Author's Note: This is long overdue, the second chapter is… and because I'm running behind a little, I'm going to post this one as is, and post chapter two at a later date… please forgive my tardiness, as I've been overwhelmed with a lot of stuff (i.e. work). I hope you enjoy Part One of the Second Chapter of 'Angels in the Night, Angels in the Day'. – ArchAngel
Chapter Two** (Part One)
The clock radio read 5:59 a.m. as Angel beat the alarm by seconds. Ten seconds went by, and the clocked clicked over to 6:00. "Good morning and thank you for listening to Naglesville News Radio. This morning's top story is the mysterious death of Barry Whitham, Chief of Police."
At the sound of the radio newscaster mentioning his death, Angel bolted straight up. What? Barry's dead? How? Thoughts raced through his head as he turned full attention to the radio.
"Naglesville has suffered a loss last night. One of the town's most respected members, and Chief of Police, was murdered last night in his office. This marks the second murder in as many days. Police investigators have refused to comment any more on this subject matter." The newsman reported. Angel immediately rose out of bed. As the newscaster continued on, he slipped on his clothes, made a brewery of instant coffee, grabbed his briefcase, and headed out the door.
Arriving to the station wasn't as big a problem as getting into the station. For starters, the media, not the police, had barricaded the front steps. Officers were, however, frantically trying to push everyone back so they could have their breathing room. Angel elbowed his way up to the front, occasionally showing his badge to the moronic reporters who had to question his rights of being there. Upon reaching the front of the crowd, Angel noticed a barricade of a different type. Police investigators had surrounded the doors to the station with the official yellow crime tape. At this sight, Angel thought to himself, How ironic… the very service that protects the innocents and upholds the law has to close off their own station as a crime scene. His thoughts were soon interrupted by a commanding voice.
"What business do you have here, Sir?" the voiced bellowed.
"Detective Angel Hobbes at your service." Angel flashed his badge towards the newcomer.
"So, you're the detective Barry was telling me about last night. Dominick Stiles here. Come this way, please?" Angel took note of this man, noted his height, approximate weight, hair color, eye color, the works. Get a hold of yourself, boy. He's an officer, just like you. He's not a suspect. Angel paid no heed to his thoughts, and continued to make mental notes.
"We found the Chief in his office early this morning." Angel's thoughts were once again disturbed. "He was slumped down on the floor, wrapped up in a nylon cloth. After-"
"Let me guess. You unwrapped him, found his chest ripped open down to his waist, his internal organs stripped, and he was drained of his blood, right?" Angel recalled the facts from yesterday's murder.
Dominick's jaw dropped open and he stammered, "H-h-h-how did you know that?" Angel had to chuckle to himself as thought about the silliness of having to answer to a subordinate.
"I've been on this force for 17 years. Last night, Barry had entrusted me with a murder case that involved the same details I just gave you. To tell the truth, it was a wild stab in the dark for me; I didn't know really what had happened."
"Well, in either case, you have it right down to a 'T'." Dominick opened the door to the former Chief's office, and Angel braced himself for what he might see. Surprisingly, the clean up crew did a fine job. The chalky outline of where the body used to lie was embedded in the turquoise plush carpeting Barry had installed over a year ago. The off-white velvet chair that he always sat in and took great pride in was now stained with splotches of blood. The slats to the venetian blinds behind the chair were shut, a sign that Barry didn't want any outsiders looking in. The mahogany desk was cluttered with papers in the baskets marked 'In' and 'Out'. The computer monitor had set itself to sleep mode, so Angel, being careful not to disturb anything, aroused it to a waking state.
'REMEMBER! WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM COULD HAPPEN TO YOU!'
Angel jumped back as those words popped up on the screen. What the hell is that? Is this some kind of joke or something? He called Dominick over to the computer. "Did you see this?" The letters of green continued to flash on the screen.
"What the hell? How long has this been up here?" Angel shrugged his shoulders, and nodded towards the screen.
"My guess is it was after the Chief was murdered. I wonder if the computer logged what the chief was working on, though. Maybe it will provide some clues to who is behind this." Angel checked through the loggings, but found the only thing that was on there last was an email to a friend of the late Chief. Angel shut the screen off and continued to look around. Several minutes of intense searching brought nothing to surface. There were no signs that anyone had ever been there at all, not even a faint fingerprint.
This guy must be all out pro. He leaves no traces whatsoever of his existence, he has not been spotted yet, despite the brightness of the area, and he was able to take on the Chief with no struggle. The Chief's body, though mangled from chest down, had no signs of a bruise anywhere. Once again, Dominick broke Angel's train of thoughts. "What do you want us to do, Sir?" Angel thought about the question for a few seconds before finally replying.
"Right now, I don't want you to do anything. I will handle this investigation, and I will handle it alone. If you feel you must do something, round up possible candidates for the new Chief of Police. Keep in contact with me. My phone number is listed. But remember, this is my investigation." Angel looked at his watch, and noticed that he had already been there for two hours, for it read 8:30. 'Three and a half more hours until I meet Queiss, and I don't know what I am going to do…'
"Duly noted, Sir. I will make sure all officers report back to me and let them know you are handling the investigation."
Angel turned around to leave, but before he even stepped foot out the door, Dominick stopped him with one final question. "Tell me, Detective, who do you think is killing these people?"
"Honestly, I couldn't tell you. There are a number of people out there who will stop at nothing to get their way, and it seems this is one of those cases." Angel shrugged off the question with finesse. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to do some work."
"Oh, yes Sir. Sorry to keep you waiting." Dominick said nothing further as Angel headed off.
Once again, Angel had to fight his way through the crowd of onlookers and the media, though this time with less trouble. Just as he reached his car, he heard a familiar voice sing out to him. "Angel! Hey, Angel! Wait up!" Angel spun around only to meet Jennifer face to face.
"Jen! What brings you here?" Angel and Jennifer had a long history together, starting back in grammar school. They even had dated a couple times in high school, but nothing serious came from it. They were just school pals, nothing more. 'But boy, does she look good.' Angel thought. Jennifer's flowing red hair reached just past the small of her back, pulled back in a ponytail. Her emerald green eyes sparkled as the sunlight gleamed in them; her eyes had always been one of her best features.
"You know that I'm a reporter, so where else would I be? Sitting at home on the biggest story this town has seen in over 20 years? I don't think so. I'm here to pick up on the story." Jennifer leaned over and him a peck on the cheek. "And, since you and I are such great friends, I was hoping I could get a little more from you than I could with those pompous jerks up there in the front."
"I'm sorry. I wish I could help you, but unfortunately, I don't know much about this yet. All I know is that we have some psycho out there running around and he's not going to be easy to catch. And besides, if I had any more information, I'm not sure how much I'd be able to tell you."
"Oh. Well," Jennifer looked at her watch and noted it was nearly a quarter before nine. "I guess we could go out to breakfast, if you haven't eaten anything yet." Angel considered this option, only because he still had almost three hours before he had to meet up with Quiess.
"Sure, why not. Where do you want to go? And of course, we'll take my car."
"Hmmm… let's go to Jerry's. That place always has great breakfast food, and I haven't been there for a long time. What do you say?"
"Jerry's sounds good to me. Go ahead, hop in." Angel held the door open for her as she climbed into his car. It wasn't the best car to be in, but he couldn't complain. Despite the numerous miles on it, the scratches on the fender and the bad paint job on it, it got him where he needed to go. After closing the door gently on the passenger side, he walked over to the driver side. In mid-stride, he paused for a second. He casually glanced around, making sure that no one was around him. What was that? I just had a feeling someone was watching me.
"Angel, are you okay?" Jennifer called out from the car. After searching around, Angel continued his route to the driver side of the car. "Angel, are you okay?" Jennifer asked again as he entered the car.
"Uh... nothing. Just thought there was someone watching me. At least, that is what I felt. Did you happen to see anyone?" Angel's thoughts continued about what had just happened. I could have sworn there was someone out there watching me. What was it? Why? Who? And more importantly, from where?
"I didn't see anyone. Are you okay? Are you sure you can go out to eat? Maybe the death of the Chief has you more shaken up than you think." Jennifer looked at Angel with more concern.
"Yeah, uh, I'm okay. Let's just go." Angel started up the car and backed out of the parking spot, still glancing around. The drive to Jerry's was uneventful; neither one of them had much to say. Angel was still worried about the 'mystery eyes' that seemed to burn their way into the back of his mind. Jennifer was worried about what story she would have if she couldn't get anything out of Angel, worried about Angel himself. When they finally arrived at Jerry's, the only words spoken between them were 'Is it too hot in here for you' and 'No.'
Part Two to be continued…