Date: April 23, 2012
Drake had decided to wait until the evening was through before he acted on his thoughts. Waiting this long for Johnny to be ready was the right move. Going in the evening, of yesterday, would have been in bad taste. Now, at this time in the morning was just perfect. At least for someone who wasn’t going to be expected to be questioned. Prodded about someone who they, as he is told, clearly care quite a bit about. It’s always a painful process. On the other side. Drake watches them when he speaks to either a victim’s family, or someone who was close to them. It goes several ways.
Most seem to break down, tears are involved. That usually happens because the kill was fresh. Because the murder had been recent and Drake has to solve the case soon. To protect others from being hurt. That’s one of the biggest things that he can do for the family. Ensure that no one else has to feel the same pain that they are currently feeling.
The others, with a murder that was years ago he hopes that their suffering can be eradicated. Snubbed out. It makes it easier for both sides. Drake can get the questions answered, find the connections easier. The one being questioned can focus on what they want to say to Drake. They won’t feel as much suffering as they once did. A slight ping of what was once was. If that feeling can dissipate, he’ll be able to have their entire attention.
Drake stood in the middle of an alleyway. The sky was low, clouds were still forming above him. They were yet to release the bulk of their weight onto the world. With the cover of his hat shadowing over his eyes, from his perspective the light appeared much dimmer than it truly was. He tugged at the sides of his trench coat, bringing it closer to the cuffs of his arms and around his neck. A small wave of cold air ran down his neck. It didn’t matter how long he’d have to wait here, his target would come out. Drake would grab what he needs from his target. A minor realization seemed to dawn on him. Why did he refer to Johnny as the ‘target’? It didn’t seem to be the best wording when thinking about someone who you wanted to help. In a sense of the word. More of get answers from, and find out details.
Words that described him didn’t seem to fit. They had yet to meet, and so ‘target’ would be appropriate enough for what he was going to have answered. For now, at least.
Tapping the brick wall on is back that he leaned against, his eyes kept low to the ground. A sour aroma rose into the air around his nostrils. It was a stinging pain in the back of his head. Trash from the restaurant’s garbage resonated from all around him. The smell felt to cling around his clothing. Grasping desperately to anything to run away from the source itself. Attaching itself to the sides of his jacket, hat, the sides of his formal shirt, it was as if he had never been allowed to wash them. He’d wait as long as he’d need to.
A set of fifteen minutes rolled by. Drake watched a few rats scurry away as he twitched his boots as they dawned nearby. Trying to find the next piece of leftover meat or food that someone had left. Grunting, he kicked one that had been drawing much too close to his position. As he did, he heard a metallic click from a nearby location.
With a wave of air swinging down the pathway, a door moaned open as another individual made their way down the alleyway. Since it was the middle of the morning, a darkened shade was lowered down over the pathway. Drake watched the person move to their nearest trash can. Opening up the top and tossing the bag over his shoulder. Clanging against the other contents, a break of glass was heard and the man cursed.
Drake slowly made his way down the pathway. He crunched against a piece of metal on the ground to make the man turn. As it crushed underneath his boot, they stared at each other. Drake’s size made him seem much more menacing then he was attempting to appear. The man let out a surprised cry and held his fists up. “Hey! What’s the big idea?”
Raising his hands up, Drake walked slowly over to the man. “Not intending for an incident. Merely wanted to talk.” As the man watched Drake walk forward, he seemed to slowly lower his own fists. They kept strained and tightened, never lowering his gaze towards him.
“And what is it that you want?” The man’s eyes never left Drake’s. He had short hair, shorter than Drake’s. Johnny’s beard seemed to twitch. It spiraled down from his chin and rolled around in a small circle. His blue eyes sharpened into Drake’s own shade. “Well!” His voice sharpened like a knife being removed from the sheath.
“The name is Drake,” he responded with a calmer tone. Something to open up to, if Johnny took in the voice. “I’m here to discuss things that have happened in your past. I’m wondering what you may have been seeing the past few weeks. Anything that may have been out-of-place.”
Johnny stared strangely at Drake. His eyes twisted for a moment and held his fists up higher. “What the hell are you talking about, buddy?”
“Jessica,” Drake said the name coolly, watching the man’s reaction.
It sparked a small flame that may have been there for quite a long time. His fists shook in front of his chest as he moved forward to Drake. Drake didn’t dare lose any ground. “You. Don’t you dare talk about her. What are you, a cop? Let’s see a badge, dammit!”
Shame. Shame was what Drake heard in the man’s voice. He was attempting to mask it in anger. To shroud what he may be fully feeling deep down in his heard. The detective had seen that sort of feeling in most people. It was when they hold something back. When they wanted to hold onto anything from something they lost.
Drake placed his hands formally behind his back. “I have no badge. I’m here on other matters. Due to certain events, I’m questioning you on Jessica due to her friend. Becca.”
“Why?” Placing his fists down lower, his hands didn’t seem to curl as much. He was unclenching as much as possible all along his body. Drake could see it even from his distance. “What’s happened? Is it because of the wedding?”
“In a manner of speaking.” Drake walked forward again, testing the waters. The man didn’t seem as distressed at this point. “Have you spoken to Becca lately? Has she mentioned anything?”
“No. No we haven’t spoken about anything for a few days now. She’s been all wrapped up in the wedding for the past few weeks. It’s been all of her life. Her air.” Johnny didn’t seem bothered by it. Like it was a distant event he wasn’t even a part of it.
“From the way you speak,” Drake brought up, “it sounds like you may not even be invited.”
“Oh, I am.” Snapped Johnny as he began to lower his hands at last. “I’ve just been really busy lately.. So many things have been going on my side..”
The man continued to trail on. Details that didn’t matter to what Drake needed to hear. He cut in, “As much as that matters. I can understand why you’re not that interested in the marriage. As happy as they are. I have to ask you. When was the last time that you saw Jessica? Where was she going? What happened?”
Johnny’s eyes shook slightly. The pain began to return to him as if Jessica had been there just yesterday. Drake saw that. Slowly, the man washed a dirty hand over the side of his cheeks. “Listen, man, can I at leas-”
“Here,” Drake attempted to lower the man’s attempts to gather himself. As much as he prefered to allow the victim’s loved ones to gather themselves, he preferred to apply pressure. From time to time. “We can discuss things here. Just you and I.”
Before Johnny could continue what he could say, an arrow cut through the air. Just as his mouth opened, an arrow cut straight through both of his cheeks. Embedding itself in the middle of his skin, blood sprayed off the side of his mouth and coated his teeth. The man’s surprise rose into his eyes. His pair of innocent blue shades were wide open in terror. As the pain rushed along his nerves, another arrow shot out and hit the middle of his head. As his body felt the pain of the first arrow, he fell to the ground from the second one penetrating his brain. The steel arrow stuck straight into the side of his head with another spray of blood hitting the ground and the sides of a nearby trash can.
As his body fell to the ground, Drake was already lowering his body and laid against a wall. His hat was angled upwards and sought for the direction of the attacker. “God dammit.”