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The Fates Work in Mysterious Ways

By Chelsea Marlin

Romance / Mystery

Prologue

It was a hot summer day. The sun shone brightly in the sky with no clouds in sight. Everything seemed perfect in the small town of Murkwood, Florida. However, this small town was about to get turned upside down on its heels. The waves of the beach were lapping against the sand. A large wave crashed on the shore bringing a large amount of debris with it. Amongst the debris was a large shape wrapped in seaweed: the body of a young female.

Murkwood was a town containing only 2500 people. The town was at the very bottom edge of Florida, so not many people lived or visited because it was farther away from the hotspots. The worst thing to ever happen in Murkwood was a local teen group getting busted for drugs. Now, the police were lining the beach with yellow crime scene tape.

It was first suspected that the girl was a random who had washed ashore, but a bystander had recognized her immediately. According to the girl who had been jogging along the beach, the body belonged to a girl named Marissa Harmdan, a local high school student.

Being a small town, the word of Marissa's untimely death had spread across the land. Everyone now began to gather behind the crime scene tape and gossip about the body now covered in a white sheet. A blonde headed girl pushed her way through the crowd. "Ms. Chase?" a boy asked the blonde girl.

"Yes," the girl said turning her head instantly, "Oh Danny, how are you?"

Danny smiled and told Ms. Chase about his current life in college and how he couldn't believe that Marissa was dead. Ms. Chase nodded her head sympathetically. Danny and Marissa had dated while they attended her 8th grade class. She had been very fond of them both.

Annabeth Chase had been teaching 8th grade math for three years now. She always tried to keep up with her students after they left her class. Majority of them had gone on to achieve greatness, and Annabeth couldn't be more proud. She loved her job and this town, which is why she was shocked to learn that one of her former students had been found dead on the beach.

Annabeth was determined to ask the police her questions before anyone else had the chance to stop her. She excused herself multiple times as she made her way to the front of the mass. "Officer Warren?" Annabeth yelled over the noise.

The head police chief turned his head, when he saw it was Annabeth he immediately walked toward her. "Good to see you," Warren said allowing Annabeth to duck under the yellow tape, "I am glad you are here. I need to know everything you know about the victim."

Annabeth felt tears sting her eyes as she gazed upon the pale, lifeless face of Marissa. She couldn't believe this was happening. There had never been any murders happen in this small town, so Annabeth had no idea what to think of the scene playing out before her very eyes.

"What happened to her?" Annabeth asked wiping at her eyes.

"We won't know without a full autopsy," Warren answered, "But it appears that she might have been strangled."

Annabeth walked quickly to the side and vomited into the sand. "We have another one!" a voice yelled from behind her.

Annabeth whirled around. There lying at the edge of the water about a mile from where Marissa's body was placed, floated a boy with dark hair. Scream filled the beach and Annabeth found herself retching in the sand once again. "What are those markings?" Warren asked suddenly.

While the officers fished the boy from the ocean, Warren had spotted strange markings on the boys stomach. Annabeth slowly trudged back towards the action, and spotted the markings. The boy had Chinese symbols carved into his abdomen. An officer checked Marissa's body and discovered she had Chinese symbols as well, but not the same symbols as the boys.

"Traitor and deceiver," Annabeth said in a trance.

All eyes immediately turned to stare at her. Annabeth cleared her throat and repeated, "Traitor and deceiver. That is what the symbols mean. Traitor is on the boy's body and deceiver on Marissa's."

"That isn't good," Warren answered, "It looks like we might have a serial killer on our hands."

Annabeth wanted to faint. A serial killer; there was no possible way a serial killer could be lurking in Murkwood. "Jake go back to the station and check surrounding counties for similar MOs," Warren ordered.

Annabeth thought this day couldn't get any worse. She was wrong however. "Darson," Warren asked, "Didn't you say you had a friend in the FBI who was a hot, up and coming star?"

Darson nodded and explained how his friend from school was the newest star in the FBI's behavioral analysis unit. "Call him," Warren ordered.

The FBI building was home to hundreds of bustling bodies. Percy Jackson had just hit his mark when he helped to find a man who had killed his entire family and tried to flee to Canada. Percy knew one high profile case would give him the edge he needed to move up higher on the FBI's food chain.

Percy sat at his desk and swirled around in his chair while doing paper work. He raked his hand through his black hair and wished someone would do this part of the job for him. He was about to leave for a lunch break when his phone began ringing. "Hello?" Percy asked, "Percy Jackson speaking."

"Hey Percy, this is Joe Darson."

Percy was surprised to hear from his high school buddy, "Hey what is going on man?"

"I am actually calling to ask you if you could consult on a case down here in Murkwood," Darson replied, "My chief thinks we might have a serial killer on our hands."

As awful as a serial killer was, Percy had never felt happier. His big break had just landed in his lap. "I will talk to my boss," Percy told Darson, "I will get back to you with an answer."

It didn't take much persuasion on Percy's end. He explained the situation to his boss and was able to get permission to take the case and had time to catch the 4:00 flight out of D.C to Florida. Percy smiled and inhaled the salty air from the ocean front. He felt at home here. He had only lived three counties over from Murkwood and it felt good to be so close to home again, even if it did involve a possible serial killer.

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Chapters
1. Prologue
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