The cold steel handcuffs bite into the skin of her wrist, leaving an obvious harsh mark. It pains her literally and figuratively to have such an expressive way of communicating.
She turns to them, pleading with her eyes, but they ignore her attempts of appealing to their humane side. They protect and serve, whether that could be described as being just or fair, is a matter of deliberation. Everything is grey, the lines are blurred. They were not this muddled before; before he changed the game.
They lead her to an isolated room where a table and two chairs decorate the barren space. Agent Knightley flings her into the wooden chair and she visibly winces at the sudden and brutal contact. Her face feels sticky, the caked make-up is now smeared to the point that it felt uncomfortable to even move her face.
On the other side of the room is a plain mirror, but she knows better than to associate it with the aesthetic of the room. It is a two-way mirror, the ones she saw on the crime shows she binge watched with her mother, but never once did she think she would be experiencing the same type of treatment a measly criminal a is destined to experience.
She sees herself for the first time since the incident and it horrifies her. She inwardly remarks that she looks exactly how she feels. The more she looks at herself, the more she notices clues from the night, the whole night was painted on her appearance and it disgusted her. Her open disdain causes Agent Knightley to chuckle and the sound tears her gaze away from the prominent mirror on the other side of the room to meet the agent's unamused expression. There was not one trace of humor in his eyes; just disappointment.
'I'm sorry', she thinks, 'I tried'.
Detective Martinez is sitting directly opposite her, obstructing her view of the large mirror. She feels grateful and she can't pinpoint why. Maybe not being able to see her reflection would stop reminding her of what she did and eventually it might stop reminding her of him. But that was impossible, because she wouldn't be here if it were not for him. Did she regret it? Maybe. Did she regret him? No. She could not tell the detectives that. She might as well sign her death warrant since she is not innocent and they know that.
Detective Martinez is sitting with his arms crossed over his chest sympathy projecting off of his features. Ah, good-cop-bad-cop.
She opens her mouth to say something but the detective lifts his hand to halt her attempt and then he leans forward. He is directly under the blinding light that hangs above them. This is ironic for the fact that it casts a shadow on his features, features that show his age. Crow's feet, laugh lines, frown lines and deep bags under his eyes that must come with the territory.
Jack Martinez is a well-rounded man have the brain and brawn of a 20 year old, all occupying the body of a 50 year old man. He is an army vet and not just a regular veteran, a lieutenant of his troop. So he was good at what he did, but he had a family to worry about so he traded his tours for badge and a desk. He gave it up for his wife and Lena, the people she considered a second family. He gave it up for the people he loved and she could relate.
"Look, before you say anything, I am going to warn you. I am drained of all possible energy and I have you to thank for that. A goddamn car chase, in this town? Why would - you know what nevermind. All I want is for this night to be over. Help me, help you", he negotiates.
She nods, acknowledging his words. He takes out a recorder, the old fashioned ones that only record audio onto tapes. His commonly colored brown eyes look directly into hers. She sees the exhaustion, the overall pleading for her to be innocent or for the night to be over. She banked on the latter, but she could not be sure.
His mouth is set in a grim line that twitched in a manner that was too small to notice, but his position under the light and his close proximity to her made it impossible for her not to notice.
He pushes the button, the only button with the colossal red circle on it. The tape recorder's gears start spinning. She exhales. Now or never.
"This is Detective Martinez with the Haven Grove Police Department. It is 02:43 on Tuesday the 22nd of December. In the room I have with me Agent Knightley with the -", Detective Martinez coughs and mutters the rest of the sentence.
" I also have Saraia Raven James, 23 year old, female, who knew and was with the deceased not long before T.O.D.", he speaks softer at the latter part of sentence, knowing he hit a fresh wound with a flaming cane.
Her throat clogs up and tears tickle her tear ducts. With all the crying she did tonight she thought she would have fainted due to dehydration.
"Ms. James, why don't you start with how you knew the deceased?". And so it begins.