Across town, in an office above a shoe repair shop, Joe McSavage lit another cigarette and ripped the yellowed nicotine patch off his shoulder. He sat sweating in his vest, his shirt and jacket were on the other side of the room, hanging on the same hook his hat was propped on. The walls were moulding and in the corner under the bin the floor boards were rotted away. The small army issue camp bed were he slept since the eviction last month was covered in sheets of paper and crime scene photos. He was barking up the wrong tree on that one, but the tree he’d chosen wore a short skirt and no pants. He’d bark a while longer.
He sat down and flipped up the screen on his laptop. No new messages. No nothing. Over head thunder rolled. It was a weird night, it wanted to rain but didn’t have the energy, so it barked. Lame weather. He went over the details again. Nothing seemed out of place. Maybe it was suicide. That was the official line anyway. But then, that wasn’t really an option. No one shoots themselves seven times in the back of the head with a six shooter. Lame case. No money, just a junky ex-girlfriend terrified out of her wits, when she weren’t out of her tree. Still it kept his mind fresh and working.
It finally got round to raining. It splashed in big happy fat drops onto the floor under the open window. He ran over to shut it, tripped on the bed, smacked his face onto the wall, wrecking his smoke into his nose.
The photos went everywhere. It didn’t help though. Sometimes guys did that kinda shit to give ’emselves a fresh perspective or whatever. Bring an old piece of evidence out into the sunshine of new thinking. Or whatever. But Joe just wanted to close the window and ended up with a burned nose and bruise coming up on his forehead. It was going to be a lame night.
It was closer to 12 than before when the call came through. It didn’t really say anything, more of a plea to keep on trying. It didn’t even refer to this case, just to some old piece of shit that he’d solved about a year ago for this cracked old man who still thought he was working on it. A lost watch, or son, or whatever. Joe stood up from the desk where he had been napping and popped his hat on his head. Back about a minute later with a cheese sandwich in his hand and an idea in his head, he propped the hat back on the hook and ate the sandwich slowly. To avoid indigestion. He didn’t even have a drink problem to pander to, just indigestion. Fucking lame anyway.