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Wednesday, 20 August 2008

The Rising - Chapter 22: Chaos At The Police Station

Dave stepped out of the car and looked across the street at the police station. The building was bathed in blue and red flashing lights but the vehicles from news networks surrounding the compound seemed to outnumber the police cars two to one.

Reporters were buzzing around, trying to talk to anyone and everyone they saw. Dave knew he’d have to run the gauntlet to get through the rabble ahead of him but unlike most of these situations, he wouldn’t have to lie.

I really don’t know anything this time, he thought.

Jane got out of the passenger side and walked round the car to take the driver’s seat.

I’ll try and take care of the car,’ she said.

Dave smiled. ‘Well, if it’s life or death situation, I’ll understand if you save yourself first.’

You’ve got our number, haven’t you?’ she asked.

Yeah, I’ve got it. I’ll give you a call if I find anything out. If you call me, don’t take offence if I don’t answer it. I might not be in a position to talk to you if I’m with other cops.’

We just need any relevant information, no matter how small,’ Doctor Owen said as he leaned over from the passenger seat, ‘Please find my wife.’

The doctor’s face painted the picture of someone who was concerned, even scared for his wife’s well-being but also one hundred percent aware of his responsibilities. He knew the job he and Jane had to do in the same way Dave knew what he had to do.

I’ll do whatever I can,’ said Dave, ‘If it was a smash-and-grab then whoever has your wife couldn’t have covered their tracks completely. If they’ve left a clue behind, I’ll find it.’

Doctor Owen nodded in appreciation and Jane wished Dave good luck as she closed the door. The car headed down the street and disappeared round the corner, leaving the detective to contemplate the chaos he was faced with.

Taking a deep breath, he crossed the street. As soon as one reporter saw him walking towards them, they all turned round and ran into the road, oblivious to the approaching drivers who screeched to a halt and honked their horns in disapproval.

As he expected, they talked with machine-gun speed, loaded with the usual questions asking him what happened, who it happened to and who the police were looking for. His only response was ‘No comment’. Dave battled his way through the crowd and under the crime scene tape that surrounded the station. He cast his eyes around the scene and saw the familiar face of Sergeant Crawford, who was doing a bad job of looking like he was in charge.

Ambulances were trying to get out of the car park but Crawford was being sidetracked by talking to the press who were standing on the exit ramp. Dave ran over to Sergeant Crawford.

I need to talk to you,’ he said in a forceful tone.

Detective Thomas…’

Dave didn’t let him finish and marched him out of the way, waving the ambulances past. The driver in front gave him a thumbs up.

I think you’re done talking to the press, sergeant,’ Dave said, ‘Where’s the relief captain? Where’s the chief?’

The chief’s on his way down here. We were on a skeleton staff this week so there’s no one to stand in.’

Right, I’m taking charge until the chief gets down here. All I know is what I saw on the news but I don’t want to talk with all these reporters out here. Take me inside.’

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