November 28, 2033

David Casserly is probably the only man I’m close to that I haven’t seen naked. I know it’s shallow of me to make this observation when there’s so much more to him and our friendship, but sex has been on my mind quite a lot lately and I can’t seem to be able to shake the urge off. For someone who used to have plenty of it, it just doesn’t seem right. With my daily job, long working hours and mundane distractions, I’m more clothed than I have ever been.

I woke up today to more sad news — not as serious as the amount of crime the city has been dealing with lately, but more of a symbolic event marking the end of an era. Everleigh is finally closing its stores after filing for bankruptcy in August. The famed New York department store was sold for scrap despite the management’s relentless attempts in finding a buyer who would keep the legacy and cultural landmark going in the city’s retail landscape. Now, people are wondering if this is a foreshadowing to another financial crisis, one the city might not be able to survive.

Somehow, these developments didn’t keep people from spending their money this Thanksgiving weekend, indulging themselves in the purchase of lavish gifts from luxurious stores and organizing family dinners at expensive restaurants. In the midst of all that, I decided to stay home and wallow in my own misery — my all-time favorite hobby. I finally gathered the courage to empty my storage room in Chicago and ship all my belongings here. I wasn’t ready to unpack and display all the things that reminded me of Matthew, but I also knew I’ll never be, so might as well do it now without thinking too much about it. The collection of memorabilia contained books, kitchen utensils, pieces of furniture as well as more personal things like Matt’s black underwear, the anal vibrator he gifted me during one of our intense sexual encounters, and the navy gym shirt I forgot ever taking. At the center of everything was the painting I spent six months perfecting. I couldn’t bring myself to unwrap it, so I kept it in the corner. It felt nice to have him around me.

As soon as I curled up in my living room, I received a call from David insisting I join his family for dinner. Having told him I didn’t have any family here, I couldn’t decline. Part of me wanted to meet his wife and kids anyway. I took a shower and picked an outfit. Before heading out, it occurred to me I couldn’t show up empty-handed, so I considered a few options. Beside the traditional bottle of wine, I thought about stopping by the houseware store and picking up a gift. It was also a good idea to get something for the kids. Having just unpacked all my things, I came across a few action figures I’ve shoplifted years ago, back in Iowa. They were still in their original packaging, so I brought them along. I took the train to the Upper East Side and stopped by the store which also had limited edition wine bottles on display by a rustic collection of plates and boards. I picked a bottle of red wine and a wooden cheese board, put them in my shopping basket and proceeded to one of the elevators. Inside, I transferred both items into my tote bag and exited the store. Before heading to West Village, I made a quick stop at Everleigh. Walking on the sidewalk, I spotted a black man in a hoodie exit the store. At the very same time, a few feet away from the store’s main entrance, a bald man in a suit walked out of what looked like the employee access door. He stopped the man who pushed him away and tried to run, but two security guards were already behind him. Apparently, he was a shoplifter. They tackled him as he fell in the middle of the street. The bigger guy took out a pair of handcuffs and apprehended him. I stood there in great astonishment as all three men violated him. When they pulled him up and took him back in, I left. Realizing I was running late, I took a cab.

———

I had developed a very congenial relationship with David over the past two years; some sort of innocent bromance. The way things naturally developed between us without ever falling in awkward situations is refreshing. And although he’s an intelligent and handsome man, I’m not sexually attracted to him. Maybe if we met under different circumstances things would ‘ve been different, but he’s my colleague and I’d like to keep things professional, not that he’d ever consider sleeping with me anyway. He’s married with two kids. He’s also like the brother I never had, and  the idea of being intimate or sexual with him makes me cringe. That would undoubtedly lead to a catastrophe. He’s very conservative, and even though I’m not out to him or anyone else, I think he suspects I’m either sexually-fluid or asexual. Our conversations are strictly work-related with very rare instances sharing things about our private lives, mainly where and how we grew up. He has a dark sense of humor I recently discovered that I appreciate tremendously. He could be very witty and dark if he wants to, and that makes doing our job a little more fun. He’s more open-minded regarding why criminals exist in the world, and he’s capable of sympathizing with them at times. When we hang out, he seems happy and fulfilled. Yet sometimes, after a couple of drinks, his demeanor changes. He becomes very in touch with his emotions and reminisces on the old days — before working as a detective. He used to be able to see life from a more uplifting lens. Now it’s all about convicting outlaws and chasing after the next big murder.

Our first get-together was a bit stressful for me. Getting to know someone means you have to open up to them too, something that immediately proved to be an impossibility due to my hidden criminal nature. But I don’t see myself as a bad guy, and I’m perfectly capable of sharing the normal — sometimes boring — parts of my life, leaving out all the sordid details.

“Things were simpler then. Less chaotic.” He once said to me. Obviously, he was referring to the chaos of the world, not his own. I would be naïve to think his life is perfect, though. I know it’s put together. He’s an honest, decent man with a quaint little family and a job he loves despite its inconveniences and dark aspects.

At this point, it’s safe to say he’s become more of a father-figure; a mentor and trusted friend. We bond over our differences, and even though my stubborn and odd behavior annoy him, I can tell he admires me for being me — unconventional and messed up. He’ll never admit it, but I think he finds pleasure and excitement in my reckless ability to bend the rules every once in a while. He values his reputation so much, though, and would never encourage or enable any misconduct. I feel bad about him having to clean up my mess and restore my credibility as an honorable individual every time I cross the line.

During the span of twenty years working as a detective, David has experienced a lot of injuries. Cuts, bruises, sprains and strains of muscle. The worst injury incurred in his career, however, was when he wrenched his back carrying children out of an abusive home.

It all started when detective Whitney Hicks from the domestic violence department came to him expressing her frustration regarding a baby’s suspicious death. I was in his office when it happened. The coroner who received the body contacted her when he realized something wasn’t right. Being the lone female investigator with a strong medical background, she immediately came to the same conclusion. The first thing she did was review the write-ups of each visit made to the same community clinic, none of which showed anything out of the ordinary. However, a new set of X-rays showed the child had multiple anterior and posterior rib fractures, a fractured vertebra, and a scabbed abrasion on the back of the infant’s head — obvious signs pointing to physical abuse.

Whitney asked to meet and interview the boy’s caregivers. At one of their later meetings, she asked both of them to reenact the way they held the baby using a doll. Although that wasn’t the strongest indication of abuse, it was a starter. She also questioned them about a bruise on his chest which she discovered during the autopsy. They claimed it was from a nursing bottle that accidentally fell on him.

I wasn’t fully briefed in on all the details since I wasn’t part of the investigation but I eventually discovered that both parents were overwhelmed by raising their child. The mother worked night shifts and so the father had to deal with the baby at night, a task which he found extremely irritable, difficult and exhausting. Throughout the child’s short life, the father would grab and squeeze him tightly around the torso whenever he cried. The night of his death, he admitted to hearing a cracking sound before feeding him and putting him back in his sleeper. Both parents were tried and convicted. The father was charged with first-degree murder while the mother faced jail time for involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment.

Months later, I was at the emergency room getting treated for an ulcer when three women walked in with a lifeless body, none of whom seemed to have any sense of urgency or emotional attachment to the child. I overheard them say they tried to resuscitate him with CPR to no avail. If it weren’t for my witnessing of Whitney’s dedication and impressive medical knowledge, I probably wouldn’t have paid much attention, but I knew there was more to the baby’s death as soon as I heard their description of what happened. You don’t wait for a baby to die, then bring him to the hospital instead of calling an ambulance as soon as you realize he’s not breathing. The sinister hidden truth of what actually happened needed to be investigated.

I wasn’t able to get the woman’s identification and the hospital obviously refused to give me any information, so I called David and described the incident to him. The next day, he brought Whitney along with him to look into the case. The coroner revealed the boy suffered from severe malnourishment and neglect. His skin was pale and mottled, and it looked like he suffered from abdominal distension. His bones had no density. Child Protectives Services was notified, and the very next day, Whitney, David and I drove up to the women’s house located in Inwood, along with a response worker.

The rundown house was bleak and set back from the street. Covering the unmowed lawn were brownish patches of burnt grass and broken tree branches. It looked abandoned and was protected by tall eroded fences and a rusted gate. We noticed how the curtains were thick and completely drawn, so there was no way to see inside. David and Whitney walked through the gate while I stayed in the car. They rang the doorbell, knocked a few times and waited a few minutes, but with no response. They crossed the street and talked to a few neighbors who claimed they’ve never seen any children walk in or out of the house. As we thought about our next move, David called the police station and asked for a search warrant to be issued. Whitney decided to park her car a couple hundreds feet away from the house to keep an eye out in case someone emerged. A couple of hours later, two cops showed up with a search warrant.

I stood by the sidewalk while all four of them walked up to the porch and knocked on the door. When no one answered, they broke it open and went inside. From what I could see, the house was completely dark. I heard footsteps, then a loud breaking noise. I took a few steps in and slowly reached for the porch. I couldn’t hear anything but the subtle sound of wind and leaves cracking and popping under my boots. Around me, I waited for some sort of revelation, my vision gradually zooming in on the vertical black hole. Finally, I heard two loud gunshots, heavy stomping and women as well as children screaming. I was torn between walking in or seeking safety. Before I could make up my mind, a large black men stormed out with a gun. My automatic reaction was to block his path and that’s what I did. He didn’t think twice and shoved me straight to the ground. As soon as our bodies collided, though, and as I started to fall backward, I managed to grip his shirt tightly, but he fought back and I ended up falling further down. My second attempt to stop him consisted of me gripping his left ankle as soon as I landed, causing him to fall face down. He turned and kicked me in the face, his shoes hitting the top of my forehead and scrapping the area around my hairline. He stood up and started fleeing, and I could hear David and Whitney rush out right after him. I pointed them in the right direction as they continued their pursuit. While the injured officer laid on the ground, the other blocked the door and dispatched a group of officers to the scene. Six women and a group of children lined up behind him, all of whom looked pale and sickly. In the distance, more gunshots were heard. A few seconds later, I spotted David and Whitney holding the man, injured and in handcuffs. He limped as he walked and tried to jerk his body around to break free, but they had him.

When I walked inside the house, I was shocked by its condition. There were no lights, barely any furniture, little to no food in the fridge. Doors to the outside were all locked and windows were shut; some of them were blocked by large wooden boards. Everyone slept on dirty mattresses. The women were petrified, but also relieved. The children, all under the age of thirteen, looked malnourished, some of them were physically deformed. One in particular, was too weak to move and suffered from what turned out to be a case of phocomelia, which disabled his capacity to stand on his own two feet. He moved toward us, pushing his head against the floor like a worm. The man was apprehended by three police officers and thrown in the back of the car while David and Whitney rescued the frightened children hiding around the residence. It was during David’s third round in and out of the house that he took a double step down the stairs. With the children’s added weight, the impact caused by missing a step injured his lumbar spine.

At the station, we interviewed the women. They were kidnapped one after the other and locked inside the basement before being moved to the house’s living room area after a flood destroyed the entire lower level. The man behind their abduction was Dwight Houston, a fifty two year-old drug-addict, preacher and cult leader. He lured battered white women, brainwashed and forced them into submission by somehow convincing them they had to pay for the racist sins of their ancestors. It was their duty to obey his rules and serve him sexually. The cult operated in total solitude and neither the women or their children were allowed outside. Once Dwight was able to take full control over them through degradation and the erosion of their self-worth, he succeeded in instilling a big amount of fear among them that at some point, they accepted their fate and stopped plotting ways to escape and undermine his authority. The most disturbing element we found in the house was a large painting of a black man holding a rifle. He stood alone while a line of inverted naked women with a gunshot wound to the head, positioned right beneath him.

———

The temperature had significantly dropped by the time I arrived at the house. I got out of the cab and looked up at the nice two-story townhouse. It looked like it needed some work, but its imperfections gave it some kind of charm. The few steps of stairs were covered in wet orange leaves. I rang the buzzer and was immediately let in. I was greeted by David to whom I handed the gifts. He took my coat and I left my boots at the door. The house was warm and cozy. We gathered in the kitchen where I finally met Jennifer. She was younger than I pictured her, and surprisingly shy. While David acted so comfortable around me, it took her a while to gradually resort back to her normal behavior.

Even though I wasn’t an obedient child at home, I always knew how to present myself well in school and at my friends’ house whenever I visited them. My mom would be shocked to hear the endless amount of compliments people used to describe me, and the constant showering with admiration and respect. Although she knew very well what kind of boy I was at home, she was glad I was at least displaying impeccable behavior and putting our family in a good light. We always had a good reputation. Some parents seemed to envy me. From the outside and to them, I was clean and well put together. They’d describe me as coy and poised, but deep within me I knew I was corrupted and messed up to the point that if I wanted to restore myself, I wouldn’t know where to start. Sometimes I feel like I enable my paraphiliac thoughts to an extreme, as if I’m testing my mind to see how far my perverted thoughts can go, and the kind of ideas and feelings it could generate. It’s safe to say that this tendency rarely takes over my behavior. If it does, I’m usually good at controlling the deviation or practicing it in total secrecy. Unrestrained behavior is fun. Drifting away from conventionalism is fascinating to me. How my mind can suddenly shift and change, causing me to do all kinds of things. It’s constant dopamine emancipation.

David’s home environment wasn’t exactly familiar to mine, but the idea of attending a family gathering seemed to be bringing back memories and thoughts long forgotten, triggering a lot of different feelings within me as I observed everyone interact with one another while I stood there like the stranger that I am. Being so far away from my family, I felt truly alone — like I’ve lost the barometer of my life. Then there’s the shift in behavior — sudden and abrupt — like a switch turned to the opposite side. I felt restrained and extremely self-conscious. My normal voice converted into a lower register and my proxemic behavior was consciously controlled to give out the best possible impression. However, I had to take into consideration that a total change in my personality would cause David, who at this point knows me quite well, to think I’m being fake or phony. While these insecurities roamed around in my head, I remained calm, but never allowed myself to get too comfortable.

Jennifer was very friendly and seemed to know a lot about me through David which made the ice easier to break. I didn’t have to introduce myself or make small talk. It felt like we were continuing a conversation we once had. She treated me as part of her family which made the whole process of trying to blend in way smoother. I couldn’t help but wonder how much she knew, though. I didn’t want to act in a way that contradicted the impression she had of me, but that concern seemed to be my own. As she juggled between tasks, David kept the boys company. I offered to help preparing the apple pie and she wasn’t shy to throw the whole task on me. I peeled the apples, cut them, threw them in a bowl. David eventually joined me as a way for him to bond with me outside of work which felt awkward. When we were done, I asked to be pointed toward the bathroom.

As soon as I switched the lights on, my eyes immediately fell on the shiny and smooth surface of the ceramic sink. It was clean, the light above nicely reflecting against its glistening finnish. Sudden flashes of the brief dream I had last night popped into my head. They came unexpectedly and went by really fast before I could control and brush them off myself — something I’ve been desperately trying to do to keep myself afloat.

In the dream, I’m holding hands with a young guy. We’re underground, at some sort of gathering. Before going in, the host asks for our names. I pull out my phone and show him a photo of Matthew, and he immediately gives us access. We go down an industrial wrought elevator surrounded with thick lozenge-shaped iron net. Seconds before we land further down, a crowd of wealthy people reveals itself to me. I spot Matt standing right in the middle which instantly triggers my anxiety. He doesn’t see me as he’s busy entertaining his circle of people. My date opens the iron gates and we proceed in walking out. We walk among the crowd, conveniently staying away from where Matt is. Black image. I’m standing so close to my guy, my head resting on his shoulder. I’m at ease, or at least that’s what I want to think — believe. There’s an odd feeling, though. Despite the safe and pleasant environment, there’s an uneasiness I can’t explain — a feeling of dread creeping from underneath. Another black image. I’m facing Matt’s vile face smirking right at me. He’s standing less than a foot away from me. I can’t hear anything, but I sense he’s mocking me. One last black image, then I’m back. This time, I’m alone in an empty room, still in the same dream environment. I’m in the presence of Matt and another young guy. They’re both dressed in nice suits. Matt’s eyes wander away from me as I watch them get closer — intimate. He grabs the boy and starts kissing him. I can’t look away. They shed their coats, start undoing their ties and shirts. I can’t stand the way he keeps glancing in my direction, as if he’s making sure what I’m witnessing is cutting right through me. Then, there’s the boy’s attitude — obnoxious, horny and full of himself. They start to undress, but I’ve had it, so I look away.

I’m out, my eyes back looking downward at the sink. I forget why I’m there in the first place. It takes a second for my bladder to signal it’s about to rupture, so I unzip my pants, lower my underwear until it hangs under my balls and start peeing in the sink. I don’t know why or when that abhorrent habit exactly started, but I’ve grown accustomed to it. Sinks are higher than toilets which makes aiming way more easier. I’ve also tried peeing with an erection once and ended up making a mess, so now I just go with the sink whenever I can. Part of me enjoys looking at my miserable, pathetic self as I do so. It makes me feel dirty and further validates this side of me that wants to destroy itself. Out of courtesy, I scrubbed the area with soap and dried the entire surface before going back into the living room.

Sitting at the table, I was facing yet another shiny white surface; the beautiful set of plates Jennifer displayed so carefully. I couldn’t help but think about the bathroom sink, though, so I distracted myself making conversation.

“Nice set of plates”, was my lame yet effective conversation starter.
“Thank you. We got them a year ago for our anniversary. They’re antique.”
“Jennifer likes her dinnerware…” David threw in, teasing her as he slid into his chair.
“Just like you like your scotch”, she threw back. We gave it a laugh and started having dinner while the boys chased one another in and out of the living room.
“Travis and Christopher are having a blast with the toys you got them. Thanks again, Felix.” I wished she’d stop saying all the nicest things. They’re stolen toys, just like the stolen bottle of wine and stolen cheeseboard which now had a set of cheeses and meats on top of it. I forced a brief smile and waited for them to pass the food around.

As I leaned in for my first bite, my chair jerked, causing the whole table to shake. Jennifer sighed and asked Travis to stop running around. It was then that I noticed the boy’s remarkable bubble butt enhanced by his onesie. It caught me off guard and for some reason, I couldn’t keep myself from staring at it as he jumped around the room. I’ve never looked at a child like that before — I know I’m not a pedophile. Yet, I was getting worked up and burdened with nasty thoughts. I wasn’t fantasizing about him sexually or anything of the sort. I was just shocked to see a prepubescent child with an ass that looked like it belonged to a twenty year-old go-go boy. It clashed with the innocent image I have of children, and the boy’s charismatic personality seemed somewhat beyond his years which added another eerie dimension to him. Minutes later, he made his way into my lap and asked me to help him put together one of the action figures. David seemed to encourage the interaction, thinking it was cute to see my morbid self helping out an innocent child, but little did he know that throughout the whole thing and out of sight, I was gradually getting a raging erection. When it became too uncomfortable and sickening for me to have him on me, I picked him up and put him back on his feet. Jennifer apologized on his behalf and sat him down across from me while Christopher remained in his high chair. We went back to eating our food in peace, but it didn’t take long for another interruption to occur. After finishing up with the appetizers, I reached for my handkerchief to clean the corners of my mouth. In that very moment and out of the blue, I felt a living thing rubbing itself against my crotch. I immediately looked down and saw their dog furtively sniffing my crotch which furthered my arousal and unleashed an unwanted memory. I remembered how Hugo loved waiting for me in the bathroom while I took a shower. There was this one time when I laid naked in my bed after cleaning up. I was on my phone when I sensed him hop on it and sneak in between my legs. He started to lick my penis and although I was appalled by it, instead of pushing him away, I let him do it. I was still a virgin back then, sexually frustrated, lonely and horny as fuck. It felt surprisngly good, but I never let him do it again. It was just too weird.

I rushed back to the bathroom, unzipped my pants, took down my underwear and furiously started to masturbate. Getting me closer to my ejaculation was one simple thought — the smashing of the boy’s face against the counter-top. I couldn’t stand the idea of Matt being with someone else, so I kept smashing his fuck boy’s head against it, repetitively and not giving any thought whether he was close to dying or not. I was filled with rage and every time I felt like I was losing my erection, I closed my eyes and fantasized about it more and more. My hand firmly gripping his wet scalp, pulling him up and bringing him down, his head impacting the surface, once clean, now smeared with blood. I keep doing it until it starts to crack and break, the boy’s fidgeting and fighting back being the least of my concern. All I’m focused on is the ceramic counter-top. I enjoy looking at it get destroyed and lose a big chunk of its corner section. It falls to the ground and blood immediately seeps through the cracks. They’re sharp and deadly. This gets me really excited and quickens my climax. The boy’s body limps then goes completely still. His head becomes a prop in my hand. I raise it a little higher and give it one finishing final smash, cracking it in half. His insides scramble around my fingers and drop to the floor. I managed to control my desire to scream as I ejaculated, and once I did, it was hard to stop. The pumping was steady and rhythmical, pushing an incredible amount of sperm that went flying fast, some of it traveling up and hitting the mirror. I mopped everything very carefully before exiting.

Back at the table, I found myself in front of a plate of spaghetti. My initial reaction was to laugh out loud due to the content’s resemblance to the unspooled remains of the boy’s brain, the images being very fresh in my head. I converted my chuckle into a cough and pretended to be clearing my throat. As I reached for the glass of water, I noticed a small drop of sperm stuck between my thumb and index finger. I threw a quick glance at everyone at the table before discreetly pulling my hand to the side and wiping off the stain with the corner of the table cloth. It didn’t take long for the dog to rush and inspect. He sniffed the cloth, pulled his tongue and licked the stain. The evening simply couldn’t get nastier and the funny part was that I was the only one in on the joke.

While Jennifer made us coffee, David took his children upstairs to tuck them into bed while I paced around the living room and looked at the vast amount of family pictures to entertain myself in the meantime. I couldn’t stop thinking about that boy, and all the men that preceded. I want to think I was the special one. After all, Matt said so himself — even his actions suggested so. But how can I be so sure? Besides Benjamin, there’s a secret lover of ten years I never knew about. There’s also Gisele and Ethan. How the hell did he manage to navigate through all these different relationships in total secrecy? And why can’t I stop thinking about it?

Trying to stay grounded at this point is like weathering a storm.

David had a dark wood shelf cabinet displaying his expensive alcohol. Unlike most people who shove their booze left and right, his collection was tidily presented and in pristine condition. The cart came with spacious compartments running from the floor to the shelf and showcased tumblers, steins, shots and wine glasses and other accessories neatly arranged.

“Do you want some whiskey?” Jennifer asked as she made her way inside the room.
“No, thanks. I’m not much of a drinker”, I responded. It’s a pretty display, though.”
“It’s all David. He’s obsessed with expensive scotch — and cigars.”
“What about you?”
“Me? God, no. I’m a wine person. But I don’t mind sharing a drink every once in a while.” She walked back to the kitchen and grabbed the coffee pot and apple pie. She set them on the table. “Me and David struggled financially to make it through college. We occasionally sit down and have a drink together as some sort of celebration. To him, it’s a sign we’ve made it.” She sat down on the couch and signaled to join her. Upstairs, David seemed to be having a hard time putting the boys to sleep.

“What about you?”, Jennifer continued. “Do you ever think about starting your own family?”
“I don’t know… It’s a little late for that.”
“Don’t say that. Look at you. You’re a handsome guy. I’m sure women line up for you.” I almost gasped out loud. She knew nothing about me after all.

We switched the conversation back to David. From what I could gather from the photos, I found out he’s originally from Vermont. Before becoming a detective, he was heavily involved in physical training and coached his hometown youth hockey team. He was also quite the nerd and a big fan of music. He played the guitar, saxophone as well as the drums. Jennifer said he still has his set of instruments in down in the basement.

Jennifer works as a nurse. David always described her as cautious and extremely paranoid. After he became a detective, she developed a situational awareness where she’s constantly planning for disaster — thinking about all the things that could go wrong. Wherever she went, she was mindful of finding the nearest exit doors as well as making sure she was safe and surrounded by good people. Airports and planes were her biggest fear. The idea of being trapped mid-air is enough to get her anxiety going. That’s why she rarely travelled. If she did, she’d knock herself out with sleeping pills as soon as the plane took off.

“When I first met David, I didn’t like him. I thought he was a bit cocky”, Jennifer revealed, her eyes focusing elsewhere as she remised on their history. “I was at a bar across campus when he came up to me and asked me out. I played hard to get for a little bit before agreeing to go out with him. I was quite surprised when I got to know him. He was — still is — a total gentleman. Smart, considerate. Everyone on campus liked him. He treated people with kindness and loved making friends from all walks of life. He was so much fun. Goofy, and a practical joker. I was off limits and somewhat cynical. We still have our silly moments.” Heavy thumping interrupted our conversation as David made his way back downstairs. He showed up by the doorframe, phone in hand, sighed and looked at us with great dismay. I knew something had happened. He was contacted by the police and briefed in on a situation. Little to no details were communicated. We had to go.

In Newark, the engine of an abandoned car, a green 1970 Maverick was left running a couple of blocks away from an apartment complex. The lights were on and the driver seat was open. The vehicle belonged to Sister Judith, a nun and public school teacher. Her roommate, Sister Marge, made the phone call to the police when she never returned home after making a quick run at a store. The last time she saw her was a few hours ago, at their apartment. Sister Judith left to go to the local shopping center while she drove to the grocery store to grab a few items. We couldn’t possibly make sense of what happened. Our theories were thrown in all sorts of directions, and Sister Marge’s reluctance to speak made it seem like there was more to the story.

“I’m afraid she fell into something evil.” Sister Marge said.
“What makes you say that?” David asked.
“A friend of ours was murdered years ago. A nun.” She continued. David was all ears. He fumbled through his coat’s pockets and took out his notepad and retractable pen. He shuffled through a few pages. “Her name was Eve — Eve Dunford.”

David’s eyes bulged and his mouth dangled open.

“Eve was a nun?” He asked, surprised at the fact he missed out on such an important detail.
“Only briefly. She went by the name of Sister Dorothy which was her mother’s name. She did some parish work before leaving the convent a few months later.” David scribbled notes down in disbelief.
“This can’t be a coincidence, detective,” Sister Marge added, a sense of urgency taking over her tone. “We might be looking into something bigger than what we know.”

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