Chapter 9: Chapter 9

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 80

Luke impatiently paced along the divide that separated the lawn and driveway of Katelynn’s home. His eyes constantly checked the end of the block for Alex’s car to finally turn the corner. She was at least an hour late and had not communicated to him what was holding her up or where she was. So much of him wanted to ease up when he heard her car, but it wasn’t until the pitch-black sixty-four Mustang came around the corner that he let out his breath. He tried to relax the scowl he knew he was making. It would take all he had not to interrogate her, but he needed her to be open. He knew that if she felt attacked she would shut down.

When she climbed out of the driver's side she closed the door swiftly but didn’t look at him. Her eyes were already fixed on the house. He immediately noticed she was still in the scrubs Hazel had given her when CSI needed to bag her clothes. 

“Why didn’t you go home?” he asked as she approached, “Where have you been?”

She didn’t answer and walked past him, but not before she took the gloves and booties he had extended towards her.

He grumbled in agitation but quickly readjusted and kept talking,“I’m not sure you should even be driving.”

Alex stopped and spun abruptly to finally address him. She eyed him with annoyance.

“Are you done?” she asked but didn’t let him answer. “Has anyone checked on Rontu?”

“Umm.” Luke tried to comprehend her question, but the name was foreign to him. He shook his head and answered tentatively, “Who?”

“He could have had DNA on him.”

Still not understanding he asked for clarification, “Who is Rontu?”

“Their dog!” she snapped.

He threw his hands up in a gesture of surrender. “I don’t know.”

“I need to find out,” she said under her breath.

“Okay?”

She stared at him briefly then twisted away again. He watched her with growing concern. He didn’t fully understand what she was dealing with because it wasn’t like her to divulge any of her feelings or true emotions. Her resistance just made the situation that much harder to navigate.

He decided that at least speaking to her back was still engaging. “Other prints were found in Tyler’s room that didn’t match his, Katelynn’s, or yours. Should get something back soon, hopefully.”

“Good.” Alex pulled the gloves on and took a breath before she broke the crime scene tape to enter. 

The door swung open slowly revealing a home overtaken by CSI. Alex didn’t move at first and Luke didn’t want to rush her so he stood back respectfully. With a shake of her head, she carefully entered and he followed her lead.

“We know what happened here,” she said and sidestepped the placards surrounding the small puddles of blood on the tile floor.

“What do you remember about him?”

“It was dark. He was big and had a knife,” she answered in almost a whisper. 

She didn’t give him a chance to delve further and maneuvered carefully through the kitchen to the living room. He watched her take in each space. Her face never shifted or wavered beyond her neutral expression.

“Anything seem odd or out of place?” he asked, surveying the room. A couch faced a fairly large entertainment center, while a bookshelf lined the wall. It was well organized and clean. To him, it looked untouched, but he waited for her to respond. 

It felt like forever before Alex answered,“I haven’t been here in a while.”

“I thought you said you worked out together every morning.” 

“No.” She finally looked at him. Her dark eyes glimmered with a hint of anger. “I said some mornings, and that doesn’t mean I came inside or that we always met here.”

He remained quiet. He wanted to ask why that day of all days did she decide to go in and not just be content with just a call or text to say that she wouldn’t make it. He’d ask but figured he’d get a generic response. He needed her to stay engaged and was doing his best not to push her further away. He simply nodded for her to continue. 

She pointed to the hallway. “I heard Rontu and followed his sounds. I had to clear the bathroom and Tyler’s room before I was able to get to him.”

He followed her into Tyler’s room and watched her closely. Alex’s eyes squinted as she did a slow turn. “Where were the other fingerprints found?”

Luke pointed to the bookshelf and then to the windowsill. “I assume that was his point of entry. I can’t imagine Tyler not waking up to someone climbing into his room.” 

“Unless he entered before he went to bed, but how did he move around without being heard or alerting Rontu?” 

Luke shrugged in agreement and continued to follow her lead. When they got to the master bedroom the already tense air became thicker with her increased anxiety. An emotional energy that he knew she would not admit to, but there was no denying her complete change in disposition. Any other scene they would have walked into she would have been sterile in context and outward reaction. This was nowhere near that. Luke felt it and Alex tried to hide it.

In an effort to break through, Luke spoke to how he thought the events went down and pointed to the dent in the wall. “I’m thinking a blitz attack. He was lying in wait, but she fought back.” 

He mimicked the possible movement and moved towards the dresser tipped over on the floor. “Then he pinned her to the bed where he stabbed her repeatedly.” He motioned to the door as he continued. “Maybe when Tyler and the dog came in it startled him. He moved to them and then fled where he ran into you.”

Alex was listening but she said little. Her eyes followed him briefly but were constantly drawn back to the stained carpet.

“Did you hear me?” 

She didn’t look over and before he could push further her phone buzzed, saving her.

“Cruz,” she answered. As she listened she cut a small circle in the carpet, still clearly aware of where not to step. The conversation sounded serious, but all he heard was Alex’s one-word responses encouraging more information.

He waved his hand to get her attention. “Put it on speaker.” 

Alex signaled for him to be quiet and stepped further away. Luke crossed his arms and waited. He didn’t like that he wasn't in the know. 

When the call concluded she dropped the phone in the front pocket of her scrub top and breathed deeply. “Doctor has given us the okay to go speak to Kate.” 

“You were on the phone longer than just an okay to see her.”

“He was giving me a lowdown on all of the things we can and can’t do and how long we have with her.”

He eyed her carefully. He hated that he had a feeling she was holding back information.

“There’s a lot of anger in this room,” she said pulling his focus back. “Deeply rooted anger.”

He agreed and continued to study Alex’s movements. She would look from the bed to the floor and back. He saw her mind working something out.

“What is it?”

“I found her on the floor with Tyler. The majority of the blood is on the bed. She fought back at one point. He will have defensive wounds; Tyler scratched him. He may even have dog bites.”

“Kate’s account may clear some of this up.”

Alex nodded and promptly left the room.

 

 

 

 

 


Submitted: September 28, 2020

© Copyright 2021 Kathrynmp. All rights reserved.

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