by Jake Christie

SCUM CITY. CHAPTER IV.
a story.

“You're off the case,” said the chief, slamming his fist down on his desk. His commendations shook. The picture of him with the mayor fell over.

“The case isn't finished,” said Detective Rex Cobalt. He leaned back in his chair and crossed one leg over his knee. He didn't let any emotion enter his voice, even though being pulled from this case would surely mean the end of Sandra's life.

“Oh yes it is,” said the chief, leveling one finger at Rex. “And you will be, too, if you don't leave this one alone.”

“Are you threatening me, chief?” asked Rex. “That's not very becoming of a decorated pillar of the community.”

“Don't take that tone with me,” said the chief. “This is too important for you to go in guns blazing, looking for your kind of 'justice.'” He let his contempt coat the last word, so thick that Rex could hear it dripping to the floor. The chief reached below his desk and pulled out a thick manilla file.

“He has a girl tied up, chief,” said Rex. “We've seen this kind of thing before. I've dealt with this kind of thing before.”

“I know you have,” said the chief, flipping open the file. “'Entry without a warrant,'” he read. “'Excessive force,'” he continued. “'Unlawful search and seizure.'”

“I get results,” said Rex. He gripped the chair to keep from standing up.

“We don't need your kind of results when it's this sensitive,” said the chief. “Not when the ransom call comes from inside the mayor's office.”

“Just give me one more day,” pleaded Rex. He could see Sandra's life slipping through his fingers, the way her hair used to after they made love. “One more day and I can get the mayor's daughter back.”


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