Two Halves of a Whole

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Chapter 4

Another killer? Another killer! There were two?! Everyone’s hands were already tied with one person, and now there were two?!

Thomas swore.

“Lola, begin to work on a profile for this copycat.” She nodded. “Tom, have you managed to find any connections between the victims?”

“Yeah, follow me.” Thomas walked out of the room and to his desk, everyone following. He grabbed a stack of papers and began to sift through them. “The first victim, John Monk, was a lawyer. The second victim, Edward Drack, owns his own insurance company. Ben Larn was a judge. Finally, our latest victim, Mike Laymen, owned a private consulting agency.”

“So, what’s the connection?” Lola asked. “That they all dealt with legal negotiations and or properties?”

“Yeah,” said Thomas. “They all dealt with legal properties, but all were thought to be involved in illegal activities.”

“Like what?” Lola asked.

“Some rumors are loan shark . . .” Lola tuned him out as she stared at the pictures of the victims.

“Oh my gosh,” she murmured.

Thomas stopped talking and looked at her. “What?” he asked.

“Type in Eli Whells.”

“Why?”

“Just do it,” Lola said, agitated.

“Lola, why?” the Captain asked as Thomas began to type in the name she had told him.

Thomas' computer screen showed a picture of Eli Whells, an exact copy to John Monk.

“They’re identical!” Thomas said in disbelief.

“It’s an alias,” the Captain said.

“Eli Whells is the loan shark,” Lola said.

“How do you know that?” the Captain asked with increasing anger. He had a theory, but he hoped it wasn’t right.

“He worked with my parents.”

Thomas and the Captain swore, and Lola rubbed her face with her hands.

“How did you not know until now?!” the Captain asked. “You saw all the victims.”

“I haven’t seen those people in over ten years! People change. Besides, most of them have gotten so much work done on their faces that they are almost completely unrecognizable. Even if that didn't change . . . after the crash-” she swore. Silence rose around them. “But this may make it easier to create profiles for them and therefore the killer.”

“When will you have that?” Thomas asked in an underlying mocking tone.

“I don’t know. If I can manage to find my parent’s deals that they made, then not too long. If I can’t find that, then we’ll have to do a lot more digging.”

“Luckily for you, digging is my job,” Thomas murmured.

“And luckily for the both of you, you’ll be working together to make this go along faster before too many people are killed,” the Captain commented, sensing the backhanded compliments between the two.

“Then I should head home and begin my search,” Lola said.

“Then I’ll stay here and look as well,” Thomas said.

“Good, keep each other updated. Hopefully, another body doesn’t show up before then.” He walked away.

Once he was gone, Lola lingered over Thomas for a few seconds before she stepped back as he began to type.

“Tom,” she said.

He hummed as a response.

“I’m not like my parents. I don’t associate with them or what they did.”

He turned in his chair and looked at her, his eyebrows knitted together in confusion. “What is that supposed to mean?”

Lola breathed in deeply. “My parents were involved in a lot of shady deals and activities. I just wanted you to hear it from me before you found out about it on the computer.”

“Ok.” He nodded almost sympathetically. “Ok,” he repeated, “thank you for telling me.”

Lola cleared her throat twice, and soon after, she snapped two times. “Yeah . . . but I’m not them.” A shaking factor seemed to infiltrate her voice unwillingly. She snapped twice again. “I’ll text you later tonight.”

“Ok, I’ll do the same.” The edge that he had in his voice was now gone as he looked at her. She looked as if she were about to become physically ill. When she sniffed twice, a fourth finger expanded on Thomas' hand under the desk. He hadn’t seen her twitch this bad since working with her.

Without another word, Lola walked away from his desk.

***

Stumbling out of her car, Lola grabbed the hood to stabilize herself. She had barely managed to make it up the winding hill without driving clear off the cliff. Bile began to leave her stomach and rise to her throat; she needed to get to the toilet. If she did throw up on her clean floors, then she feared a panic attack would ensue, and she would become immobile for a good portion of the day.

Falling onto the floor of her house, she groaned and coughed in pain. Her foot kicked the door shut, and she began to hyperventilate.

“ALICE!” she screamed in desperation. ALICE was all she had right now. She was the only thing that could help Lola.

“Yes?” ALICE asked.

Lola’s hands grasped onto the wall, and she barely managed to stand. “Help me calm down!” Lola cried out. “Please!” she pleaded. She almost tumbled to the floor again as her body weakened more. Her hand cupped her mouth, and she swallowed the acid-like puke. “Play the song!” she panted out.

I’m laughing on the outside
Crying on the inside
’ Cause I’m so in love with you

Lola fell against the bathroom door, and the next thing she knew, she was lying on the ground. Her hands grasped the toilet seat, and she dragged herself into a sitting position. Right as she did so, the contents of her stomach began to empty into the water.

No one knows it’s just a pose
Pretending I’m glad we’re apart
But when I cry, my eyes are dry
The tears are in my heart

Lola gasped and panted for air when she was finally done throwing up. Her shaking hand reached up and grasped the toilet handle. With some strain, it was pulled down, and Lola’s breakfast disappeared down the bowl.

Sitting back, her back hit the wall as her breathing remained the consistent heaviness. A headache washed over her, and tears appeared in her eyes. She wanted to throw up again so badly, hoping, praying, that that was causing the headache.

The back of her head banged against the wall twice, almost as if against her will. Her fingers twitched at her sides a couple of times, and Lola was forced to swallow air.

I’m laughing on the outside
Crying on the inside
’Cause I’m so in love with you

Her head twitched to the side twice, and her world went black.

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