Shock. That was all I felt the day I found out my assignment as an investigator. Pure shock. Flicking back a stray strand of hair from my bun, I muttered a curse, and then tromped angrily out of Police and B.I. headquarters. It just so happened I had been assigned a murder case that chilled my bones. That was hard to do. After five years on the force I had gone from a frail and timid fresh-out-of-college common crime investigator, catching pickpockets and common thieves, to one of the most accomplished serial killer catchers in the game. So far, I’ve captured thirty-seven killers, and I’ve had to see what they did to people too. Pretty gruesome stuff. But this case was different. This particular murderer had tortured and killed hundreds of people. People all around my age, and mostly women. The pictures were enough to make me sick.
Marching out into the busy streets of la Città di Ombre, the City of Shadows, I crossed a street and unlocked my precious Hummingbird. I’m extremely proud of my car, and brag about it often. In a city of thieves, killers, and sluts with very little money, a treasure like a Hummingbird is rare. All black and chrome outside, chrome detailing on the hood, and black leather interior, custom. Five hundred horse power too. My little baby has never failed me yet! Sitting on the personalized drivers’ seat, I inserted my laser key, closed the door and locked it, and drove off to my apartment. How am I going to solve this one? I thought, frustrated. I turned on the radio, blaring heavy metal, and ripped my hair out of its bun, shaking my copper hair out of the swirl. Finally I arrived at my apartment complex. Tyler, one of my roommates, was outside getting off his motorcycle, and was just about to go in the complex, when I yelled, “Hey, Ty!” and ran up to him. “I’ve got another murder case. A bad one. How was work at the store?” Tyler owned chain of weapon stores.
“It was fine, I sold another bluebox. Mo, are you sure you want to handle another case? You’ve already spent most of this month on three cases. I don’t want you to get stressed out.”
“Don’t worry Ty ty…I’m used to work by now.” He hates it when I call him Ty ty, but that’s just how I tease him. We walked into the lobby of the complex, and got in the elevator. Tyler pressed the button and we shot up to the very top floor and stepped out. I walked over to the door to our penthouse suite, and opened it. The room smelled like fresh paint. Becca, Tyler’s graceful and pretty wife, was at work on another of her beautiful paintings. “Hey Bec…” I said, sighing.
“Hey Mo, hi honey,” she said, giving Tyler a quick hug then returning to her painting. “How was work for you both…?” she asked, then saw my stressed and puzzled expression. “Oh no…you have another case, don’t you?” I nodded.
“Murder. You know the serial killer who only goes after people our age? I’m supposed to catch him, dead or alive.” They both gasped. “So far he’s killed 208 women and men all around our ages. Promise me you won’t go out without someone protecting you.”
“I promise.” They both said.
Grabbing a bag of pretzels, I walked into the living room and flopped on the couch beside Sarah, who was playing with our playire system. She was another one of my five roommates. There was also Megan and Becks in our seven-bedroom, five-bathroom, and three-living room penthouse. We all had been close friends since our middle school days back in 2006. Now, in 2022, we all had jobs, and Becca and Tyler were married. Becca and Becks are artists, Megan a cartoonist, Sarah a gamer, Tyler the owner of a chain of weapon stores, and me, an investigator. Munching on the pretzels, I watched Sarah play Doom 6. Becca and Tyler’s kid, an adorable little girl named Bella, waddled in on her unsteady three year old legs. I scooped her up and gave her a hug.
“Mowwy can I have a pwezzle?” She asked in her childish voice, grabbing at my bag of pretzels.
“Hey Bec can Bella have a pretzel?” I yelled to Becca.
“You heard your mom.” I said, handing her a pretzel. She scampered off, probably to go see her dad. I stood, leaving the pretzels for Sarah, and went in my room, flopping on my silver bead spread. My phone buzzed on my back pocket. I retrieved it, and saw it was Zach, another investigator and my friend.
“Hello?” I answered
“Hey Mo,” he said, sounding excited to talk to me. “What are you up to this fine and smoggy evening?” Sarcastic, as always.
I laughed. “I’m just hanging around with my room mates and the munchkin. You?”
“Well,” he said “I was about to go to dinner, and seeing as I would be going alone, I decided to call my little partner in crime to see if she was available to join me at Sakura. What do you say, Bonnie?”
“Sakura? Clyde, did you just rob Fort Knox?” I giggled. It was a joke between me and him to call each other ‘partners in crime’ and Bonnie and Clyde. “Yeah I’d love to go, but I’ll have to change. I’m still in uniform. Meet there in…thirty minuites?”
“Of course. Talk to you later, Hummingbird.” He said, jokingly, and hung up. I scrambled out of my uniform and put on my favorite blood red skirt and black tank top, and rushed into the bathroom to brush my hair. Dashing back in, I slipped on some heels and snatched up my purse. With a quick goodbye to Tyler, telling him I was off to dinner with a friend, and dashed down to my Hummingbird. I slid in, and sped off to the most expensive sushi restaurant in the city. Punctual as always, we met in front of the building. We walked up to the door, and he opened it for me.
Someone’s courteous today…I thought and walked in, led by the host, to a private table for two. Oh…This can’t be what I think it is… I wondered. We sat and ordered our food. About fifteen minuites later, our food arrived and I started munching on my dragon roll with an intense fury, prodding it with my chopsticks. People say that every time I eat, it’s like I’ve never seen food before I devour it so quickly. Today was no exception. I was done before he was even halfway finished. “So who’s your girlfriend this week?” I teased.
“No one…” A mournful, pathetic expression came across his face. We soon went into discussion about work and my new case. He said he would be happy to help where he could. I thanked him; we paid, and walked out to our cars. He surprised me then, by bringing a bouquet of red and white roses out of his car. He handed it to me, got in, and drove away.