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Thread: Chapter 8 - Murder on the Moon

  1. #1
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    Chapter 8 - Murder on the Moon

    This is just one component of 22 components of the artificial gravity machine that give the moon colony almost the same gravity as they were used to on earth. Each of the components are kept in a separate area, with air tight security, and connect to each other in a manner that people of today can only comprehend as some sort of "wireless" network.

    Chapter 8


    The next morning, Chet had been at the office less than an hour when his communicator buzzed. The caller was Trey Beckman. "Well, do we know anymore today than we did yesterday about this nut?"
    "No," he answered. "I've been going back over everything one more time, trying to find a pattern, a motive, a profile, something. To this point, I'm coming up empty. I'm getting ready to go over and talk to the family of Officer Riley. It's probably a waste of time, but they were the closest to one of the victims when he was killed than anybody, so maybe something will come out of it."
    "You think one of them knows something they aren't telling us Chet?"
    Chet's eyes scanned a note one of the clerks had just dropped on his desk. It was a minor matter, so he turned his attention back to Beckman. "I doubt they are conscious of anything, but maybe there's something in the background that we are not considering. This 'Knight', seemed to have his act together on the other killings. If he was targeting Riley's wife or daughter, he would know that Riley was a cop. Why wouldn't he make sure Riley was not at home before making his move? Maybe this one was never about killing the women. Maybe the killer had a personal beef with officer Riley? Maybe not. Right now, it's the only thing I have, so I'm going to check it out."
    Beckman said, "Sounds reasonable. Listen, the Governor is calling for me. Call me and let me know how things went with Mrs. Riley and the daughter."
    Fifteen minutes later, Chet was headed for the door when his communicator buzzed. A quick glance showed that it was Rita Kerrigan. "Hi Rita. What's the emergency?" He could hear her breathing deep and quickly.
    "He was here Chet!"
    "Who was there," he asked.
    This time she was shouting. "Damn it, the Knight was here, in my house!"
    Racing out the door, he quickly asked, "Are you all right?"
    "Yes, yes. He didn't hurt me, this time. Just get over here and I'll tell you all about it."
    Rita was waiting by the door when he arrived. "Come on in," she said. "I just made some coffee. I need some to settle my nerves. Want some?"
    Wasting no time on words, he grabbed a cup and poured the coffee himself. After they sat down at the kitchen table, he looked closely at Rita, and it was obvious she was pretty excited. He gave her a couple of minutes, then asked, "Feel like talking now?"
    She took another sip of coffee, then said. "Yes, I think so. Oh hell, who am I kidding? If I don't tell somebody about this, I'm going to explode! I'm both excited, and terrified at the same time."
    Chet smiled. "I can imagine. Just take your time."
    Rita took a deep breath, stared at her hands, and began. " I was right here in the kitchen, getting ready to make coffee, when I looked out the window over the sink, and saw his reflection behind me. I didn't know who it was at first, but I knew a man was in my kitchen without my knowledge, and it scared the hell out of me. When I asked him what he was doing in my house, he just kept staring at me. It was then that I remembered that I only had on a short silk robe that was tied pretty loosely. I uh...I...Well, I sleep in the nude, so I guess he was getting a pretty good look. I quickly tied the robe close around me, and stared him in the eye with as much composure as I could summon."
    Chet grinned. "Well, I'll bet his composure was probably shaken a bit after taking a good look at you, dressed, or not dressed, as you were."
    She glared at him and said, "Do you want to hear this or not? If so, shut up."
    "Sure. Go ahead."
    She shook her head as if she couldn't believe what she was about to say. "He spoke in a very polite manner. He asked, 'Miss Kerrigan, why haven't you done a story on me yet?" He seemed really puzzled about that. I tried to tell him that we didn't feel we had enough information yet. That we were trying to find evidence that all the killings had been done by the same person, etc.,etc."
    After he walked over and picked up the coffee pot and refilled their cups, Chet said, "So, did he buy it?"
    "Not for a minute. Still, he didn't react in anger. Just said, 'I'm sorry Miss Kerrigan. You are lying to me. You know I killed all those people. The people need to be warned about me, and you are not doing your job.'
    Rita lowered her head a bit, then looked up at the wall. "Then he walked closer until we would have been nose to nose, if it weren't for that clown mask he was wearing. In a very soft voice he said, 'If you do not put out a story on me tomorrow morning, I will kill someone for no other reason than your refusal to tell the people about me. That person's blood will be on your hands Rita. It will be all your fault. He pulled a straight razor out of his back pocket, then sliced right thru the rope holding my robe together."
    She twice tried to speak, but no words would come out. Finally after a couple gulps of coffee, she said, "I thought he was going to kill me with that razor, so I didn't say a word while he took a very good look at my body. I'm not sure that I even breathed during that time. Then I thought I heard a quiet laugh, as he said, 'See? I could have killed you just that quickly, before you had a chance to do anything. That's how I will kill someone, if you don't do as I have asked. If I do, it's your fault.' He pulled me into the bedroom, and shoved me under the bed. Then he told me that if I tried to crawl out before I counted to three hundred, he would kill me"

    She stared Chet in the eyes. "I didn't come out until the count of four hundred. I was not about to take any chances with him. I truly believe he would have killed me just like he would take a slice off an apple, and with less thought attached to it."
    Suddenly she started trembling. Chet reached out and took her in his arms and held her for a minute until she calmed down.
    "So, what are you going to do?, he asked.
    Her eyes grew big, and her answer almost boomed out of her. "Are you nuts? I'm going to do the story. I know I promised you that I've give you some time, but if I don't do the story, somebody is going to die. I have no doubt in my mind about that. I am not going to be the cause of someone being murdered. If that makes me a bitch for breaking my promise, so be it."
    Chet shook his head to indicate that he understood. "Look I can't blame you. I don't know if he would follow through on his threat or not, but that's a tough gamble to make with someone else's life. What can you tell me about what he looked like?"
    "As I said, he was wearing a clown's mask, so I can't give you anything on facial features. He had blue eyes. I'd say he was over six feet tall by an inch or two. Probably between two hundred ten, and two hundred twenty pounds. I saw enough skin to say that he was Caucasian. Didn't notice any kind of an accent at all."
    After he finished jotting down his notes, Chet asked, "Do you have a phazer Rita?"
    "No," she answered. I have one back on earth, but didn't think I'd need it here."
    "Do you know how to use one?" he asked.
    "Yes. My father taught me when he learned I was going to be a reporter."
    He pulled his from his holster and handed it to her. "Here, take mine until you can get to a store and get one of your own. Make sure you do that today. I've got a spare that I can use until you return mine."
    Rita took the phazer from him, then gave him a hug. "You really aren't as big a jerk as people paint you out to be are you?"
    He laughed. "Yeah, I probably am, but everybody has a weak moment now and then. Listen, I know you are going to get busy on your story. Once that's done, I need you to come by the office and file a report on this." Then he turned and head for the door. Just before he pulled the door open, he turned and asked. "I don't suppose there is any chance that this guy was a copy cat?"
    She reached into her pocket and tossed something to him. After he grabbed it, he looked down. It was the same kind of Knight chess piece as had been left at all the killings.
    Chet shoved it into his pocket. "Guess not. Keep that weapon with you, and lock these doors." Then, he walked out and down the street, trying to figure out his next move.
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  2. #2
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    BB wow oh wow!!.. I am loving this story.. I was disappointed the last couple of days wondering where the next ( this ) installment was.!!... oh by the way thanks for letting us get a peek at how the accomplished the gravity ...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by gxhpainter View Post
    BB wow oh wow!!.. I am loving this story.. I was disappointed the last couple of days wondering where the next ( this ) installment was.!!... oh by the way thanks for letting us get a peek at how the accomplished the gravity ...
    Many thanks George. Been really snowed under lately. Finally dug out long enough to sit down and write this morning.
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  4. #4
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    cool graphic design. love it.

  5. #5
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    Great image dear Mike I really must find some time to catch up on your stories
    Treat Others as you wish to be treated

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  6. #6
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    Screenpainter - Thanks a lot.

    Amanda - Thank you very much.
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