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The ambulance took an eternity to arrive. Leonopli's wife and Julian accompanied him to the hospital. That stupid coffee. Why did I think I could just forget everything? It's not like I'm on holidays, this is my job. As emotions ran high, a doctor came out of room 107, where Leonopli was. It was clear what the news was going to be by the doctor's expression. His wife burst into tears.


Julian sat in the hospital deep in thought for a while when his phone rang.
"Jules! How's the old caserooney?"
"Not now, Delassi."
"Did something happen?"
"I'm at the hospital, Leonopli is dead. He was attacked, somehow. At 7:20."

There was a long pause on both ends of the phone.

"7:20? Maybe it's a coincidence."
"How can it be? At 7:19 everything was perfect, I was sitting with a nice warm cup of coffee in a French café. Leonopli and his wife were together and then came seven twenty."

Another long pause.

"Well Jules I'm not sure what the protocol is in this case but I think you should come back to the office, let the forensics department take it from here."
"I'll see, Con."

With that, Julian hung up. Feeling raw, he headed back to the hotel.


Once again, the bed became his only comfort. Feeling hunger stir within him, Lucaster called room service.
"Bonjour que puis-je faire pour vous?"
"Pourrais-je avoir un sandwich thon avec une bouteille de vin rouge, s'il vous plaît?"
"Tout de suite monsieur."
Although the combination of  a tuna sandwich and red wine was not the most appealing meal to the general eye, it was all that tempted Lucaster at the moment.


A sharp knock on the door woke Lucaster from his daydream. Opening the door, a young woman stood with a silver platter.
"Voici votre commande monsieur." Said she
"Merci mademoiselle Hélèna." Said he, taking note of the woman's name.


With a now full stomach, Lucaster tried to wrap his head around the events. The only time I forget about the case is the time when I am closest to it. He thought All I need now is to find a clue, perhaps a pattern? Overwhelmed, Lucaster sat pensive for the majority of the morning.


As the day rolled on, Julian's mind got increasingly foggy. I need a walk. Being cooped up in here hours upon end is torturous. Lucaster reaches for his coat and room key, closing the door behind him, adamant to, in doing so, block out any intrusive thoughts.


On his stroll, Julian took time to appreciate his surroundings, listening in to the chants of nearby birds, the cries of cranky toddlers. It was what he craved.

On his way back, he noticed a woman hunched over in a corner. As he got closer, he could hear light sobs. He couldn't decide whether to keep on walking or to console this stranger.

Before being able to think, the girl turns around.

"What do you want?" The girl spoke with an ever so slight french accent. Lucaster vaguely recognised the woman's features, his waitress. Incessantly starring into his eyes trying to figure him out, She continued with "Who are you?" Realising his words were inaudible to anyone apart from himself, he repeated: "Julian Lucaster."

The look in her eyes were glowing softly, like melancholic fires. Her hair was disheveled, resembling her scattered mind. Lucaster felt a need to help this broken bird, although, not knowing how.

A wave of fear surged in the bird's eyes. "You're the man I served this morning, aren't you?" She muttered. Julian acquiesced. "Oh God." She mumbled. "I've made a right show of myself". She said picking herself off the ground. Before Julian had time to say anything, the broken bird had flown.


Making his way back to hotel, pensive Lucaster, saunters along. Daydreaming about this and that. This being the murder case. That being the girl.


Reaching the hotel rather tardily, Lucaster feels exhausted. Sick of the day, and at this point, sick of life, Lucaster sinks into the pool of blankets and pillows.


Eyes groggy from lack of sleep and head pounding from over-sleeping, Julian wakes from the snug cocoon he has so carefully wrapped himself in. Swearing under his breath, Julian checks the time on his phone. 09:17. 1 hour and 53 minutes late.

Cursing himself, Lucaster rapidly checks the news to see if a new murder has been committed. To his discontent, all newspapers flashed with the headline:


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