A Henry Ike Pierce Novel. (unpublished)
While investigating multiple murders in 1995, a detective followed the trail of the suspected killer from Alexandria, Virginia to Prague where he too became a victim. His widow later became director of the city’s homicide division and has pursued her husband’s killer for twenty-five years. Henry Pierce is a new detective whose first case entangles him in her old quest. Is there a conspiracy only she can see?
He pointed to our left. I saw nothing but leaves and bits of paper trash smashed against a deformed wire-mesh fence near the east exit. “Here . This whole section.” He kicked at the leaves, and a flat gray headstone appeared with the name of UNKNOWN and the death date of JULY 1987. “This used to be where unidentified bodies were buried after two weeks if nobody claimed them. These days it doesn’t happen much with all the DNA crap. This way.” A few steps closer to the fence, and he cleared off another area. This time five markers appeared, all said UNKNOWN and JANUARY 1995. “These are the five homicide victims Director Marconi told you about.”
Those deaths came into focus like a cold slap. “Why couldn’t you identify them? Wasn’t anyone missing?”
“No heads or hands.”
“Whoever did this not only dismembered them but kept the skulls and hands or disposed of them somewhere. We had nothing to help us back then. No teeth and no fingerprints.”
“No guesses even? Missing person report and all?”
“Nope. No one was reported missing. But we found a connection.”
“To each other, it seemed. The victims were male, all wore brown leather jackets, and the damnedest thing, a piece of Orehnjaca stuck in the breast pocket of each victim.”
“Oren Jaka? I’ve never heard that word.”
He grinned. “I didn’t know what it was either. It’s a Serbian bread dessert. A nut roll or something.”
“Wait a minute. This sounds more like a mob hit than a serial killer.”
ON THE HORIZON – Unseen, a second Henry Ike Pierce novel.
Dawn in Hawaii. Another morning of waking too early. My hotel sat across the street from the bay, and I had hoped to leave the patio door open to let the sounds of the ocean lull me to sleep. That wasn’t to be. The streetside restaurant below me had hosted late-night partiers who lingered well past midnight.
Sleepiness was gone. I made coffee and escaped to the lanai of my third-floor suite. The hotel was old-school Maui, thirty rooms or so built around a courtyard of yellow hibiscus bushes in random patterns of sunbursts. The hotel’s gray clapboard siding with dark-green trim had seen better days, but the rooms were immaculate and much preferred to the massive resorts lining the beaches on the northwest part of the island.
Muffled thumps and bumps floated from the dock where a small navy of fishing boats, catamarans, and yachts bobbed and bumped in the dark bay lit only by the quarter moon. Deep-sea fishing was something I always wanted to try, so I had booked the Miss Mio, a well-worn, white and red fishing boat. Tomorrow morning would be a perfect opportunity after an early breakfast with my boss. She intended to shop all day, and my mother and grandmother had their own plans. A day alone in Maui. I couldn’t think of anything better.
Copyright 2017-2020 by Mark Edward Jones, Edmond, Oklahoma 73034.
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