Read Also: The Haunter and the Haunted #6
Chapter 7: Psalms
Birds chirping noisily, the sun beaming favorably, laughter of kids in the park, others riding their bikes, adults jogging in the streets, some others picnicking, old folks walking their dogs… Little was left to be seen; summer was at its peak. Max had struggled to get a good night sleep as the incessant howling voices in his head stayed put. Weary-looking, he sat on the bed, hiding his face in his sturdy hands. It was already 8am but it felt like midnight. His complaints were however short-lived, hearing an unexpected gentle rap on his door. Opening up, there stood a sheriff’s deputy, cap underneath the arm. He mouthed some nearly inaudible phrases to Max whose eyes widened, yelling, “No!!!!” After hurriedly donning a pair of jeans, a loose t-shirt and his leather boots, he rushed back to the officer and they exited the hotel in his car.
Max turned and turned it all in his head, he couldn’t quite grasp it. Throughout this short drive, his mind raced back and forth… Arriving at the scene, the stench at the scene caused an uproar in his gut. Looking up, he saw Matt who simply waved at him and continued staring into space. “I’m so sorry man, what really happened?” Max started. “It’s funny you know. He was with you last night. Got a call from his wife around midnight saying he didn’t come home. Called your place, found out from the people there that he left earlier. Looked round town for him, all to no avail. Until some scavenger found his body here at this dumpster few hours ago.” Matt sobbed as watery snort flowed from his big nose. Seeing the man in such pain broke Max’ heart. He remained mute and stared at the bright skies. The rays seemed like shadows to him as his eyes glistened.
“You know, he really speaks highly of you, despite everything that happened. He was a loyal friend and great officer. He was like a brother to me. Who would want to hurt him? I mean, he was the one loved by everybody. I was the unruly one.” Matt continued. Max responded, “well, this changes things for me and for everyone too, I believe. It’s time to take down this killer. I think it’s the same person.” Raising an eyebrow, Matt replied unkindly,” that was why he called you in the first place. Been waiting for you to get serious. Now you’ve got purpose. Do what you do best. I got your back.” Simperingly, Max began, “according to your deputy, his car was found on the other side of town. There are lots of question marks here, you know… Why drive all the way down here to dump a body? It’s even risky because there’re officers patrolling this area. Why didn’t any officer notice any strange movement like a car’s?”
Taking a few steps forward, he concluded, “for motive, it seems strange because all the victims so far are odd to start with. I know there’s something I’m oblivious of here. Let’s begin by talking to all the officers on patrol that night and determining the cause of death. I’ve got another lead to follow.” Sore-eyed Matt looked at him and said, “great! Now you are hyper-sensitive. Well, I’ll follow the body to the morgue. Follow up on your lead.”
Evening that same day, gloomy clouds hovered over the county. One could say they mourned alongside the residents. People still walked around but a certain hushed panic bit through the air non-stop. Returning back to his hotel room after checking out the scene of the murder, Max was exhausted but happy with his find. Holding up a bracelet with the initials B.A., he wondered who owned it and how it got there. Grinning, He reassured himself of finding out. After dialing a number on his cellphone, he listened for a response. On the other side, hissed the familiar voice of Ben. “Talk of the devil… Was about to call you. I’ve got something for you. Anyways, what’s up?” Ben asked. Solemnly, his caller replied, “not so good bro. You remember Graham, right? He’s dead. Found his body this morning.” “Damn!!! I’m so sorry. He was a great guy. I know you guys were close.” Ben breathed. “This is no time to fret. Give me what you’ve got. Need it now!” Max demanded. “You’ll never change… Hahahaha…This will blow your mind. The victims so far were part of the county committee. According to the info I gathered; Graham, Matt were members also with the Mayor as the head. A year ago, the youngest member of the committee, a promising politician, died mysteriously in a car accident. So, when it was declared as it happened, his fiancé cried foul, claiming he was murdered. Well, it seems the young man was a thorn in their flesh who was vying for the post of the mayor. Of course, there was no evidence to prove it. My guess is whoever is targeting these people is on a vengeance streak. And yes, his name was Brian Anderson and he was dating the Mayor’s daughter.” Hanging up, Max let out a dry titter. Casting a quick glance at the bracelet, he whispered, “B.A!!! Hmmmm…. it’s either she’s got something to do with this or we’ve got a ghost in town. Oh! This just got very interesting…”