The Ice-Cream Club

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Chapter 15 (CROSS-WORD puzzle)

EMBAFAGLNFGUAADUAUINNOCENTTLCTGBKGDNHGAORFHRIAEELUEUEASRMNICNSADSCATGHOCRAOITGNAUATTLSIAOBSTKIVSSVBLAIIOEIEELEDONNDSLEINDTSTALIONTRAPISTTAINTNAIVEEGOTOREYEN

DOWN:

BEWITCHING AND ENCHANTING 8. CURSED AND DAMNED

GOOD GIVING AND LOVING 9. ABOVE ALL

LUSTROUS AND SHINING 10. DARKENED

WICKED AND EVIL 11. HUMILIATION

OUTRAGEOUS AND VILE 12. MORTIFICATION

HAMMER OF ORDER 13. NOT ANALYSED

IN LOVE WITH THYSELF 14. LIKES TO HURT PEOPLE

ACROSS:

1. BLAMELESS 2. CHILDLIKE

3. IMPULSE/ GRAVING4. REVENGE

5. CONTAMINATED 6. RAPIST

7. SELF-SEEKER 8. RIPPED OUT

Somewhere in there the name of the REAL rapist and murderer of my daughter is hidden. Find it and maybe his life can be saved.

You know which phrase I hate most? It is: “Nobody is above the law.”

It’s the biggest fib the “Powers to be” is trying to sell the infamous, the poor and the defenceless.

The law had failed me so I’ve became a law onto myself.

You have 30 days. After that I cannot guarantee anyone’s safety.

The GAME is on.

Don’t waste time!

Yours sincerely,

Brenda Muller.

‘Clever lady,’ Monty said as he looked over the crossword puzzle, ‘no numbers in any blocks just “Down” and “Across” - makes it a little more challenging.’

‘So, we nearly lost two days already.’ Jim said pensively as he picked up the pen and wrote the date on the board, ‘that is if the thirty days started when you received this letter. I think this letter is the one that set things off! And let’s hope she’s not jerking us around’

’Well, she just said “after that she cannot guarantee anyone’s safety”,’ Deric read from the letter, ’so, yes, let’s say it’s in the time-frame we’ve got, hopefully not earlier. Will it be exactly on a specific day, or does it mean he will be fair game only after thirty days? That’s another question.’ Frown lines adorned his forehead, ’To tell you the truth, it feels to me like some kind of algebra-equation that must be solved. Don’t know if I understand exactly what she means. Let’s assume that that is the date,’ he pointed to the date Jim had written on the board, ‘and work from there.’

Deric scratched his chin as they all stared at the date.

’Monty, see what you can do with that,’ he pointed to the crossword, ‘Jim and I will find out about Benjamin Javid.’

‘See,’ Jim said in a taunting boy’s voice, ‘we can also work with a computer.’

Monty smiled.

Jim patted Monty on the head as if he’s a little puppy, ‘Only joking, gorgeous.’

‘Jim!’ Deric yelled, ‘quit monkeying around. Time is money!’

‘Not in this damn job!’ A choir of voices chimed in from the other office as Jim utter his favoured saying.

All laughed, but didn’t even look up from their work.

‘All stand-up comedians then?’ Jim said sarcastically with hands on hips as he stepped out the door.


They typed in Javid murder case and pulled up a case-file of six-month old Lulu Javid who was clubbed to death.

Murderers’R’us’, Deric said laconically.

Jim said distractedly “What?”

‘Our job-description,’ he made a circle to indicate the office or building, ’we’re Murderers’R’us, that’s basically our job,’ Deric said seriously, ’but child-murderers make my blood boil. In that regard I’m with Brenda Blignaut, let them have it in the worst possible way! How can anyone do that to a baby?’ He pointed to the photos courtesy of the police-archives.

They both stared with utter disgust at the crime-scene photos.

‘That child would’ve been, what, around twenty-something now, if…’ Jim said with a sad tone in his voice.

The small body ligaments were sprawled West, East and South, blood-spatter and brain-matter were everywhere. On the little white vest she was wearing, the nappy, the cot, the blanket. The source of all those spatters was a bloody mess where eyes, a nose and mouth should have been. A few strings of black hair were still clinging to what was left of the top of the little scull.

‘It’s awful,’ Deric said as he placed a hand over his mouth, ‘God, we’re cruel species, Jim!’

’You don’t have to tell me! But if Brenda Blignaut is right by saying that Javid was their “only regret”, it means that she thought, or knew somehow, he wasn’t the actual murderer.’ Jim swallowed hard at the lump in his throat. Deric was absolutely right! The sight of the murdered baby was unsettling and vomit-worthy.

‘You’re right, why would she have said that otherwise?’ His fingers scroll down, but the case-file was short and sweet. The baby-basher murderer came to a fair and abrupt end just one day after he allegedly murdered his own daughter. The cause of death was noted as a result of the head injuries that were inflicted upon him. There was nothing to indicate any foul-play according to the ME. He did have quite serious concussion as his wife whacked him over the head with the same murder weapon that he’d used on the baby, and although his death was sudden, it wasn’t totally uncommon. His timely death saved the tax-payers a lot of money and time, by way of lawyers and court cases and jail-time.

Deric grabbed his jacket, ‘Time for some digging, all the reports will still be in a box somewhere, even though the case was wrapped up quickly. I think they just put the absolute bare minimum in the data-base as this was 1992 and these are just back-ups, why write a longwinded report if the case was closed so quickly and easily.’

Jim followed without taking his jacket. ’It’s just the archives who’re going to see me, and if the archives don’t like to see me without a jacket, it can complain through the right channels in triplicate to the proper authorities. I’m not wearing a bloody jacket in this heat.’

Deric smiled.

In the lobby Deric and Patricia Mabone exchanged their usual, mutual, tongue-in-cheek complimentary remarks about each other. Jim gave his usual, utterly disgusted, comment about it, ‘God, people, give me a break, it’s too hot for this Tom-foolery. Can’t you two think of anything else to converse about? The weather for instance?’

‘You’re also not too bad looking Lieutenant Cruse, it’s just the thinning hair and the bad attitude that’s holding you back!’ Patricia shouted after him, and one could hear her hooped-earrings and bangles clinging. Her hearty laughter followed them out the door.

Jim was right. It’s not a day for a jacket. It was sweltering hot. The heat reminded him of Vincent Van Gogh’s picture, the one with the workers in the wheat-fields and those swirling sun rays. He left his jacket in the car. Like Jim said, who’s going to notice they’re not wearing jackets but a few dusty boxes on even more dusty shelves?

“Colours changing hue, Morning fields with amber grain, weathered faces lined in pain…” Don McLean’s “Vincent” sang through Deric’s head.

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