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3: To Defeat A Seal

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"It is strange how loud little sounds become when you are in the dark and doing something wrong."

~ Richard Llewellyn

~**~~**~

Jack concentrated on the road ahead as the rain pelted down against the windshield. It was a dark night and the rain made it even more soul consuming. The prospect of a murder and the chance for action had gotten his hopes up, but the arrival to the town had mercilessly crushed them.

The officer in the seat next to him shook with anticipation. The boy stared out into the black with a look of glee written across his baby face. However, since the moment he had plopped his scrawny frame into the passenger's seat, he hadn't stopped talking.

Not even to take a breath.

With that type of dedication, Jack reckoned the young man would make a fine SEAL if only he could shut up for a minute or two.

The ten-minute drive to the crime scene yielded more information pertaining to the officer than Jack ever wanted to know. By the time he pulled up to the curb, he had learned every aspect of Officer Pierson's life.

Thomas, Jack amended.

The officer vehemently insisted Jack call him Thomas.

Not Tommy like the Sheriff had stated.

Just plain Thomas.

In order to stop the verbal waterfall tumbling out of Thomas' mouth, Jack quickly agreed.

Rhodes had barely shifted the car into park before his passenger was out of the car and scurrying up the walkway towards the house. With a shake of his head, Jack pulled the keys out of the ignition.

Outside the cruiser, the first thing he noticed was the noise.

Or rather, the lack of noise.

The house was dark and lifeless.

In fact, the whole street seemed to have escaped from a scene of a ghost town.

Jack always was wary of situations like this. If his time conducting covert operations had taught him anything, there was such a thing as 'too quiet'.

Further up the lawn, the only evidence that a crime took place was the yellow police tape splayed across the door in a haphazard fashion. The slapdash approach to the crime scene appalled him. He physically restrained himself from writing a citation for the local police department. He knew they probably never had to deal with crimes other than the occasional jaywalker in this sleepy town so they had neither the resources or the workforce to deal with an active crime scene.

He could let this go.

But not before righting the crime scene tape and establishing a base perimeter.

After all, he was only human.

Slipping under the fixed tape, Jack made his way into the house behind the eager rookie. Observing the area, he noticed the lack of decor and personal belongings. It was strange for a supposedly lived-in house.

Silvia Praxton obviously wasn't the sentimental type.

The smell of burnt food led him to the kitchen where he paused at the door to survey the scene. The floor tiles were covered in shattered glass and the window above the sink was missing. A wine glass laid tipped on its side with remnants of wine gracing the bottom.

Just as the Sheriff described.

Jack circled the shattered glass strategically and bent down. His eyes narrowed in on a thin metal sliver which lay in the mass of glass. It was nearly imperceptible to the untrained eye, but Jack's observation skills were off the charts.

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