Midnight Owl (A Joe Leverette Mystery, Book 1)

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Amy Lang and Carole Sage walked into the precinct and told the officer at the desk they were here to see Detective Marsden. The officer called Marsden to let him know two women were here to see him “Okay, thanks,” Marsden said and hung up the phone with a puzzled look on his face.

“What?” Leverette asked.

“Two women are here to see me. I was only expecting one,” he said and stood up.

“Maybe she needed a ride,” Leverette said, “Or moral support.”

“Yeah, maybe,” Marsden shrugged his shoulders and headed to the front of the precinct. He saw Amy Lang and the other woman and walked up to them.

“Ms. Lang,” he said politely, “Please come with me. Your friend can wait here.” He pointed to a row of chairs along the wall. Carole went to sit down and Amy went with Marsden.

He led Amy into an interrogation room on the left where Leverette was waiting with the file.

“You remember Detective Leverette?” he asked her.

“Yes. Hello,” Amy said, getting more and more nervous. Marsden pulled out a chair for her to sit in and she sat down. He then went across the table next to Leverette. Both detectives noticed how uncomfortable she was getting.

“Now, Ms. Lang, we just want to go over what you already told us. And to ask if you’ve remembered anything since yesterday morning,” Marsden started in his soothing voice.

Amy wondered if the other detective was the bad cop. He looked like he could be.

“I just went to walk my dog and get a little exercise before going in to work,” she said swallowing hard.

“You don’t remember hearing or seeing anything out of the ordinary?” Leverette asked harshly.

Yup, he’s the bad cop, Amy thought.

“Other than the leg, no. I didn’t see or hear anything.”

Leverette put his elbows on the table and intertwined his fingers resting his chin on them. He stared at her for a moment looking directly into her eyes.

“Are you sure you’re telling us everything?” he asked. This made Amy shudder.

“I, I, I,” she couldn’t finish her thought. How was she going to tell them she saw the woman in her dream, and the killer, too?

“You what?” Leverette said and slammed his fists on the table top. This made Amy jump and start to cry.

Marsden offered her some tissues to wipe her eyes. “Please forgive my partner. He tends to get a bit rough during interviews.”

She wiped her eyes and tried to stop crying. For a few minutes she tried to get up the courage to tell them. So what if they thought she was a nut job, Carole was there to help her out.

“I, I had a dream the night before,” she started, not knowing if she could go on.

“What was the dream about, Ms. Lang?” Marsden asked in his gentle voice.

She looked up at him and avoided Leverette. Marsden made her feel like she could tell him everything.

“I saw the murderer in my dream,” she said at last. “But his face was covered except for his eyes.”

Marsden and Leverette exchanged glances.

“I knew you’d think I was crazy!” Amy yelled. “I saw the woman on a steel table all cut up. I saw that man put her left leg in a black plastic bag and tie it off. Then he looked me in the eye and shushed me. Then an owl hooted three times!” She burst into tears.

The detectives didn’t know what to think about this. They had worked with psychics on a couple cases but this was different.

“Why didn’t you tell us this before,” Marsden asked.

“The way you just looked at each other is why. You think I’m nuts!” she yelled. “Carole Sage can tell you. She saw the whole thing!”

“And who is Carole Sage?” Leverette asked trying to tone his voice down.

“She came in with me. She’s a sensitive or something. Carole saw the whole thing,” Amy started sobbing again.

Leverette bristled. This Carole Sage might be someone to talk to.

“We’ll be right back, Ms. Lang,” Marsden said and handed her the box of tissues.

In the hall they were baffled by what they just heard.

“A sensitive saw the whole thing?” Marsden asked. “I wonder if she’s part of it.”

“I don’t know. Maybe we should talk to her before we get to the other five,” Leverette said. “She might have just dreamed it like Ms. Lang.

“You know I don’t believe in that shit,” Marsden said. “Even though we had that psychic help us with a couple cases.”

“Yeah. She was good.”

“I still don’t believe,” Marsden said and went back into the interrogation room.

Amy had calmed down but her eyes were puffy from crying. She looked up at Marsden who smiled.

“Do you think we could talk to your friend?” he asked.

“Yeah. We talked about it last night,” Amy said. “She didn’t think it’d help but she said she would.”

“Okay. Come with me. I’ll show you to the ladies room so you can freshen up. Then I’ll go get her,” Marsden said and held the door open for her. He led her down the hall to the ladies room and then pointed to the front of the precinct where the chairs were.

“You can wait out there,” he said still smiling.

He headed to the waiting area to get Carole.

“Ms. Sage, could you come with me, please?” Marsden asked. Carole got up and went toward him.

“Where’s Amy?” she asked.

“She’s in the ladies room. She’ll meet you out here when we’re done.”

Marsden motioned for her to go down the hall and into the same room Amy had been in. Leverette was still there. He had called to have Gordon check Carole out and get the information to him as quickly as possible as soon as Marsden had led Ms. Lang out of the room.

It didn’t take Gordon very long. “Looks like a good ole girl. A couple parking tickets and one for speeding, but nothing criminal.”

“Okay, Gordon, thanks,” Leverette said and hung up the phone as Carole and Marsden entered the room.

Marsden held the chair out for Carole to sit in then rejoined his partner on the other side of the table. The three looked at each other for a bit.

“Ms. Lang said you have psychic powers or some such,” Marsden said.

Carole took a slight breath and began.

“I’m not psychic; I get feelings and visions,” she said steeling herself for the questions.

“Then what would you call yourself?” Marsden asked. Leverette just sat there watching and listening.

“I don’t know,” she thought for a second, “I think I’m a sensitive.”

Marsden looked at Leverette who was still looking at Carole. Carole became uncomfortable under the scrutiny.

Marsden looked back at Carole, who met his gaze.

“When did you see this – vision?”

“Yesterday, around noon,” she said waiting for THE question. “I was having my lunch.

Leverette sat quietly and this began to bother Marsden. Leverette was usually the one who played bad cop.

“Why don’t you tell us about this vision?”

“I didn’t see the actual murder,” she started, “The woman was on the table already cut up. A man was putting each piece into its own bag.”

“Can you describe the woman?” Leverette finally asked but gently. Marsden didn’t react to him but made a mental note to ask him about it.

“Did you see anyone else?” Leverette asked.

“Yes, there was a man there.”

“Can you describe him?”

“Not really. He was in scrubs or something and had a cap and face mask on. All I could see were his eyes.”

“What about the room? Do you remember anything you saw there?”

Carole felt odd. Were they making fun of her or seriously listening to what she was saying?

She thought for a minute.

“I saw the woman on a metal looking table and small tray table on the left.”

“Her left?” Marsden asked.

“Yes. Her head was toward me. The walls were an ugly gray and there was a light over the table she was on.”

Marsden was writing and then looked up at her. He noticed the concern in her eyes.

“Is something wrong, Ms. Sage?” he asked.

“You’re taking this all in rather well,” she said.

“We’ve worked with psychics before,” Leverette said. “They were a big help.”

“But I’m not a psychic…” she started to say.

“Yes we know. But you may just very well be the one who helps us solve this case,” Leverette said with a timid smile.

This made Carole blush and she smiled back.

“That’s all I saw,” she said and looked back at Marsden.

“Okay,” Marsden said, “We’ll be right back.” He got up but Leverette was still sitting and looking at Carole. He tapped his shoulder.

“Oh, I’m coming,” Leverette said feeling a little embarrassed.

The two men went out of the room and shut the door.

“What’s with you?” Marsden asked.

“What do you mean?” Leverette asked.

“Did you hear anything she said?”

“Yeah,” Leverette said and that grin came back.

Marsden looked at him surprised, and grinned himself.

“You like her?”

“No,” Leverette said and looked through the one way window. “Why?”

“You look like,” Marsden stopped to think of a word. “You’re smitten.”

“Bull shit,” Leverette said and looked at him not grinning anymore.

“You know the rules,” Marsden said matter-of-factly.

“What the hell are you talking about?” now Leverette was getting mad.

“You can’t ask her out until after the case is solved.”

“What makes you think I want to ask her out?” Leverette was really getting mad now.

Marsden just shook his head. He didn’t like getting Leverette mad and he knew he was pissing him off.

“You’re the one who believes in this nonsense,” Marsden said changing the subject, “Do you think she’s telling the truth?”

Leverette thought for a second.

“Does your gut tell you anything?” Leverette asked calming down a little.

“No.” Marsden said and looked through the window at Carole.

“I don’t think she’s lying about seeing the murder,” Leverette said looking through the window now. “I just don’t know if she’s not part of it. What about Ms. Lang?”

“I don’t think she had anything to do with it,” Marsden said, “Once she started talking about the dream I didn’t have that feeling she was hiding something anymore.”

“And you don’t believe in this ‘nonsense’,” Leverette said and turned back to him. “You’ve a touch of it yourself.”

“Bull shit,” Marsden said and went to open the door.

Carole looked up at the two men, waiting to see if she was going to be locked up.

“Ms. Sage, you and Ms. Lang can leave now,” Leverette said with that grin.

“Just stay in town in case we have more questions,” Marsden added shaking his head at his partner’s infatuation.

“Okay, thank you,” Carole said and got up and left the room. As she walked past Leverette she had a funny feeling but she didn’t know what it was about so she kept it to herself.

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