Chapter Twenty-Four: The Tip Of A Knife

She didn't mean to disappoint Mia or Godot, but Pearl wanted to see Wocky. Since Matt's passing, Wocky's face had been rather sour.

Pearl dogged Wocky's steps as he stormed forward to the car park. He hurled himself at the wall, staring at mid-air. Pearl sighed. Leaning against the wall, sliding down to the floor. She looked up: it felt like midnight, an active breeze and black sky.

A friend dead, another accused of his murder. Both were dangerous criminals but that wasn't how Wocky saw Matt and Luke. He knew they were crazy, but they helped him escape prison fair and square. He didn't have to knock, he could just walk to them and they'd listen. The press branded them as monsters, but to Wocky they were just ordinary people. He knew his opinion would be disagreed on, but he met them in jail. Everyone was on the same in prison; they were sinners told to make atonement.

"You've been quiet," Pearl said. "Are you upset about Luke and Matt? You should have showed up this morning. The trial wouldn't have turned into that mess."

"Shouldn't you be there too?"

"I told them I had to see you," replied Pearl. She held onto his hand asked, "Has Alita contacted you lately?"

Wocky shook his head and closed his eyes.

"That's good. Hopefully she'll get locked up again soon."

"Then she can shut up about the money I apparently owe her."

"I heard that!" Heaven's gone and Hell was here. There was everything to fear. Alita tiptoed along the lines. She bowed, then walked like a ballerina dancing the time of her life. "How's my money coming along?"

The cheeky bitch, thought Pearl. Alita emerged from the shadows demanding money like a prostitute. "Go away you're getting nothing!"

"Oh little slut," Alita sighed. "I have to kill you if Wocky doesn't give me the cash."

"I'M NOT SCARED OF YOU!" Pearl yelled.

She flashed a knife. Alita dragged Pearl onto the floor and sat ontop of her. The silver was pointing at Pearl's neck. Her arms performed a routine of moving the knife up and down. Everything was silent, except Alita who released a laugh most foul.

"Now are you scared of me, little slut?"

"You're the one who should be scared," Wocky roared. He pulled a gun out of his pocket and aimed at Alita. "I'm really gonna kill you now."

"Sticks and stones may break my bones," Alita murmured. "Words can't hurt me like they hurt you. Your face is so ugly is funny. You're not even gonna shoot me cause you know your precious little Pearl won't like you killing. What's the matter Wocky? Will I break your heart? I know its pretty much dead anyway."

Wocky's gun hit the floor. The tip of the knife was close to Pearl's brain. Alita was enjoying it like a child in the candy shop.

"Typical of you Wocky," Alita said. "Always cowering out on the last minute. I'd be so mean to just kill Pearl right now. She's so dumb and naïve." Alita played with Pearl's hair and asked, "do you know how Wocky treated me?"

"He treated you like a princess," Pearl said. "You threw it back in his face."

Alita sighed. She lifted Pearl's head up and showed her the red scars around her neck. "These scars, I got these from Wocky."

"YOU LYING BITCH!" Wocky roared again. He picked up his gun and said, "YOU KNOW WHO GAVE THEM YOU!" He still held the gun, aiming at Alita, but he didn't shoot. He had to wait for the right time. He didn't want to accidently gun down Pearl.

"He used to strangle me once a week." Alita's voice of cruelty melted into a soft gentle accent. A voice, Wocky knew was fake and hoped Pearl didn't fall for. "He tried to get back me lots of times since I escaped Prison. He even lied about Larry beating him up. I guess he blackmailed you into beating Larry up, didn't he? He always loves to act hard cause he's too chicken to walk the walk if you get what I mean." Alita hugged Pearl and moved the knife away. "You don't have to suffer the way I did."

"Alita..." Pearl whispered. She pushed herself away. She stared at the floor and her eyes wandered to the tip of the knife. "I'm sorry."

"You don't have to apologise."

"I'm sorry that you're a filthy liar!" Pearl pushed Alita who gritted her teeth and tried to stab Pearl. Alita just about missed Pearl who slid under her and ran to Wocky.

He pulled the trigger and heard screams.

It didn't come from Pearl.

It didn't come from Alita.

"You two should be careful next time," Alita announced. "You're both alive for now. I'll now be wanting that money by next week."

"Your words aren't gonna change anything," Wocky snapped. "You're still not getting nothing from me."

"I'll make sure of it too," vowed Pearl.

"By the way Wocky," Alita laughed, "you're a dumbass if you think that Luke and Matt actually wanted to be you're friends. They only used you to get back at Dessie and they gave that retard Ron to me. They were playing you the whole time and you fell in their trap. Well they're both screwed so I guess it don't matter anymore. Still its hilarious how you fell for it. Have fun looking after that ugly child of yours!"

"Where have you hid him?" Pearl asked.

"As if anybody's gonna find him." Alita faced Pearl and before she went said, "I threw him in that river near Harazuka temple. So cute watching him drown."

She ran out of the park laughing without a care in the world.

Running out from the shadows was Godot. He was out of breath and covered in blood. "You guys okay? What happened to you guys? "

"Geez Godot what the fuck happened to you?"

"Thalassa was asleep and I can't wake her up," he stated. "I just can't seem to wake her up no matter how much I try."

"What's with all that blood on you?" Wocky asked. "Imagine how Apollo's going to react."

"Blood?" Godot asked. His voice became faint as did his expression. "I can't see any."

"You can't any?" Wocky snapped. "Its all over you. Its on your hands and everything!"

"Wocky," Pearl said, tapping on his shoulder. "Mr. Godot's site isn't perfect: he can't see red very well. We'll have to check Miss Thalassa to see if she's okay."

The three of them went over to the other side of the car park and saw Thalassa laying hopeless on the floor. The red puddle and wounds near the heart was enough for Pearl and Wocky to know Thalassa was dead.

"She's dead isn't she?" Godot asked.

"She's defiantly gone," Wocky said.

"Poor Apollo," said Pearl. "He's only just been reunited with his real parents and he's just lost one already. This is so sad."

"Any idea who did this?" Godot asked. He knelt over Thalassa's body and touched her cheek. "I heard Pearl screaming not long ago. Whoever tried to harm you could be the killer of my son's mother."

"One of my crazy ex-girlfriends named Alita," Wocky replied.

"Any chance she dates a man named Larry Butz?"

"Yeah," Pearl said. "How did you know?"

"When I was in prison," Godot said. "Larry smuggling some instant coffee into the prison for me. Since last year, he's always gone on about a girl named Alita. He spoke non-stop about her. Sometimes I wished he would shut up."

"He helped her escape," Wocky said. "I know he did. Anyway Godot shouldn't you be at the courtroom thing?"

"I left during on the intervals," replied Godot. "I walked away satisfied cause Apollo threw coffee at Franziska's face."

"Really?"

"Yeah," said Godot. "It was hilarious. I'm glad you didn't show up in court, the trial is bonkers."

"I ain't into chess anyway," Wocky said. "I would have been board and left."

"Larry always seemed to be nice," Pearl said. "We need to find where Larry is hiding Alita. I'm going to call the police as well. We should have done that by now!" She held the phone by her ear and requested for the police. "Hello, sorry for disturbing you guys at this hour but there's but Alita's just killed Miss Thalassa! She told us that she has drowned Ron too. You gotta get to the car park near the courtroom as soon as you can. Okay! Thank you Mr. Dick, get here soon."

"I guess I'll have to go into court this time," said Wocky.

"I know you don't want to go to court, but you'll have to this time."

"Pearl's right," Godot said. "And don't be surprised if I get arrested for her murder."

"Mystic Maya isn't answering her phone," Pearl gasped. "I'm going to try Mr. Apollo... his phone is switched off. Mr. Nick should answer his phone... Hello? Mr. Nick?... Oh its you Iris. ... Uhm, Mr. Polly's mother has been murdered and we know who did it. It was Alita, she said she drowned Ron in the river in Harazuka. I needed Mr. Nick's help on something. ... Yeah we called the police, I'll see you at the station."

"The trial is still going ahead," said Pearl. "The police should be coming soon."

Gumshoe walked onto the park with police officers and investigators behind him. Gumshoe was carrying his son, Copper in his arms. "The police are here!" Gumshoe announced. Copper burped and spat on his father's coat. "Sorry guys I had to bring the baby into work this morning. Maggey's working at night and we couldn't afford a babysitter. You guys know what to do, I need to go and sort this little monster out."

"Alright guys?" Mike asked. "So you guys seen Alita?"

Pearl nodded. "She says Luke handed Ron over to her and she drowned him."

"Looks like we're onto something," Mike said. "You guys think Alita killed Thalassa?"

"I know she did," Wocky said.

"Did you see Alita do it?" Mike asked.

"No," replied Wocky. "We didn't know anything about Thalassa until Godot came covered in blood thinking she fell asleep."

"Why don't you arrest me?" Godot asked. "You all want to arrest me anyway. I can see it in the papers, killer set free to kill again."

"Well I don't," Mike admitted. "But that attitude is not going to help you clear your name. Its not good for Apollo either."

"Okay guys any clues yet?" Gumshoe asked. He held Copper in his hands who drooled onto his coat.

"One of the guys are checking the security cameras right now," Mike told him. "Also just been told by Wocky and Pearl that Alita was here. They suspect fugitive, Alita Tiala is the one we're looking for."

"That's good," said Gumshoe. "But I'm afraid we'll have to arrest Godot."

"Already?" Mike said. "Shouldn't we spend more time investigating?"

"I've got to pick up Maggey tonight and get Copper asleep," Gumshoe said. "I'll leave it to you and Ema."

"What do you think, Ema?" asked Mike.

"She's had lots of severe stabbing," said Ema. "Looks like it could have been more than one person."

"Not just Alita?" Pearl asked.

"She looks like she's been dead for no more than half an hour. The killer must have silenced her by trapping her mouth with her veil. She was stabbed near the legs first then the killer made it's way to the arms, then after the final blow removed the veil and stabbed her in the heart."

"This is awful," Pearl said.

"When did you hear the screams?" Ema asked.

"We heard it when Alita was about to stab Pearl," replied Wocky. "... fifteen or twenty minutes ago."

"It couldn't have been Alita then," Ema confirmed. "If Pearl or Alita didn't scream then it must have been Thalassa if you were the only people in park."

"Oh man," moaned Wocky. "Alita is the only one I can imagine killing her."

"Do you anyone who could help Alita?" Ema asked.

"I know who helped her get out of prison," Wocky said. "Larry Butz could have killed her."

"Makes sense," said Mike. "Larry was fired yesterday for being caught with dirty pictures of Alita. He was last seen that evening, at the casino at 11:00 A.M."

"So where has he been hiding Alita all this time?" Ema asked.

"We have to investigate Larry's address for any clues," said Mike. "After you get some sleep Ema, go ask people you know from prison about Alita and Ema."

"Sure," sighed Ema. "Apollo's mom dead, and his dad's been arrested for his murder... Great. How are we suppose to tell him this."

"Good news!" Mike shouted. "They found Ron. Don't worry: he's alive."

"That's good," Pearl said. "So it looks like Alita was lying about Ron."

"Alita lies about a lot of things," Wocky said. "I'm gonna go home now. You coming? Mama won't mind you sleeping over."

"Okay then, I will."

"Ema, I've just got another call from the police," Mike told her. "They've arrested someone else for the murder!"

"Really?" Ema said. "Who?"