Who, What, When, Where?
Right after Jessie and Katie left the hotel, they headed straight to the bank, trying to cash the check as soon as they could, knowing very well Andini's financial situation. But bank didn't open until nine am, so they waited.
While they waited, Katie snuggled up to Jessie, resting her head on her shoulder.
"I see somebody wants some cuddling?" Jessie teased with a smile.
Katie blushed a deep red, much to Jessie's amusement. Jessie hugged her girlfriend to her, gently stroking her hair. The hug soon turned into a kiss, Katie's CD player playing James Blunt's "You're Beautiful" as it became a hot make-out session, Jessie's arms fully wrapped around Katie. Both were completely oblivious to the fact that the banks had already opened, they just continued on until they needed air. By then it was already fifteen minutes passed nine.
"Damn, the bank already opened!" Jessie noticed, untangling herself from Katie.
Luckily for them, there was only one other person in the bank, so they were able to transfer the money to their account quickly.
Next, they headed to the Chicago Police Department main headquarters. They searched through the database of missing people and unsolved deaths and found nothing that looked like Jamie and Allie. Jessie was starting to get frustrated.
"We're getting nowhere with this. It's been over two hours and we haven't made one bit of progress."
"Hmm this is starting to feel like a wild goose chase."
"Maybe we should take Andini's suggestion and wait until they reveal more information, though I don't like it."
"I don't think we have much of a choice, Jess. Right now we have little information to go on. Besides, I am so in the mood for some Italian, wanna get something to eat?"
Jessie just shrugged and said 'fine.' She wasn't really in the mood for anything.
So they went to an Italian restaurant, not just any Italian restaurant, but Pane Caldo's, one of the finest, and most expensive, Italian restaurant in Chicago. Katie ordered the Farfalle pasta with North Atlantic salmon and tomato cream sauce with a Coke, one of the most expensive dishes in the restaurant, while the somewhat-frugal Jessie ordered the Spaghetti Primavera with spring vegetables and virgin olive oil with regular tap water. During their lunch, Jessie voiced her displeasure with Katie's spending.
"You know, that money is supposed to help us in solving the mystery, it's not for spending on expensive food."
"Relax Jessie; we got enough to help us solve the mystery. I doubt that we're going to have to go on a long distance trip anywhere."
"Well from now on, I'm going to decide where and how the money is going to be spent. You got it?" She said with a serious look on her face.
Katie nodded, not daring to meet Jessie's eye, she knew better than to get on the wrong side of her. Jessie calmed down a bit and they went back to eating. While they ate, Katie was listening to a conversation a few tables behind her. They were a group of old men listening to a funny story. Katie laughed at it.
"What's so funny?" Jessie asked with a frown.
"Oh, the guy back there was talking about his fishing trip with his wife and how when his wife caught a fish, she fell off the boat," she said then she chuckled. "It was so hilarious!"
"Since when did you know Italian?"
"Huh? What do you mean?"
"The guy was talking to his friends in what sounded like Italian."
Katie turned around and listened to the conversation again. It sure was in Italian, but she understood everything they said. Shocked, she turned back round and looked at Jessie.
"Oh my God, you're right. I've never learned even one word in Italian, yet I can understand everything they were saying. This is so weird."
Jessie then thought, "Could it be that Allie is Italian or of Italian-descent?"
"Well it makes sense. She's had dark hair, olive skin, and by the way she moves with those skates, I bet she can dance."
After Jessie said that Katie had something of a flashback. It was a girl at an even younger age, around 10, and it was at somebody's birthday party. The girl looked like a younger Allie. She was dancing to the Tarantella with an older man, an uncle or father perhaps. Everyone around her had the same complexion, brown or black hair and olive skin. A lot of people were speaking Italian. There was a banner saying "Happy Birthday Santino" in Italian. After that, the flashback ended, it was just long enough to make Katie realize that Jessie was right.
"Allie is Italian, or at least her parents are. I just had a flashback of a much younger Allie at a birthday party for a cousin, I guess. A lot of people were speaking Italian."
"Okay, but did you get any more info about her?"
"Nope. It ended rather quickly."
"Hmm..." Jessie thought, putting the pieces together in her head while trying to connect all the dots. After a short while, something came up in her head, "I notice there's a lot of similarities between you and Allie and me and Jamie. I was wondering if there are name similarities as well. This is a wild shot but can you tell me what the word "Singer" is in Italian?
"Well I bet that Allie's name is Allie Cantante, just like your name is Katie Singer. However I have serious doubts that Allie is her real name, just like Katie isn't."
Something inside of her told her that Jessie was right. "That could be it. It might be worth going back to the headquarters and looking through the database again."
"But Katie, I also think that they weren't murdered in this area?"
"What makes you say that?"
"Well the area was hilly, and Chicago is very flat. I remember seeing lots of hills on the way back home from the rink."
"Well then, we'll look in the nationwide database."
"Sounds good to me." After they were finished with their lunch they went back to the SUV. While they were driving back listening to some music from the radio, they reached a stop light and something came to Katie.
"I also remember something else."
"What is it?"
"I remember the scent in the air at the bay where they died. It smelt like fresh salt water. I know that smell from my time at Tampa Bay. So it's definitely not Chicago. It must be one of the coasts."
"Yeah, you might be right."
Then a commercial came on, it was Tony Bennett promoting San Francisco. When they heard that, they instantly got a flashback.
They were back at the scene where the couple died, and they could see the bridge in the moonlight. It was very obvious then that the bridge was the iconic Golden Gate Bridge! The flashback ended and both girls screamed "San Francisco!" They quickly drove to the headquarters and looked again in the dead people's database, this time nationwide. They were looking for anybody whose last name was 'Cantante' and whose first name began with 'Al'. A profile popped up on the computer. A woman named Alessandra Cantante showed.
"Oh my God, that's her!" Katie exclaimed, nudging Jessie with her elbow.
"It sure is! The black hair, blue eyes, facial features. She's got the same height and almost the same weight as you."
"Amazing, and she also fit the timeline: January 24, 1962 - October 10, 1982. That's my birthday! Also, it says that she died in San Francisco. There's no doubt that it's her. Plus she is Italian; she was born in Triggiano, Italy."
"Great, now maybe we can find out about Jamie. Scroll down to the Notes section."
Katie then scrolled to the section and read it out loud. "On the day of her murder, she was accompanied with another person, Elizabeth Jamie O'Sullivan. That must be Jamie."
So Katie then looked up Elizabeth Jamie O'Sullivan, sure enough a profile of her showed up and it did match the Jamie in their flashbacks. Nevertheless, Jessie was in shock.
"Oh my God, she also has my height, weight, and birthday! Plus she's got my middle name as her first name, this is getting so creepy."
Then Katie chuckled.
Jessie looked at her, "What are you laughing at?"
"Oh, I though it was funny that Allie is an Italian. Oh my God, I'm a Guidette!" Katie was laughing hard now.
"You make it sound like a bad thing! Not all Italians are low-life trash or mobsters from NYC or 'Joisey'," Jessie told her with a phony Italian-American accent. "It doesn't seem that Allie is. Well we know for sure she's not from that area."
"Yeah, thank God! At least she doesn't seem to be that foul-mouthed, disrespectful, trashy daughter from Bensonhurst, in that horrible movie 'Julie Johnson'. God, if that was my daughter, I would slap that little bitch!"
"Yeah, that movie was terrible. It nearly took lesbian movies two steps back. I can't believe you talked me into renting it. I mean it had Courtney Love in it, that should be a hint and a half for you mind that it's going to be trashy."
"Well I thought that since she did a great job in 'The People vs. Larry Flint' and 'Sid 'n Nancy', she would do a great job in it as well, but even she couldn't save that piece of crap. But you know what's also funny? That fact that Jamie is Irish."
They both laughed and then Jessie noted, "That's funny, we're both ethnic characters!" Then she added in a phony Irish accent, "Well that explains her red hair and green eyes." That gave Katie more chuckles.
"That's another weird thing, Jessie, the fact that Jamie, who is you, has my eye color, and Allie, who is me, has your eye color."
Jessie hadn't noticed it until now, "Yeah, that is strange. It makes me wonder are they actually us or if we were them at one time."
"Well now that we know who they are and where they are, let's go back to my place and look up more on them," Katie noted.
They left the headquarters and went to Katie's place, which was a dorm in Northwestern. She was the only person in the dorm, but Jessie stayed there during the weekday for classes. Her father is a professor at the university, so she gets to stay for free. While they were there, they were on the Internet on Katie's laptop. They were looking up more on Allie and Jamie. They were able to find quite a few things on them.
"Look, the San Francisco Chronicle had a few articles on them, even one of the 20th anniversary of their death four years ago."
"Click on the link, I want to see what they have."
So Katie clicked on the link and they read the article. Jessie read it out loud, "It's been 20 years since the death of Alessandra Cantante and Elizabeth Jamie O'Sullivan. The only evidence found was the bullet, a typical 9mm, and a few bloody footprints. Neither helped much as the 9mm is very common and the footprints have no markings or grooves to make it unique."
"So the assailant could be using some kind of dress shoes."
"Could be. That makes sense since some dress shoes have no markings on them." Then Jessie continued reading on, getting more on the girls' background. "The death of Alessandra was heavy on her family as her brother had died only a few years earlier."
"Yeah, that's so sad."
"But they did have another daughter a few years later, Cassandra."
"True, but losing two of your kids is still hard."
"Yeah, and the O'Sullivan's didn't have it any better."
"What do you mean, Jess?"
"Read further down."
So she did and Katie was shocked when she read it, "Oh my, Jamie's father died."
"Yep. It said that he died of a heart-attack in 1991."
"I'm sure Jamie's death contributed to it."
"Yeah, I can't imagine what those parents are going through, living with the fact that their kids got murdered." Jessie continued reading and found out who Jamie's real mom was. "Jamie's mother, Shelly O'Sullivan, now Shelly Thomas, is married and has two children after Jamie's death. And there's a picture of her."
Katie looked, "That's funny. We look like Jamie and Allie, but our parents don't look like their parents. That makes no sense."
"I don't get it either. But now we have some more info on them. Now it's a matter of getting their numbers and calling them up. But how in the world are we going to explain to them that two college students from Chicago are trying to solve a murder in San Francisco?"
"I don't know," Katie replied, but a few seconds later an idea popped in her head. "Hey, I got it! I'm taking Filmmaking 102 next semester, and I heard that part of the grade is a documentary film project. We can tell them that we are doing a documentary on it."
"That's a great idea," Jessie grinned, but then she quickly saw a problem. "But, we don't know anybody in San Francisco to stay with."
"You mean YOU don't know anybody in San Francisco. On the contrary, I know quite a few people in San Francisco."
"Of course. I chat with them daily." she boasted.
"I chat with them daily through MySpace and that new one called Facebook. They're on my friends list."
"But they're just Internet acquaintances; you don't know them that well. I don't want to stay with a bunch of strangers."
"They're not just acquaintances and they're not strangers, they're cool people, so don't worry."
"But I heard that San Francisco is full of strange people."
"So? You're with me, aren't you?"
"That's a good point."
"So it's not going to be much different. Come on Jess, don't worry so much. Nothing will happen, we're going to have fun. Plus, if things don't work out, we can always stay at a hotel. After all, we got around $10,000."
"Yeah, but San Francisco is an expensive city, we could actually blow it all real quick, especially if you had the money in your hands."
"True. But don't you want to see San Francisco? I know Russ and his boyfriend want to, they've talked about it a few times."
"I mean we're going to get to see the Golden Gate bridge, Chinatown, Cable Cars, Aquarium of the Bay, Fisherman's Wharf, and of course, the Castro District.
"Um, I know that the Castro District has a strong gay and lesbian community, but what makes it so special?"
"What makes it so special? Why the Castro District is like Mecca for us queers and we're taking a holy gay pilgrimage there, except that you won't find women wearing Burqas over there, but you'll sure find some wearing Birkenstocks."
Jessie put her hands over her face and shook her head in shame, but Katie continued.
"And you know, it's a city for lovers, especially lesbian lovers," she said seductively, moving closer to Jessie with a smile. "Maybe we can take a walk down Crissy Field, without people staring at us like a zoo exhibit. Or take a short cruise. Or enjoy the beauty of the Botanical Gardens just holding each other, think about that," she whispered seductively. Jessie was blushing a furious red. "So what do you say?"
"Well... It sounds like a great place to be."
"That's the spirit! Now do you have the camera ready?"
"I do. I got a few extra DV tapes as well."
Katie was studying Drama with a minor in Film and Media. She wanted to be an actress but she also had some aspirations for filmmaking. Jessie was studying Veterinarian Medicine, but her real passion was Music, so she also majors in that. Jessie had become well adapted to using the video camera since Katie liked to act out her favorite movie or television scenes.
"Great, then let me find a place we can stay."