String of Murders
“I made you dinner.”
Madison pecked Alessandro’s lips and ran her fingers through his hair as he was just waking up from three-hour nap. She knew something was up from how the state of his living room was. She knew of his dilemma and she always offered her services.
She loved him even though he didn’t reciprocate her feelings, but she understood. She would give him all the time in the world if he needed. Not a lot of people come back from what he went through and lived a normal and sane life without any repercussions.
“You didn’t have to baby.” He said as he sat up and rubbed his eyes.
“I know but I wanted to. I figured you needed to regain your strength after the fuck festival we just had.” She giggled and he couldn’t help but stare at her. He wouldn’t deny the fact that she was someone important in his life. She had stuck by him for the past year through the good and the bad. Even though their ‘relationship’ was never labeled, she never pressed him for more and he appreciated her for that. She was caring, loving, thoughtful, sexy, and more. She was everything a man would want in his life. She was the definition of perfect. He was glad to have someone like her in these tough times.
In fact, he needed her more than ever as he had stopped seeing his therapist. She seemed to calm his inner demons and that was enough to know how much of a strong woman she was to put up with his shit for so long.
He wasn’t in love with her, but he did love her and cared for her as a little more than a friend. A partner if you will. He would forever be grateful for her care.
“You’re too good to me.” He hugged her waist and brought her down onto his lap and pressed his lips on her in a deeply passionate kiss. One of his hands went to her nape and moved up and down very soothingly and sensually.
Her breath stilled as it was seldom he kissed her this way. She smiled and brought her hands around his neck to deepen the kiss. After about thirty seconds, he pulled back and gazed into her beautiful brown orbs that always seemed to captivate him.
“What is it?” She softly spoke with a hint of shyness and vulnerability as she studied his face.
He brought his hand and cupped her cheek whilst caressing it with the pad of his thumb.
“Nothing. You’re just beautiful.” He genuinely smiled and pecked her lips. “Come, let’s go and eat before the food gets cold.” He pushed her off gently and intertwined their hands as they walked out the bedroom.
She glanced down to their hands and bit her lip feeling giddy. He was showing improvement and she was glad to be of help. This was definitely a step in the right direction.
“What the-” He turned his head to Madison in surprise and saw her glancing down shyly at the floor as she played with her own feet. “Baby, really?” He lightly scoffed in amazement. She simply nodded without lifting her head. His living room was completely clean and she had put up some couch covers to hide the gruesome way in which he destroyed them. The chairs had been replaced with foldable chairs and his table now had a tablecloth with a small floral arrangement in the middle and set up with plates and cups for their meal.
All in all, it was a nice change in scenery. His manly and usually messy house looked cozy and warm with a woman’s touch. She really was something else.
He sighed and brought one of his arms around her waist and used the other to lift her chin with his thumb and index finger to look at him. “I know I don’t say it often and well, maybe never but I really appreciate everything you do for me. I know I can be quite the asshole and how you put up with me, I’ll never know. So, thank you.” He softly pressed their lips together in a gentle manner.
Her eyes widened. He had never expressed his gratitude with such honesty and genuineness.
“You’re welcome.” She smiled sweetly and kissed his cheek.
Two days later.
“Hurry the fuck up.” Alessandro yelled out in frustration at Patrick. He turned around only to see him bent over with his hands on his knees and panting heavily. They had been working out in the mornings at the nearby park before their shifts. He found it to be a very cathartic experience as he had always worked out in a gym, but the change of view was nicely welcomed.
“I’m not a fucking fish Alex.” He snapped at him. “I actually have lungs that need to breathe in the air I need to survive.” He spat tiredly and began to cough.
Alessandro rolled his eyes and kept jogging in place just watching his friend look like he was about one breath away from having a fucking heart attack and dying on the spot. He sighed dejectedly and walked over to him and rubbed his back to help him ease up off the cough attack he was currently having.
“Come on. Let’s go shower and then go get some breakfast at Petey’s Diner. I’d kill for some of their blueberry pancakes right about now.” He wavered as it had already been an hour. Way more than what his friend was used to.
Patrick just glared up at him and narrowed his eyes in contemplation. He slumped his shoulder and sighed.
“Yeah, okay.” He crinkled his nose and stood up straight.
Both of them walked slowly back to Alessandro’s house. After they finished getting ready, they headed out.
“Welcome to Petey’s darlings. What can I getcha?” Martha, the eldest employee at the diner, approached their booth to take their orders.
“Just give us two specials and two coffees, sweetheart.” Alessandro winked and like always, she blushed. Patrick just rolled his eyes in annoyance. Everywhere they fucking went, all women seemed to drop their panties at him.
“You got it, sweetcheeks.” She winked back and walked away fanning herself with her old-fashioned notebook.
Patrick shook his head at the action and Alessandro just chuckled.
“So, any news from Liz on Donovan.” He asked Patrick as he stared out the window looking at the older couple walking hand in hand to their car across the street.
“Not much. He hasn’t been seen at the property nor anyone driving the car. So, we’re still waiting on something.”
Alessandro just nodded not bothering to look his way.
“I don’t think it’s going to be as easy as we expected.” Patrick stated.
“Why do you say that?” He replied as he began to fiddle with the utensils.
“Well,” Patrick took in a deep breath. “He’s a smart son of a bitch. He might’ve messed up at the party place by being out in broad daylight, but that fucker sure knows how to hide well. Plus,” He shifted in his seat as he thought about how to say the following sentence. “Another girl turned up in a ditch last night with the same M.O., so we figure he’s been distracted with that for the past days to say the least.” He gnawed at his lip nervously just waiting for the blowout but much to his surprise, Alessandro just nodded in acknowledgement.
He furrowed his brows as he was sure his partner would have already blown a fuse by now. His eerily calm demeanor was making his insides churn with fear. Alessandro was not a patient man by any means, so he knew something was up inside that thick head of his.
“You don’t have anything to say?” Patrick pressed hoping to get a reaction from him, but nothing worked.
“Not my problem for now.” He pursed his lips and shook his head. “I just need a clue to find him and when I do, he’s done for.” He nonchalantly spoke.
“Here you go. Enjoy!” Martha came by with the food and set it down.
“Thank you.” They both said in unison.
Both men turned their attention to the television behind them as they ate their meal.
The body of a female in her mid-twenties was reportedly found late last night. Police have not yet released the name as they are waiting for the family member to identify the body. It appears to be the latest in a string of murders by an unknown serial killer. Sources say, the victim bared the same mark on her body as the rest indicating that it was indeed, the same individual who committed the murder. Authorities are advising all women who bear the same resemblance to please be on the lookout for anything that appears to be out of the ordinary. They ask for them to please not walk, run, jog, or exercise alone for that matter until the murderer is caught. They are also asking the public’s help for any information that could lead his or her arrest. We will have more later at the five o’clock news.
They both turned back and continued eating.
“So, I noticed Madison leave your house the other night as I drove by.” Patrick broke the uncomfortable silence. “How are things with her?” He took a bite of his over medium eggs hoping to start up a conversation.
“I know she wants more than what I can give her, but she’s been extremely patient with me. She’s been more of a woman to me than my ex-wife ever was.” He sipped his coffee.
“Wow. That’s nice of you to say. Are you planning to ask her to be your girlfriend any time soon?” He pried.
“I don’t know.” He scratched the back of his head. “I just,” He sighed. “I know that I care for her a lot and I’m just not in the right mind set right now for anything official you know?”
Patrick nodded in understanding.
“Just, be good to her man. She’s been through a lot as well and I think she might be good for you if you let her in.” He stated.
“Yeah. I know. Fucking bastard is rotting in jail and he’s just lucky I didn’t kill him myself. Fucking Captain and his ‘rules’” He quoted with his fingers. “If he would’ve seen the state she was in when I found her, then he would’ve done the same shit I did when I beat that asshole up.” He picked up the pancake and aggressively took a bite of it as he remembered the moment he saw Madison’s bruised and battered body crawling out of her back door onto her backyard as she tried calling out for help.
“I get you. I just th-”
Patrick’s phone went off interrupting their conversation.
“Clarke.” He answered.
He was about to sip his coffee but froze upon hearing what the person had to say over the phone. He put his head down to listen in carefully and when they mentioned something particular, his eyes snapped up to see Alessandro eating his meal in peace.
“Fuck.” He whispered for only himself to hear but Alessandro heard him.
“What is it?” He asked.
Patrick gulped audibly hard and Alessandro knew something was wrong. He quickly took out his wallet and left a twenty-dollar bill on the table. He motioned with his head for Patrick to follow him outside.
He agreed and they both walked to Alessandro’s car.
“Thanks Liz. I’ll call you back.” Patrick hung up the phone and opened the car door. As soon as Alessandro got in, he turned on the ignition and began to drive back home. The whole ride home was done in silence. Patrick knew he had to wait before he gave Alessandro the heavy news as he knew it would be devastating.
Pulling up on his driveway, Alessandro turned off the ignition and sat still.
“Well, are you going to tell me what happened or not?” His hands played with the steering wheel as he waited for Patrick’s response.
Patrick inwardly cussed and pressed his lips together wondering how he was going to break the news to his friend.
“Liz was called over by Hank to the morgue.”
“And.” Alessandro drawled out still looking at his hands on the wheel.
He fidgeted with his hair and his hands before speaking.
“Just tell me God damnit!” Alessandro snapped.
Patrick closed his eyes and hoped he wouldn’t be in the crossfire of his friend’s temper.
“Liz believes you might know the victim.”
At this, Alessandro turned his body and gave his full attention to his partner.
“And who might this said victim be because I only know like five people and only one of them is a girl.” He stated unaffected in disbelief.
Patrick stilled and maintained eye contact in hopes that it would be enough to let Alessandro know who he was talking about without actually saying her name out loud.
They stared at each other for about ten seconds before Alessandro’s confused face turned into a ghostly one. His eyes opened wide and his jaw clenched while his blood drained from his face. He didn’t say anything but simply took his phone out and dialed her number.
Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring.
She failed to answer her phone and it went to voicemail. He was beginning to worry as she always answered on the first two rings. His breathing became erratic and Patrick was already dreading having to handle the raging bull that was about to come out.
He tried five more times without luck and finally snapped by throwing his phone towards Patrick’s lap.
He whipped his head to Patrick in clear fury. His lip curled up into a snarl and his nostrils were flaring.
“Is it Madison that Liz was talking about?” His grip on the wheel hardened. He clenched his eyes shut and breathed in deep hoping to get a negative response.
Patrick closed his eyes and opened them back up staring at his friend with a sad face.