That same afternoon, Mrs. Selene Slocum-Lofton was out in the bright cold of the early afternoon, well-bundled up … if the sun was shining and it was above 35 degrees, she went and got her walk in, day in and day out. It helped her stay fit and sane, and also to think, to sort things out.
Something was bothering her. At 84, she had seven full decades of memories to sort, so that took about a mile or two of walking to do, and three miles with breaks. She had at least casual knowledge of everyone of importance – every businessman, politician, society figure – there was a lot to sort.
The mind was a strange thing at any age, the way it played games with itself to hide itself and the emotions from truth. One of the verses Mrs. Slocum-Lofton had made herself memorize, in her quest to read through the entire Bible in her first three months of being a Christian (“because at 84, I have got to get caught up”) was Jeremiah 17:9: “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked – who can know it?” She admitted that for most of her life she had not understood her own incredible depravity, and so the best she could sometimes do was find out what tricks she was playing on herself, and then go to God for help.
This case – this case that her grandson's cousin Captain Hamilton was on – was bothering her. Obviously, she could dig through her pocket change and solve the whole problem – at 84 years old, end of her life, the “cute little old tycoon” of a woman was verging on a quarter billion in total assets owned or controlled, and by the time she and John Worley finished doing whatever it was he thought he wanted to do with the rest of their lives, it would be a half a billion, easy.
But that was the whole thing. There was just no reason for anybody rich to do this sort of thing over pocket change – it took a little while to amass $250 million in life, and a few years confined over a few thousands in toys was madness.
It couldn't be dementia because the thing had been too well planned. It had to be madness, and the person had been mad for a long, long time. That kind of thing just didn't happen overnight.