The picture had me worried. There were no finger prints. I had used my nails but whoever had it had used gloves.
Like a professional.
I could have an assassin after me. It would not be the first time. Yet assassins try to get a job done fast. In and out. Save time. Get money. Be untraceable. That picture was taking a year ago. Only big jobs can take a year. I was one woman.
As far as anyone was aware I was Rose Blossom. End of story. As far as anyone is aware Vivian Moon had ran away twelve years ago. The only people who would remember me should be my family - who knew that I was safe and well through phone calls and e-mails - and my friends who truly believe I am dead. I miss them.
I would have to worry about all that later though. I was sick. With food poisoning.
Whoever said that eating healthy was good for you better stay away from dark alleys for a while.
I was bedbound. Or bathroom floor bound. The floor was cold and hard and just horrible. I had to run in here this morning and almost fell on the slippery floor. Now it was just mocking me.
Matt gave me a glass of water and left to get groceries for the both of us. I was lying on the floor dying. He was trying to be optimistic saying that the food poisoning was just a sign that me on a diet was just stupid.
I threw the glass at him. It missed. Unfortunately.
I made Matt take the gun as a precaution. Whoever knew about me would know about him. I could kick someone in the head and knock them unconscious. Matt can run and scream holy murder.
Though if someone truly knew how dangerous I could be then there was a good chance that I would be in some serious trouble. Again.
We were watching a film. Some sort of horror. Now we were both sick. Sometimes I wonder why I let Matt do this case with me.
Turns out that the picture would have been taken from across the road where there was a small park. From a tree.
I searched the park and the tree top to bottom. I found small scrapes that could have come from a shoe. It was made recently.
Male boots at around a size 8. The boots would be from a hiking store. The male is right handed as the scrapes were mostly to the right of the tree.
The phone rang. This was one bad thing about being a private detective. You had no office hours so people just phoned whenever they felt like it.
"Hello?" Matt answered. He frowned.
"I suppose that is good news. We will be over tomorrow after lunch. Goodbye." Matt knew better than to make me work early in the morning.
"What is it?" I asked as Matt set the phone down.
"Your friend James is awake. We are going to interview him tomorrow after lunch. By the way, do you remember that licence plate number?"
"Charles needs it. He said that he has no other leads right now."
"Hasn't he seen James yet?" I wondered.
"No. He is away for the week. That's why he asked us." Great. So if he was here he would do it himself!? Men!
My head was pounding but at least the food poisoning is over. Matt and I headed for ward 13 room 201. As far as we were aware James is fine. Not a lot of blood but fine. This was beginning to sound like a twisted vampire book.
I loved vampires but only if they stay on the page.
The hospital was confusing. In a fire you would die of exhaustion instead of flames. Or whiplash.
The corridor was long and white. People walked - or crawled - by in gowns with drips. It was depressing.
"You okay?" Matt asked as he put an arm around my shoulder for comfort. I leaned into him.
"Yes. It's just that the last time I was in a hospital was when my doctor said that my baby was gone." I looked down at the light blue tiled floor.
I knocked before entering the room.
"Hey Vivian. I thought you ran away." James said when we went in. Thank god we were alone. I never told him at the cafe. The only reason we spoke was because he moved here.
"Hey, I'm Matt." They shook hands.
"Do you mind telling me about where Ro... um Vivian is from?" He asked. It sounded weird when he said my name.
"Sure. Vivian is from Rome in Italy. We grew up there."
"Really?" Matt looked at me. This was going to haunt me later. It took me months to lose my Italian accent.
James had light blue eyes and brown/blonde hair. He was one year younger than me.
"Yes but I heard what happened and came over. Is it okay if you call me Rose?" I asked.
"Like your twin Rose?"
"Yes." I nodded. Oh dear.
"Twin!?" Matt shouted.
"Later and keep your voice down." I threatened. Matt flinched. I knew what my face looked like. My teeth would be bared and my eyes would be so narrowed that they would looked black. The only thing missing would be a snarl.
"Do you mind telling us what happened?" I asked James as we sat down. He looked terrible. So pale.
"A man grabbed my from behind and covered my face with a pillow case. He stabbed me so many times and I was in so much pain. I thought it would never end. Then he choked me until I collapsed. I thought I was dead. I was so scared. I was beyond scared. I was terrified..." James trailed off. He was shaking. I got up and hugged my friend. Whoever did this was going to pay. With blood.
Now it was personal.