426 Hartford Street
“Knott. I need you to look into this person’s past living quarters,” Avril Wroth said as she burst into the office. “And quit playing solitaire. I didn’t hire you to play games all day.”
Chris Knott stared at his boss as she rummaged around the office agitatedly.
“Ms. Wroth?” He asked. Something was very wrong.
“Shut up and do your job. Be quick about it too. The precinct wants a report in two hours.”
Chris nodded and turned to his computer, still feeling like his usually calm and cold boss was upset.
Chris may not have ever been the most calculated or careful person in the world, but he was good with people and computers. He didn’t do a lick of good on the field, looking for clues, but doing research and interviews were his specialty.
Avril had slammed the file down next to his elbow, a few droplets of water from the rain still adorning the envelope. The file was thick. This person had a bit of history with the law.
The first page was boring. Name, age, weight, eye color… Nothing too interesting.
The next page was more interesting to him. A picture of the man.
He seemed thin and wiry. His hair was greying, combed neatly to the side in an attempt to cover up a balding patch. But the most unsettling thing about him was his face. He was smiling to the camera. He had a black eye and several scratches on his cheek, looking as if someone had raked their fingers down his face. There was one deep scar across the bridge of his nose that had pulled the skin taught against the bone.
But the thing that bothered Chris the mos were the man’s eyes. They were icy blue rimmed with grey. It was overly familiar to him. They were eyes he’d seen nearly every day.
He turned back to the first page and looked closer.
Name: Don Weller Wroth
“Don’t say anything, Knott.” Avril had come up behind him while he was reading.
“Avril? Is this man related to-”
“Come on, Knott. We’re going on a field trip…” She said with a sigh.
“Where are we going? I thought you wanted me to…”
“Stop asking questions. That doesn’t even matter anymore. I know about where he’s lived anyways… Let’s go.”
Before he left, Chris grabbed the file. There was more he wanted to know about this subject.
“Ma’am, where are we going?” Chris asked as they entered the car. The file felt heavy and weighted in his arms.
Chris opened the file again. Each page seemed stare him in the face. Each page was as unsettling as the man’s eyes.
A page on his drug addictions.
A page on all the times he’d been driving drunk.
A page on his petty thefts.
A page on his family. There was a picture of young Avril there, smiling as she stood next to Don and another woman, presumably her mother.
Chris had never seen her smile.
Chris looked over at her. She was grimly looking at the street, her eye shining with held-back tears. Her knuckles were white as she gripped the steering wheel.
The next page had another picture of her. She was bruised and battered, dried blood streaking across her face and a fresh gash on her lip. Her mother looked the same.
There were only four pages left. All dated within the last two days.
A missing person’s report, dated as the day before.
A picture of a woman’s body, drenching wet and covered in mud. A bullet hole through her chest. Also the day before.
A search warrant, dated as today.
And finally a police report issued on the man, ordering his arrest. The last two pages were still warm from the printer.
“You satisfied, Knott?” Avril asked. The car had stopped in front of a little white house. 426 West Hartford Street.
“I’m so sorry Ma’am…” Chris looked at the warrant. The address matched. What was there to say?
“Let’s go finish this, Knott.” Avril said, taking the warrant and police report. She paused for a moment, looking over he documents.
Then she grabbed her gun.
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