“Eddie dear, is that really something to be excited about?” she questioned while she grabbed her camera and notepad. He groaned at one of the various nicknames she had for him but still remained smiling. He had just informed her of a recent crime. A stabbing by one of the old abandoned mills
“But Marie here’s the thing!” he continued, “The first responding forensic team identified footprints from both the victim and the stabber. The victims were regular but the stabbers were odd.They weren’t from an everyday person’s shoe. They were from a police uniforms shoe print.” He revealed practically vibrating with anticipation.
Marie swung around in surprise, nearly knocking over her bag while her ponytail smacked her in the face, eliciting a laugh from Edward when her hair got caught on her glasses. She removed them and detangled herself slowly. Once she was freed she looked back at Edward confusion written across her face.
“Do they know who got stabbed yet? Why would a policeman stab someone? Don’t they have guns for these kinds of things? What kind of police man carries a knife anyways?” she questioned. After picking up her bag, she handed it to Edward while she slipped on her jacket.
“Well let’s go find out.” Edward declared as he lead her to the police car awaiting them.
The area was awful. There was trash and mud filling up most crevices and plants were growing up the sides of the abandoned factory. But the most gruesome part was the blood sprayed across the ground. Caught inside of her own world, Marie jumped when Edward placed a hand on her shoulder.
“Maybe you should try and do something about your jumpiness” Edward stated matter of factly.
Marie glared at him while his mouth twitched threatening to spill over into a grin.
“That’s beside the point Edward. Maybe you shouldn’t be scaring me if you don’t like my jumpiness.” she retorted.
She turned away pointedly and walked over to her next area. Kneeling down she snapped more pictures of the prints littering the area for the forensic team to analyze later. She also snapped a few pictures of the blood stains surrounding the area and frowned.
“Hey Edward!” She called. “Just how much blood did the victim lose? It looks like he lost a lot judging by the amount of blood splatter everywhere.” she muttered.
Turning over the papers in his hand Edward walked over to her and handed her the documents for her to look through.
“It says it could’ve been a pint or two. If this person’s still alive they won’t be for long unless they got medical attention. But so far there hasn’t been a report of someone being treated for a stab wound at any of the hospitals near by.” he reported.
Marie sighed. This was wonderful.Civilians had started to gather and no one wanted anything out to the press before they were ready with the real report. Everyone packed up their gear and it was back to the precinct.
For the next few hours time seemed to move agonizingly slow for Marie. She had barely begun her article and it was due by the end of the week. Suddenly there was a knock at her door. She frowned and opened the door. Edward was standing there files in hand. She motioned for him to enter and he sat down in front of her desk on one of the chairs.
“So what do you need?” she asked expectantly. He handed her a stack of files and she began to rifle through them slowly.
“This is all my forensic team has gathered from the scene. In those files you’ll find whatever you want to know. Footprints, suspects, blood patterns, you name it.” he explained.
“You guys already have suspects?” she exclaimed. Usually it took a few days for them to gather enough evidence for a suspect so this was a surprise.
“Well when a guy doesn’t cover his tracks well it doesn’t take long.” he added.
“So does your team think this is a first time crime for whoever did this?” she wondered.
“Well it’s either that or it was a spontaneous crime that didn’t have much thought behind it.” Edward speculated.
“Have you guys identified the victim yet?” she interrogated.
“No we haven’t but I doubt they’re still alive.” he sighed. Marie stood up and began to pace.
“No but that doesn’t make sense why would they leave their victim alive? That makes more problems for them wouldn’t it?” she asked.
“Well yes but if they knew their victim was going to die from blood loss if they did it right then they would’ve made sure they did it right the first time.” Edward commented. Edward stood and moved to her side of the desk and picked up her pictures. Marie stepped aside as he began to pull out more papers.
“Remember how the footprints we found were from a police officer’s uniform boots?” he asked.
“We got good reliable alibis from each officer with witnesses to make sure they were right.”Edward added.
“So that means that our criminal stole police officer boots to make a cop look dirty so they could get off home free?” Marie speculated.
“Well that or one of our boys is lying but I doubt it.” Edward retorted.
“We’ve got to check with our uniform suppliers for any recent break ins.” Marie decided.
“ I’ll write them an email later and we can go talk it over with the chief.” Edward suggested. Marie nodded in agreement and started towards the door but before she could make it she tripped over one of the various evidence boxes she had yet to put away. Before she inevitably fell Edward moved forward and caught her by the waist and slowly brought her to her feet. With his hands still on her waist to steady her they stared at each other for a moment before separating.
“You should really clean up more in here you know.” Edward teased. Marie glared at him but mumbled a thanks anyway. As Edward walked past her and opened the door she stood there a moment confused by what had just happened. Her heart was beating abnormally fast but she decided it was the adrenaline from nearly falling on her face. She was shaken from her thoughts by Edwards voice.
“Hello? Earth to Marie! Are you coming or not?” he called. She looked at him again, a sassy response forming in her head, but decided not to speak. She followed him out of the room and to the chief’s office. As she trailed behind him , flushed and heart still pounding, she had one question in her mind. “What’s wrong with me?”
After their conversation with the chief Marie’s shift was over. It had been a long odd day for her and she wanted to just go home and sleep. Edward had offered to walk her to her car after the chief had made a comment about how it was getting late so she should be careful on her way out because who knew what was lurking in the alleyways nearby. Marie had silently cursed the chief as they left. They walked in silence to her car and when they made it they stayed there for a moment.
“So I’m guessing I’ll see you here tomorrow unless you somehow get sick in the span of 12 hours or fall without me there to catch you.” Edward grinned. Marie raised an eyebrow and smiled. Edward reached out with one hand and tucked a strand of her hair behind her ear that had fallen out.
“Goodnight Marie.” he murmured. He put his hand down and began to walk back to the precinct leaving Marie standing dumbfounded and slowly turning pink with embarrassment for the second time that day. As soon as she couldn’t see Edward anymore she climbed into her car and drove quietly the whole time. She climbed the stairs up to her apartment slowly and sluggishly and fumbled with her keys once more while trying to open her door. She made herself dinner mindlessly and ate quickly. She quickly got ready for bed when she was done and climbed under her covers. The silence of her apartment gave her time to think of what had happened that day. Twice now Edward had done something odd around her. First he caught her from falling when a normal person would’ve just watched and probably made fun of her for it and then walked her to her car and tucked her hair back which by the way was oddly affectionate for someone she had only known for a year or two. She knew what his actions might mean but she didn’t want to admit to herself. Some guys were just friendly right? She sighed and rolled over onto her side. Sure they were friends and yeah maybe she’d had the tiniest crush on him since she met him but he had never acted as though he reciprocated how she felt until now. She cleared her head and let it go for now. She was too tired to think about this anymore. She shut her eyes and pulled her covers closer. And within a few moments she was asleep.
The next day when she arrived at work it was much busier than usual. The officers had their bulletproof vests on and combat gear. She pushed her way through the crowd and started to sign in. When she turned around she gasped loudly in surprise when she found Edward standing behind her carrying his own bulletproof gear.
“Jesus Edward you scared me have to death.” she wheezed.
“Sorry Marie didn’t mean to. BUt besides that did you hear the news?” he asked.
“No? Did something happen? Why is everyone acting like we’re busting some drug heist or something.” She wondered.
“Well if you must know before I left last night I got a response from our uniform providers. They checked surveillance and found three heavily armed men breaking in and stealing equipment. And since they were stupid enough to not wear masks we have identified them and we have located a warehouse under their name. Along with that we also don’t know if they have anyone else and considering they were armed we are taking all necessary precautions.” he concluded.
“Oh and lets not forget both of us are going with the strike teams for various reasons who are leaving in about 15 minutes so I suggest you go get ready.” he added. Marie gaped at him for a moment before processing the information.
“I guess I’ll go get my things then.” she mumbled. She walked to her office slowly and began to pack everything she needed. She grabbed her camera, notepad, and pencils then put them all in her backpack. She then went to the girls locker room and changed into her combat gear which consisted of a bullet proof vest, black pants, a grey police uniform shirt and sweatshirt, army boots and her handgun. When she opened the door Edward was waiting for her again. He lead her to the police van and they were off. She was incredibly nervous to say the least. This wasn’t her first time being in a situation like this but she had never been in a situation where the officers around her had automatics. The men in the video had also been heavily armed and obviously dangerous. The severity of the situation struck her and her anxiety made her hands start to shake. As she stared at the floor trying to calm herself down she felt someone grab her hand. She looked up and was met with the sympathetic face of the man she had planned to avoid that day. Edward smiled softly. Where as her hands were perpetually freezing his had always been warm. She looked away, a wave of shyness washing over her, and began counting the gridded van floor to distract herself. When they arrived they were given a quick debriefing. The plan was that the first strike team would go in and take out any armed threats then the second strike team would go in with Edward and Marie so they could do their jobs of collecting evidence. They all piled out of the vehicle silently and the first strike team went in. Within the first few minutes they heard gunshots and shouting from inside. Then a muffled voice rang out from one of the radios.
“We’ve been compromised send in the next team. Bring all you’ve got!” it shrieked. The team assembled quickly and the officer in charge ordered Marie and Edward to come in as well with loaded weapons for a last defense. As Marie loaded her .45 to its full capacity her hands began to shake so badly she could barely get the clip into her gun. Edward quickly noticed her distress and made his way over to her. He pulled the gun slowly out of her hands and loaded the clip himself then handed it back to her.
“Hey you know you can opt out of going in there if you’re scared right?” he asked.
“I’m fine Ed I swear I just haven’t had much experience with these kinds of things. I like situations where I’m under control and I don’t know what to expect in there.” she confessed.
“Just remember I’ll have your back the entire time alright?” he assured and placed a comforting hand on her arm. Before he could say anything else to calm her nerves they were called into position and they entered the now eerily quiet warehouse. The officer had said to be prepared to shoot on sight. The team slowly made their way through the large amount of boxes. Everyone was on edge and awaiting the first shot. Suddenly one of the officers pointed to a box and a shot fired out. One of the criminals grunted in surprise as the bullet pierced his shoulder knocking him backwards. Then all hell broke loose. Men jumped out from behind boxes and began firing at the police squad. Marie was pulled behind a pile of boxes for cover by Edward who nodded to her. On the count of three they both aimed out into the chaos and shot at their targets. Marie shot one of them in the leg while Edward got another in the chest. They ducked down again and then continued shooting. Another in the leg and the next in the arm. All of a sudden time seemed to move in slow motion for Marie. As they ducked down for the third time they weren’t quick enough. One stray bullet caught Edward in the shoulder and he dropped. He pushed himself up against the boxes and screwed his eyes shut in pain. Marie fired a few more good shots then turned back to Edward.
“Are you ok? Wait dumb question to ask you just got shot in the shoulder. Why are you bleeding so much? Is that normal? Oh my god ok that doesn’t look good.” Marie panicked. Ed groaned loudly and clutched his shoulder. Marie ducked as a few bullets fired into the boxes behind her.
“Uh hey Marie I need something to pressure on this or I could end up passing out if we don’t stop the bleeding.” Edward warned. Marie looked around her surroundings until she zeroed in on to some rags across the room. Edward caught sight of the rags and began to protest but before he could say anything Marie darted across the room. She weaved her way between batches of fighting men and finally was able to grab the rags. So far no one had noticed her thank god but she still had to be careful. She readied herself once again and then quickly made her way back. Before she could make it back she felt someone grab her by the collar. She swung back in fear and connected her elbow with the man’s face. He grunted and backed away
“You’re in for it now bitch.” he growled and pulled out his gun while holding his now broken and bleeding nose. Horrified, Marie froze in fear as he moved his finger to the trigger. But before he could do anything he dropped to the floor. Marie stood shocked as blood blossomed across the man’s stomach. She swung around and saw Ed drop his gun to the floor and lean back in exhaustion. The very act of aiming and shooting the gun drained him.She raced back to his side and began pressing the rags to his shoulder.
“You’ve got to be more careful Marie. You could’ve gotten killed.” he mumbled.
“Well that’s what I have you for.” she retorted. She pressed harder and he winced.
“Sorry Eddie I don’t want you dying yet.” she muttered. The area around them calmed slowly and the last gunshots were fired. The teams gathered the criminals and sent them off. The paramedics rushed into the warehouse and began caring for the injured. One of them came over and removed the rags from Ed’s arm and replaced them with gauze and an ace bandage to keep them in place. Marie leaned next to Edward against the boxes and took a minute to breathe.
“You gonna be ok Eddie?” she asked. He huffed out a laugh and then cringed at the movement.
“Well thanks to you I didn’t bleed out.” he remarked. Marie smiled and sighed.
“And thanks to you I’m alive.” Marie retorted.
“Well you probably could’ve handled it yourself.” Ed replied. He reached out with his free hand and took hold of hers.
“This is probably a bad time to ask but do you maybe want to go get a coffee sometime?” Edward murmured. Marie stared at him in surprise and then leaned back and closed her eyes.
“I would like that.”