This is my second story I have written for this website. I will be posting chapters as I write them, so not very often. My primary story right now is "Love is Strange", and it will be my priority until I have it all written. I just couldn't get this story out of my head.
This is a post Red John fic. I hope it's alright. It's not going to be very long.
I hope you like it!
I own nothing.
Lisbon looked at her map of the trail. It was six-thirty in the morning. The cool, crisp air of the Colorado Rocky Mountains was refreshing.
A week ago, Lisbon decided she needed some time off. Her friend Amy had a cabin near Aspen, and she let Lisbon stay with her from time to time.
She loved visiting the Colorado. It was such a change of scenery from California. Sure, there were mountains there too, but not nearly as many.
Over the past few days she had taken some shorter trails to get used to the elevation. Now she was going to do the Lost Man Trail. It's a long one; it takes over six hours to complete, but she'd done it before. She checked her bag to make sure she had her walkie talkie (Amy had the other one, in case of an emergency), water, lunch, and her camera. She also checked her gun to make sure it was fully loaded. Wouldn't want to come across a bear unarmed.
She had only gotten as far as Lost Man Reservoir when she felt that something was not right. It was eerily quiet. The only sound she heard was the sound of the water and the kaws of crows. Lisbon put her hand on the holster of her gun. It was times like this when she was really glad she was a cop.
She saw movement through the trees. Crows. Lisbon decided it was worth checking out. It was probably some sort of dead animal.
Lisbon's blood ran cold. A baseball cap was lying close to the murder of crows. She ran forward, shooing the birds away.
It was a man.
Lisbon looked away. The man was in bad shape. The crows had picked at his skin, particularly around the eyes. It was kind of gruesome.
She saw another flock about 10 yards away. A bright yellow was visible beneath them and she knew it was another person. She walked over to the body and the crows scattered. This man was younger than the other. He was lying on his stomach with his head turned to the side. There was a bullet hole in his back.
Lisbon walked back to the trail and pulled out her walkie talkie. She pushed the call button and waited.
"Hey, Teresa. Are you ok?" Amy's voice sounded from the speaker 10 seconds or so later.
"Yeah, I'm fine, but I found two dead bodies out here."
"Like, people?" Amy gasped.
"Yep. I need you to call the police. I'm on the Lost Man Trail right before the Lost Man Reservoir. I got two dead males, one looks like he's in his forties and the other in his late twenties. Tell them my name too. I'm staying here until they get here. I will need to give a statement."
"Should I tell them that you are a California state agent?"
"No. I don't want to get involved. I came out here to get away from murder. It's just my luck I walk right into one."
"All right. I'm calling them now. I will let you know what they say."
"Thanks Amy. "
Amy radioed Lisbon about ten minutes later and told her the police were on their way. Lisbon found a nice rock to sit down on to wait. She wanted to talk to Amy, but her friend managed a store in town, so she couldn't just stop working to talk to Lisbon for the time it took the police to arrive at the scene. So for now, Lisbon was alone among the dead. Great.
Lisbon and just finished eating one of her granola bars when she heard people approaching. She looked over her shoulder to see about five people walking up over the hill. The first three were uniformed police officers, two men and a woman, the other two must have been coroners or paramedics. They had the jackets.
The first officer walked up to her and extended his hand. He was an older man with white hair, dark eyebrows and a bit of weight around the middle. He looked fairly out of breath.
"I'm Officer Brady. You Teresa Lisbon?"
"Yes, sir," replied Lisbon as she shook the man's hand.
Officer Brady turned and motioned to the other two officers. "These are Officers Egan and Anderson," he said as he pointed to each in turn.
Egan was young. He looked to be in his mid-twenties. He had a long face and short blonde hair. When he leaned forward to shake her hand, Lisbon noticed a long scar across his left cheek. Other than that, the man was fairly handsome.
Anderson looked to be only a little younger then Lisbon herself. She was, however, several inches taller, and she had blonde hair pulled back in a ponytail. Anderson smiled warmly at Lisbon as she shook her hand.
"So where are these bodies?" Brady asked.
Lisbon walked a few steps off the trail and motioned over to where the bodies lay in the grass. Brady, Egan, and the other two walked over to take a look. Anderson stayed with Lisbon.
"I'm gonna need you to make a statement," she told Lisbon.
"Of course. Anything you need."
"Can you explain how you came across the bodies?"
Lisbon told the short story as Anderson scribbled on her notepad. She just finished when Brady joined them once more.
"You got a permit for that gun?" he asked, pointing at the weapon at her hip.
"Oh, yeah." Lisbon walked over to her bag and pulled out her wallet. He gave the officer both the permit and her driver's license.
After inspecting them, Brady returned them to her.
"I'm sorry, ma'am, but we are going to have to look at your gun."
Lisbon looked confused, so Brady contained. "Both of these men were killed from gunshot wounds."
"Wait," Lisbon held her hand out in front of her as if she was telling a dog to stay, "you don't actually think I did this, do you?"
Anderson was the one to answer her. "No, but you were found at the crime scene with a gun. You have to understand we have to be a little bit suspicious."
Lisbon nodded and handed her gun over to Brady.
"Is there anything else you need me for?" She asked Brady.
"Oh, none of us are going anywhere."
"Blondie coming?" Anderson asked.
"Are you kidding? I don't think he's seen a murder since he got here form God knows where. I think he's been bored." Egan and Anderson smiled as Brady spoke.
"Aww, poor baby. It's his fault he moved here instead of, oh, I don't know, Detroit." Anderson said.
Lisbon was defiantly missing something. "Um, excuse me, but what's going on?"
Anderson shook her head apologetically. "There's this guy who lived here in Aspen, he's a consultant. Really good at figuring this kind of stuff out. He's a detective of sorts I guess. He helps out all the jurisdictions in the area."
"He's a real pain in the ass if you ask me. Not worth the time," Egan said, "Why don't we clean up and head back to the station. He can meet us there."
Brady shook his head. "No. We wait here. Blondie will want to see the crime scene."
"So this guy finds your daughter and now you're just going to so whatever he says, is that it?" Egan snapped.
"Let's give them some space, this could go on for a while," Anderson whispered in Lisbon's ear. She led her away to a spot overlooking the lake and they sat down on a fallen tree.
Lisbon looked at her companion, "So, Anderson-"
"Call me Stacy."
Lisbon smiled. "Stacy then, what exactly is the story here?"
Anderson sighed. "About eight months ago, Brady's daughter went missing. The town went crazy. We were pretty sure she'd been kidnapped, but there were no solid leads. The husband was breathing down are necks. We had no idea what to do."
"Then this blonde, snarky, son-of-a-bitch waltzes in and tells us he could help us find her. He was a real pain to work with, but he came up with several leads and about two days later we found her. Blondie decided to stay here in Aspen. He said he liked it here."
"What's Egan's problem with him?"
Anderson shook her head. "Egan is young and arrogant. He wants to be the smartest man in the room, and he's not when Blondie is here. Blondie sees things Egan doesn't. With Brady's case, Egan was so sure about this one lead, but Blondie kept saying he was wrong. Egan refused to listen. He followed it but the lead got them nowhere. When Egan finally listened to Blondie, they found Sarah within a few hours. Egan was humiliated."
Lisbon smiled. "So where is the master detective from?"
Anderson shook her head. "No one knows. He's not exactly an open person. We aren't even sure if the name he gave us is his real name."
"You employ someone without doing a background check?"
Anderson just shrugged. "You know, when you save the life of the chief's daughter, in a small town that can be enough. The other jurisdictions trust him because we do. And he's really been a big help."
"You do realize this small town has multi-million dollar homes owned by people worth millions of dollars living in them?" Lisbon asked.
"This is a good community, Teresa. Millionaires and all."
Anderson and Lisbon sat and talked for another half an hour waiting for Blondie to get there. Apparently he had been in Glenwood Springs helping the police with a case. Brady told Lisbon and Anderson earlier that he sounded excited on the phone when they told him about the murders. Lisbon wished she could share the unknown man's excitement. Why did she have to get caught up in all of this?
Anderson asked Lisbon where she was from. Lisbon told her about Sacramento and the surrounding areas. Anderson told her that she had never been outside of Colorado. Lisbon didn't think that was such a bad thing. Colorado was gorgeous, if a bit cold at times.
"Seriously, if I didn't love my job so much, I would seriously consider moving out here," said Lisbon, looking out over the reservoir.
"What do you do?"
Lisbon started to answer but was cut off by Brady's call.
"Hey, Anderson! Blondie's here! Come on!"
Anderson stood and looked at Lisbon. "You can stay here if you want, just don't run away on us, we haven't excluded you yet." With that, she turned and headed through the trees.
Lisbon sat and listened to the voices for a while before deciding to walk over there herself. She may be off duty, but the cop in her wanted to know what was going on. Besides, she wanted to see this Blondie fellow.
As she got closer to the scene, she saw him. He was squatting down next to the younger man who had been lying on his stomach. His back was to her.
The man was wearing a light gray suit. His shoes were light brown and scuffed. His hair was blonde. Curly.
It couldn't be.
Lisbon stopped and stared at the back of the man as Brady spoke to him.
"This is Michael Lawson, killed by a gunshot wound to the back. He's not a local like Mitchell is. That's what I don't understand. Why did two completely unrelated people end up dead?"
"I guess that's what we are going to find out, isn't it?" The blonde man said as he stood, his back still facing Lisbon. "Do you know what this man does for a living?"
Brady shook his head. "I assume you are going to tell me."
The blonde man smirked. "Well if you really have no idea…" he turned to face Brady and froze, mouth still open as if he was going to say something.
Lisbon froze at the exact same moment. No no no, this was is possible, she thought. How could he be here?
The man turned his head slowly towards her. Their eyes met; his eyes were bright blue. There was no mistake.
It was him.
He was here.
Was that ok? Maybe? Anyone interested?
Thank you so much for giving it a shot, you are a wonderful person.