Jason's Requiem

Chapter 8

"So, did the doctor tell you how long I've got?" Jason asked with no hint of concern in his voice as his partner helped him get out of their car once they arrived once again at his diner.

"Do you really have to sound like you're not worried at all?" Casey asked in frustration. "You're insufferable. I hope you know that."

Walsh slowly sat down on his bed, then smiled as he looked up at her, and answered, "Yeah, I know it. So, did he say?"

She finally turned around to look at him and then responded, "No, he didn't actually and I didn't ask him. Maybe I should have, but… I didn't really want to hear about a time limit. Neither one of us really need the extra pressure right now."

"That's a good call," he replied as she walked into the diner area, then came back carrying the TV he used to watch his surveillance feed. "I don't really care about how much time a doctor might think I have left. It's up to me how long it will be before I can no longer keep up the fight and I don't plan on giving up."

"Then, why don't we begin with our home movies," Shraeger answered as she finished setting up the box, then started playing the surveillance footage they had gotten from outside the station. "Do you really expect to find something here?"

As he worked the controls in order to forward through all of the footage until the time of his attack, Walsh quietly responded, "I'm not really sure, but something didn't seem right about them. I mean, they were wearing gloves and so they didn't want to risk leaving finger prints behind, but they weren't wearing masks. Doesn't it seem strange that they didn't seem to mind if either of us, mainly you, recognized them?"

Casey finally understood and she replied, "You're right, but… I couldn't really see them all that well in the dark, but they certainly weren't wearing masks. I would have noticed that."

"Maybe not, but the faces you saw weren't their faces," Jason answered as he suddenly stopped and paused the tape, then zoomed in close on the assailant struggling behind him holding the knife. "I didn't think much of it at the time, but when the scumbags first attacked me, I reached up and scratched this guy's cheek and then focused on keeping him and his friend from plunging the knife into my chest. I ripped something and it looks like it wasn't a band-aid."

"Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle," Casey said in surprise as she started at the paused image in the screen, seeing what looked like torn flesh peeled away from his face. "They were wearing masks, but not some creepy Halloween mask you pull on and off. They were wearing prosthetics."

Walsh stared sternly at the screen as he responded coldly, "These guys are good."

Shraeger replied, "Well, so much for me being able to identify them. What are we supposed to do now? Scratch that, I'll find something, but you are going to try to get some sleep now. I told you I would let you watch the footage. You have to rest, otherwise the poison in your system is going to wear you out faster. You promised me."

"Okay, you're right," he answered as he looked up at her while she loomed over him, her arms crossed. "But I need you to promise to come get me if you find us a lead."

"You have my word," she responded sincerely. "I'm going to check in with you in a little while and it won't be on your cell phone. You better be here."

Walsh nodded, then replied, "I promise too."

Meanwhile…

Back at the precinct, the detectives were standing around as Alvarez briefed them all on the situation at hand as he was saying, "It turns out, that the blade our assailants used to cut Walsh was tipped with poison. The doctor wasn't sure about how fast the poison would spread or how long Walsh has, but it doesn't matter. We need to figure this out as soon as possible."

"Where are we supposed to start?" Delahoy asked curtly. "We have nothing to go on."

"Actually, it looks like that's not exactly true," Sergeant Brown said as he walked into the large room from his office. "I just received word that two officers got into a chase with two men driving a grey Pontiac with no plates. The chase ended when the perpetrators' tire blew out, causing them to crash. As the police tried to question them, they were both beaten down by a group of thugs and by the time they came to, the men were gone."

Detective Banks asked, "Do you want us to go and talk with the cops to see if they can help us by giving us a description of the two men?"

Casey walked in holding up a surveillance tape as she quickly answered, "I don't think that description is going to do us any good. They were wearing prosthetic make up."

"How could you tell?" the sergeant asked gruffly. "You were pretty positive last night that you could identify them if you saw them again, Shraeger."

"I thought I was, but it turns out that the faces I saw weren't their real faces," she responded as she handed their boss the tape. "Walsh remembers scratching one of his attackers across the cheek and thought he had managed to tear off what he thought might have been a band-aid or more likely skin, but after watching the video, it's clear that that's not what it was and before walking in here just now, I took a look around the area where the attack happened. I found the piece of the prosthetic mask on the ground. It's possible that Walsh's attackers had pulled their masks off once they got away, but I wouldn't bet on it. Anything could have happened on their way back to wherever they were heading. If they ran into someone, they wouldn't risk anyone seeing their real faces."

"Beaumont and Latham, I want the two of you to go and talk with the officers anyway, just in case," Serge replied. "I don't want to take any chances. Delahoy and Banks, the two of you are going to go take a look around the scene of the crash. Look inside their car and see if there's anything that they might have left behind that might help us to identify our criminals."

Casey looked over at their boss and asked, "What about me?"

The sergeant stared back at her and said, "You, me, and Alvarez are going to go take a look around the scene, to see if there were any witnesses to the beating. Maybe they can help us with finding the thugs that beat down two cops. They'll probably have information on our two scumbags, seeing as they helped them get away, whether it was out of the goodness of their hearts or because they were offered money to help them escape."

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