Creative Writing - The Case: An Original Mystery
"Ring . . . Ring" screamed the phone. "Damn who could that be . . . its
almost seven a.m. on a Saturday . . . . hold on Allison it will only take a
minute . . . Hello?" detective Pat said.
" Hey sorry Sergeant McGurn but we need you to come down to the station
as soon as possible . . . there's more trouble over at Gibbons. Meet me there."
"Hey sugar I have to go down to Gibbons there's more trouble, do you
need a ride someplace?" said the exasperated homicide detective.
"It's always something with you Pat . . . every time I come over you
either get called in or you're so drunk that you can't even remember who I am . .
. It's over Pat!" and then she left.
"Come on car . . . Please work . . . Just this once . . . There you go.
No matter what anyone says your the best three tone Buick I've ever had." See
he was a real cheap skate, spent all his money on St. Ides and Old English
64oz.ers. He was always borrowing money too. He still owes me seven hundred
ninety eight dollars and ninety five cents, plus tax. For a Harvard graduate he
sure is a wash up. The only thing he could afford to drive was the car the
police station gave him. It was a 1986 Buick with a green trunk, maroon body,
and a navy blue hood. The thing took about three minutes to start and another
five to warm up, and that was in the summer.
Ten minutes later he showed up at my desk. I could still smell her
perfume on him. He looked terrible, like usual, man he was such a good guy, but
he didn't have a lucky bone in his body.
"So what's up now Steve? . . . another vending machine robbery . . .
more scuff marks?" Pat looked like a detective, you know what I mean, the way
the detectives looked in those old movies. He had a bad suit on, with a tie
loosened and hanging down and his shirt opened up, and he usually was sleeping
at his desk with the light dimmed and his feet up. The hat he had on looked
like it had really been worn by a detective out of an old movie, it was all
dirty and had a fold like somebody sat on it.
"No not this time Pat . . . Its a little worse . . . there's been a
Pat froze, then as calm as can be he sat down and said "Give me the who,
what, when, and where's about it. You know, the faster we get moving, the
fresher the scent is."
"Yeah I know you always say that . . . to bad it hardly ever works . . .
we haven't cracked a case since you got involved that Richter girl . . . she's
bad news . . . you should get rid of her as soon as possible."
"Too late for that . . . right after you called she threw a fit and left
. . . too bad I was just starting to like her . . . oh well lets get down to
"I don't know how to break this to you Pat, but at six thirty Jim
Collins phoned me at the station . . . he sounded very upset, never heard him
talk like this before . . . and it didn't really sound like him, he had to
identify himself . . . he might even have been crying."
"No way . . . not Jim."
"Well it wasn't Jim. I had Mrs. Page phone him, and he was home
sleeping at six thirty, it was his day off."
"That explains why you didn't recognize him on the phone."
"As I was saying, he said ‘Steve we need you to come as soon as you can,
Mr. Chank and Mrs. Hartnett were found dead on the ground in room one.' I
asked if there was anything that looked funny to him, but just then I heard the
fire alarm go off and the connection was lost."
"That's funny the fire alarm has no bearing on the phones"
"Well we looked into that and when we got here we found that the main
switch was turned off. Jim's office has both of those controls and those were
the controls that were used. We also found out that when the fire alarm goes
off it over loads the video system, the cameras fold into the fire proof boxes
in the wall."
"I'd like to take a closer look, hey I wonder how much that cost?"
When ever I told him something he always had this annoying way of
needing to check just in case I in fact screwed up, but he never found anything
wrong with what I did. After about ten minutes Pat came out and said to me "
We're gonna need to get Chank's room finger printed and Jim's office printed
too . . . and see if there is any tape from the video cameras. I'm going to
breakfast can you lend me ten?"
"I'm broke . . . I already looked into the camera situation. They leave
the cameras rolling at night and they were taping, but because of the alarm they
didn't catch the murderer on the film . . . I made sure of it checked everything
myself. The culprit must of known that the cameras withdrew when the alarms
went off. And there is no one available to print right now have to call back
"Were do they keep the monitors and the VCRs with the tapes in them?"
"Two places one in Brother Mark's secret lair and one in Ms. Cervo's
"We'll what are we waiting for lets go and check them out . . . between
you and me, I think it might have been an inside job. You know people don't
like when others are too powerful and pushy."
"Yeah I know that feeling." Little did Pat know that I was referring to
our relationship. I was getting rather sick of him pushing me around, hey I
have just as much experience as him, so what if he's a lieutenant and I'm just a
lowly assistant, he's not so smart.
He has just started toward Br. Staniecki and is about to start his line
of questioning on him. I wonder if Brother is going to let us into his secret
lair? Brother never really liked me, he just had to tolerate me because I
wasn't bad enough to kick out or maybe I should say I never got caught. Anyway
I don't want to blow our chances of getting into the room, so I'd better stay
out of the conversation. But I made sure to stay in ear shot of the
conversation, I didn't want to miss anything.
"Good afternoon Brother . . . sorry to have to speak with you on such a
bad terms, but what can you do?"
"You guys could start by getting off your lazy @$$es and start working .
. . just look at Greeley standing over there with his thumb up his butt, why
isn't he finger printing or questioning or investigating?"
"Brother I know this is tough on you but its tough on us too, we're
doing all we can for the moment . . . Bother we have to wait until the finger
printers and photographers get here to do those kind of things, Steve is
checking possible links between the scuff marks, the vending machine thefts and
the murders. It's a tough job, but someone has to do it. Brother, what we need
now is to take a look at your secret lair" just then Brother cut him off and
"No Way that is out of the Question!" but Pat answered with.
"Brother the only way we are going to get this case solved is if we have
your complete cooperation, this could be vital to our investigation. You can
even blind fold us until we get there. Is it a deal?"
"I guess so, but only for the victims sake."
"Thank you! You won't regret it Brother. Steve come on lets go out to
the car and get our stuff. And Brother one more question . . . Did you hear
anything unusual or something I should know that others failed to mention?"
"Well . . . I did hear Mrs. Hartnett singing if that's any use to you."
"Steve follow me"
When we got out in to the hallway away from Brother he said to me ‘I
think we'll find something useful in there I just know it.' and I asked him if
he thought Brother had something to do with it but he said no. I wonder what it
could be that would interest him.
When we went outside he told me "Go to the station and get Jimmy to come
down and dust the room for prints and take some pictures of the crime scene"
"Why do I need to go all the way down town, why don't I just call him"
"He doesn't have a car"
"He can use his black and white, can't he"
"He could but I need you to go down to Slick's and get some sandwiches .
. . I want a roast beef with mayo on rye . . . and get a six of St. Ides."
"We're on duty!"
"Its not for now its for later"
"Well do you have any money? Or should I just put this on your tab?"
"Don't get like this man . . . listen if its a problem I'll just do it
I don't know why I let him talk me into it, he already owes about a
thousand dollars. I don't plan to get any of it back but it would be nice for
him to pick up lunch just once, he makes twice as much money as I do anyway.
Anyhow, when he said Jimmy he was referring to his older brother. He's kind of
a dead beat. If he's not working at the station he's usually there locked up,
but it never sticks. He is Schenectady's version of "Teflon Don", sometimes I
think he might be involved in the mob or something, but Pat tells me he's just a
trouble maker. Maybe I can get a few bucks off him, but it's highly unlikely he
owes me about five hundred dollars himself. Their tabs go all the way back to
senior year, those were the good old days.
When I pulled up to the station Jimmy was outside smoking, so I just
parked in front of him and shouted out the window "Yo Jimmy . . . Pat needs you
down at Gibbons . . . we need some pictures and prints . . . and bring some
money for lunch."
"Hold on I be right back . . . I need to go get the dust." That's what
they call the finger printing kits, kind of corny if you ask me.
"Where we getting lunch?" As someone opened the door and got in, it was
a familiar voice but I just couldn't seem to place it with out turning around.
"No way Walker . . . get out we don't need any blues with us today the
unmarked is bad enough." It was Sean Walker he was a rookie and he was always
trying to tag along, he was the crookedest cop in town, he beat up a few to many
and pinched money too often to have him tagging along. If the Captain saw us
together that would be the end of my dreams of being promoted to a detective.
See I wasn't a full blown detective just a temporary arrangement the Captain, Mr.
Lazzarri, set up. He said he wanted to see what I was made of before I got the
"Why don't yous guys let me come with yous anymore . . . remember when
we were back in Gibbons how come we can't hang any more?"
"Because you don't always do things by the book and we're on a big case,
if its blown I can kiss my promotion good bye and then I'd be a beat cop again
like you. Two years of that is enough for me."
"What ever but if yous guys go out tonight then give me a call." And
then he jumped out and started to talk to Jimmy, but Jimmy just opened the car
door and said to me.
"Drive . . . I hate talking to that punk. I could only find a ten spot"
and he held it up to show me.
"Thanks that'll do" and I snatched it.
"Hey man that's all I got till Friday . . . give me five back man"
"Jimmy were going to Slick's for sandwiches what do you want?"
"It's only ten in the morning . . . Let me guess Pat told you we're
"Shut up man I have to kiss his butt,