Seaver Residence - September 19, 9:47 AM
James Young stared at the photo hanging on the wall. It was just like so many photos that he'd seen before. A man in dress blues, tin shield on the chest, whistle chain dangling from the front pocket, hat neatly placed upon the head with an American flag in the background. Detective 2nd class Charles D. Seaver, deceased. Young looked at the eyes of the man he'd seen murdered in the alley. They were full of life. That divine spark that made a man a man. Seaver was 39 years old. James shook his head in dismay at the thought of it.
He felt a hand on his shoulder, and he turned around to find Marla Seaver standing behind him holding two steaming mugs of coffee, and handing him one of them. He thanked her and took a cautious sip, not knowing how hot the mud would be. But it wasn't hot beyond drinking, and he savored the strong taste of the Maxwell House. He looked back at her, but she had her gaze fixed on the photo on the wall. Her eyes were puffed, and he could tell she hadn't slept.
"I knew when I married him that this could happen. After twelve years of him coming home safe and sound, I just kind of lost sight of that," she said sadly. She looked back at Young. "Are you married, Detective Young?"
Young couldn't help but chuckle. "No. No, I'm not. Can't say marriage has ever crossed my mind yet."
She gave him a watery smile in return. "Seems your name says it all, doesn't it? Charlie was twenty-five when he joined the force."
James nodded. "My joining was a special circumstance. I haven't quite decided if I'm going to make this into a career yet or not," he looked again at the picture. "When was the last time you saw your husband, Mrs. Seaver?"
She sighed and walked toward the living room, so Young followed her while he listened.
"I guess it was last Wednesday. He's been working a brothel racket case, so he stayed in the precinct cradle quite a bit."
"Was he getting close?" James asked.
"The morning he left, he said he had a new lead that he was going to try. He called me at work that day around noon. That was the last time I heard from him."
James nodded his head. He looked across the room at a small display table near the front window. It was adorned with a medal case and several commendations. He walked over to the table and looked at one thing that caught his eye. A silver ring with a lion atop a large black stone. It was resting in a black velvet ring box.
He looked at Marla. "Charlie was in the league?" he asked with a raised brow.
Marla nodded. "Yeah. His dad was too."
It wasn't all that often anymore that you found a cop in the league. It was a brotherhood that had started after the draft riots of 1863. The police had been so badly battered in those five bloody days that the remaining cops banded together in the hopes of restoring order to the city. They only barely succeeded with the help of federal troops. The gangs had held rule over the streets for so long, and so, the police created their own. The League of Sentinels was born. But fifty years later, the league had become little more than a band of crooked cops, feeding off of protection from the shop owners and the underworld. Present day, they were a bunch of cops and ex-cops, content to sit at a bar and say they have a fraternity to belong to.
James heard the front door open and he turned to see Serena poke her head through.
"Captain wants to see us back at the precinct."
James nodded and looked to Marla. "Thanks for your time Mrs. Seaver. If you can think of anything else that might have a bearing, give me a call."
The widow nodded. "Detective, please catch this guy. Don't let him end it this way."
Young grinned half-heartedly. "I don't intend to let him."
As James and Serena walked down the front steps, Serena threw him a glance. "Be careful of what promises you make on the job, James."
He quirked his mouth. "What? You don't think I'm doing any good?"
"I didn't say that. But you're new at this game. This isn't college. You have to be careful of what you tell people you're going to do, because they take a badge at its word. Trust me, I had to learn that one the hard way."
Young thought about that for a moment. He could definitely see her point. "Why's Jack sounding the supper horn?"
Brighton shook her head as she got in the driver's seat of the old Crown Vic they'd been assigned. "Don't know. My guess is he just wants to see how you're doing. Waste of time if you ask me. He oughta know better. Vince Young's kid on the job? This thing's gonna get solved."
She fired the engine up and they took off.
Seaver Residence - September 19, 9:47 AM
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