It felt a bit fat, like pictures. Crap, he hoped it wasn't evidence that would mean he had to work. He set all his mail: letter, bills, junk and all, onto the crowded kitchen table and went to make some coffee. He would do anything to avoid working on his day off.
When he finally sat back down at the table, he'd had two cups of coffee and was also eating a bagel. He started by putting the junk mail into his metal garbage can, lighting a match and watching it burn contentedly as he ate. Then he opened up the bills, scanning them to make sure all the amounts were correct. They were charging him too much for his electricity bill again. He finished his bagel and went to call the company. Took forty-five minutes to straighten the whole thing out. After he'd put all his bills into a careful pile on his actual desk, there was left only the letter.
It must have been delivered by hand. There was no postage and no address. Curious, but dreading opening it, he held it up to the light and looked. He couldn't make anything out but some delicate scrawl on a piece of paper and what appeared to be a pack of photos. Sighing, he lit up another cigarette and began to tear the letter open. The photos tumbled to the tabletop, but he ignored them in favor of the written word.
Dear Investigator Edmundo,
I send this letter to you as a concerned citizen. Recently I was witness to some indiscretions committed by a member of the police force. This young man is a bad example to others on the force and seeing an officer of the law behaving in such a demoralizing manner is making a shameful reflection onto our fair city.
Enclosed are several photos, displaying his misconduct.
Vampire, Clair Leonelli
Edmundo choked on his coffee and then reread the letter all over again. Sincerely, Vampire, Clair Leonelli.
Oh, fuck. Oh, lord. Edmundo set the letter down and caught his face in his hands. Someone on the force had pissed off Clair Leonelli. The vampire, the most terrifying vampire ever to grace the city with his presence, was pissed off at someone on the force. All Edmundo could really say was: at least the guy wasn't dead.
He rubbed his temples and then picked up the pictures, looking through them. They'd been paper clipped together and the first was of a smoky, crowded bar. Edmundo had no idea who he was looking for. He sighed and went to the next image. He wondered why the hell Leonelli had sent him photos anyway. What year were they in? The crazy bastard could have sent him an image disc. Asshole probably thought it would have detracted from the drama.
So, the next picture, whoever had taken the picture, had turned the camera to focus on the bar. Edmundo scanned each of the faces that he could see. He didn't recognize any of them. He was beginning to think Clair was just fucking with him. He pulled the picture viciously from the clip and tossed it over his shoulder. The third picture had zoomed in closer to the bar. Edmundo looked over the faces, captured forevermore on paper. He couldn't connect a name to any of them.
But wait…there was one face he couldn't really make out. He squinted and tried to use a glass as a magnifying glass, but the bartender was standing in front of the guy. Was that who Clair wanted him to see? He went to the next picture.
The bartender had moved, but so had the guy. The inspector growled at the paper and nearly ripped it with contempt, before he noticed that the man was still in the picture. He'd just gotten up and moved to a table further away, apparently to talk to a dark haired gentleman sitting there. Still no face though.
"Goddam, Leonelli, would you just get on with it…"
Annoyed, he flipped to the final picture, but all he saw was the front of an apartment building. So, he went back to looking at the images in their sequential order. The next photo had zoomed in close to the table and…the cameraman had moved around behind the target, showing his friend's face. He looked really young, probably too young to legally be in the bar. He had dark, almost navy hair, big blue eyes and a road of freckles across his nose. His face was kind of flushed, probably drunk, and he was smiling.
"Neeext…" Edmundo muttered sardonically to himself. He set the pictures down in order to get another cup of coffee. He returned and glanced down at the image. "Gods, Leonelli…you think this is an issue?"
The two unwilling exhibitionists had leaned over the table to kiss. And all Edmundo had to say in response was, what did he care if they were gay? This wasn't the damn 80's, homosexuals were perfectly welcome on the force.
He pushed the image out of the way, to look at the one following it. The two were getting up to leave…great. Whatever. Next.
The inspector rolled his eyes. Leonelli had his man follow them into the street? What the hell. And they were just walking for about the next three photographs…then he choked on his coffee. It took all his willpower not to spit it across the table.
The cameraman had somehow gotten to the window of the building they'd gone into. That wasn't the fucking surprise though. The mother-fucking-surprise was the fact that he was finally getting the see one of the men's face for the first time and it was…oh shit, damn, fuck…It was fucking Daisuke Aurora and Edmundo figured he better hand in his badge right away. What kind of detective was he and…he really hadn't needed to see Daisuke in the middle of having sex with some kid…
Edmundo felt his face turn red and quickly stuffed all the pictures haphazardly back into their envelope, which he jammed into his pants pocket. He left his coffee cooling on the table and went out for a walk.
He found Daisuke bumming around at a ramen shop. Why wasn't surprised?
"Daisuke," he called and then dropped down beside the kid.
The blonde let his sunglasses slip down his nose to look at the detective. "Uh, hey, Edmundo."
"I'm hoping to have a little talk with you."
Dice let out a puff of breath and pushed his glasses back up, he looked pouty. "Well, if it's unavoidable, go ahead and talk."
"Ah, dammit," the kid grumbled. He got up listlessly and stood waiting for the investigator. "Come on then, my place is pretty close."
The blonde led the way and Edmundo followed. He cursed softly when he saw the apartment building; it was the same one from the picture. Mostly he cursed Leonelli for sending him the goddam letter, so he had an image of Daisuke mid-coitus, not only in his pocket but also in his mind.
"Are you coming?" Daisuke called irritably from the elevator. Edmundo snapped out of his fantasies and hurried up.
They immerged on the 6th floor into an apartment lacking any semblance of personality. It was clean and plain and Edmundo had expected more. He'd been able to see the bed in the picture, but that was about it and…
"So, what did you want to talk about?"
"I got a letter delivered this morning."
"What a coincidence, so did I," Dice muttered, pursing his lips. He threw himself back onto his couch and put his feet on the coffee table.
"Not one like this, I'm sure," Edmundo replied. He pulled the crumpled wad out of his pocket and held it up. "This is a letter complaining about a member of the police force."
"Great. Good thing I'm not on the police force, else I might worry," Daisuke raised an amused eyebrow.
"No, Daisuke, it is about you."
"Whoa, whoa!" Daisuke cried, sitting up straight "What do you mean it's about me!"
"There's a set of about eleven pictures in the envelope," Edmundo explained, holding it up, but not handing it over. "As well as a letter. They depict a bar, a certain young special serves officer, and…a young man who I believe to be underage."
Daisuke turned white, then red, and then he fell back against the couch laughing. It was slightly hysterical, as there was nothing funny about.
"Oh. Oh, shit." He scrubbed at his face, still laughing. "Who is the letter from?"
Daisuke stopped laughing and winced. "Edmundo..."
"No," the inspector interrupted.
Dice jumped up. "No, what? We have to watch out for Kia! If Leonelli knows he's close to me the kid might get hurt!"
"Oh," Edmundo muttered. "I thought you wanted the pictures back."
The blonde raised his eyebrow incredulously. "Well, yes, I do, actually."
Edmundo felt a smile curving to his face. "I had planned to send a few of them to your brother…" And one for himself but he couldn't say that because Dice was only 21 and he was 33 and he was nearly twice his age but he could fantasize and…
Daisuke's eyes narrowed. "Oh, were you?"
"Yeah," he was almost to the door, almost out. Then Daisuke lunged forward, little fucker was fast. He pushed Edmundo up against the door, holding his lapels and…kissing him. The inspector groaned. Then, before he knew it, he was shoved out the door and into the hallway. Daisuke stood in the doorway with an impassive look on his face.
"Thanks for the heads up, Edmundo."
Ken Edmundo was dazed, but he had the sense to feel his back pocket…where the letter no longer was.
"Sneaky fucker," he growled.
A smile crept into Dice's eyes. "Yeah, I hear that a lot."
Edmundo turned to head down the hall with a disgusted snort.
"By the way, Edmundo!" the blonde called after him. "Kia isn't my boyfriend!"
"Yeah, whatever," the inspector grumbled in reply.
Edmundo was not particularly expecting to get any mail besides his usual bills. After Leonelli's stunt with the pictures, he was beyond surprised to receive yet another plain white envelope, with only his name on it. He gnawed viciously on the butt of his cigarette and took the letter inside. He considered throwing it into the trash, without opening it, along with the junk mail.
His curiosity was, however, piqued. He opened it first and without any delay for coffee or bagels or cigarettes.
Much to his relief, he only found a letter inside.
Dear Investigator Edmundo,
I send this letter to you as an upstanding citizen. Recently, a member of your fine force assisted me. I feel this great example of a man should be held up and honored…Shit, I bet Leonelli laughs his ass of when he writes these kinds of stupid letters.
Want to come have dinner tonight?