Elijah was pacing around all the officers that were spending their time not focusing on the murder. Clearly they had other things to do but he couldn’t help but think no one cared. Then again, that was the least of his problems. He continued to pace around as he thought.
The three medical examiners came over to him to tell him news about the recent body found during the morning. They looked among each other first however because they weren’t sure if they wanted to talk about what Elijah truly wanted to hear.
“Dominique Brown worked at the Opal Hotel. His cause of death bleeding out from a large stab wound through his chest that extends to his pelvic region.”
“So, we clearly saw this man was holding on to all of his organs.” Natasha started slowly.
It wasn’t just that. The man that was killed was a dancer, so of course his murder was more than just theatrical. However, the point was complete and utter humiliation. So, being found naked and castrated seemed fit.
“Um...” Nick looked over his papers before he glanced between the others again. “His tongue was cut out just like...well, you know.” he continued.
“I just want to know if this has symbolic meaning.” Elijah continued to pace.
“Like cutting off this man’s tongue means he disrespected the killer or something?” Natasha asked because she didn’t think the connection meant anything.
The murderer was ruthless. Why should it mean anything?
“And cutting off his balls...really?”
Elijah stopped pacing, thinking to himself. He knew the murderer was vain but not as vain as he was beginning to believe. It was all about him. It has to be all about him. He knew that much. He was dealing with someone that was hostile. Depending on this killer’s mood, the crimes get more vicious.
“Next one.” Elijah paced again.
“Max Turner literally burst into flames.” Joe said and he wasn’t exaggerating. “There were traces of gasoline inside his body, like he ingested it.”
The body was in flames when they found Max Turner.
“Who was he?”
“A lawyer on the west side of the city. Criminal justice but didn’t have that good of a record.” Joe continued as he looked over his papers. “He actually moved here from Georgia, he was only here for a few weeks before...burning to death.” he said.
Elijah closed his eyes.
The feeling he was getting was not a good one. His gut was telling him what direction to point to but he refused to do so. It was like he was fighting every bone in his body.
“Two different murderers, Elijah.” Natasha said.
“I know.” he continued to pace. For the first time, he was feeling anxiety, and that doesn’t usually happen when he has cases like these.
“They were at the same time.”
“I know.” Elijah said again.
The two murderers were definitely having the time of their lives. Maybe this was the way they talked to each other. Who could do better. Or what kind of mood they were in.
The fire was abrupt.
He hasn’t seen anyone explode from these groups of murders. Whoever the arsonist was, they were having an extreme moment. They must have been feeling something intense. Was it rage or anger or just extreme happiness that they couldn’t contain it.
Elijah hated that he didn’t know.
May walked out of her office, and she didn’t seem that happy. She stared at the four of them, but her attention turned to Elijah who was still pacing around, thinking to himself hard. She didn’t want Elijah to get sucked into this case. She warned him weeks ago. Did she have to warn him again?
“I’m bringing someone in.” She said.
Elijah stopped. He knew he needed help, but he didn’t want it. This case was his to solve.
“She’s an FBI investigator up north, said something about knowing a lot about these types of murders.”
“Let’s not discuss this, Elijah.” she said abruptly. “You’ve reached over time twice already. I need to give you a break. And it’s going to start at the end of the week.” She was serious.
May didn’t want to listen to it. She just put her jacket on as she walked by the four of them. Natasha, Joe, and Nick were concerned as she was. Elijah looked an unruly mess at the moment, and it’s because he hasn’t been sleeping in the past couple of days.
“I’m questioning people.” Elijah said and turned away.
Was he going to start questioning people for real? Does that mean he has leads? He felt like the murders were so obvious. He was looking for clues when the entire murder was a clue. The entire case was a clue. He was missing the bigger picture.
Why are the two murderers together? He knew one was dominant over the other. Was he training the other killer? Was he getting him to do what he did? What would be the point of snapping someone like that?
It’s like now these murders were getting finely tuned.
Bodies were dropping like flies.
Elijah needed to start talking to everyone to get information, even people underground because he knew someone was talking. These killers had to be vain. They had to like hearing about themselves. And as much as the news were provoking them, it wasn’t enough. They needed more so they killed more.
Was that it?
Elijah had an entire list of people he had brought in and throughout the entire day, officers questioned them, anything they might’ve heard or seen about the victims, and about the killers. This was on a much higher scale than it has been for weeks.
Elijah needed something that he didn’t know already.
In the afternoon, a few cops were escorting a young man with bright blond hair. How they got him in here, it was difficult to talk about but they were able to. The one thing they didn’t do was arrest him, however he was asking for a lawyer.
Elijah was looking through the glass, watching Sorrel quietly.
“Guy’s got a vicious tongue on him.” One of the officers said. “Demanded his lawyer the second he saw us, so he got us there.”
“That’s fine. I’m sure I can swindle answers.” This was a controlled environment.
Elijah wanted Sorrel agitated. He wanted Sorrel restless and anxious and angry. Maybe he might talk then.
He just didn’t know that he was playing with fire.
“Elijah.” he heard his name being called behind him.
It was Sorrel’s lawyer, but Elijah truly didn’t believe that James would be the one representing him. Wasn’t that a conflict of interest or something? Elijah didn’t want to get James involved in this, considering that he had enough to deal with.
Though it was odd.
James seemed to be...more out of his box, like he was in his environment, like he belonged here. The slow, twitchy, broken man was no longer slow, twitchy, or broken. Elijah thought he was about to deal with a beast, and this was one that knew the law.
“You’re really going to defend him?” Elijah asked, though it wasn’t his place to. James didn’t take offense to that.
“He’s not being arrested, is he?”
They both knew the answer to that.
“I guess I don’t have to defend him.” James said as he walked by him and into the interrogation room.
The officer beside Elijah whistled. “Good luck with that.” he said, holding on to his belt. “I’ve seen a lot of lawyers in my day, and the cocky ones are the wild ones. You’re dealing with a lion here.” he laughed to himself.
Elijah didn’t think it was that serious. He hoped it wasn’t.
He didn’t think that James would be protective over Sorrel. It would be odd if he wasn’t, then again, Sorrel seems like a hostile person. Elijah thought James would want to get away from that but that’s not the case.
The two of them in one room together at a police station was not a good idea.
Elijah could feel it.
He walked into the room, wanting to get into so they don’t waste anytime. They had places to be and it wasn’t here. Elijah had things to do as well, but he was sure that today he would get something out of Sorrel if it’s the last thing he does.
Sorrel was actually quiet. He was literally biting his tongue so he didn’t say anything obscene and obnoxious. He had his patience tested today so his real behavior came out. After so long of holding it in and being polite to people he didn’t like, he cracked. But he remained quiet next to James because it was only a minute ago that he was told to behave.
“We’re here as a courtesy.” James said, because he wanted to help Elijah. “If I think you’re incriminating him, we’re leaving.” He may have wanted to help Elijah, but he was loyal to Sorrel.
He would protect him first.
“I just have general questions I would like to ask.” Elijah said cautiously.
Sorrel was only cooperating because James was here.
“You worked yesterday, right?” Elijah asked. Sorrel didn’t think he needed to answer that question but he shrugged. “Do you remember seeing Dominique Brown yesterday evening?” he asked.
“He worked last night.” Sorrel said.
“Anything strange about him? His behavior, his appearance, anything he said?”
“Not that I know of.” Sorrel said. “He always just comes to work, does his job and leaves.”
“Anyone that he usually hangs out with?”
“He’s close with Emma. They come in together and leave together.”
“Right, Emma Jacobs.” Elijah nodded. She was here earlier. He remembered her statement because Sorrel’s name came up while she was a blubbering mess. “She said you and Dominique didn’t get along much.”
“Don’t respond to that.” James said before Sorrel could obviously say something that might get him in real trouble.
Elijah knew it was coming at one point. He wanted to manipulate Sorrel’s answers but it wasn’t going to work with James here. So he tried to work around it. “Is there anyone else who probably didn’t like Dominique?” he asked.
Sorrel thought for a second, looking around. He actually did want to answer this question since he wasn’t the only one to dislike this person. “Well, Abigail had a lot to say about him, I guess. She’s the other team lead and she does the schedule so they butt heads over availability.” he answered.
Elijah was going to talk to her soon.
“Did you see him leave yesterday?”
“When his shift was over.”
“Where were you?”
James spoke up again. “Don’t answer that.” he told Sorrel. “You don’t need to know where he was.” he looked at Elijah.
“I need to know who saw Dominique last-”
“You want probable cause, don’t you?” James still didn’t think it was necessary for Sorrel to tell Elijah where he was if Sorrel wasn’t being arrested.
They were both doing their jobs.
“Fine.” Elijah took a breath. “Do you know who was with him last?” he asked Sorrel.
Elijah knew that. He knew a lot more too. Emma talked a lot, probably because of her fear of being here, so she told a lot about how Dominique and Sorrel didn’t get along. Not that Sorrel was close to firing him, they just saw things differently.
“How did last night’s shift go?” Elijah asked and it was clearly because he knew something.
James nudged Sorrel and leaned closer to him, whispering in his ear to tell him something privately. Clearly he knew Elijah had information about how the night went. It’s either Sorrel tells the truth or Elijah really might have probable cause and enough to arrest Sorrel. James moved away and Sorrel sat up so he could talk without being slightly hostile.
“The two of us had a bit of a disagreement.” Sorrel started. “It was a petty fight that I’m sure we settled before he left.” he answered.
“Do you think he thought it was settled?”
“Don’t answer that.” James said again.
It was getting difficult to ask the questions he wanted to ask. Surely he wasn’t trying to incriminate Sorrel. Then again, exposing as much as he could would be helpful. Elijah knew James was doing his job but there was something that told him that James may be overdoing it.
“Dominique had his organs pulled out of his body rather violently and placed in his hands. But what gets me is the dance pose, so I’ve been talking to a lot of performers today.” Elijah explained himself.
Sorrel fought the urge to smile. He had this awful habit of sticking his tongue out, and it hurt not to show off.
But he behaved because he was told to.
Right now wasn’t the time to be disobedient.
“I’m sorry you’re having difficulty finding the murderers.” Sorrel said, still fighting the urge to smile but slowly losing.
The edges of his lips were curving upwards into a devilish smile. Elijah didn’t like sitting across the table from the two of them. This time when it gave him chills, every bone in his body told him to watch out.
Why did the two of them look murderous?
It was a subtle blood lust gaze that came from wild eyes. But Elijah has worked with enough psychopaths and murderers to know that look anywhere. And both of them did not give him a good feeling.
It was wrong to let them go, but Elijah had nothing to keep them here.
He wasn’t at a lost though. He was going to follow his gut because he was usually right. But for now, he kept what he thought to himself. He had to be one hundred percent sure before he started doing anything wild. He would need complete trust from his team before going for the win.
But deep down, he wanted to hope he was wrong.
Elijah took a break and walked over to May’s office. She had a lot of paper work to do, a lot to sign off on, and then on the side she had to watch over Elijah who was about to go mad because of the case.
“Who’s this woman that’s coming?” Elijah asked quietly.
“You’ll meet her after your few days off. She’s coming next week.” May said plainly, keeping her eyes down on her papers. She could feel Elijah’s nerves even from where she was sitting. This was what she was trying to avoid. “Listen, Elijah...” she looked towards him, “I don’t think you’re incapable-”
“It’s not that, May.” Elijah sighed.
“I need you to take a break.” She insisted. “I need you to take care of yourself because that brain of yours is why you’re here.” she said.
Elijah took a deep breath to calm himself down.
He has to take a break for a few days. When he gets back, another woman was going to join him for a few days to help out. What happens if that doesn’t work? How long will the case stay open? Elijah hasn’t been beaten before, and as determined as he was, he knew there was something that was so wrong.
It was a mess, at least for him it was.
It was like he was being kept at bay.
Was it because he was close?
He left May’s office and went to talk to one of the officers that was helping him during the day. Elijah took a pen and a piece of paper, writing something down furiously. His nerves began to pick up again as he became desperate for answers.
He needed probable cause.
“Do something for me, Hank.” He said and handed him the paper. “Look for anything at this address.”
“Not gonna get one. This is...undercover work.”
Hank raised an eyebrow. “This better be good, Elijah. You owe me a beer for this.” he said as he crumpled up the paper and put his hands in the pockets of his black slacks.
Elijah was playing with fire.
Was he going to make it out alive?
He had other things to put his mind on today.
Elijah spent most of the day doing busy work. He needed something different to think about so he took on smaller cases that weren’t as challenging. He was hoping to get on May’s good side but she didn’t plan to take back what she said about him taking a few days off. She was stubborn, just like he was. The other investigators continued questioning people about the last couple of disappearances. Anything could be helpful at the moment. Elijah wouldn’t have a chance to review all of the notes but it should be enough once he gets back.
At the end of the day, he wanted to go see someone to apologize than to antagonize. He felt like he may have over stepped his boundaries and it’s not like he meant to of course. As the sun set, he walked into an office, seeing the orange sky from the open windows. James was just about to leave but he stopped when he saw Elijah standing at his door.
“I want to apologize.” He came out with it.
“For doing your job?” James understood more than anything that Elijah had work to do. It’s not like he didn’t know what was going to happen.
He thought it would’ve been worse, so he was lucky when it wasn’t.
“You’re doing what you’re supposed to. I can’t stop you from doing that just because we’re friends.” James said politely.
“There’s more.” Elijah wasn’t done yet. They really did need to talk. Elijah crossed his arms over his chest and leaned against the door frame. He kept his gaze on James, wondering if earlier that was how James truly was as a person.
Right now, James was dull and quiet, and twitchy, and timid, and cautious. But when he was with Sorrel, that’s not how he was. He was ready to fight. He would’ve done anything. Elijah could sense it. A person doesn’t just become like that. A person doesn’t just gain that kind of confidence. The look in James’ eyes earlier today, that screamed fire, there was a low rage, there was temptation. It was like seeing complete and utter destruction.
James always says that Sorrel was the actual devil, and it just made Elijah think that James was his hellhound.
“I think Sorrel is one of the murderers.” Elijah wasn’t scared to say it. What he wanted to see was James’ reaction. “I think you’re covering for him and protecting him.” he said.
James stared back at Elijah without saying anything, not even denying the accusation.
Between them was a painful silence.