We’re in Nawlins baby! There are drums, and voodoo and fog and someone running and SURPRISE CAMEO

#SNAKESPEARELIVES

That someone running turns out to be the reporter Jim Nash, and running did not help him – he was hacked to death with a machete, the fourth victim in three months. There are signs of voodoo at the body but Detective Alex Tibideaux thinks it’s a ruse and Jim’s colleagues at the paper Tom McCray and Cynthia Broussard say Jim was investigating links between the murders and organized crime.

You know what I’d like to organize? A whole lot of beignets in my mouth. And maybe some gumbo. And a cocktail or two.

Detective Tibideaux’s next stop is the last notation on Nash’s planner, which was to pick up JB Fletcher and take her to dinner. Nash was helping JB with research for her newest book; voodoo, illegal gambling, jazz, all the good stuff. Detective Tibideaux warns her that New Orleans also has the highest murder rate in America, but I mean has he been to Cabot Cove?

Guys, forget books. It’s all about KonMarie-ing people.

Jessica is staying at the home of her friend Emily Broussard, newly married to former Senator Brent Renwyck (aka Greg’s dad from Dharma and Greg) who has swapped senate-ing for opening a jazz bar. While JB chats with their housekeeper Yvette Dauphin, Emily has a quiet word with Brent before he heads out the door. Apparently one of their bank accounts was mysteriously empty but Brett explains he had emergency repairs down the club, he’s totes sorry he forgot to tell her about it.

Uh-huh.

Jess heads off to a voodoo shop where she finds some dude called Ralph Danton roughing up sales assistant Vera Welles. Vera was friends with the dead reporter and Ralph’s just discovered she’s planning to leave town which he’s aggressively against. He backs off when JB wanders in and walks away with a smile. Jess is actually looking for the owner, Kelly, but alas she died six months ago and the shop has new owners.  Kelly was going to take JB to the Gula Ruines for St Johns Eve festivities and to educate JB on a poisonous plant JB heard about in Jamaica. Vera doesn’t like to get involved in that stuff but agrees to take JB to the ruins.

Down at Brent’s jazz bar, Priscilla Dauphin (daughter of Yvette) is rehearsing for the grand opening. Brent wants to tell her how happy it’s going to make Emily and Yvette but she gives him the brush off and calls Emily, demanding to see her. Yvette overhears the conversation and looks worried. Meanwhile, Brett has a meeting with local crime boss Frank Roussel, nightclub host Mal Carter and Ralph – Brett’s an idiot who got financing from Roussel and now he’s signing paperwork that will give the club to Mal if anything should happen to him. Ralph spots Tom McCray out the window, and Roussel orders Ralph to tail him.

Back at the Broussard house, Jessica finds an old photo of Emily with her father and Yvette. Cynthia Broussard (who is Emily’s daughter don’tcha know) arrives with an envelope addressed to JB that they found in Jim Nash’s office and a message from Tom to meet JB at  3pm so he can explain what the documents are.

When they meet, they aren’t alone – Ralph is keeping an eye on them. Jess has discovered notes in Jim’s file that suggest he had a last minute change of plans to go and meet someone before meeting Jess. Jessica spots Ralph and suggests that Tom gets going, she’ll put Ralph off – which she does by blocking his exit and demanding the waiter call the police, causing Ralph to scarper.

Back at the Broussard residence, Priscilla confronts Emily with an anonymous letter she received declaring Emily’s father is also her father and that he paid for her schooling at Julliard as a result. Emily is aghast, and when she asks Priscilla about it she confirms it. Yvette says she wants her money or she’s suing.

That night

You know Snakespeare is here for the sonnetsssss. I should also mention that Melbourne is basically a firey Hellmouth right now and we’ve all lost our minds due to the heat. And by we I mean me.

Jessica and Vera arrive at the Gula Ruins for the voodoo festival and spot Ralph in the crowd. He sees them, and they make a hasty exit leaving just enough time for Ralph to laugh creepily.

Back at the club, Mal Carter overhears Tom interviewing Brett. Tom’s picking up Jim’s story and tells the senator all about how Jim found out that Brett had blown Emily’s money and ended up with a magical last-minute partner with just enough money to get the club going. Tom knows Mal Carter is fronting for Frank Roussel but Brett is giving nothing away. Also, it’s totally awkward because Tom went after Brett while he was a senator, and he’s also dating his step-daughter. Like I said, awks.

Mal watches Tom leave and calls Frank to report trouble.

The next day Jessica has coffee with Emily and explains that she called her friend at Julliard (because Our Heroine has friends EVERYWHERE) and he confirmed that Emily’s father paid for Priscilla’s schooling. Jessica suggests a DNA test but Emily’s father was cremated. Emily is a hot mess but Jess says not to worry – the letter is odd but there’s more to it than they know just yet.

Emily fills Brett in on the letter situation and he hits the roof, doubly so when he finds out that she’s going to audit the businesses in case she has to give money to Priscilla but she’s adamant. Brett runs into Priscilla and tells her she won’t get away with her scheme.

The club opens that night and everything appears to go swimmingly. Mal tells Brett to cheer up. Cynthia arrives and is not thrilled about Aunt Priscilla.

Back at home, Yvette is embracing some KonMarie voodoo and a Senator shaped voodoo doll.

I’ll be honest, I don’t actually know what this means either, but let’s pretend it does okay?

Brett calls Roussel, who is getting a status update on things from Ralph. Brett explains Emily’s audit plans and Roussel tells him to shut that down. Brett tells him there’s no way to stop the DA from finding out about their little arrangement if Emily knows about what’s going on. Roussel calls Mal Carter and tells him to follow Brett, as he asks Emily to go home with him. Priscilla finishes her set and says she’s going to get some air.

At nine o’clock that night, Brett is having a cheeky whisky when someone wanders over to him and kills him. Jess and Cynthia arrive home a short time later just in time to find Emily screaming over the body, a voodoo doll on the floor next to it.

Ah yes. That old chestnut.

Detective Tibideaux arrives on the scene in double quick time, and tells them that it appears to be a heart attack – the only physical thing they can see wrong with Brett is a cut on his hand, which Emily says was from a splinter he caught a couple of days earlier. Yvette is missing, and Cynthia sends Emily off to bed. Jess asks Detective Tibideaux if all the homicide squad are in attendance because of the voodoo doll and he says yes – there’s a habit for voodoo to take the fall for the bad guy. Tom arrives just as Jessica spots a familiar looking petal on the ground that looks a lot like those Priscilla was wearing on her head.

On the scent of a clue, Jessica pops down the club and finds Charlie the piano player, who has just heard about what happened. Priscilla is shaken and admits she followed Emily and Brent home, but by the time she got there he was already dead so she hightailed it out of there. She swears that the voodoo doll wasn’t there when she left, which means someone else was there in between Emily leaving the room and coming back in and Jess has a good idea of who and where she might be now.

Sure enough, Yvette is down at the Guila Ruins doing a bit more voodoo. Jess tells her Priscilla has gone to the police and Yvette says she only left the doll there to throw suspicion away from Priscilla, she didn’t want her daughter getting caught up in it all. Over at the voodoo shop, Vera is packing up for the night when she sees Ralph coming. She hides, he breaks in and she only gets away after conking him on the head.

The next morning Detective Tibideaux arrives to take Yvette in for questioning. Vera returns home from grocery shopping to find Ralph loitering outside her apartment so she gets on the pay phone (naw!) and calls the only person who can help.

I saw a tweet a while ago that said Jessica Fletcher was the only white person that people could trust and it made me laugh so hard. She’s such a Slytherin.

Tom arrives a short time later with the news that the call that lured Jim to his death came from a rando dentist office, that had other calls to Frank Roussel’s cell phone. Vera tells them that Ralph is skilled in the art of cloning phone numbers onto illegal mobile phones (LOL WHAT). Tom has also learned that Brett owed money to Emily and to Frank Roussel and a comment about left and right hands sends Jessica off on a reverie and she asks Vera about the poison from Jamaica. A call to the detective reveals that Brett had puncture marks on both hands but neither showed up anything poisonous.

A horseshoe ring and a memory later, Jess is back at the club to talk to Charlie the piano player – who is Priscilla’s real father and the former chauffeur for the Broussard’s. He and Yvette admit to cooking up the scheme together, without Priscilla’s knowledge. Neither of them was involved in the murder but Jessica already knows that.

Because of course.

Vera got the poisonous plant for them, and they whacked Brett to get ownership of the club. Tale as old as time, song as old as rhyme beauty and the beasttttttt.

Later gang

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