Friday, July 27, 2012

Excerpt from Facets: Beneath the Surface

Greetings to all...
You know how the Police utilize psychics to help them solve particularly difficult cases? Most people dismiss them as being fakes who are wasting detectives time and money. What if one of the psychics were the real deal? What if he or she could read all of your memories by simply touching you? Or see future events through dreams?
Why, you'd get Emma Michaels, a psychic of the first order, who, with her trusty partner in crime solving, P. I. Evan McDermott, help solve cases like this where there are more questions than answers...

 Facets is available on the Kindle Market!

Lieutenant Milhone asked us to meet him at Saint Margaret’s Mercy Hospital in downtown Hammond. There’d been some remodeling done since the last time I was out here. The campus had expanded into the building across the street and added a parking garage. It used to look like a small hospital playing at being a big city hospital. Now, if you could say such a thing about a building, it had grown up.
Emma and I walked into the main entrance. A blond haired man about a match for me in height stood up to greet us. He was lean and wiry and his beige suit fit him easily. He also had cold, assessing brown eyes that had seen a lot of bad things. I knew that because I saw the same look in my eyes when I looked in the mirror.
            “Emma and Evan?” he asked.
            “Yes,” I answered. We shook hands and he kissed Emma’s hand   
“Emery’s told me a lot about the both of you.”
            “Good things, I hope,” Emma grinned.
            “If what he’s told me is true, yes.”
            “How do you know Emery?” I asked.
            “He was my partner when I was a rookie out of Area 1. I stayed in Chicago until about ten years ago when I took the job out here in Hammond. It’s slower out here, but not by much.”
            “I see,” Emma answered. “So, what happened?”
            “Walk with me and I’ll fill the both of you in.” We headed towards the elevator and went to the fourth floor. On the way, Milhone told us about Gloria Sezewski and how she and her daughter, Marie, both wound up in the ICU because her husband, George, who had a history of never even raising his voice, broke her arm and jaw and left Marie little better than a mass of broken bones.
            “How old is the daughter?” Emma asked. Her voice went flat and tension seeped onto her face.
            “About nine years old,” He responded.
            “And the wife said that Mr. Sezewski has never been abusive towards her or their daughter?”
            “That’s right.” We finally reached the Intensive Care Unit and looked in on Mrs. Sezewski. Her jaw was wired shut and her left arm was in a splint. Bruises bloomed on the same side of her face and her eyes were swollen. Emma walked out of the room and we followed her to the room next door where Marie Sezewski lay, her left leg and both arms in casts and her face puffy and broken. I put a hand on Emma’s shoulder and felt the coiled anger in her muscles. She relaxed a little, but only that.
            “Well, what happened?” I asked.
            “No one knows. What I do know, is that the marriage was on the verge of dissolution and he was in deep financial trouble.” He pulled out a notebook and flipped a few pages. “According to Mrs. Sezewski’s statement, He came home from work, complaining about being passed over for a promotion again. She then informed him of her intent to divorce him and presented papers for him to sign. She tried to explain things to him, but he just walked away and totally ignored her. She followed him into their bedroom where he sat down on their bed.
            “Now things get really weird,” Milhone continued. “Mr. Sezewski started clutching his head and rambling something incoherently to himself when she walked in. She assumed he had a headache and was deeply affected by what she’d just told him. When he looked up at her there was hate in his eyes and he started punching and kicking her. The noise was such that the daughter ran into the room and he started beating her up too. Mrs. Sezewski tried to protect her daughter, but he knocked Mrs. Sezewski out. When she came to, Mr. Sezewski was crying and cradling her in his arms.
            “I checked with the paramedics and the officers that arrived there first and her story checks out.”
            “Who called 9-1-1?” I asked.
            “Sezewski did, according to the dispatcher.”
            “That doesn’t make sense,” I stated to no one in particular. “Why would he call the police on himself?”
            “Maybe he felt guilty,” Milhone offered.
            “Now there’s a surprise,” Emma snarked.
            Back in the U.K., Emma’s best friend as well as the friends’ mother and two other siblings were periodically beaten by the father. Em got wind of it and called the police. Her friend never spoke to her again after that. Em didn’t mind. At least her friend was alive to ignore her, she had said.
             I looked at Emma and let some annoyance show.
“What?” she asked.
“I know this is a little touchy for you, but don’t make it personal.”
“Sorry. Grown men beating on helpless women and children make me a bit testy.”
“Obviously,” I deadpanned. “Where is Mr. Sezewski at now?”
“In a holding cell down the street,” Milhone said and put away the notebook.
“Sezewski maintains that he didn’t do anything to them.”
            We walked out of the I.C.U. and Milhone took out a pack of cigarettes, shook one out and lit it. There were no smoking signs all around, but he didn’t seem to care.
            “According to him, the only thing he remembers was walking into his bedroom and going to sleep. When he woke up, he found his wife and kid beat all to hell, his knuckles skinned and his face full of scratches.” Milhone took a drag off his cancer stick and blew out a stream of smoke. “I like this guy for it. Thing is, he doesn’t look or act like someone who’d do this kinda thing. Could be, he’s tryin’ to cop an insanity plea by claiming he blacked out or some shit like that, but I got no way to tell.”
            I grinned cuz’ I saw where this was going and why Emma and I were here.
            “If I may venture a guess—,“ Emma began. “—you want me to confirm if Mr. Sezewski actually hurt his family.”
            “It’d answer a lotta questions, which are legion, in this case.” He took another puff. “Unless Emery was lyin’ about what you can do, Miss Michaels, I could really use your help here.”
            “Okay,” She said.

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