Jack In The Box

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Chapter 9

Riley

Detective Alicia led me to a room that was now set up with a bunch of equipment and there were a lot of people in the room being questioned, others were going through files and papers, typing on their MacBooks. A young officer looked up from his laptop towards me and back at the screen.

“Please have a seat, Miss. Frazier.” Detective Alicia pointed at the chair as she settled in the chair across from it. She had a memo pad and a pen in her lap. “How are you doing today?”

“I’m good, Detective. Thanks for asking.”

“I have some questions so let’s get it over with.” She said. “How was David’s behavior usually?”

“He liked to pick fights with the other patients. Harassed most of the staff. Frankly speaking, I don’t think anyone here would miss him in the slightest.” There, I said the truth. Just because Dave was dead, didn’t mean we had to pity him. He got what he deserved.

Detective Alicia nodded, scribbling something in her notepad. “When he had a fight with Jackson Wolfe, you were a witness. Is that correct?”

“Yes.” I responded. “I saw how Dave mocked Jackson about his mother and that put him in a rage.”

I was momentarily disturbed by her scrawling so I stopped talking which is when she glanced up from her writing pad. “Go on please.”

“Jackson pummeled Dave to the floor and he was bleeding.” I said.

“And then?” She pressed.

“He was taken to the isolation room where he was kept for about four or five days while Dave was getting treated for the injuries.” I informed her. “I honestly think it wasn’t Jackson’s fault at that time. Dave liked to pick on Jackson every chance he got.”

“So you think killing Dave was a genius option?” She asked and I was caught off guard with that question.

“Of course not.” I said. “But is it really Jackson who is responsible for this?”

“We are not sure, but the investigation is going on. As soon as we have information, we will take him into custody.” She pushed a manila file towards me. “These are some of the murders that happened a year back and supposedly, Jackson is responsible for them although there’s no evidence. If it really is Jackson who committed those murders, he is clever enough not to leave any traces.”

I scanned the top of the file, flipped it open and I instantly wished I hadn’t. On the first page was a picture of a woman. Her arms weren’t in the right angle, but when I looked closely, her right hand was attached to the left arm and her left hand was attached to the right, sewed together. Her eyes sunken back into hollows. The eyeballs placed neatly in her outstretched palm. The body looked like a Barbie doll that was badly played with. Another picture showed a man crucified against the wall, his eyes as usual were the same; empty and hollow.

Alicia flipped more pages and pointed at another picture where the same woman was lying face down with bite marks over her back.

I shuddered. “Isn’t this confidential?”

Alicia waved her hand in dismissal. “This stuff is all over the news and the internet. It’s not confidential information anymore.”

“I see.”

“Since Jackson is under your care, I want you to check his behavior and inform us if he says something out of the ordinary. Any valuable information that may help us because we are pretty sure he is the one.”

The problem was Jackson was never normal.


Jackson was seated in a hospital room. A Blood pressure cuff was wrapped around his arm to record his pulse, along with rubber tubes places over his chest abdomen to check his breathing rate and finally, two metal plates attached to his fingers to check if was sweating due to nervousness. The wires were connected to the laptop which was attached to another rectangle box shaped device. I instantly knew it was a polygraph test. It was a device that instantly proved if the accused person was lying or telling the truth by checking their heart rate or pulse but Jackson seemed relaxed, like he wasn’t just going to answer a lie detecting test, but ready to watch a movie on his couch. I wondered how a person accused of such atrocious crimes could act so laid back.

Or maybe it wasn’t an act at all. Maybe Jackson wasn’t really scared.

His dark eyes flicked towards me and stayed there, his hair was brushed perfectly. A smug expression plastered over his face, a condescending look like he was the master of this game and we were his pawns. The overconfidence radiating through him as usual. My mind preoccupied by thoughts of Jackson murdering all those innocent people.

Everyone was present in the room, including Aaron and Paul who were closely assessing Jackson like he was a rare species from another planet. Paul, specifically was scowling at him and it proved how much he hated Jackson’s guts.

The session of the Polygraph test began, and a Polygraph examiner began asking him questions. “Is your name Jackson Wolfe?”

“No.” Jackson responded and machine made a sound indicating that he was lying. “It is Michael Jackson.”

Paul barked. “You’re supposed to say yes.”

“Then, don’t ask me stupid questions.” Jackson said.

“Are you Twenty-seven years old?”

“Yes.”

“Are you nervous?”

“No.”

“Have you been diagnosed with Psychopathy due to the incident last year?”

“Yes.” He responded without a trace of nervousness in his voice.

“Did you have a fight with David the night before he died?”

“Yes.”

“Did you kill David?”

He looked straight at Paul. “No.”

The machine beeped and there was a green line waves on the laptop screen. That meant he wasn’t lying. Everyone in the room was confused including me. If Jackson did not kill Dave, then who did?

“Did you kill David?” Paul repeated.

“No.”

Green signal.

“Mr. Jackson Wolfe, did you slaughter Mad-Dave?”

“I said NO!”

Red signal.

Jackson gave out laugh. “That’s fucking stupid if you think you can ask me the same question thrice just to get a negative reaction. I did not kill that stupid fuck.”

“Did you kill Laura Wolfe too, Jackson?”

What does my mother have to do with anything?”

“Did you kill your mother, yes or no?” Paul demanded the answer.

“No.” Jackson said and the signal was red again.

His jaw twisted and his eyes turned dark. He gritted his teeth, “I did not kill my mother.”

“But the polygraph results say otherwise.” Aaron pointed out.

“I don’t care what the results say.”

The examiner exchanged glances from Aaron to Jackson. “May I continue the test, Dr. Aaron?”

“Yes, you may.”

“Jackson, look at these pictures.” The examiner pushed the same pictures towards Jackson that Detective Alicia had shown me. “Do you remember something?”

For the first time, I saw Jackson swallow hard. The examiner noticed this but his expressions remained impassive. “Do you recognize these pictures, Jackson?”

“No.”

Red.

“Are you sure?”

“Yes.”

Red.

“How about this one?” The examiner asked, pushing a different picture towards him, one that I hadn’t seen before.

It was a picture of an open suitcase. The contents weren’t for someone with a faint heart. A heart placed nicely in the center of the suitcase, along with neatly piled guts and other body parts and the most prominent one being the severed dark head placed right beside the heart. The suitcase soaked with blood.

Seconds ticked by and before anyone could see it coming, Jackson lunged out of his chair and attacked Paul, “I will kill you, you sonofabitch!” His teeth barring out as he grabbed for Paul’s arm. Before Jackson could do many more damage, Aaron and the others grabbed Jackson and placed a mask on his mouth as I grabbed for the injection

“Riley! Now!” Aaron instructed me.

Jackson trashed and screamed, his eyes met mine for just a split second before I injected the tranquiller into his vein. I had no idea how I’d done it, I’d never dealt with a more troublemaking patient than Jackson. Instantly, his eyes rolled back and his body went limp.

“Whose body was that in the suitcase?” I asked Aaron.

“Jackson’s mother.”


Today’s dinner consisted of grilled chicken and boiled vegies. I placed the tray over Jackson’s bedside table. He seemed to be fast asleep; I checked my watch and the time read nine p.m. He’d slept very early today and that was really odd. The comforter went over his head, facing the wall.

“Jackson, your dinner is here.” I announced.

All I could hear was the soft whoosh of the wind.

“Haven’t you got enough sleep today?” I asked. “It’s your favorite; Grilled chicken.”

He didn’t move a limb.

A chill ran down my body. Crazy ideas crossed my mind for a nano second.

Did someone kill Jackson too?

I walked cautiously towards his bed, one slow step at a time. Then, I grabbed the comforter and pulled it off the bed.

There were cushions properly arranged to look like a body. A drawing of a sleeping emoji was taped against one cushion where his head was supposed to lie down.

I was close to having a panic attack when I realized he must be using the bathroom. I checked the window to find the bars in its place. I walked to the bathroom and turned the knob to find it locked from the inside.

I knocked a few times. “Jackson, are you inside?”

There was no answer.

“Jackson?”

Panic turned to hysteria. “Open the door!”

Did he escape again?

I tried to force it open with all my strength, but it wasn’t enough. I walked outside the room and called for the security guards. I was just about to speed-dial Aaron when I spotted Paul across from the hallway talking to another nurse.

“Dr. Paul.” I called out to him.

Paul’s usually vibrant blue eyes look tired. I knew he was working around the clock for roughly twenty-eight hours due to the short staff. As much as I hated Paul for his arrogance, I really appreciated how hard working he was. He probably saw the worried look on my face because he made a beeline towards me. The faint whiff of coffee and cigarette assaulted my nostrils.

The first thing he asked me was. “What did you do now?”

“I went to Jackson’s room and his bed was empty. I mean, not empty but there were pillows arranged on it to look like he was sleeping and then when I tried to open his bathroom room. It didn’t open. I’m pretty sure something is...” I blabbered without missing a beat.

“Wait. Slow down. You’re not making any sense.” He said.

“There’s no time.” I said as I grasped his arm and dragged him towards Jackson’s room.

The security guards were trying to break the lock when I explained Paul the situation. Paul’s forehead formed a creased line of worry.

“I’m sure he escaped somehow.” Paul said to me, and to the men he instructed, “Break the door open.”

It took a minute for the boys; the door loosened and burst open. I had all the worst scenarios in my mind when the door finally opened but what I didn’t expect was to see Jackson lying on the white bathroom tile. The tiles weren’t white anymore; they were matted in a shade of crimson red color.

I heard the sound of my screams.


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