2 - Houston, We Have a Problem
Two days later.
Hailey had managed to get me a video call meeting with her boss, Samuel, who didn’t seem interested in hiring me at first until I dropped the fact that I’m working on the serial killer issue. After hearing my theory, the clues and the evidence he seemed quite impressed and told me that if I give him a story backed up by factual evidence he’ll hire me. In addition to that he had called into the police department in Houston, Texas and got me a meeting with the police chief.
I also had some calls with other employers and recruiters of media companies. Once I told them the same thing I did to Samuel every one of them had the same response, that they’d hire me as soon as I got them a detailed version of story. Maybe telling them about the case I’ve been following was a bad idea. Now I’m desperate to get any insight I can on D.S.
So, that’s where I’m heading right now. Since I didn’t have a job in California anymore there was no reason for me to keep renting there. I set off first thing in the morning today and took a flight to Houston. After getting out of the airport I catch a taxi before heading to a nearby motel that I’ll be staying at for the meantime.
The driver eventually pulls up to an old, decrepit looking building with people either smoking or drinking around it. I pay him before grabbing my things and walking inside. The radio’s blaring a little too loudly and I find myself ringing the bell a few times before an old woman pops out from the back.
“Hi! Is there a single bed available?” I ask but am quickly distracted by her noisily chewing her gum.
She grunts before nodding and giving me the details. I pay in cash before she hands me the room key and I haul my things upstairs. It’s on the second floor but still, because of how unfit I am I’m panting as I reach the door. Unlocking it I slide my things inside before glancing around. It’s average but it’ll do and besides I’m not going to stay long anyways.
I check the time and decide to walk to the department since I’m only fifteen minutes away from the center. Unzipping my bag I grab the folder I have prepared on the case and stuff it into my handbag before rushing out of the room. The old lady eyes me like a hawk as I fly past her but I pay no mind.
I mentally practice what I’m going to say to the police chief the entire way to the department. I’m nervous as hell because if I don’t get clearance then I’m stuck. And I despise feeling like I’m stuck in any situation. Sighing I glance at the maps open on my phone before looking up at the tall building I arrive at. It’s ginormous and the sheer size of it intimidates me but I suck it up before going inside.
I tell the receptionist about my appointment with the police chief before she instructs me to wait. I’m unable to stop my leg from bouncing as anticipation courses through my veins. The next ten minutes are spent looking around and sighing in boredom before she finally asks me to follow her. We walk into an elevator and go up six floors before the doors open to a silent hallway.
I look around discreetly before thanking her with a polite smile when she leaves me outside the office with ‘Police Chief. Kyle Wilson’ engraved on a gold plaque in big, bold letters. Knocking twice I hear a muffled “come in” and I step inside to see the familiar man I saw a picture of online. He has light brown hair that’s starting to grey slightly and blue eyes. There’s wrinkles on his forehead and around his eyes, he seems to be in his late forties. Overall he looks friendly enough as he stands and greets me with a wide smile.
“Elena Moretti, right?”
“Yes, how are you chief Wilson?” I ask as we take our seats and exchange pleasantries.
“I’m good. So, I’ve heard you’ve been following the case of the serial killer called D.S. quite closely, correct?” He asks and I nod in response. “And you were just fired from your job?”
Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! I think to myself in dread. “Yes but –”
“I’m sorry miss Moretti but I can’t grant you access to the investigation. We rarely work with journalists as it is and you are no longer affiliated with a company. I highly advise letting the police take care of this instead of trying to figure it out on your own.” He smiles politely which does nothing to relieve my agitation.
“Chief Wilson, I am so much more ahead of the police working on this case. I have solid evidence and theories –”
“It’s still a no, miss Moretti. You are an ordinary member of the public now and have no business being involved with this. I would appreciate it if you let us do our job and keep yourself safe.” He sighs heavily and I clench my folder in response. “Details of the investigation will be revealed once we catch the serial killer but until then this is strictly confidential.”
I know he’s right but I still can’t help but seethe silently in my seat. I decide to let it be for now and thank him for his time. We wrap up our meeting and I walk out of his office with a defeated sigh.
“As I said, miss...” He starts and I turn to face him slightly. “Keep yourself out of trouble and don’t get involved. It’s better if you let us solve it.”
“Understood, chief Wilson. Thank you.” I smile sickly sweet but it falls flat as soon as I turn.
I’ve always been reckless and irrational. His advice isn’t going to make me stop following the case of D.S. I’m going to figure out who it is and blow Samuel’s goddamn mind, I think to myself as I press the button for the lift. But a cork board boldly titled with ‘FBI Crime Associated Agents – FCAA’ captures my interest and I step closer to the office. I push up on my toes and peek to see a map of various locations around Texas. I assume these are where the FCAA teams operate from. Luckily there’s one in Houston not far from the department.
Then I spot portrait photos of what I guess are the members of the FCAA and my eyes widen when I spot a certain person. He looks to be in his late twenties. It’s quite apparent that he has a fit body and he oozes rugged masculinity. He has dark chocolate brown hair with emerald eyes and the perfect golden tan. In the picture he looks deadly serious and I find myself wondering how he would look with a full-blown smile.
“Roman Jackson.” I whisper before the ding of the elevator distracts me.
With one last look to the location and his picture I get into the lift and make my way downstairs. The receptionist smiles brightly and I nod before leaving the building. It’s already dark and I groan in frustration over how I booked a later flight rather than an earlier one. If only I wasn’t so lazy I would have checked out the location straight away!
Sighing I decide to leave it for tomorrow morning and settle for getting some food instead. I head to a nearby restaurant and order both a burger and a pizza for myself. The last thing I ate was the food on the plane which wasn’t much so I’m starving right now. While I’m eating I check the location on Google Maps and frown in confusion when it shows me a clothing store.
I almost panic thinking that I forgot the location or didn’t enter it correctly when it clicks. Of course, the FCAA wouldn’t want their locations to be obvious so they’re probably hidden in places like bars, restaurants, etcetera. Well I’ll certainly know tomorrow if it’s the right place or not, I think to myself as I finish my food.
Feeling much too full I decide to take a taxi back to the motel. The old bat grunts at me with narrowed eyes but I’m more surprised over the fact that she’s out at the counter this late. I mockingly salute her before hurrying upstairs, but not before hearing her grumble under her breath. Smirking I unlock the door and step inside.
I send a quick text to Hailey about today before taking a shower and changing into comfy pajamas. I double check the bed to see if it’s in a clean condition before slipping under the blanket. As soon as my head hits the pillow my eyelids start drooping of their own accord. A yawn escapes me as my phone vibrates somewhere underneath the covers.
I grab it to see her text. I don’t think Samuel can do much else. I wish I could help!
It’s alright, I think I might still stand a chance. I’ll update you tomorrow. I reply before putting my phone on charge and closing my eyes.
I end up drifting off to dreamland with Roman Jackson in mind where everything goes to shit and he ends up putting me in jail. Wild but I won’t be surprised if it comes true.