"Jenny's Ghost" by David Dean, in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, June 2012.
After I read this story I asked my friend David if there was a crime in it. He replied: "there is no crime in 'Jenny's Ghost'; only consequences." But, he noted, there is a mystery. Having thought about it, I decided there is a crime, of sorts. I'd be interested to know what you thought.
David wrote about the genesis of this story last month at SleuthSayers, but even if he hadn't I would have suspected it started with the location.
Picture the setting: you are in an airport, stuck in that endless half-life between flights and suddenly you spot something that can't possibly be there: a woman who died a decade before. Hell of a set-up, isn't it?
David noted that this is a story about consequences. Not surprisingly it is also about guilt, and the chance of redemption. These are subjects for fiction I am very much drawn to. (Hey, my CD is called Can I Blame You?) David's stories often have a strong spiritual component. (One of his recurring characters is a priest.) As I said, there is a possibility of redemption at the end of this story. Airports can seem like hell, but you don't have to stay in one forever.