A woman falls to the hard concrete streets of downtown Manhattan. Blood seeps out from a small hole in her abdomen. She cries out in pain desperate for somebody, anybody who could save her from an inescapable death. Nobody. A man walks towards her. She has seconds to live. He closes in and stabs with a sharp butterfly knife. She is dead. The man lifts his hood up revealing a young face. His name is Simon Glass, age 19, curly, wild, untamed hair. More like a boy really now that I think about it. People believe their were no witnesses, but they were wrong. I was the only witness to that horrible, disgusting crime. I can’t tell anyone what I saw. He’s killed before, in fact I’ve witnessed all his murders. He’s a part of something bigger, much bigger. I can’t tell anyone what he’s done because I can’t lose him. I love him. My name is Nathan Glass and Simon Glass is my son.
I’m Jane Rose, I’m a detective for the Manhattan Police Department, or was, I guess. Today is supposed to be my last day on the job. I’m moving to London to be closer to my boyfriend Harry’s family. He has a kid, I hate him. His name is Ash and he’s a smug little prick. Harry’s too easy on him. Caught him smoking weed two months ago and Harry let him off with a goddamn warning. Sometimes I close my eyes and I ask myself if I really want to move. Life isn’t perfect down here but it’s home. I take a cigarette out of my mouth and blow a puff of smoke into the cold air. “Jane, you know smoking ain’t good for ya right?” My partner Joel Bateman. I fake a smile and drop my cigarette into the ashtray.
“That’s better now ain’t it.” Joel says as he begins to light up his own cigar. What a joker. I roll my eyes and start walking back to the front of the station. “You really gonna leave me here all alone Rose?”
“Now that isn’t very nice.” I flip him off. I hear a loud snort as I walk away.
I walk around the station and into the front doors and I’m greeted by the secretary Amanda Byrne. I nod politely. A few people stop to say bye but I try to go quickly. I’m not very good with people. I’m almost to the safety and comfort of my office before someone stops me. Police Chief Roger Baldwin. Kind of a chubby guy and an older guy as well. He has a worried expression in his face. I look at him concerned. “You’re never gonna believe who we caught.” The Chief said.
“Who?” I ask tentatively. I’ve never seen the Chief looked this worried in his entire life.
“Just...just come with me alright?” He says. So I follow him through the hallways of the office. He stops at one of the windows. It’s a interrogation. I look to the interrogator. It’s Charlie Galapagos. I looked to the right and I see him. I cover my mouth with my hand, and I nearly faint. It was Nathan Glass.
I glance at the Chief searching for answers. He looks on. I stare at Glass. He looks old, tired, beaten down, but still handsome. Chief taps the glass. Galapagos stands up and says something to Nathan Glass. He walks out of the interrogation room and looks at me.
“Long time no see Rose.” Galapagos says. I always liked Galapagos. He was one of the few people who didn’t annoy me on a daily basis. I nod.
“What’s the deal with Glass?” Chief said to Galapagos as he pulled out keys to the case file room.
“He’s going on about how there’s something bigger, but it sounds like crap to me.”
It was silent as we made our way to the case file room. I walked in and looked around the dusty old room. It looked like it hadn’t been cleaned in years. I watched Galapagos pull a case file out of the G folder. He dropped the file onto the table and opened it up. Years of investigation. This case had been primarily worked on by Matthew Smith and Gina Rodriguez. The two were long retired as was the case. The verdict was that Nathan Glass had murdered over sixty women in the New York area. They never found him or caught him.
“How did they get him after all this time?” I asked.
Galapagos sighed and wiped his tired eyes. “We didn’t catch him Jane, he turned himself in.” My eyes widened in shock. Why after all these years of evading the department, why would he just himself in?
“Look Rose, I’m just gonna cut to the chase here, we need to someone to reopen this case.” Chief said. I looked at him angrily. How could he expect me to just drop all my plans to reopen this case. He looked at me and put his face in his hands.
“Jane, we need you here,” Galapagos said or more like pleaded to me.
I took one look at the two men. The two practically were on there hands and knees pleaded with me. I sighed. “Fine.”
Galapagos walked over and shook my hand.
“You're doing this department a great service Jane.”
I scoffed and walked out of the case file room. I had to clear my head. I walked through the longs hallways of the Manhattan Police Department. I noticed glances from people passing by. I suspected Galapagos had discussed this with the entire department. I had to leave. Clear my head.
I was home. I checked the time again. 8:30 PM. I sighed. I was late for dinner. I walked up to the porch and fumbled around for the keys in my pocket. Fortunately for me the door creaked open slowly. Deep piercing blue eyes peered back at me. It was Ash. He opened the door wider. I stared him down. He look tired and stoned. He looked at me in annoyance. “I had to walk home in pouring rain you know?” I forgot to pick him up from school.
He stomped off angrily.
I took off my coat and hung it up on the coat rack. It was cold in the house. I walked over to the thermometer. I was about to dial the temperature up but a strong hand stopped me. “You know I like it cold in the house.” I turned to the left. A pair of rough lips met mine. I stared deep into Harry’s hazel eyes. He was beautiful.
“You’re beautiful you know that?” I said to him. He laughed.
“Thanks for that.” He said. I smiled at him. He smiled back. Harry was about the only thing in this that could make me happy right now. All of the sudden I felt dizzy. I nearly fell onto the hard tile floor but Harry helps keep me balanced.
“I need to sleep.” I mumbled to him. He picked me up and began carrying me to the bedroom. He laid me down and I fell asleep in his arms.
I woke to the sound of my phone buzzing. I sleepily pick it up. I checked my notifications. Sixteen texts from Galapagos. They all read the same thing. Get to the Department now and all had a link that lead to the same news articles. I gasped as I read the news headline. “Manhattan Murderer Nathan Glass mysteriously beaten within an inch of his life.” I start to get ready. I take a shower, brush my hair and apply my makeup. I stub my toe on the stupid box that Harry leaves under the bed. I tell him to get rid of it but he says he wants to keep it until he finds the lost key. I check my watch. Better skip breakfast for now. I grab everything I need. My coat, my phone, my wallet, and my police identification card. I’m about to take off but a strong hand pulls me back. It’s Harry.
“Where are you going so early?”
I sighed. I was hoping he wasn’t going to wake up. He doesn’t know I’m working the Nathan Glass case. It’s a touchy subject for him. He told me his Aunt Sarah was murdered in London and that’s why he’s always on edge when I tell him about murder cases. “The guys at the station needed some early assistance, it’s just some paperwork.”
He looked at me suspiciously for a moment and then asked “You sure you're not cheating on me with some american phony?”
I punched him lightly on the shoulder and gave a small laugh. It wasn’t really funny but maybe it would make him feel better.
“I’ll only be gone for a little while ok?” He nodded, I kissed his cheek goodbye and I left.
As I drive I think about how desperately I could use a coffee. I pull into the back parking lot and sure enough Joel Bateman stands, smoking a cigarette, laughing as I pull in. I roll my eyes, turn the car off, and step outside.
“What happened to Glass?” I ask.
“That dumb rookie Martin Sanchez who was assigned to take him to the jailhouse? Yeah he and his partner took him into an alleyway and beating the everliving hell out of him. Broke his ribs, broke both arms, smashed his ankles with a crowbar, all sorts of messed up crap. His pretty boy face somehow went untouched and how in the hell is that fair? Maybe if he wasn’t so good-looking other girls would swoon over me instead of his face on those tabloids at the grocery.” He chuckles at his own joke. “Well anyways they took him to the hospital down the road.”
“You know why Sanchez attacked Glass?”
“Nah, well, there’s a rumor going around the station that maybe a relative of Sanchez was killed by glass but I dunno.”
“Alright, thanks for the update, I think I’m gonna head in now, you coming?”
He shook his head and said “Nah you go ahead, I don’t want to waste any of my smoke break.”
I nodded and I walk around the station and into the front doors. Amanda isn’t there. Instead there’s a curly haired guy wearing a suit that might be two sizes too big for him. I tap on his desk and he looks up alarmed. I glance at his identification badge. It reads Jesse Thompson, Temporary Secretary.
“Where’s the old secretary?” I ask.
“Oh, I’m just a temporary replacement, Amanda Byrne has quit her job.” Not surprising.
As I passed by I heard gasps of surprise, some people got up to say hello, some asked me why I was back so soon, but I just ignored them. I had more important things to attend to. I walked my way over to the Chief’s office. I knocked on the door and let myself in. Galapagos and the Chief, turned their heads towards me.
“Fancy seeing you here Detective,” said Chief. “You’ve missed a fair amount.”
“I was made aware of this by Detective Bateman.” I retorted.
“Well, Mister Glass as you might know is severely injured, possibly to the point of death.” said Galapagos as he let out a long puff of smoke.
I raise my eyebrows. The Chief glancing at me before sighing. “He said he would be willing to speak to you and you only.”
“So we’d like to send you and Bateman over to the hospital and get whatever information you can.” Galapagos says. I look at him and nod. Whatever would get this over with. “We have a car out back that’s ready to go, just go and wait while I retrieve Bateman.” I nod and head to the back. I open up the back door and walk over to the car. I open it up and slide into the driver’s seat. I close the door and bury my head into my hands. I’m a wreck. I stare out the window. I see the world. It’s grey, devoid of any light or color. I rub my eyes. I hear Bateman slide into the passenger’s seat. I start the car in silence and I start driving the road to the hospital.
About five minutes into the ride Bateman tells me to slow down and pull over. I look at him quizzically. He pulls a cigarette out of his mouth and smiles. He turns to me and points to a blue house on the corner. “You know that’s where I grew up.” He says to me. “Just me and my mom.” His expression changes and he points to a tall beautiful tree next to the tree. “Thats where I met Miranda.” He says as he turns to look out the window.
“Hey, it’s alright to cry Joel.” I say as I put my hand on his shoulder. He turns towards me and I see a small amount of tears roll down his cheeks. He wipes his tears and nods. I start back on the route.
We arrive at the hospital and Joel decides to take a walk to get some air. I flash my police badge and I ask one of the nurses to take me to Glass. He takes me to room 217. He opens the door and lets me in. I walk in slowly. Glass lays on a hospital bed moaning in pain. He notices me and coughs. Blood spills from his mouth and onto his patient gown. He was taking his last breaths. I walk closer to him.
“Nathan.” He looks up at me. “Use these last moments, help me.” I plead with him. He turns back and looks up to the ceiling and he begins to cry. It’s a weird feeling, sympathizing with a killer. He mumbles something and beckons me over with his weak fingers. I lean over to listen in closer.
“My jacket...the...box...Harry Norton’s box...my son.” he says before coughing up more blood. I’m struck with fear. Harry? My Harry? He begins to cough up more blood and he points to his jacket. I walk over to it and dig into his pockets. I pull out a small box. I look back at him. He’s dying. I call the nurse and a mob of them run into the room and they start to usher me out. I stare at Glass one more time, he stares back. I’m pushed out of the room and the door closes. I close my eyes. Glass is dead. I shake my head and get back onto task. I open the small box. A golden key. The same color as Harry’s box. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t scared. I start to dash out of the hospital. I run over to the police car and I start the car. I think about Joel for a moment. No, this was too important. I start the car and begin driving as fast as I can.
I’m at the house. Harry should be at his poker game. I run up to the bedroom and I pick up the large golden box from under the bed. My heart’s beating fast. I’m sweating. I pull the key out of the box and I take a long breath. I stick it in and I open the box. I look in and I’m sick. Pictures of dead people, women, men, kids. I feel myself start to hyperventilate. No, it can’t be. I see a folder of papers on top of the photos. I pick it up. A list of names, addresses, pseudonyms. They all have the same thing in common. All killers. Serial killers. One of the papers reads Simon Glass. It’s a picture of Harry. I start to cry. How could this happen? I dig around more. More pictures, knives, small guns. I pick up a photo. It’s Harry with a dead woman lying on a hard concrete street. This can’t be happening. I take my phone out of my pocket and start to dial the Chief. It rings once, twice, then… a sharp pain. I gasp. I fall forward onto my stomach. I scream out in pain. I look up. It’s Harry. Holding a sharp butterfly knife and a glass of red wine.
“I wish you hadn’t said yes to the case. This would’ve never had to happen.” said Harry. I stare at him coldly. I had loved him. I thought he loved me. He looks back at me and sets the glass down on the dresser. “You’re going to sleep soon, it won’t be painful anymore.” He says. He holds the knife close to my neck. “I’m sorry.” His voice is shaky. He lifts the knife up once more. “You’re more beautiful now you know that? All covered in blood.” He is sickening. He puts his head over my mouth and I suddenly feel the cold sharp knife on my neck. I prepare for death.
Then I hear Harry scream. He falls down next to me. A knife is lodged in his neck. I feel someone pick me up. I look up. Ash. He holds me. He feels warmer and safer than he ever has before.
“I’m going to lean on you ok?” I say slowly to Ash. He nods. I see tears in his eyes. I close my eyes. I can’t go to sleep. There’s still so much work to be done. I need to get these killers to pay for what they’ve done. I start to cry. I blink through tears as I watch Ash take his phone out. He starts to dial a number. I could’ve been happy, I could’ve been so happy. Here I am. Taking my last breaths. Then I feel it. A twinge of happiness. A feeling of light. No worries. I’m free now.
I’m finally free.