Declan fought the instinct to apologize for the book. He fought it because that would make him seem this side of touched in the head. ‘I am sorry for that thing happening with which I had no involvement’ was not the message he wished to convey. He couldn’t get much of a bead on this man, but he was right certain, again, that acting bonks was not the right choice in any case.
Silence filled the space, at least for Aidan it would. Derek was still muttering under his non-existent breath, but Declan could easily tune it out. He tried to imagine the struggle he considered seeing on Adian’s face. The man did know something, of that everyone seemed fairly certain, so what was keeping him from speaking of it. Fear of retaliation? Fear that he was involved? Fear that he knew the killer and didn’t wish to betray them? From what he could see, from what discernment he did have, he felt like his side, the side where Aidan told him what he knew, was winning. He wasn’t sure what sort of temper this mad had hidden between his tight buttoned shell, but he could easily imagine Aidan telling him to remove his person from this office without hesitation, and that was not happening. So, Declan would wait.
As it happened, it was worth the wait, maybe. In the Academy, they spoke of people giving too much detail, and how it was a red flag that they were lying. Your average citizen, when some dastardly event occurs, will only see one, maybe two things that matter. The color of a shirt, maybe a particular word that stood out, all else a blur. But in this case, as Aidan painted a verbal portrait good enough for any sketch artist to draw out a selfie, Declan did not doubt for a second that every bit coming forth was true, and jotted down every word as it was spoken. Captain Gittes had spoken to Declan a few times about a hand-held recorder, or even an app on his phone that could serve the purpose of gathering info better than any pad of paper, but Declan liked to keep things old-fashioned in some cases, this being one of them. He trusted his pad, just as he trusted his ability to decipher his own notes.
His brows lifted as he glanced towards Derek, who was staring intently at Aidan, fighting, Declan could tell, between the two sides of believing and not believing the words. A woman. And not what anyone would call a professional, not if this account were true, which Declan had no reason to doubt. Granted, there was the possibility of an elaborate smokescreen of misinformation, but Declan’s gut told him that weren’t the case here. He found himself wishing Thea were here, to verify this, which caused him to frown slightly. He was a little troubled when he wished for his partner’s presence, still having to make sure it was for the right reasons. He quickly shook that distraction from his mind as he looked again to Aidan, then glanced down at the nearly over-filled page of his notepad. State of dress, mannerisms, birthmark, and a scar? It was, indeed, what was referred to as an orgy of evidence. Perhaps it was a combination of Declan wanting it to be this straight forward, and his instinct to trust this man, but Declan did believe it.
“If I were able to locate this woman, and produce a photograph, you’d know her if you saw her, yeah? Or even have you come down to the station for a lineup?” He asked, keeping the pad and pen out, though lowering it to his lap.
“Come on, man. We’re going with that? Some chick in a fancy coat killed me? I’m telling you, I have enemies. Mob shit, jealous husbands, the works!” Said Derek, indignantly.
Declan reached up to pinch the bridge of his nose, his patience for Derek wearing just a bit thin. He was the victim, sure, but one out of three people saw the murderer, and Derek was not he. Or…
Declan’s gaze studied Derek a little distrustfully. Maybe Derek had seen her, and just wanted to deny it. Maybe this whole thing was a goosechase on Derek’s part, and he hadn’t counted on Aidan being so detailed on the description. Maybe the whole thing had backfired. Declan knowing what he did know, however, he had no trouble believing that this was a probably case of a woman scorned. Declan had known a few, knew what was capable of occuring in that setting. Answer: anything.
Declan finally slid his notepad and pen into his pocket as he stood from his chair.
“You have been most helpful, and I thank you for that. I’ll be in touch should I need you.” Declan offered a nod as he then showed himself out, moving back towards the visitor’s parking lot.
“I mean, maybe she was..” Kurt began after a long moment once they reached the car.
“Ara be whist, boyo. I’ll take it from here, yeah? You want it solved or not? I’m chasing this lead, and I’ll let you know what I find.” Declan replied, then said no more to the spirit.
The next couple of days were fairly run-of-the-mill. It took minimal amounts of legwork, thanks in no small part to the detailed description. Declan had gotten the sketch artist to draw up a portrait, and then canvassed the restaurants and clubs surrounding the area of the scene. Declan got a name, which got him an address, neither of which he ran by Derek to see if either meant anything to him, for Declan felt the deceased had done his part, and didn’t much feel like having him around.
The woman, one Elizabeth Ross, was brought in for questioning, though had gone silent and lawyered up pretty quickly, which did not necessarily add up to the simple woman scorned theory, though it didn’t mean she wasn’t just that, either. Declan was growing used to people not simply trusting the police these days. Not much to be done about the court of popular opinion. She did, however, agree to a lineup, which was at least something. It was a big something, in his opinion, since he was figuring that Keeper Harmon had a rather photographic memory, at least in this particular case. The lineup is all he would need for a grand jury.
Declan reached for the phone on his desk, glancing at his notes as he dialed the number he had down.
“Mr. Harmon, or is it Doctor? Would you be so kind as to come down to the main station downtown this afternoon? I have a few faces I would like for you to look at.”