Division 47 Forgotten in Time
By Joanna E Sears
© The Monster Zoo
Oliver had two reasons for being at the Federal Services Hospital that morning, the first and most important in his eyes was to see off a very special person and finally close the case on the Beast in the Forest.
Elaine Garvell was just shutting the suitcase on her bed. She turned as her door opened.
Oliver Walingham gave her a tight smile and enquired.
"All ready for the move?" Elaine nodded
"The Witness Protection Marshalls are waiting outside." Oliver laid a hand on her arm.
"It's all set up. You'll never want for anything the government has set up a trust fund for you," she nodded. Oliver handed her a small card. "I am the only person who will ever know where you went. If you ever have any problems?" he tapped the card. "This number will automatically re-route your call straight through to me." She tried to smile but had to ask.
"What of the child? I know it survived," she blushed "I guess the legends are true a mother always knows." Oliver inhaled
"Yes it survived," he concurred. "But it can never be set free. No one knows how much of its father dwells within it." Elaine nodded again.
"But it will be properly looked after?"
"Yes! Although it's going to be permanently institutionalized," he gave her a second smile. "Actually the nursemaid assigned to the kid, says he's a jolly little chap who smiles a lot and takes a keen interest in everything going on around him."
"I'm glad," Elaine replied then there was a knock at the door and two brown suited Marshalls entered. Oliver gave the woman one last hug then stepped back as she was led away to a new life far from the painful memories of the last year. Oliver inhaled hard he'd grown fond of the brave woman but as she left he drew himself up and turned his thoughts to the second reason he was at the hospital.
Tony gave a low moan as he tried to sit up. Okay the burning pain of his bursting Appendix was gone but he was sore and the new stitches pulled whenever he moved. His throat was dry and the nausea was still threatening to make him hurl. He dreaded doing that anticipating how much it would hurt.
A shadow fell over him, Tony looked up and inwardly groaned. He'd guessed it had been too much to hope for that 'Olive Oyl' would leave him in peace while he was in the hospital. Oliver laid a stack of slim red files on his bedside table and set what Tony recognized as a
Federal Laptop computer, next to them.
"What are they?" Tony asked puzzled.
"Old unsolved cases," his brother replied. "While you're laid up in here? You will have plenty of time to read through them and write closing reports so I can officially archive the cases and clear up my office a bit." Tony gaped in surprise.
"But I'm on sick leave," he protested.
"You fell ill on my time, in my office, you're being treated in a Federal Hospital at my Department's expense. The least you can do is help defray the cost a bit." Tony was struck dumb with shock and before he could recover his wits. His brother had spun on his heel and stalked out. A nurse came over and he lay back to allow her to check his vital signs and ensure he was comfortable. Well as comfortable as he could get considering he'd undergone
Major Surgery the day before.
He woke an hour later feeling a little better his abdomen was still sore but the thirst and
nausea were gone. Moving slowly and using the strength in his arms he dragged himself up
to a sitting position. The stack of red files caught his eye and having nothing else to really do
he reached for the one on top of the pile. The first three he read through were pretty dull and
he had read them within an hour. But the fourth one down was completely different and within a few seconds his interest was piqued. In fact part of him recognised the mystery would make a good basis for one of his Demon Skald novels not that he would tell Oliver that. He pretty much sussed his brother would veto any release of information to the public
not even in the form of fiction. Tony eyed the Official computer Oliver had left and then gave a sly grin. Moving slowly so as not to jar his still sore stomach he inched across to the left side of his bed and reached out to where his jacket lay over a chair.
"Urrgh!" he groaned loudly as pain burned across his lower torso. The sound instantly brought the same nurse running.
"What are you doing sir?" she enquired. Tony blushed
"Sorry I was just trying to reach my jacket." The Nurse gently but firmly settled him back against the pillows then passed him his jacket.
"If you need anything else please just press this button," she handed his a small pad with a large button at the centre. Tony gave her a weak smile and asked if he could have a drink of water. She filled a small beaker with water from a jug then fitted a lid to it. Tony gratefully sucked a few small mouthfuls through the straw protruding from the top. The nodded his thanks. The nurse placed the cup on his bedside cabinet within easy reach and then disappeared into an office at the far end of the ward. Tony waited until she had closed the door then picked up his jacket and felt in the pocket for his cell phone. He waited for a few seconds for his call to be connected and then ten more for it to be answered.
"Rhys! It's Tony."
"Tony? I thought you were in Hospital? Tangle called me last night to say you'd been rushed to the FSH with a suspected Appendectomy."
"Yes I was. Now I'm in post op and recovery."
"And they're letting you call out."
"They don't know and please don't say I phoned."
"As if I would? But why are you calling me? If it's about Percy don't fret? He's safe Tangle has him."
"I'm glad about that but that's not the reason I'm calling. Olive Oyl," he heard Rhys chuckle at the derogatory name he used for his brother. "Has loaded me down with a stack of cold case files four miles high, to solve while I'm laid up."
"Man! He's such a tyrant," Rhys commiserated
"Yeah and all he's left me with, is a stripped down laptop which is about as much use as a caveman's club. Any chance you could nip to my Apartment and get my own for me?"
"Sure I'm on leave for the next week so whatever you need just yell especially if its decent victuals. I stayed in the FSH last year the food was dire then and I doubt it's improved any."
"OK see you in about an hour." Tony cut the call and laid back to re-read the case file.
It concerned a series of gruesome unsolved murders that had taken place across the Mid-western states of Kansas Ohio and Missouri during the latter part of the Nineteenth Century. Tony wondered why his brother was so worried about a case that was over a hundred years old. No one could ever be brought to justice, the murderer would be as dead as his victims by now. Even still it was an interesting read and took his mind off his still aching belly.
The first attack occurred in the small town of Creston Iowa between the hours of ten pm on the night of May 9, 1891, and five am May 10, 1891. Four members of the Marne family and two house guests were found slashed in the family residence. All six victims, including two children, had severe torso wounds from long knife. A lengthy investigation yielded several suspects, none of whom were ever apprehended. The crime remains unsolved.
The second attack came eleven days later in Kirksville Iowa. Again the murders took place sometime after ten pm and before five am. The victims were a newly married young couple and one of their bridesmaids. No connection was made to the Creston murders at this time. A rival for the Bride's hand was arrested and hung for the crime. Such was the outrage of the two families at the brutal sadistic killings, that the young man was not given anything more than a cursory trial.
Nine months separated the first two attacks from the third recorded incident. It happened
at an isolated house on the fringes of the bustling Kansas town of Topeka. A man in his early forties, his wife and their three children had all been slashed and cut with something the local undertaker described as a long serrated blade and shorter straight edged knife.
Even as early as 1892 Topeka was showing signs of being a prominent place of commerce and trade. The newly appointed Sheriff, aware that the crime could harm his town's reputation and frighten off prospective investors, sent for a renowned detective from the famous Pilkington Agency the fore-runner of the FBI. He brought with him a member of the newly formed Dog Tracker squad. Sheriff Watts had also had the fore-sight to employ a young chemist with some experience to take Photographs of the crime scene. The first recorded use of the new technology in crime solving. The young man was considerably shaken by the experience but nevertheless his pictures were included in the subsequent investigation.
A shadow fell over Tony and he looked up into the smiling face of Rhys-ap-Pryderi.
He laid up Tony's personal laptop computer on the bed then held up a plastic carrier bag.
"I took the liberty of grabbing you some decent PJs 'nd all mate. Those hospital gowns aren't very good at protecting one's modesty. Tony was intensely grateful for this and grimacing against the pain changed into the thick pyjamas. Once this was accomplished
Tony showed Rhys the file he was interested in. The older man stroked his chin.
"You're going to need a pair of boots on the ground while you're in here."
"No I couldn't expect you to do that," Tony protested. "You're on vacation I wouldn't dream of it." Rhys laughed.
"Ollie has a real bee in his bonnet about this case. Imagine how peeved he's going to be
if his little brother solves it from his hospital bed?" Tony instantly grinned back
"Oh yeah! It would be the perfect revenge for 'Olive Oyl' forcing him to work while he was officially off sick.