The river mourns for a loss today. We drive down this dreary coast, sky grey and clouds greyer, to our destination. I’m on the way to my last stop. The wind blows us along the one-way road.
A murder out in the open, riverside like this one, is unusual. And a killer who can bring a body so far into nowhere before the victim is reported missing, is dangerous. What I’ve learnt on cases like these is that these monsters don’t change, it’s only a matter of time until you learn it; until it affects you.
We arrive. I assess the scene: the riverside, the corpse, and a painting... A painting!?
Alarmed and disconcerted, I look at what lies ahead. Others look too. What I’m looking at is a wooden art stand, stood steadfast, with a canvas on, facing up the stony beach. The river roars. In the picture is something horrible...
The face of a detective with his family and friends. A painted version of a photo which is only associated with those dear to him. My face. Who could get this kind of photo? I act professionally, though pale as the sea, and focus on the dead body.
I feel a deathly cold surge as I kneel beside her. Though blonde hair faded, she looks familiar and a chill goes down my spine. I am unexpectedly shaking as I turn her over; what I see grips the inner of my very being and squeezes my heart like torture.
I feel the churning of the sea. I am blown to my knees. A shiny blur is all I see. Sinking, collapsing in wither.
These monsters don’t change, it’s only a matter of time until you learn it; until it affects you. A certain dread rushes over me.