A hazy nightmare, as Julie starts to wake, and shake it out off here mind. Her bed feels wet, as she lies naked on it. The smell, it seemed unfamiliar. As her mind crosses over from the unconscious to the conscious, she realizes what has happened.
“God ….”she holds the rest of the words in, “not again, I am going to start tying myself to the bed” and then she sits up on the bed, raises her right hand to rub her forehead, with that movement an unbearable pain shoots through her arm. She sees a cut with a dangling thread that is holding the wound together, which now starts to bleed. The broken wound spits out the blood like a stream of lava down her arm. Staring in a daze at the sight, she feels the pain creep back up to her head.
“Oh shit, what the hell is going on?” The clock alarm rings in the background.
“Work…but how can I go like this, I can’t miss the first day of work, I need this job, it is my way out of this dump.” The mystery of the wound seems so unimportant, compared to the hardships of survival, and need.
She enters the tiny bathroom, and washes away the stains. She then decides it will be best to tighten the thread, pain shoots all through her body, dizziness, she starts to feel faint.
“Nooo, not now.” She holds herself together, and ties the knots on both ends, so the thread does not get loose, and open the bottle of peroxide. She grabs a wash towel and stuffs it in her mouth, and bites down. Then she washes the wound with peroxide to disinfect it. As she grits her teeth, she notices that the med kit was open and it had been used on her arm, but she does not remember any of it. The stitching on the wound looked like it was stitched correctly as she learned in school. She gets into the shower, with her wounded arm outside the curtain. “Quick now, don’t want to waste time,” she thinks to herself, as the pain, like a turtle on a million mile race, slowly fades away.
She dries herself off, and examines the arm and it looks like it stopped bleeding. She grabs the bandages from the med kit and covers the wound. “Thank God I work at the hospital” She thinks to herself, which is where she gets her med supplies from, more like take, after all she could not afford the items. Her work clothes go on her, she opens the fridge which is mostly empty, and grabs a small bottle of milk and a banana from on top of the counter, as she heads out of the door.
At the front entrance of the building she notices, to her left, a lot of police officers at the corner of the building, and what seems like an area surrounded by yellow tape. She stands for a moment staring, waiting for a memory to wash over her. “Hello miss, I am…” Julie startled jumps back in surprise and stares at the person looking at her. “I am sorry I did not mean to startle you.” Julie takes in a deep breathe, “It’s ok, I did not notice you. Can I help you?”
“I am Officer Joe, and we are questioning people that live in this neighborhood, do you have a minute?”
“Just a minute I do not want to miss the bus.”
“Good, do you live in this area?”
“Yes I do I live in this building,” Julie points to the building she came out of.
“Did you hear anything strange, or see anyone strange last night?”
“Sorry, but I did not, I am a very deep sleeper.”
He pulls out a card, like he has done a thousand times in his career, “this is my phone number if you remember anything, have a good day.”
“You too,” she begins to move fast towards the bus stop.
“I wish,” Officer Joe whispers to himself, as he starts to walk towards the crime scene.
Julie stands a few blocks away from her building, waiting for the bus. She glances at the building, were she lives, then around the neighborhood, “I am going to get out of this shit hole.” A slight pain in here arm reminds her again of what didn’t happen! Then a memory comes to her, the night she was late coming back home, from work. When she almost got raped, “I don’t know if I did or not, I passed out, when I came too, I was at home, with a few scratches and some blood.” “But it can’t be… I must have had a dream…or seemed like one”
She then hears the bus turn the corner and her thoughts dissipate, as the bus reaches the stop. She gets in. “That was a year and half ago, and now my sleep walking has got me in trouble again. Sleep walking in this place is not good, I am defiantly going to tie myself to the bed from now on” Her job then overshadows the previous thoughts, as excitement fills her, here new position at the hospital. After all these years she gets to do something else besides clean people, rooms and toilets. A nurse, after years of learning and working, a smile pushes through to fill her face. Julie, a six foot two inches tall, a hundred and seventy five pound women, she feels her size helped, especially living in a neighborhood filled with crime and filth. She kept to herself, and the only goal, is to get out, and out is all that she wanted, for all the struggles, and isolation, a great price. Just to get out, and then life begins, and that day will come.
Officer Joe heads back to the crime scene, “Pete, find anything?” “No, this looks like the other murders around the city the last few months, except the person that was doing the killing got killed.” Pete continues talking as they walk towards the crime scene. “All the victims’ from the other murders were killed by a knife wound to the throat, and all were found naked, with their clothes lying next to them.” Joe and Pete stop where the bodies are getting taken away and the area is getting photographed and evidence is being collected. They stand for a minute looking around, Pete stops talking as they look on. “The knife we found seems to be the same knife used on the other victims, I am sure we will get a match to link the knife with the other murders.”
Joe turns and looks at Pete, “Ok that is fine Pete but like you said this time the killer got killed, and did you find out who this killer is that we found?” “Yes it only took a minute to find a record on him, got out of jail last year around this time, the name is Vinneo Tamriky, was convicted of drug dealing, although he was charged for murder as well, he took a plea.”
“So he gets killed and we have reason to believe he was responsible for the killings that have been going on, same MO. Gets his throat ripped out, a lot of blood on the pavement, and the drugs still on him, right?”
“Pretty much the story,” Pete responds.
Joe shakes his head and rubs his scruffy beard. “Things are never easy anymore. So who is the person that called 911?” Joe turns and looks down the ally towards the street. “The call was made from the pay phone at the end of 5th street, according to the tapes it was a male’s voice, but no name, it could have been anyone, possibly the vigilante.”
“I was hoping …” Joe stops, and turns back towards the crime scene, “that we would be the ones to catch the killer, but a gift is a gift.”
“I cannot believe you said that Joe. We cannot have another killer on the street, that person must be caught and justice must be served.” “Pete I have been here in this city a long time, and this is the only time that help getting dirt off the street has been done.”
“Joe our job is…”
“Is what? To catch criminals so they can be put away and released again, did you notice all the teenage kids that got killed this last two months, and now he is off the street. Finish up here and we will finish this case up when we get back to the station.”
“Ok, you’re the detective.” Pete backs down, from knowing Joe these last few years it is better not to argue when he is pissed off, he will bring this back up when they are at the station. “I will meet you back at the station, once I pass by the lab to see what they got.”
“See you then Pete,” Joe’s voice calm and distant now, as he walks out of the ally. He lifts the zone tape and turns the corner, as he turns his shoulder meets someone else’s shoulder. He looks at the person “excuse me…” “Sorry officer I was just trying to see what happened.” “This is not a movie, move away from the crime scene.”
“Again I am sorry.” The person that Joe bumped into starts to cross the street, and gets in a newer model car and drives off. Joe starts to walk to his car and notices that something is not right, that person did not live in this area, a Cadillac and now he also notices that the clothes were very nice, but the shoes were muddy and the lower part of the pants were wet.
“Defiantly not from this area.” Joe looks back at the back of the car and just catches the license plate, pulls out his notepad and writes it down.