The blood spread outwards from the prone figure, crimson seeping between the floorboards and starting to harden. The only sound was the whisper of pen across the paper.
“What’s it look like to you?” Frost asked. Korsak grunted. The small living room buzzed with activity as CSI personnel dusted the entire area.
“It’s him again.” Korsak finally begrudgingly admitted. Frost nodded.
“Same MO as the last few. Young female, 20s, killed at close range with a serrated knife to the throat.” Both of the detectives eyeballed the red rose lying on the girl’s chest, both hands of the victim manipulated to be grasping the stem gently. “And the rose.” Frost finished.
“It’s our third in the last month alone.” Korsak sighed and ran a hand through his grey hair. “No clues, no anything. The crime scene is pristine. Whoever it is, they aren’t any normal serial killer.”
“Korsak! Frost!” A CSI operative called urgently. The two homicide detectives glanced at each other. The CSI personnel rarely talked to them.
They stepped over the body and joined the CSI operative by the window.
“What is it?” Korsak asked, his gravelly voice curious.
“We seem to have a note here.” The quiet man handed over a piece of paper. Korsak eagerly took it and Frost peered over his shoulder. Messy handwriting scrawled across a plain white page.
Korsak, Frost. Are you surprised that I know your names? This game has been boring lately. Can two homicide detectives match an artist like me? 287 Maple Rd. Room 433.
Your friend, J
Frost finished reading first, and urgently unclipped his radio from his belt. “This is Frost, calling in a tip. We need a unit to meet us at 287 Maple Rd., Room 433. 10 minutes.” He reattached his radio and patted Korsak on the shoulder.
Korsak looked over at the CSI operative.
“Good eye. Dust the page for fingerprints and get the results to my desk.” With that, the two homicide detectives of the Boston PD exited the building.
“Boston PD!” Frost called through the door. With no reply, he raised his leg and smashed the lock and door in. Both detectives raised their handguns, and a police detail followed them in.
Frost turned the first corner, glancing in a combined open kitchen and dining room with large bay windows.
“Clear!” He shouted. The uniforms moved deeper in the house. Korsak, being not as spry as the younger men, simply followed Frost as he remained on high alert.
“Dammit!” Korsak cursed as the pair turned another corner. A blonde, young female lay on the carpeted ground of the living room. Her eyes stared unseeingly at the ceiling. The neck wound was easily visible, along with a single, precious red rose clutched in the hands of the victim. A single note lay below the note, and Frost snatched it up.
Frost almost threw down his gun in anger, but he knew it wasn’t wise while the house was still unexplored. He tapped Korsak’s arm, the warning clear in his eyes. Korsak nodded tightly.
“Clear!” Frost’s voice was hoarse, and the sound startled even himself. Noises of confirmation from the other units resounded through the house. Frost and Korsak started up the stairs on the other side of the room.
The pair managed to go through what seemed to be a guest bedroom and a bathroom, when they heard the sound of a window opening. They glanced at each other, alarmed, before sprinting down the hallway to reach the last room; the master bedroom.
Frost kicked the door in with no hesitation and raised his gun in preparation.
“Freeze!” He shouted. The flutter of the curtains drew the attention of the two men. They cautiously made their way to it to see a fire escape right outside the window. An alley lay below, and a lone figure was strolling, not running away. The figure was dressed all in black, long slacks with a long coat that draped to the knees. The detectives could barely make out that the figure raised a hand and slowly waved goodbye.
Frost snapped out of his stupor. He grabbed his radio.
“All personnel within house! Perp is making their way away outside! I repeat, all personnel, converge on perp outside the locale!” He all but screamed into the radio. Affirmatives were quick and the detail poured out onto the street. Frost and Korsak joined them, nearly breathless from their rush through the house. The head of the detail shook his head curtly.
“No sign of perp, sir.” He apologetically revealed.
“Fuck!” Frost cursed. He rarely did, but it was a sign that he was really, truly pissed off. Korsak grit his teeth. The killer had killed 21 up to date, and this was the first time they had ever seen him, and they had let him get away. Cavanaugh was going to murder them.