- The Voice - Part 7
The Voice speaks and demands complete obedience. You better pray it doesn't speak to you!
From Part 7
“Peter, do you know why you remember that particular incident and not the others we looked at tonight?”
“It’s because, at that point, you weren’t under hypnosis. What you were experiencing wasn’t in the past. It was in the present. At that exact moment, even though it overlapped an earlier experience, it was happening in the present. What you remember – what we saw, and heard was happening at the moment, not in your past.
“Peter, this is too important. We can find the answer to who tried to kill you, and in the process, perhaps save many more innocent lives. Peter, you need to tell us every detail of what you remember, okay?”
“Doctor Welch, I’m so confused. I can’t tell reality from this other world I’m experiencing, but I do want to help. I do want to help you nab this guy. I’ll do whatever I can, but Doctor, I just don’t remember anything else. It’s extremely frightful. I don’t want to take a second look at it, but I’ll do whatever I must to get to the bottom of this.”
“Peter, Margie, go home and rest. Lance, get ready. There’s been another murder. It’s a little later in the evening, but Peter just witnessed another murder. You’ll be getting a call and the time of death will coincide with Peter’s reaction here tonight. That’s all for now. Good-night, Folks.”
The group turned and left for home. Lance again looked up in the sky. He thought, If there’s another murder, it can’t be the same person. Look at those stars. Peter’s killer only operates in the rain.”
Back at the house, Lance and Margie were going over the facts while an exhausted Peter collapsed on his bed. There were only a few facts to go over. The case yielded so little substantial information. The case began with fact number one. Peter was brutally attacked and left for dead almost 13 years ago.
There have been three murders since, beginning less than a few months ago. All three killings have carried the same description. All were done in the rain. All victims have been found with a planted bag of cocaine on their person. All have had their throat slashed and kicked above the eye with a steel-toed boot.
Lance stood and looked toward the door. “Well, I think we’ve done enough for tonight.” He could see the concern and fright in Margie’s eyes. He could only fight the feeling so long. “Margie,” he said, “I’m off tomorrow. Would you do me the pleasure of allowing me to take you to dinner? We both need to get away from the case, even if it’s just for a night.”
Margie was a bit surprised but pleased. She was also surprised to find herself accepting Lance’s invitation. “What time shall I expect you, detective?”
Lance smiled. “7:00 p.m. sharp.” And with that the door closed. Lance headed for home looking forward to a good night’s sleep, and a relaxing and much needed day off.
Margie signed off with that puzzling line, “I’ll be praying for you , Lance.”
The Following Morning
The morning found a refreshed Lance Fisher with his feet propped up on the coffee table eating a bag of potato chips. The afternoon found him relaxing in front of the TV – until his phone rang.
“Lance, Chief Gordon here. There’s been another murder.”
“Yeah I know,” yawned Lance.
“What do you mean you know. They just found the body.”
“Sorry Chief. I didn’t get you the full report from Peter’s hypnosis session last night. Peter has some sort of telepathic ability. He can see the murders as they take place, but it’s very hard for him to remember what he sees. Doc Welch had him under hypnosis last night, and right in the middle of his regression, he snapped back into the present as he was able to witness the killing.
“I don’t have all the answers yet, but we’re getting close to a break in the case. I’ll try to do a better job of keeping you posted.”
“You’re telling me that Peter knows when these attacks take place?”
“Yeah, but that’s about all. He doesn’t know where they occur or who the murderer is, but I’m hoping he’ll be able to break through soon with all the detail we need to get this monster.”
“Okay, Fisher. Look, I need you to go over to the crime scene as soon as possible. I know it’s your day off, but crime doesn’t wait.”
A sick feeling ran through Lance as he remembered his date with Margie later in the evening. He had to do some quick thinking. “Chief, I can’t. I’m right in the middle of pulling things together with Peter. If we get Peter to break through, we’ll have our man soon. I just need a little more time.
“The one thing I can’t figure out is that it wasn’t raining last night. It goes against the usual killing in the rain.”
“Fisher, The murder was in Morristown 55 miles away. It was raining cats and dogs last night. You planning to work on this today?”
“Yeah, I can’t help myself,” Lance lied. “We got to get to the bottom of this, and soon.”
“Okay. Stay with it. That Bobby Marx is always complaining. He wants to do detective work. I’ll give him the shot. I’ll send him over, but keep me up on what’s happening on your end.”
Lance hung up the phone feeling proud he was able to maneuver out of that tight spot.
Bobby Marx to the Rescue
Within minutes, Officer Marx was on his way to Morristown to investigate another serial murder. Marx determined to make the most of the situation. He had to show he was able to do some of the harder, detailed work if he was ever going to make detective. He had been on the force for too many years with too little promotions. Maybe this would be his big break. Marx squealed tires as he pulled into the crime scene.
As usual, Carl Zimmerman was first on the scene. “Marx, what are you doing here?”
“Chief sent me to help out. Fisher’s working on something else.”
“Just stay clear. We have work to do, and I don’t need you getting in the way.”
Marx continued to putter around. “Hey! Zimmy – has anyone measured the head wound? Maybe if we measure the wound we could get the size of the boot; maybe even a make. We could trace it to see who’s bought that size and make, and start eliminating suspects from there.”
Zimmerman stopped dead in his tracks. “You know Marx, that’s not a bad idea. Get on it and see what you come up with. You’re going to have to get five consecutive measurements the same, then let me know. I’m going to have to match yours three times. It’s all about detail – detail and patience. Go do it!”
All the while Marx was thinking, “You mean to tell me, you guys never thought to check the size and shape of the wound? Maybe I should try for CSI rather than detective.”
Marx got the information, passed it off to Zimmerman, and headed out. He had other business to attend to. This was his big chance and he wasn’t going to let anything stand in his way. He stopped by headquarters and quickly grabbed his ball cap and sunglasses. His sixth sense took over. His next assignment would be a stakeout of the McClanahan residence.
Marx turned left on Dawson Street and proceeded to drive to the 2100 block. He parked his vehicle a few houses down from the McClanahan’s on the other side of the street. Slouching back in his seat, he pulled the ball cap down closer to his sunglassed eyes and covered the rest of his face from his nose down with a Mechanics Illustrated magazine.
Time began to drag; nothing to be seen, nor reported. After about an hour and a half, Marx decided to head back to the station. Before pulling out, he looked in his rearview mirror and saw a gray convertible coming down the street. He waited for just a minute. The car entered the McClanahan driveway. Marx settled in for a closer look.
Lance Fisher hopped out and walked quickly to the front door. It was exactly 7:00 p.m. Margie answered the door and both went inside. Marx thought, “This is what I need. I need to get inside, see things firsthand. That Fisher sure knows how to investigate a case. But how do I get inside?”
Marx’s concentration was broken when both Lance and Margie came out and got in the vehicle. At first glance, it looked like a little more than just investigative work, but he was willing to give Fisher the benefit of the doubt.
Lance looked over at Margie and said, “Don’t look now, but we’re about to be followed. Officer Marx is sitting in that car three houses back watching our every move. Wanna have some fun?”
Lance winked at Margie as he floored the gas pedal and squealed out of the driveway. The chase was on. Marx revved up his car and was in hot pursuit. Fisher took a quick left followed by another quick left and doubled back. Within seconds, Lance was tailing Marx. After a few minutes, Marx looked in his rearview mirror. Lance waved and cut off at the next intersection. They continued on to Sebastian’s Restaurant on the Boulevard.
“My Lance, this is some place. I hear people talk about it, but I’ve never eaten here before.”
“The food is excellent, and the atmosphere is like no other place I’ve ever been.” Lance added.
They were led to their table. Their waiter made his approach and the candlelight flickered momentarily.
“And a good evening to you both. My name is Rob. I’ll be your waiter for the evening. May I suggest our special for the night? That’s our asiago chicken breast served with sautéed mushrooms, melted asiago cheese with a white wine cream sauce over papardelle pasta.”
“Margie spoke first. “That sounds delicious. Sign me up.
Lance added, “Make that two. Oh, and two coffees, please.”
After combing the area Marx finally found Lance’s convertible parked in Sebastian’s parking lot. He made a beeline for the entrance. Just inside the door he was stopped.
“Good evening, Sir. Your name please?”
“Oh, uh. Bob Marx.”
“I’m sorry, Sir. I don’t seem to find your name on the reservation list. Did you make a reservation?”
“Well no, not exactly.” Marx reached for his badge. “You see, I’m here on official police business.”
“Oh, I am sorry Mr. Marx, but our tables are available by reservation only.”
“See that man and woman over there by the window? He’s with the police, too. You allowed him in.”
“Oh, you mean Lance Fisher?” He comes here all the time, but he always makes a reservation. If you like, you can wait in the foyer and I’ll have you placed at the first available table; however that may be another 40 minutes to an hour.”
“No, no. That’s okay. Could I just speak with the manager please?”
“I am the manager.”
Marx went back to his car to decide if he should wait it out and continue to follow Fisher or go back to headquarters and report what he had seen. The latter won out and Marx headed back to the station.
Running into the building, he went directly to Chief Gordon’s office.
“Chief, Chief . . .”
“Hey Marx, good work. They’re running the wound measurements right now to see if they can match it to a boot. Good job!”
“Thanks, but there’s more Chief. I was staking out the McClanahan residence. Fisher and Margie McClanahan were eating dinner at Sebastian’s Restaurant. Chief, that could compromise the whole investigation.”
“No doubt that was part of the whole investigation," Chief quipped.
“No Chief, You don’t understand. This is Sebastian’s. You go to McDonald’s to do investigative work. Chief, they were both dressed to kill. They were sitting at a candlelit table. Chief, his emotions could jeopardize the whole thing.”
“Marx, listen. Fisher is our lead homicide detective for a reason. He’s as levelheaded as they come. What he does on his personal time is none of my business; nor is it any of yours. Thanks for letting me know about it, but I’m not getting involved, and neither are you. Call it a night. You did good today. Go home. Get some rest. Oh Marx, by the way, why were you staking out the McClanahan residence?”
“ . . . Just a hunch. Just a hunch . . .”
Back at the restaurant, Lance and Margie were making small talk. Lance gazed out the window and watched the cars pass by. He could see the reflection of the candlelight on Margie’s face. He turned to face her.
“Margie, I’ve got to be truthful with you. When this case went cold years ago my biggest regret was not that we didn’t get a killer off the streets, but that I wouldn’t see you anymore. Then these latest murders and the case was reopened, as well as my attraction to you. “There’s something different about you. Thank you for spending the evening with me.
“Your strength amazes me; all you’ve been through, and yet you keep going. I didn’t notice that as much the first time as I do now. Your desire for justice at any cost stands out, but so does the calmness you possess in the face of difficult times. Then you tell me you’ll pray for me. What’s the real Margie about?”
A lump formed in Margie’s throat. She wasn’t sure how to respond to the compliment she just received. “Lance, I’m a Christian. Several years ago I found myself becoming hateful and bitter over the circumstances. I mean, someone tried to kill my only son. I wanted to lash out, hurt whoever did this terrible thing. Then I came to realize if I allowed bitterness to consume me, I was no better than the one who tried to kill Peter. I realized that the perpetrator would have two victims – Peter and me.
“I came to learn that God willingly sacrificed His only Son for me. God sent Jesus Christ into the world to pay for my bitterness as well as so many other sins. Jesus was taken, and beaten, and left to die on a Roman cross of crucifixion – all so that I might live. Now my sins are forgiven, and I have a personal relationship with God.
“The blood of that sacrifice was applied to my account; the innocent for the guilty; the just for the unjust; the pure for the filthy. Jesus loves me, and I love Him.
“So you got religion.”
“No, Lance. I got Jesus Christ.”
“And that’s what’s different about you?”
“He made me different, and I wouldn’t change any of my life for any reason – not even Peter. Jesus is my life. Lance, it wasn’t just His death. He was raised from the dead after three days. He conquered death. He conquered the very thing that held me in bondage. He lives, and now I’m free. I’ll live forever with Him.”
“So you got religion?” Lance, asked again.
“No, I told you. I have a relationship, not a religion.”
“Come on. Let’s eat.”
The evening ended quietly. Lance smiled to himself as he pulled out of the McClanahan driveway. This time,Marx was nowhere in sight. His rare day off had ended. Tomorrow would be work as usual.
- The Voice - Part 9
The Voice speaks and demands complete obedience. You better pray it doesn't speak to you!
© 2016 William Kovacic