Celetial Summoner: An Esoteric Paranormal Suspense Thriller

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Chapter Twelve: Revenge, Unfortunately, Isn’t in the Manual

Chapter Twelve: Revenge, Unfortunately, Isn’t in the Manual

John was finally sleeping fine. He had found his suspect, and found a way to legally keep him on proverbial house arrest, so his dream of rescuing damsels was enjoyable, except it was about to become prophetic.


Who was ringing John’s phone at this hour?


John was forced from his dream into reality so he picked up.

“What?” he asked in a stupor whoever was calling.

“It’s Roark, John. We have a problem with Simin.”

“What happened to Simin?!” John became fully awake.

“She’s at Lady’s Pass Hospital. She was beaten badly,” Roark said.

“Who beat her?!”

“An intruder entered her apartment, and assaulted her. She’s conscious now, but she aint goin’ on a date anytime soon,” Roark revealed.

“I’ll be there in fifteen! See ya there, Chief.” John hang up the phone, and got dressed in his sweats. He got in his car, and drove to Lady’s Pass.

Roark stood in front of Simin’s bed. She wasn’t the dexterous detective that he knew. She portrayed the horribly wrecked woman.

Simin was littered with purple and black bruises all over her body. It looked as if she was struck with an aluminum bat repeatedly.

“Is john coming?” she asked.

“I just called him ten minutes ago. He said that he’d be here in fifteen,” Roark said.

“I’m a mess, Dave. I probably won’t be in tomorrow.” She gave a weak smile.

“I’ll give you a comp day, Kid. You need your rest.”

“Not yet. John’ll be here soon,” Simin said. “I think I know who beat me.”

“Who beat you?!” Roark was surprised at her statement.

Just then, John came through the door.

“Are you okay, Simin?!”

“Hey partner. He knocked me out, I’m a little worse for wear, but I’m a tough bitch.” She gave another weak smile.

“Don’t speak, you’ve been through a lot,” John said.

“Marvin Predjin beat me.”

“We have a team watching him right now. He hasn’t been out of his house at all today,” John said.

“He had on a black ski mask, but I could recognize that African accent anywhere. He got out of his house,” Simin said.

“Did Milner or Yeggs call for anything other than to check in?” John asked Roark.

“No discrepancies, John. Just a routine check in,” Roark said.

Simin interjected. “I don’t care what they reported, John. Marvin didn’t kill me because I live alone, and didn’t have a boyfriend. He told me that while he beat me with a Billy club so you could see how damaged he made me. This just got personal.”

John looked at Simin, and saw how badly she was beaten. The rage began to manifest in his core. He was with Simin for years, and always protected her from all the dangers of homicide. He felt as if Marvin had slapped him again. He knew Milner wouldn’t allow air to pass in his surveillance, so Marvin had to be a wizard.

“I’m gonna get him, Simin. That was wrong what he did to you,” John said.

Roark spoke up. “Look, John, you have to calm down.”

John spun to Roark while pointing at Simin.

“This was because I found him, Dave! He beat Simin unconscious because I found him! Playtime is OVER!”

“If you’re going to assault this guy, you’ll be suspended while he walks!” Roark vociferated.

“I won’t assault Marvin, but I will make him pay!”

“We can’t even be sure that it was Mister Predjin who assaulted Simin! Milner didn’t report anything, and Simin didn’t see his face! We’re playing with reasonable doubt here!” Roark exclaimed.

“Our dual killer just told Simin he wouldn’t kill her because she lived alone! What else do you need?!” John became angry.

“One of two things, John. Either legitimate, irrefutable evidence, or a confession!” Roark matched John’s anger.

John was incredibly steamed. Marvin ran roughshod all over the police department, and personally him. He was a detective that wouldn’t let it happen anymore.

“I’ll get him to confess, Dave. He’ll spill his guts before I have to,” John said with a dark prophetic menace.

“What are you going to do?” Roark asked.

“Just make him confess. Now how I make him tell, you may not want to ask to save your career with plausible deniability. I may be late coming in today.”

“I know you’ve been a detective for seventeen years. I also know that you could cut a lady in half, and have drinks with her after the show. Just don’t screw up by revealing your tricks. We’re law enforcement, and one of our own was damaged severely by a lawless individual. Show him the consequences of his actions. Law enforcement solidarity--I’m in your corner.” Roark abstractly gave John permission.

“Gotcha, Chief,” John said. “Get better, Simin. I have it from here.”

“I know you’re suffering from battered woman’s syndrome, and want to make him eat ground up lightbulbs. Just don’t let him laugh at you from the grave when you’re facing life in prison being constantly raped by the convicts you put there.” Simin warned him.

“Look, Simin, I didn’t bust my ass at the academy to graduate, and let a criminal beat me. My criminal protocol exam will haunt me for the rest of my doomed life if I let that happen,” John said. “As Dave said, I know how to cut ladies in half.”

He put his hand on her’s to say good bye, shook Roark’s hand, and left for Marvin’s confession.

“Want some more coffee, Sarge?” Yeggs asked.

“I’m about to bust my bladder, Mel. I’m good.” Milner declined.

“I told you this guy won’t go anywhere.”

“And I told you that we’re the reason he didn’t go anywhere,” Milner said. “We sit well, and don’t let the baby drown in the tub while we’re making out with our girlfriend downstairs.”

Milner was satisfied with the shift they were about to finish in three hours. Nothing happened because of their presence. That was when he heard the knock on the van side, and was about to be surprised.

Milner looked on the monitor, and saw John. He opened the van side door.

“Hey John. We’re holding down the fort.”

“Your suspect went AWOL, Remy. You held down an empty fort!” John stepped in the surveillance van rather heated.

“What are you talking about, John? Mister Predjin never left his home! We put cameras on both entrances, and motion sensors underneath every window! We didn’t even take shifts! Mel’s been keeping me awake with his girl problems! He didn’t get past us!”

“He got past you, Remy! He beat Simin unconscious last night! She’s recovering at Lady’s Pass Hospital from her Billy club contusions!” John yelled.

“I don’t think it was Mister Predjin that caused Detective Khouri’s bruises, Sir,” Yeggs said. “We’ve been here all night, and he never left.”

“Then why was he able to tell Simin he wasn’t going to kill her, and just beat her to send me a message, Genius?!” John exploded at Yeggs.

Milner defended Yeggs.

“Mel’s right, he didn’t go anywhere! We would’ve seen that!”

“Then Predjin can fool the police escort accompaniment because Simin heard his African accent through that ski mask, and I don’t think faking an accent is an attribute to a crack head gangbanger!”

That was when they all heard the rapping on the van door through their yelling.

John went to the door, and opened it in the morning dusk. Marvin was standing there in sweats.

“I was taking out my garbage, and heard a commotion coming from this van. Is everything okay?”

John peered at Marvin with unbridled hatred, and almost punched him in the nose. Then his training harnessed his rage.

“Everything’s fine, Mister Predjin. We were just discussing the relief assignments.”

“Where is Detective Khouri?”

John knew Marvin had known where Simin was. He put her there.

“Detective Khouri is… incapacitated for a bit.”

“My goodness. I hope nothing is wrong. She seemed like a delicate woman.” Marvin knew John knew what he did, and wanted to rub in his vile actions. “When you see her again, please tell her that I hope she becomes capacitated soon.”

“Where were you last night?!” Yeggs blurted across the van.

“Why, I was watching a singing competition, got tired, and went to sleep. You police know that I never left my home.”

“That’s what you want us to think, but Detective Khouri heard your accent as you beat her!” Yeggs kept jumping the gun. John knew that Mel wasn’t a detective, but the kid could have a little finesse about himself.

“I never studied prestidigitation, Officer, so I don’t know what you think I did, but I didn’t do it. You did your jobs, and protected me from the killer. You should be commended on your diligence,” Marvin said, and tuned to John. “Detective Khouri was beaten? Oh my word. It could be the killer going after you, Detective Chandless. He may be attacking anyone that is close to you. I’d watch out if I were you.”

John felt the undertone of Marvin’s warning loud and clear. He just didn’t have the concrete evidence to arrest him. Damned concrete evidence.

“Oh I’m watching my back, Mister Predjin. If he tries to strike again, I WILL be ready.” John gave back that defensive undertone.

“Well I just emptied my trash. I’m about to go for my run. You can follow me in the van. I won’t run in the park so you won’t be in conflict with your order because I don’t think you want to run with me.”

Marvin began to jog in place so Milner, and Yeggs could turn their van.

Milner started up the van, and began to turn.

“He’s lying, and we can’t prove it, dammit!” Milner exclaimed.

I know you’re not a detective yet, Yeggs, so don’t try to be one,” John said, “You showed Mister Predjin our hold card. That was why he gave me that concealed warning.”

“I’m sorry, Sir, but he was just making us look stupid!” Mel became frustrated.

“Right now, we just have to regroup. Get some sleep, and we’ll strategize later tonight. Drop me off at my car, Remy. We’ll get him.”

Milner dropped John off at his car, and began to follow Marvin.

As they disappeared around a corner, John went home to get some rest from his harrowing night.

John sat at George Stein’s Diner drinking his coffee that morning. He was too frustrated to sleep. Marvin was getting to him. That manipulative ass was aggravating him. He evaded him for weeks killing and taunting him. Then when John found him, he didn’t have the legitimate evidence to arrest him, although, he knew Marvin was the dual killer.

Anezka’s help was invaluable, but legally it was nothing. John walked into Marvin’s layer without a sword, and Simin got torched. This was the main reason he never tried a psychic profiler. They helped the police, but society and the courts didn’t believe in them. The majority rule was kicking his ass at that time. He contemplated while sipping his coffee.

He had to tell Anezka what happened to Simin. He knew she would be upset, but she was part of this investigation, and he was sure Roark told Bellagio so it was his turn to be the bearer of the bad news.

He finished his coffee, placed a few bills under the cup, and left the diner to drive to Anezka’s house. He had hoped she was an early bird.

He parked in front of her house, and walked up to her door. He rang her bell, and hoped he didn’t intrude at such an early hour. It took a minute, but Anezka was awake, and opened her door.

“I expected you sooner, John,” she said.

“Why did you expect me at all?”

“I’m psychic. I felt you aura’s damage very early this morning. I knew you’d come, and that is why I didn’t jog this morning,” she said.

John had forgotten Anezka’s gift was universal. They had done way more than just touch, so she knew more about him soulfully than he did.

“I sense your desperation and anger, John, what happened?” she asked.

“Simin and I went to Marvin Predjin’s house because we thought we had evidence other than yours to arrest him legally, but it was weakly circumstantial so it was no dice. I put a twenty four hour detail on him to keep him from killing, and to give me time to think.

Somehow he eluded the surveillance team, and beat Simin with a Billy club in her apartment. Now since he eluded the police detail I have nothing on him physically. I know he did it, and he knows that I know he did it. His arrogant look is assaulting my brain like an ice pick,” John explained the events that happened since she pegged their perp.

“Marvin Predjin is dangerous, John. He thinks he’s saving people from a debauchers life here through their deaths,” Anezka said.

“If he truly believes that, when I arrest him, he could get off on an insanity plea.”

“Just do your job. Let the lawyers fight over him,” she said.

“All of this procedure, weak circumstantial evidence, and technicalities are making this an expensive almost get your man,” John said and began to plead with her. “Please let me shoot him, Anezka. He’s gonna get away with beating Simin to a pulp on a technicality, and a bullet costs way less than a trial.”

“The loss of your soul comes with that cheap bullet, and your soul costs much more than a trial.”

Anezka always made John think. Frustrated rage was guiding him at that time, and she had the gift of quelling the beast. She was a very wise woman that didn’t let him stoop to Marvin’s insanity level.

“I know you have been up since that devastating information. You need rest to keep trying to beat this, and a tired body will not be helpful. You do not have to drive home. You can sleep here. I want to keep an eye on you anyway because of your fragile state. I lost Hugo because I was too weak to be assertive with him. I will not lose you.” She touched his cheek.

“Anezka I… thank you.” John felt comfort in her touch. “I have to call in, and tell Roark I won’t be in today, but I think after the call he gave me in the middle of last night, he’ll understand.”

John gave Roark a call to tell him he had to rest, and Roark was surprised that he even called. Roark knew what had transpired at Marvin’s residence, and knew John had to cool down, and rest. John told him that he’d be at the surveillance van that evening to consult with Milner to find out a way to apprehend Marvin. Roark was fine with that, and told John to get some rest.

John clicked off his phone as Anezka came in the living room with some pajamas.

“Hugo was shorter than you, but I think these will fit.”

“You still keep his clothes? Hasn’t that been about two years ago?” he asked.

“It was four years ago. I was in depression two years after his death, and then I couldn’t donate his clothing to charity so they still fill his side of the closet. They are clean, and pressed. My maintenance of his clothing helped my depression. It gave me the fallacy of him coming home after working in his office.”

John knew Anezka was compassionate, but now he also understood she could have a normal coping mechanism. He took the pajamas.

“How tall was he?”

“One hundred seventy two centimeters, oh I’m sorry. He was five eight.”

John was a bit apprehensive about putting on his little brother’s pajamas, but then he thought pajamas weren’t form fitting, and elastic should give.

“Thank you, Anezka. I can make these work,” he said.

“They aren’t too small?” she asked.

“Unless he slept in a bodysuit, I think they’ll stretch. Where’s your bathroom?”

Anezka turned, and began to walk upstairs.

“Follow me. The guest washroom is down here. My personal washroom is up here. I will give you a towel to dry yourself after your shower.”

Anezka wasn’t a college student wanting him to spend the night. She was an accommodating woman that felt how heavy his stress was weighing on him, and wanted to make him comfortable.

John went upstairs to Anezka’s bathroom, and Anezka gave him a towel to dry himself. As she was in the bed room, he turned on the shower, disrobed, and got in.

Anezka took his clothing off of the sink counter as he was in the shower, went downstairs, and put them in the washing machine. It felt good taking care of her betrothed again.

John got out, dried, and put on the pajamas. They were tight, but he made them fit. He came out of the bathroom, and saw his pad, pen, wallet, and cellphone on the dresser.

Anezka came into the bedroom, and saw John in the tight pajamas.

“Are you comfortable, John? Your other clothes are in the wash.”

“I’m more than fine. I don’t even set up my accessories that way.” He gestured to the dresser.

“That’s because you haven’t had a woman around to set them up for you for a few years now. You probably scramble in the mornings trying to fish them out of yesterday’s pants pockets.” She smiled.

“You know, I was very distraught coming to talk to you about Simin, but you are easing my mind. I feel better.”

“You are welcome, John. You cannot beat him when you are troubled. Simin will be fine. I have been feeling her essence for years now, and she is a resilient woman. She may be out of commission for the rest of this case, but you can, and will arrest him,” she said as she pulled back the covers from her bed. “You must rest to arrest him though. I want you sharp, not dull.”

John agreed with her actions, and got in her bed.

Anezka looked at him as she tucked him in. He fell asleep right away. That night was very taxing to him. He just didn’t know how fatigued he was. His body had taken over his mind when Anezka relaxed it. She just let him sleep.

John slept until 3. His eyes shot open from the previous events. The Simin beating, and Marvin giving him that covered warning. Who did he think he was? John was a detective that had the authority to arrest him, but with the proper evidence. Marvin knew that, and used the system to his advantage. John was a detective who was stifled by the system that he worked for. That was his conundrum that assaulted his motivations.

Anezka came in with coffee, and saw John just looking up at the ceiling.

“Good afternoon. Did you sleep well?”

John snapped from his contemplation, and looked at Anezka.

“You let me sleep, and didn’t make any noise, thank you,” he said.

“You were so gone, I ran the vacuum downstairs, and listened to sock hop. You were on another planet while you slept. I just hope the residents from there were cordial to you.” She smiled.

“I can’t believe I was that tired,” he said. “I just didn’t realize last night’s events had demanded from me so harshly.”

“Even when you go to work, you need adequate sleep. Your pattern had become altered, and your body does not like change.”

John had thought about what she said, and realized who better to explain your body’s physiology than a person intimate with the essence of your body.

John felt the tightness of his pajamas, and began to unbutton the top.

“I have your clothing on the ironing board. Let me go and get them.” Anezka left the room to get his clothes.

John sipped his coffee, and felt different with someone taking care of him again. He knew he liked Anezka, and thought this was just a passing fancy for her. She had been in a very long marriage before, and he didn’t think he could ever live up to Hugo. His self-doubt was unfounded in Anezka’s eyes. She wasn’t promiscuous in the least, and she never wanted to live that way. She thought she would just die alone, so John actually surprised her. She hadn’t thought of any other man other than Hugo, but John had definitely surprised her.

She walked back into the bedroom with his clothing pressed, and gave them to him as he sat his cup down.

“I hope the smell of lilacs doesn’t bother you, it was the only detergent I had.”

“Thank you, Anezka, and the smell of lilacs is more than fine.” He took his clothes, and started to go to the bathroom to change.

Anezka stopped him by saying, “Hugo never changed in the washroom.”

John stopped, and turned to her.

“Hugo was your husband.”

“Hugo was also my lover, and I think you have taken over that position now.” Anezka had that look about her. That… approval look.

John was in a precarious position. He did like her, and she did press his clothing. Why not just take the leap of faith.

“Simin has already told me never to assume, so what are you telling me?”

Anezka walked up to him sultrily, and began to take off his pajama top.

“Sometimes you assumptions are correct. Get dressed here. The bedroom is warmer than the washroom anyway.”

She kept driving, and she was going to take him to a better place.

John threw his clothes on the bed, and peeled off those tight pajamas. He looked for his briefs to put them on quickly, but couldn’t find them.

Anezka took them out of her dress, and began to wave them at John.

“Are you looking for these?”

John walked up to her, and began to take them, but she put them out of reach.

“They will cost you a kiss.”

Yep, she was driving.

John smiled, and gave her a deep kiss. As Anezka became lost in his lips, he snatched his briefs from her hand.

“That should be enough toll for my underwear, dear.”

“You tricked me, you scoundrel,” she said as she smiled at him.

“You’re trying to get my mind off of my depressed feeling, thank you.”

Anezka kept smiling. “You got me, Detective. Není zač, you’re welcome.”

John grinned as the put on his briefs. Anezka walked to the bathroom door.

“I do not have any men’s shaving equipment, but I kept Hugo’s Hai Karate after shave, and Drakkar Noir cologne. You can pick one.”

John had wondered why Hugo, being as wealthy as Mature Page had made him, didn’t have Atelier, or Penhaligon’s Endymion colognes. Then he realized that simplicity was who they were. They just wanted to be comfortable, not extravagant.

“I’ll take some Drakkar please.”

Anezka went to the medicine cabinet, and grabbed the Drakkar bottle. She walked over with some baby powder, and the bottle.

“I don’t think you would want to smell like lilacs when you leave from my antiperspirant. Have some baby powder.”

He took the baby powder, and cologne.

“Do you have lilac perfume?” he asked as he added the powder, and cologne.

“Yes I do, why do you ask?”

“Don’t think I’m creepy, but I smelled it on your dress when I lifted you that day in the park to touch that camera,” he admitted.

“Now, John, when you picked me up that day, your essence transferred to me, and I already knew of your intentions. When you returned to my house for “police business”, I knew your essence didn’t lie to me, and I wanted to move our relationship along quicker that your nervousness would allow so that was why I was so forward that day.”

At first it was strange Anezka had known even before he did, but then again, she was a psychic who could read auras, and your aura was an open book. Of course she knew. Why wouldn’t she?

“You had me pegged even before I thought about it,” he said.

“It was just amusing to me of how you tried when you decided I was what you wanted. You were cute with your tactics. I let you think you were making progress. You just didn’t know that I was already at the finish line with your trophy in hand.”

John finished getting dressed, and Anezka tied his tie for him. He didn’t need her for that, but he had been doing it constantly for years, and he felt like Anezka needed her practice. This experience could be a permanent one. Only Anezka knew if it would be permanent, but that was female intuition, not her psychic gift.

As John finished, and looked like the detective to catch the predator, he gave Anezka a kiss, and left for his house.

John got home, and went for his deodorant. Baby powder was nice in a pinch, but good old deodorant lasted longer. He dialed the precinct to get Roark on the phone.

“Captain Roark, how may I help you?”

“It’s me, John, Chief. I’m home. Did anything happen in my case today?”

“We’re just monitoring him, John. Laras, and Vualdon have been checking in routinely with no results. They are thinking that Mister Predjin is a lonely, boring guy,” Roark said.

“That’s because we took away his hobby of killing, Chief. Milner’s team will be there at six so I’ll meet them there,” John said. “You need the rest that I got, Chief.”

“I watch over everybody John. I had to be here to let everybody know Simin didn’t get cursed by a warlock, and she’d be back. But you are right though. I’m dragging a tank right now. I’m about to go home, and become unconscious for eight or ten hours. Contact me tomorrow with your findings.”

“Gotcha, Chief, get some sleep I might need you tomorrow,” John said.

John clicked off his phone, and just sat in his living room contemplating how Marvin was besting him at every turn. He decided to go into cram for exam status with his contemplation.

Marvin wasn’t a magician, and he definitely wasn’t supernatural. Then John had a daunting thought assault his person.

Anezka’s paranormal, and you didn’t believe in her methods at first so why not take into account Marvin’s pretense for supernatural ability?

John was an accomplished detective. He detected factual occurrences, not jump at crypto prima facta notions. Anezka was inadvertently muddling his mind with her gift, and his caring for her.

John was very staunch about his job not interfering with his personal relationship, but he never thought that his personal life would taint his job. Anezka was definitely a witch because she was putting a spell on him.

His mind was wandering about his new interest instead of his daunting nemesis. He had to focus on Marvin. After Simin’s beating, Marvin was truly focusing on him.

In order to defeat your opponent you have to know your opponent was what John thought as he went to his computer and began to search for Mister Predjin. John was a detective that patrolled the gritty New York streets for the beginning of his law enforcement career. He knew how to turn the tables.

As Marvin’s online information popped up, John began to learn of his obscure opponent.

“Our parameter is secure, Sarge,” Yeggs said to Milner as Milner pulled out his thermos of hot soup, and monitored the panel.

“I think we need to check it again. From that Simin beating, I understand why John exploded this morning. I would lose it too if my partner was assaulted like she was, and I knew who did it, but couldn’t do anything about it. I know John was a heartbeat away from shooting Predjin in his smug face this morning,”

Mel knew that police work was going to just be a job to him, but listening to Milner’s words again kick started that exciting adventure aspect once more.

“So now you believe that we messed up yesterday?” he asked Milner.

“John’s been on the force since seventy eight. You were probably in diapers when he was collaring wise guys. He can smell a covert threat a mile away, and if he said Predjin threatened him then I believe the experience from a New York cop more so than me, a Leavenworth sergeant that hasn’t pulled his gun on anybody in ten years. Yeah, we messed up somehow.” Milner came to that sad conclusion.

Mel looked at his monitor, and saw John walking to the service van.

“Hey, Sarge, Detective Chandless is coming to the van, and he doesn’t look as pissed as he was this morning.”

Milner opened he van door to greet John.

“Hey, John, I saw Simin, and I believe we messed up yesterday.”

“Predjin was smarter than us yesterday, Remy. I think I found out how he slipped away,” John said as he entered the van. “You messed up as much as an audience messes up by not pegging a magic trick from Copperfield the first time they see it.”

“You know I’m gonna ask you how he did his trick,” Milner said.

“How do all magicians do their tricks? You were intently looking where he wanted you to look. Remember when he said that you should be commended for your diligence? That was his tell. He was just too arrogant to not tout his success of misdirecting you.”

“We have his entire house locked up tight with surveillance. If he farts and waves it outside, we’ll see it,” Milner got defensive.

“Exactly, Remy. You did your job with the surveillance of his house and didn’t even think about his fruit shed.”

Remy thought about it, and John was right. They made very sure Predjin didn’t leave the house, but his fruit shed never came into play.

“Begging your pardon, Sir,” Mel intervened. “That fruit shed is about a hundred feet away from the house that we have motion sensors surrounding. How did he get out from there, teleport?”

“One of these days you’ll learn criminals can skin cats in multiple ways, Mel.” Milner said. “We have him sewn tight above ground with the house exactly where he wanted us to look. We can’t see what happens underneath his house.”

As Mel was figuring out how Predjin did it, John backed up his speculations.

“I was incredibly heated at Marvin this morning, and that heat clouded my thinking. I went to Anezka Kranz’ house before I went home just to vent, and tell her about Simin. She relaxed me, and told me to sit and think about how Marvin did it so I went home, and got on the computer to check his background, the same thing that he probably did to us. Through the Leavenworth police network, I saw all the history of any activity of that house for ten years, and three years ago, Predjin requested schematics of the underground pipes, and infrastructure wiring from city hall. People that want to dig holes to plant trees or make in-ground pools do that in order not to puncture a line or get inadvertently shocked. I don’t see any planted trees or new pools in Marvin’s back yard, and his fruit shed doesn’t have any indoor plumbing, I saw inside when he was trying to misdirect us from his suspected basement. On that schematic request he wrote down he worked at Cercian Construction in Los Angeles. That means he knows how to dig holes because in order to make larger buildings, you have to anchor them with pylons as deep as the building is tall. I know, I took Urban Planning in high school.

I looked up what buildings Cercian Construction were contracted to do, and do you remember that Ragin’ Jai-Alai Sports Center?”

Remy nodded, and saw how lost Mel was.

“You’re not that young, Mel. That center was built about fourteen years ago. It’s LA’s equivalent to New York’s Madison Square. I know you know about that infamous Woodstock-like concert that happened there.”

“You’re talkin’ about Metal-palooza where the cops arrested Ripping Scabs! I know that place,” Mel said.

John was sure they knew what the place was so he continued.

Digging pylon holes is grunt work, and I’m speculating that Predjin was one of the grunts. That means he knows how to dig underground. I bet there’s a tunnel he built from his house to that shed. While you were intently monitoring his house, he slipped out his shed free to drive to Simin’s apartment to beat her within an inch of her life.” John had to begin to think instead of just getting frustrated.

“How did you figure that out, Sir?” Mel asked.

“John graduated from the academy in seventy eight, and walked a beat in New York to cut his teeth. He became detective through experience, and I think he’s pretty good at detecting, Mel,” Remy said. “He has more commendations’ than you have years on the force.”

“What are we going to do with this information, Sir?” Mel asked John.

“Knowledge is power, Mel. Now that I know his escape route, I’m just itching to put my knee in his back when he emerges from that shed.”

Remy spoke up. “Mel’s been itching for some exciting police work, John. Why don’t you let him cuff Predjin? He’ll probably never go up against a serial killer in Leavenworth ever again.”

John wanted to nab him because he knew Marvin would resist, and he could shoot him. Then Anezka’s voice rang in his mind.

The loss of your soul comes with that cheap bullet, and your soul costs much more than a trial.


“Are you sure you can handle Predjin?” John asked Mel.

“He’s not a gangbanger, Sir. I know all the holds and locks to subdue Mister Predjin. I can get a surprised suspect.”

At least Mel was confident. John had guessed he was getting tired of being Kansas’ best crossing guard for the elderly.

“I know that this is my case, Remy, but Yeggs is under you. I don’t want to pull rank on you. It’ll be your choice,” John told Remy he had the floor for this performance.

“Oh no, John. You’re top cop on this one. You give the order.”

Remy knew he didn’t want the responsibility for Yeggs if he screwed up. Roark would have his head for that, and his next ‘career advancement’ would be that infamous parking checker assignment.

“I’m not gonna screw up, Sir, and Sarge already did suggest me for this assignment so it’s up to you,” Mel said.

John was the primary in this so it was his job to delegate. He wasn’t shy this morning when wanted to rip them a new one for missing Marvin. He did all the detecting so why not send Mel? He became seasoned harshly in New York. It was Mel’s turn to gain some points to add to his law enforcement career.

“Okay, Mel, go to Predjin’s fruit shed at around nine to surprise him. If you hear any movement before he comes out, radio us.”

“I’m on it, Sir. If I hear a creek, I’ll call for support,” Mel said.

“Just don’t get cocky, kid. Predjin aint one of those meth heads on one of those cop shows. Not even our reality ones. He’s a sinewy taller South African. He might know some Zulu, or Capoeira defenses. Don’t take his portrayed kindness for weakness,” John warned Yeggs.

“He could be a Brazilian Jujitsu grappler, Sir. A gun levels all of that crazy training,” Yeggs said. “I was cocky last year. Sarge straightened me out on my annual review, right Sarge?”

“Yean, Mel thought he was Kansas’ Captain America last year, and I had to knock him down a few pegs. He’s back to working within reason.”

John looked at Mel.

“Just understand there were many cocky officers in New York, and I attended many cocky cop funerals. Presumptuous police can even get their asses shot off in the middle of the country.”

“I know you guys are warning me because I haven’t done any real big city police work, but I’ll be fine. The academy was two years ago. I aced all of my tests, and still remember procedure. Trust me, I got this,” Mel said. “I’m not as crusty as you two.”

“I thought you said the kid wasn’t cocky, Remy. He just dropped cocky all over us.” John thumbed at Mel.

“That wasn’t cockiness, John that was being young and dumb. The only way he’s gonna cure that is through age and experience.”

“Your prescription is to grow up, kid. You’ll get experience by staying on the force,” John admonished him.

“Well I’m staying on the force so I’ll get experience, and as you’ve proven, growing up is inevitable.”

“I don’t know if that acknowledgement was backhanded or not, Remy. You know him better than I do, so should I be pissed?” John asked Milner.

“Mel still thinks he could get away with those veiled jabs, John. He just doesn’t remember who we are and what we could do to him,” Milner said.

“C’mon guys, law enforcement solidarity.”

“Our solidarity is based on unity. You’re fracturing that unity, kid. Know your role, and we won’t make you patrol the electric fence so electric eels don’t get in,” Remy said.

“I guess I got too care free with our conversation, and forgot about respecting rank, I’m sorry,” Mel said.

“I told you, John, the kid’s one of the smarter ones.”

“I’m still worried about him cuffing Predjin,” John said.

“I’ve been itchin’ to drop a perp, Sir. Don’t worry about me. I’ve dropped Swamp Thing at the academy.”

Remy explained to a confused John.

“They call Korso Swamp Thing. He’s a little larger than the average bear, literally.”

“You mean that four hundred pound weight lifter rookie? You dropped him?!” John asked Mel.

“The bigger they are, Sir, the harder they fall when you know what you’re doing.” Mel smiled.

John knew how large Korso was. He saw him power lift five hundred pounds, and press three fifty twenty times in the gym. Korso was no push over.

“Mel’s scrappy, John. He can back his talk.”

“When I was little, the bullies called me ‘Yuck Eggs’ because of my last name. I got tired of getting my ass kicked whenever I fought back, so mom put me in karate class to save her from paying for all those extra bandages, and a broken arm once. I got’em back, Sir,” Mel said.

“Well, I guess you sold yourself, Mel. Get to the fruit shed by nine, and drop whatever comes out.”

“I’m gonna wrap him up like a pretzel, Sir,” Mel said.

Marvin was getting ready to cause more havoc in Detective Chandless’ life by going to his other interest. An Anezka Kranz. He had looked up a few cases from Simin, and deduced that if Simin had worked with a psychic profiler, and she was his partner, Chandless could only find him through ethereal means. Watching the news feed online about Anezka having pom-poms attacking an assailant gave him all the clues he needed to figure out the particulars. He was going to pay her a visit, and disrupt her to rile Chandless. And if someone was crazy enough to marry that witch, he would execute them both.

Marvin grabbed his assaulting equipment he used on Simin, put on the black sweat suit, dark shades, and went to his tunnel.

Mel knew Predjin would be surprised to be caught by the youngest guy. Sure Milner and Chandless were seasoned veterans, but as seasoned as they were they could pass for Cajun cuisine. Mel was a student of Gracie Jiu-jitsu, and never wanted to shoot a perp he could submit. Swamp Thing felt his skill at the academy, and nobody put him through a hazing after that. Kick the biggest guy’s ass, and they’ll leave you alone. He began to hear something coming from the shed. After a clicking, the door opened, and Marvin emerged in a black jump suit. Mel was set to submit.

“I didn’t think someone like you could fool us. Hands up, Mister Predjin.”

“Marvin was surprised at the voice coming from behind him. He was on his way to disrupt his speculated psychic tattle tale, but now his plans had to be augmented. He turned around.

Mel was standing there in a fighting stance waiting for Marvin to jump.

“They sent the young puppy to catch the panther. You have no idea what a panther can do,” he said.

“Shut up you crazy murdering lunatic! You aren’t a panther! You’re just a tricky punk that just got caught! Hands up!” Mel became more adamant.

“I am taking this as a lone attempt at capture. You should call for support, puppy,” Marvin said without any fear of incarceration.

What Mel should have done was listen to Marvin, and call for Chandless and Milner, but being young, and always wanting to save the day by himself, he opted for taking Marvin down himself.

“I don’t need any back up to cuff you! Get down!”

“Bring it, puppy.” Marvin got ready to defend.

Mel came at him with a swiftness. No murdering idiot was going to challenge him! As he went after Marvin to cuff him, Marvin pulled out his stun gun, and shocked Mel!

As Mel felt the excruciating burning sensation of the stun before he passed out, he had thought of what Chandless had said about gaining experience.

Once Marvin incapacitated Mel, he began to drag him into the fruit shed.

“Oh, Puppy, I am not an idiot murderer. I am a majestic vindicator.”

Marvin closed, and locked the shed, and drug Mel to his basement to begin another vindication.

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