When asked about the death of Mr. Echo, Theodore Carmichael, the manager of the White House Cinema, had only had praises to sing. “I mean, the guy almost single-handedly kept this place in business…if it weren’t for him, we’d have sunk years ago.”
Apparently, at the most crucial moment in the fiscal history of the White House, Art (as his beneficiaries affectionately called him) swooped in seemingly out of nowhere to save the day. “We were in the midst of preparing to file bankruptcy, deciding how to sell off the assets, and this guy from out of the blue waltzes in, looks around, and says he LOVES the place. Old school charm and all that. At first, I wondered what he was on about, but he seemed genuinely into the vibe of the place, even WITH the paint peeling and the projectors about 13 years too old to compete.” Asking about his involvement in the theater’s day-to-day, Carmichael mentioned “oh, he’d come in about once a week with a new business associate…at least, they looked that way from the way they were all slapping backs and commenting on each others’ suits. Way I see it, I figured he was prolly tryna grab some interest in the joint and get some more investors onboard…I was expecting an offer on the place any day. Near the end, he was in here, even on days when we were closed to the public. Giving tours to prospects, he’d say. Heck, who was I to say no when he’d basically brought the business back from the brink of extinction?”
Pressing into this last comment, detectives asked Carmichael if he had a good relationship with Mr. Echo. “As good as I could, given the circumstances. I mean, I rarely saw him, and when I did, he was all smiles.” His eyes grew distant for a moment, and he said aloud to no one in particular, “The more he was here, though, the cockier he became. Like he owned the place. I mean, he practically DID, but when there’s nothing like that set in stone, you kinda notice things like his way with the employees…he could get kinda bossy. Other than that, the guy was pretty cool.”
“I DID try to have a sit-down with him once…he was with a chap he called Charlie…evidently, I got a little too close while they were chatting, and Charlie gave me a look that said I didn’t really wanna be there. But like I said, Mr. Echo was the savior of the White House Cinema. Can’t tell ya much more than that.”
Theodore Carmichael was told not to leave town, and was subsequently released from custody.