Book Four: Part 8 - Rhyming Evil - Chapter 36
Friday - August 10th
The Squad Room – 8:33 a.m.
“We are running out of time. Anyone have any ideas as to where our killer may be? Anyone?”
She looked around the room
“There is something we’re missing to all of this. Something that may be as obvious as the noses on our faces, something that could be so ordinary and we’re just missing it. C’mon people\, think! What have you seen that isn’t the way it should be?”
There was a stillness in the air before Damien Sorrenson spoke up.
“I don’t know if this is anything or not, but my partner, Jack, stumble over a rapper from Taco’s Supreme. It was out there at Brewster’s Gun Club. When he threw it in the trash, he noticed several more wrappers. Probably just kids hanging out; what with the place closed and all.”
Wrappers. Baker remembered.
“Anyone happen to know where the closest Billy Burger’s is?”
“Sure,” Jack Mallory said. “Same place as Taco’s Supreme. Palymera.”
“I found a bunch of wrapper’s there Wednesday, and now you two find taco wrappers. I don’t think kids would be out there two days in a row from Palymera. Doesn’t make sense to drive almost fifteen miles when they have better places to have a picnic or a party.”
Baker looked around the room.
“Devon and J.W., Mallory and Sorrenson, Lowery and Banyard, Clausen and Klugston, saddle up. We’re going to Brewster’s. Wear your flak-jackets and helmets.
“It’s now 8:46. I want all units approximately one-half mile away from the property by 9:15. Clinton and Davis? I want you at the entrance off Highway 60 to make sure no one other than us and emergency services go up that road.
“The rest of you run your routes. Be safe out there and keep our streets safe.”
She looked at Dianne.
“Come with me.”
She walked into Satchell’s office.
“Captain, you might want to get in your car and follow us to Brewster’s. I think we’ve found our potential killer.”
Satchell stood up, saying, “I’m right behind you.”
The wrapped package held in his hand, he put in his desk drawer.
Brewster’s Gun Club – 9:25 a.m.
“Mallory and Sorrenson, go around to the back side of the building, maintain your position there. Keep your radio, and this goes for all of you, to open channel 05, but keep it set on low.
“Devon and J.W., front side. Lowery and Banyard, left side, and Clausen and Klugston, right side.
“I’m going to try and talk whoever is in there into coming out without any possibility of someone getting injured or killed.
“Dianne, hand me the bull horn.”
“If nothing else,” said Satchell, “the bull horn will get their attention. Then we could call them on the phone.”
Baker nodded and brought the bull horn to her lips and flipped the on switch.
“This is to whoever is inside the building. This is the police. We have the building surrounded. There is no chance for escape. Step out of the building with your hands locked behind your head.”
Every officer in position were at the ready. Each man held a riot gun at port arms, ready to be used. Like them, Baker, Satchell, and Dianne had the safeties off on their own weapons and like everyone else; they were counting the passing seconds.
No one came out.
Baker wondered if anyone was really inside, but she kept at it.
“I repeat. Step out of the building. Place your hands behind your head. There is no chance for escape. Do not take lives of those you love. I promise you, come out, and there will be no violent repercussions.”
They heard a scream, then a shot was fired. Every weapon was now trained on the building entrance to the range rooms.
In the back of the building, Mallory radioed Baker.
“I found an opening back here. It’s a small crawlspace, but I’m sure I can fit through it.”
“Take it, but listen, Mallory. Before you take out the primary, check the situation first. A shot has been fired but that doesn’t mean anyone’s been hurt. Relay back to me what you can see.”
“Roger that, Baker.”
Satchell handed Baker his cell.
“Phone’s ringing. Take it.”
Baker grabbed and listened to it ring eight more times before someone picked up the landline.
“Help us! Please!”
It was a young voice, probably a child. A boy.
“There—there is a gun against my head, and—and I, I, I’m supposed to say I de-deserve to die! But I don’t want to die! Help me!”
Baker shouted loudly as she could into the phone.
“Whoever you are, answer me! If you kill those people with you, you will never see the light of day again. You will spend the rest of your life in prison! Is that what you want? In prison, reliving this moment the rest of your life? Is it?”
Baker heard cackling laughter.
“This is funny, honey!” The phone disconnected.
Baker heard a female voice. On her radio, she heard Mallory.
“Baker, my view is so-so, but what I see is Jimmy Brewster, and he’s down. He’s either been shot or suffered a brutal blow to his head. I can see blood.
“I can see a woman holding two hand guns. One looks to be a .45 semi-auto mag, and the other; not sure, but it might be a Lugar, vintage German style.”
“Okay, Mallory. Do you know if the woman is Jimmy’s wife, and can you see his son?”
“Never saw his wife before, and I can’t see the boy, but I can get a clean head or heart shot. Just say the word.”
“Hold, Mallory. Wait for my signal.”
She looked to Satchell and Dianne.
“It’s the Brewster’s. All three of them, I’m sure of it. Mallory did see Jimmy. Lydia is holding them hostage.”
“She’s been drinking for years, ever since Blake was born without legs. Now, she’s unstable. We have to stop her, Baker,” said Satchell.
“I know. Mallory says he has a clear shot, but I have to try once more to talk her down.”
She hit speed dial on Satchell’s cell. This time she got a response after the first ring.
“We all have to die. It’s the only way. I’m a terrible mother. Jimmy’s not a father, and Blake has been tortured by all of this. Don’t you see? It’s the only logical choice left. First is the man who helped me spawn my poor child. Then Blake, to end all his pain, suffering, and ridicule. Then me.
“Can’t you see? After that, we’ll be a real family, in heaven. It’s the only way!”
Baker could feel her anguish and listened to her voice as it was choked with a flood of tears.
“Lydia! Listen to me. If you kill Jimmy, you also kill a man who has been a friend to many people. You kill him, you kill a good and kind memory to many of us.
“And Blake. What about Blake? He’s made friends in school. He gets along in school with my son and his friends. My son, Stevie, has told me how funny and how much fun it is to be around Blake at school. A lot of kids like him. You would be killing—no, forget that; you would be robbing him of his chance to choose and make a difference with his own life. It’s what every mother wants for their child. To see them grow and make their generation a little bit better than the one before.
“Don’t take that away from him, Lydia. As a mother, you gave him life. Only God has the right to take Blake from you and Jimmy. Just come outside and let’s talk. Let’s end all this.”
“Jimmy’s already dead.”
Baker jumped, a startled look on her face as she stared at the cell.
She hit the talk button on her radio.
“Mallory! Tell me you did not just fire! What happened?”
“Never saw this happen before, Baker. I swear!”
“Dammit! What? Talk to me!”
“She just put the .45 in her mouth and pulled the trigger.”
Brewster’s Gun Club – Two Hours Later
Carl and his F-team were all over the place . The County morgue wagon arrived, and after Carl checked over Lydia Brewster’s body, he signed a release form where the ME would cite the obvious cause of death.
Two ambulances pulled in. One for Jimmy, the other, Blake.
“I loaded the van to spend a week at the Pocono’s. The van’s in the barn. Things were all
right until after we got on 60. Lydia pulled a gun out of nowhere and started shouting orders at us.
“We came here. She had me carry Blake from the van to the range room. Then she threw handcuffs at me and had me handcuff Blake to one of metal legs. Then she smacked me in the head. When I came back around, I was cuffed to Blake’s left hand with my right, and my left hand was cuffed to another metal leg.”
“Was, or did she give you any indication as to the what and why with all of this?” asked Baker.
“Prior to keeping us locked down, nothing I can think of. I’d leave the house every day like clockwork, and she’d either be dead drunk or almost there. Blake would comment sometimes she was passed out before he left for work.
“I know our marriage went to hell shortly after Blake was born, but I tried to keep us together. I guess I didn’t try hard enough.” As a passing thought, he added, “The keys to the barn are in Lydia’s pocket.”
One of the paramedics step forward saying they had to get Jimmy and Blake to the hospital.
Jimmy’s head injury from the bullet, wasn’t as bad as it first looked to Mallory. The bullet creased his scalp, but he would still have to have x-rays to make certain there wasn’t any other damage.
As to Blake, the boy was traumatized by the events and would require several days in the hospital as well as professional counseling.
Driving back to the Twenty-Second, Dianne said, “Kind of amazing in a way, that Lydia could be so drunk and yet follow up on every riddle she ever wrote.”
“Dianne, it’s hard to tell which Lydia was doing that; the sober or the drunk one, but either way, she almost managed to do what she had planned. And now, it’s over.”
Lydia Brewster wouldn’t be tormented any longer.