I was at that point now. The point where you weren't sure if your phone was ACTUALLY ringing because you were so on the verge of a decent nights sleep. I was a night owl by trade, and unfortunate genetics. So sleeping at an ungodly time wasn't new for me. But days off were. This happened to be one of those scenarios where you wanted to jump through your phone and strangle the person on the other line. Reluctantly, I opened my eyes slightly. It was dark in my room, which was nice and cool from the air conditioner I had just put in earlier in the week.
I rolled over to the direction of my nightstand, flicked on the lamp. Much to my annoyance, my eyes burned in the intense light. I groaned and wiped the very little sleep I had in the corner of my eye. My phone kept ringing. I finally picked it up.
"Blair speaking." I said tiredly, but tried to keep my voice level.
"You better come down here." A man's voice said urgently over the phone.
"Evans, it's my day off." I said.
"You're the only person I knew to trust with this one." He said.
"This better be good. You owe me a cup when I get there." I said, swinging my legs over the bed.
My bones creaked slightly.
"Good, the guys and I are down at the river mouth. We already called a bus for this one." Evans said.
"I'll be there in ten." I said, shutting my phone before Evans could reply.
I stood up, my head ached slightly from the rush of it all. I quickly went to my bathroom, brushing my teeth. The mint of the toothpaste woke me up enough. I noticed the slight redness in my green eyes. So I slapped a cold wash cloth to my face.
"Christ." I groaned into the wet fabric.
I tore off my night shirt and threw on a plain black shirt, my blue jeans, and my bulky black combat boots. It was always extremely muddy but the river mouth. Harsh and sticky bog lands surrounded the wood areas around it. Better be safe then sorry. I walked briskly outside, slipping my dark blue IPD wind breaker on.
It was sort of a cool night, windy at the most. Small sprinkles of rain fell on top of my IPD vehicle as I rushed into the drivers seat. The vehicle was the least the Ithaca Police Department could give me for all of the shit I did for them. I checked my watch. 3:06 am. I sighed sharply and started up my vehicle.
As I drove down the long dark road, I slightly thanked Evans in my head for calling me. My days off were always unproductive. Sure, I kept the house clean. But my love life was a pile of shit at this point. My fiancée of two years had walked out on me a month ago. I drowned myself with piles of work after that. Not that there was much to do up here in Ithaca Vermont. A quiet little town who happened to need a forensics nerd for the ever prominent crime that we always seemed to get from the big cities around us.
I sighed, you know. Not every criminal should assume that small towns like Ithaca would be ideal places for dumping bodies and keeping little shacks in the woods. I turned off of the main road and parked my vehicle by an IPD bus and cop car. I saw Evans running towards me. Charlie Evans had dark brown eyes, and blonde hair that was covered by his police hat. An all around good-looking nice guy who liked to tease me because I liked to work with dead people rather than them.
"Ten minutes and five seconds. You're slacking." He said, opening my vehicle door.
I slammed my door shut behind me and went to the trunk to get my supplies.
"Just shut up and get me my coffee Evans." I snapped.
"Touchy touchy Blair." He said, following me to the river-side.
"It's..." I checked my watch, "3:17 in the morning now." I said, "Of course I'm a bit pissy."
"Blair!" Evans partner Ian called me over. A black haired blue eyed cop with a rookie air about him.
I went over and set my case down, "Jesus." I said.
A strange looking boat sat before me on the bank. If the boat wasn't enough to stump you, then the man inside would. It was clear to me he was dead, but I strapped my gloves on and checked his pulse anyway. His skin was cold to the touch, and he clutched a sword with both hands.
"Got an I.D?" I asked.
"No, nothing on him." Ian said, "Just a crazy costume and a broadsword by the looks of it."
I looked back at the body, who was now being lifted and about to be taken to the bus. He wasn't terrible to look at, despite the blue to his lips. What Ian said wasn't a lie. The guy looked like he stepped out of King Richard's Fair or something by the look of his tunic and trousers.
"Evans, I'd say this one outranks the Donnelley case, ten-fold." I said huffing, checking the boat.
"The one with the..." Ian pointed at his face, making circular motions.
"Yup." I said, trying to dust prints quickly before the sky opened up.
The three of us shuddered. The Donnelley case involved a serial killer from New York who had a cabin out here by the river. The guy crossed over the border before NYPD and IPD could get him. The perp had a fondness for skinning women's faces after he kept them for a course of five days. Raping them on and off, storing them in a cellar of salt after he had cut them up badly. After he killed them, he liked to go out onto his property and bury them. He sent their skinned faces down the river. A lovely sight to behold indeed.
"I don't know Cory. This is a whole new kind of crazy." Evans said, he and Ian walking me back to my vehicle.
I set my stuff in the trunk, getting ready to head back to the precinct and run some tests and examine the body.
"Regardless. I'm the one who has to go back and look at a corpse for the rest of my day off. You two get to go home." I said, "At least until I find something."
"Don't be so sore Cory. We'd rather it be you than Harker." Evans said.
"The chief just needs to fire him already." I said, jumping in my car, "Fucking idiot couldn't even hold a scalpel right."
I slammed my door shut and started the ignition. I backed out quickly, then followed the bus to town. While driving, I decided to play some tunes. I hummed along to some Def Leppard to keep my mind busy. I sighed loudly and then pursed my lips in frustration. What I'd said earlier was true. Having to keep up all night to run DNA, prints and try to figure out who this guy was. I wondered what I always wondered before I examined the body.
Did he have a family?
Was he in love?
What was the last thing they said before they died?
These were all questions that I knew could never have been answered. At least until I find out what his name was. I slowly pulled into the lot of the precinct and took my stuff out of the trunk. I followed Ian and Evans as they carried the body, sword and all, to the downstairs room where I worked primarily. It was going to be another long and sleepless night.