Nicky lit another cigarette, guarding the lighter against the heavy downpour of rain, handling it with shaky fingers. He leant back on the patrol car, the siren still soundlessly flashing. Looking over to his partner giving him a nod, as he unholstered his gun approaching the house.
Frankie kicked the door in, the wood splintering into hundreds of pieces causing a ruckus with the local vermin. The rats of the dark hallway disturbed in the dead of night – scurrying off further into the house to seek shelter from the invading damp and wind.
Nicky entered first, and Frankie flicked his cigarette from his partner’s mouth taking it for a drag of his own, then threw it to the pavement outside. Frankie pushed past him and signalled for each to stop before the doorway. Listening closely waiting for a response. There wasn’t one.
“Your call,” said Nicky softly shrugging his shoulders.
Frankie darted into the room, flashlight in hand and rushed to turn another corner to find a body. “Goddamn it,” said Frankie swearing under his breath.
Nicky holstered his gun, “Is it, him?”
Frankie rolled the corpse over, shining the light on the body’s face.
“Looks like. Yeah, real ugly shyster. This is your guy alright.”
“Fuck’s sake. I needed him alive Frankie, you can’t just punch your way through every case. I can’t go back to the station with this it’ll be my last mark, the captain will have my head.”
“I’ll fix it.”
“Haha, fix it he says. The guys dead Frank or haven’t you noticed? I had one lead, one, and you fucked it up. Well, you can write the report, how about that? Huh? How about that, you can explain it to the sarge, the captain and you –”
Frankie stood up, approached his partner, “Nobody’s perfect Nick,” he said as Nicky was still ranting and raving. “I’m gonna fix this, I promise,” said Frankie shouting over his partner.
“How the hell you gonna do that you numbskull, look, use your eyes he’s dea—” Nicky cut off mid-speech was knocked clean out from a right hook from Frankie, hitting him straight in the jaw.
“I’ll think of something.”
Frankie slammed the car door shut. Leaning hard on the wheel, rubbing his face, scratching his beard, not knowing what he was going to do next. Sighing and breathing heavy, he reached into his coat pocket taking out his hip-flask – taking a swig of whisky.
He had only one option now, and he knew it wasn’t something that should be done. But the timing of this latest murder had messed up the entire department, and no-one, not even Frank would be able to explain the death of a state witness away in court. Frankie turned the rear-view mirror to check on his partner, Nicky was soundly resting in the back seat. Possibly bleeding all over the leather. But resting none the less.
Frank started the car up and left the slums behind him. He decided not to call the homicide in. Control didn’t need to know about this, at least, not until he knew that he couldn’t do something to prevent it.
Turning back into his neighbourhood, Broslin heights, to drop Nicky off at his flat. The kid could use a good sleep, he hadn’t slept for a few weeks now and it was starting to show. He parked up in front of his place and carried Nick to the door.
Apartment block 187, room 390. Frankie’s flat, and near enough only the sancutuary in all of Waraven, the only place in the city Frank could be himself without having to put on his mask of law enforcement. He pushed his way through the stairs, and past his arguing neighbours. A man and a woman, the man; drunk, & stoned, her – black & blue. But both exchanging verbal blows while ignoring Frank as he walked by – caught in their own haze of hatred.
Frankie couldn’t be certain if he was beating her, but frankly, he didn’t much care. Too much shit went on in this city, not all of it bad, but all of it questionable. Frank spent his daylight hours dealing with cases like this all the time; assault, battery, spouse abuse, it wasn’t that he didn’t care about these things anymore. It was that after twenty-four years on the job, he no longer could care.
A clear slap was heard, and a burst of wailing as Frankie turned the corner to his room. Reaching into his pockets for his keys, while leaning against the doorway holding Nicky on his shoulder, he cringed at the-all-too familiar sound.
Frankie got the door open and quietly shut it behind him. He walked over to his couch and threw Nick down, taking the time to remove his partners coat and boots to make him more comfortable.
The couple outside still shouting, hell, they were near enough screaming now. Shaking his head in disgust, he grabbed a beer from the fridge and sat opposite his mate. Putting his feet up on the coffee table. And flicking the Television on.
A loud cry came from outside, and then a gunshot. After that, it was quiet again. Frankie opened his beer and took a hard-earned sip, to end the day. Looking at Nick as he drank, “Cheers partner.”
To be continued…