"They say the easy way to keep a secret is to act like there isn't one in the first place. And while that may work for a while, it's never a long-term goal. The most guarded secrets are usually the most twisted one."
"...Fuck" Kai mumbles under his breath as he walks over to Morris.
He doesn't even look at him, just nods to the group.
"Deal with them, I don't care how. Question them and then clear them out." Morris commanded
Kai doesn't argue and walks over to the crowd outside the police line. They were all trying to get a glance around to see into the crime scene even at the distance it was.
"Did someone die?"
"Of course, someone died idiot. Why else would they be there?!"
Kai raises his hands in a pacific way.
"Hello everyone, please remain calm and don't try to force yourself through the barrier." Kai says as he eyes the eager crowd.
Some of the people back away a bit and let out some grumbling while others seem to recognize him almost instantly.
"Hey, you're that guy right?!"
"Oh yeah, the Bloodhound!!"
"What's happening?! Did someone die?!"
He eyes the crowd with a neutral face. The people didn't appear overly concerned with the fact that someone was dead, more so curious about who died. Which begs the question of if they already knew who's body was there.
"It's that greedy businessman isn't it?" One man sneered with an ugly smile.
Kai looks at him, he is of average height. A bit on the bigger side with unclean messy hair and unkempt clothing. His dark-colored eyes were gleaming at Kai with almost sadistic glee.
Well, that answers that question.
"Oh? And why do you say that?" Kai asks, neither confirming nor denying the question.
The man seems almost overjoyed at his response as his smile grows larger.
"Haha, it's obvious. Fucker had it coming after all."
"Yeah, he did. Treating us like cattle just cause he's got money?!"
The crowd seems to rally behind the man's words. Anger and spit swirling in the air like a rotten stench that you just couldn't wash out. Kai couldn't help the anger the coiled in his gut at these people's behavior. Sure, Maro was human trash but he didn't deserve to die for it.
"And do you have any idea of who killed him then?"
Silence hung over the crowd at the question. Everyone was eyeing each other with suspicion. Kai's eyes scanned through the crowd once again. He knew pretty confidently that no one here was the one who killed Maro. The killer was vicious like a storm, they caused destruction and then moved on. He could feel in his gut this wasn't some random killing spree.
Their killer had a list.
"W-who cares who killed him? Good riddance!"
"Ye-yeah, who cares! We want our home back!"
"Yeah, yeah, give us our home back!"
The crowd then erupted to cries and chants for their homes. Kai let out a small sigh and then nodded to the officers before walking back over the crime scene. The office quickly disperses the crowd behind him. The situation back at the scene isn't any better and only gets worst as Kai returns back to see everyone staring at him. He could already know what that meant.
He got another note.
The note this time types out like in an old-style typographic for ransom notes. It spelled out his title again and this time attached the words see with it.
"See what?" Morris grunts behind me.
"I'm not sure honestly. Like I said, between the two scenes the only thing that ties together so far is the message and these scatter papers. I mean, Honda may have been a successful businessman but the guy was a creep. He liked cheap beer, shady company, and loved to populate seedy bars all over the upper and lower district. Then there's the polar opposite which is Price. He was a snob, loved nothing but the highest of class, beauty, you name it. I highly doubt the two were in the same social circles." Kai said with a shrug.
"Hmm, that is true. I imagine Price would never be caught dead with someone like Honda who was just too chaotic to control at times." Rafeeqa said with a disgusted glance at the body.
"And you! You sure you know nothing about the reason why Honda would be here of all places?" Morris ask with a frustrated grunt to Kyle.
"As I said before, Honda and I were business partners. But we had nothing to do with each other person lives outside of that. I don't give a shit, nor care what he did in his personal life."
"Oh? And if he did do something that could interrupt your business, that wouldn't make you angry?"
Kyle looked back at Morris with an unmistakable gaze of disdain at the very apparent baiting he was doing.
"Maybe I should call my lawyer if this is how you are gonna be.." Kyle said smugly while crossing his arm over his chest.
Morris looked like he was about to quite literally murder Kyle in the middle of their investigation scene before Rafeeqa stepped up and in between the two.
"Look just, if you remember anything. And I mean anything useful...? Call me." She said as she handed out her business card to him.
Kyle looks at her, a pause while he scans her up and down before taking her car with an obvious sneer smirk on his face.
"Hm... Yeah, sure sweetheart. I think about it." He responded unprofessionally.
Rafeeqa doesn't appear bothered by his rather transparent leering at her body or clear disregard of her job. She just nodded to another cop and has Kyle escorted out.
"So now what?" She said as she turn back to Morris and Kai.
"We need to at least look into this Truth thing? From the last case, forensic didn't find anything besides the victim's own fingerprints. Whoever this is? Is frightfully careful. And it has already been twice that this has come up. There must be a lead there!" Kai insisted.
Kai doesn't miss the look that goes between Rafeeqa and Morris. He knows already what they are trying to say without saying it.
They think Kai merely wants something to build a case against Halloway.
And to be fair they would be correct at any other time. Kai knows deep in his gut that Halloway is corrupt. Can practically smell it but the man prides himself in being, immaculate and pristine background notwithstanding. And Kai knew from experience living here for all this life that there is one constant with those who do anything to appear as clean as possible..
They will have the biggest skeletons in their closets.
"...Fine, go. I'll give a few calls ahead. But understand you are only there to get information. Only that nothing else. I don't want to have Hollway on my ass again Kai." Morris said with a glare on Kai.
He then gives Rafeeqa a very pointed look that this time Kai does choose to ignore. With that decided, it did take a while to arrive at the facility, given that it was on the furthest point away from the slums. But after a half-hour, the patrol car slows to a stop in front of a large white building.
"Well here we are, Restore Pharmaceuticals." Rafeeqa said.
The building and surrounding compound were large. There were people entering and exiting periodically given that it was still mid-day.
Kai turns back as Rafeeqa grabs onto his arm. Her pointed look was more than expected.
"Remember, we are just here to get some information. That all, it been ten years since that drug was scrapped so I don't know how much we'll be able to get here. Just...don't push it." Rafeeqa warns.
Kai just nods, he understands her underlying statement all too clear.
Don't make things more complicated.
They both continued onward into the building. A few people eyed them briefly, mostly Kai with very curious looks. Kai is well used to it but it still never stop being unnerving. They make their way to the front desk quickly.
"Hi, how may I help you?" The rep, a young woman said with a fake plastered smile.
"Briagas PD, I believe we were expected to meet with Professor Roman?" Rafeeqa said with a flash of her badge.
The rep seemed to pause as her eyes went from Rafeeqa before turning to Kai then back. It only lasts a few seconds but Kai caught it.
"Oh yes, let me call her! Please wait over there for one moment." The rep said with that same smile and motion to the waiting area a few steps away.
Rafeeqa give her a smile and push Kai over there when it look like he wanted to ask questions. Both sit down and wait. But Kai couldn't help but scan around everywhere. From the people to the building inner structure.
His head turns to Rafeeqa.
"I got it Rafee. I'll play nice." Kai said.
He was probably lying but honestly, he wasn't sure.
It took a few more minutes before finally, they both say a woman, a bit on the older side. Dark brown hair that stops at her shoulders. Thick frame glasses obscure her dark-colored eyes at times. She was dressed professionally, dark slacks with a pale green button-down shirt and a snow-white lab coat over all that.
She didn't however appear all the happy to see either of them apparently.
"...Officers..." She said with a nod.
"Professor Roman, I presume?" Rafeeqa said with a smile.
"Hmm, you'd be right. Come on from what I understand you have some questions?" She said before turning around and proceeding to walk.
Kai and Rafeeqa follow behind quickly.
"..We are working on a case which seemly has ties to a drug that was produced here some year back." Kai said
"Kai..!" Rafeeqa warns again, giving him a glare.
He keeps his wording as vague as possible. His eyes scanned each face that turned to look as they passed. Professor Roman didn't seem to react that way until the end of his sentence.
She paused for only a second.
But the point is she did. And Kai saw it without even a missing a beat.
"...Hmm I see, well we'll talk more in my office."
With that, the remainder of their walk was done in silence. Soon they were in a medium-size office space. Kai drank in the room, it was clear, immaculate even. Not a single paper out of place or even left out.
A frown came to Kai's face as he sat down.
Professor Roman sat opposite to them behind her desk and give them an expecting look.
"So what drug are you talking about specifically?"
"Truth." Kai asks.
She looks at him with scrunched-up eyebrows. Confusion was clear on her face.
"Truth? It died before even clinical trial. Too unstable." She says.
"There been two bodies already, both have the words and papers on 'truth' in two different locations." Kai pushed on even at the heated look Rafeeqa is giving him.
Professor Roman doesn't look impressed or even worried.
"Well, it was ten years ago and at the old building. I highly doubt the paperwork you'll find has anything useful as much of it was lost in the fire that happened 3 years ago. Which is why we moved here." Roman said motion with a hand around herself.
And this is something that was common knowledge. That the old building did experience a fire, faulty wire apparently. It was ruled out as an accident and Restore Pharmaceuticals move here, halfway across the city.
"Do you know who manufactured the drug, does that scientist still work here?" Kai asks.
The room seems to oddly drop a few degrees. Rafeeqa shifted next to him and the Professor seem to look at him differently.
A cold and calculative look.
"...For someone who wants to know more about it. You don't seem to do your research too accurately Officer." She said in a dry tone.
Kai force down a few choice words before giving her a smile.
"I'm from out of town, move here 5 years ago."
"Hmm, well to answer your questions, I do know him and no." She said with the same dry clinical tone.
She doesn't elaborate further than that.
"....And his name?" Kai asks with a slightly annoyed look on his face.
She doesn't respond for a few seconds. Just staring Kai down with a dead fish store of look.
"...His name is David Turner. And you won't find him cause he's dead." She responded as plain as if talking about the weather.