While dragging her, a bottle fell out of Joanna’s robe pocket. It was an empty bottle of prescription tranquilizers. A few minutes before the emergency help arrived, Joanna woke. She was falling in and out of consciousness. In between, Joanna apologized repeatedly. Alexa was barely able to understand, but she did understand that Joanna was telling her something about Guthrie and Bell working together for the Dimensions Institute.
Guthrie had killed Trask’s father. Guthrie and Bell’s plan was working ad almost complete. Bell had began to get greedy so he killed Guthrie. Both murders had worked out perfectly because of Avalon Point. Joanna also apologized for making the phone calls. She explained that the reason she had taken the pills was because she could handle the burden of it any longer.
Immediately after the ambulance arrived, Trask pulled up. After Joanna had been taken
away, Alexa called Webster Bell. She told him what had happened to his sister.
After hanging up the phone, Alexa told Trask all Joanna had told her. She wanted to head to the police station, but Trask reminded her that they had no evidence.
That night, they broke into Bell’s office using a key they had found at Joanna’s house. It didn’t take long before they had found what they needed. There was a file with copies of Guthrie’s will, Trask’s father’s will, and graphs so show what would be done with the money after the men died.
The two had been successful but still hadn’t found a way to get Bell convicted. They couldn’t tell the authorities about breaking into the office. Trask used his influence in the business world. He called an friend of his, Dylan Fenn, who happened to be a private investigator. Fenn agreed to do research on the case but explained that he needed time.
A week later, there was an article in the newspaper telling about the Dimension Institute scandal. Trask was looked upon as a hero to the town. Because of the new hotel and his relationship with Alexa, he decided he could stick around for a while.