CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
Word Count: 990
BOO! How would you go about scaring someone?
In a rare show of comeuppance to the desert paradise that Las Vegas was, the sky opened with rolling thunder and cracks of lightning and heaven upon Earth rained down from above. This did not help Conrad Ecklie entirely as he stole up the darkened garden path of a long abandoned two story house behind several sets of burly police officers, their uniforms and his suit, already, for the most part, soaked through. A sudden afterthought of wind sent fat droplets of water lashing against his bald, exposed scalp, and he cursed the sorry bastard who had decided to murder a string of hookers that week. Poor working class girls some, another, perverted sicko was trying to cleanse from the streets. It made no difference to him, because he’d seen things like that before, had been in situations like the one he was in, dozens of times previously. But still, he’d just had the suit dry cleaned after another incident had left it covered in mud, and the rain just seemed to impose a Godly rhetoric on the whole situation.
His gun hovered by his side, gripped in a steely but familiar curlicue of fingers and fingertips. Thunder and lightning lost distinction and rain whirled overhead as they stole up old wooden steps and onto a wizened porch of equally unstable and probably rotting, dead trees. The man’s aquiline features shifted as he cocked his head, differentiating between the noises of the rain and storm superimposed over what could, what must, have been inside. He stood behind the officers, not in the lead, waiting for them to exact their own unique form of control over the situation. They knocked on the door, they shouted orders, distinct in their orderly precision and lack of desire to wait. Nothing came, and the rain, the wind, blocked any small noises of someone stealing away in the night, stealing them away as they happened, so they never even passed by the ears of all the official personnel waiting outside.
As Ecklie gripped tighter on his weapon, a man inside looked down at the face of the woman strung on the bed that had too long ago, lost all reason to be uniform or comforting, the mattress sitting in odd supporting lumps and the frame rusting away with antiquity. As the sky above them all roared ferociously, an uproar of wet and anger, the CSI steadied himself as the officers prepared to knock down the door, and the man inside was already hurrying to pack up, to scamper away, to run and flee and disappear. But as the sky howled above him, that stronger sense of purpose asserted itself once again in his head, spoke of how easy it would be to kill her, and steal away into the night while the police buzzed around the place like over exited flies. The voice killed out all sound reason and he dropped his bag, his tools, and flicked up a dagger into his fingers, holding it poised within his hand, threatening.
Urgent voices rose within the house and it’s empty rooms, it’s dilapidated places of old times past that were now transformed into the hiding holes of the criminal side of Las Vegas. Police rushed in and split up, checking rooms and shouting out confirms of complete emptiness. Until, however, they happened upon the room with the mattress and the bed, the man and the woman, her skin prickled with fear and coldness. The girl screamed and struggled against her bonds, her gag, as policemen shouted at the man, who by now, straddling her awkwardly, had the sharp implement poised above her breastbone, waiting to gut her and spill out all her evilness, all her wrongdoing towards the world. One officer wrestled him, and there was a brief dusting of fighting, of danger, that soon abated away with soothing ease.
A subordinate, a younger CSI followed Ecklie in as the police wrestled the man away, and the Supervisor hushed the woman with well practiced words, cutting away the gag, and then bonds, with gloves hands and a sharp knife. The evidence went into bags, and an ambulance officer who had appeared with a meticulous flourish of his own kit, guided the woman away to where she would be attended to, given a blanket and reassured further while being given the once over by another subordinate, another supervisor.
Everything would be ok for her, and while she might never work as what she had worked, again, she would find something and she would continue. One day she would relay the story to a lover or a John, and they would look at her disbelievingly, and then, something else would happen.
Later on they interviewed the man in court, laid out all the evidence before him, the knife, the rope, the cloth gag, photographs of the bruises and marks on the girl’s body. Other people gave evidentiary testimonies and it was all very thorough. While he gave evidence, and danced the usual parade, Ecklie never saw fear in the man’s eyes, but this was not unusual. Some people just snapped at some point during the course of their life, whether they were normal or abnormal to begin with, and fear wasn’t a word for them anymore. Sometimes it never had been in the first place. The criminal was convicted and sent away, and if it scared someone else off the street, frightened them away from a potential and horrendous wrongdoing, then that was enough for him. That had to be enough for him. Nothing changed for him, things just continued and went along the same line. He was scary, he could scare, but he would never be scared himself. That’s why simplistic victories had to be enough, however or whenever they came about. Whatever kind of success he gained, whatever kind of fear he imparted onto others, no matter how small or large, it, had to be enough.