Murder Mystery 1: Foul Play in the Forest

October 10, 2021

A grey Volkswagen rolled to a stop before the nature preserve. Its color was as grey as the thick fog from the rain just a few hours ago. A young-looking man, fresh out of college, stepped up to the car. He was waiting for the door to open to reveal a man ten to fifteen years older than him.

“Detective,” announced the forensic investigator on the site. Detective Pierce Wolfe got out of his car, shutting the door after himself.

Detective Wolfe was a tall Norwegian man. He was well built with broader shoulders, blond hair and dark eyes to tie it all with his lighter skin. He wore a button down and loose tie, a trench coat slipped over his clothes. Pierce’s shoes were already muddied from the morning rain that had fallen, but it wasn’t very obvious from the color of his shoes.

He gave the analyst a nod, taking the papers given to him. “Good morning, Mr. Moore, what do we know so far?”

Jogging to keep up with the detective’s long stride, the analyst looked up at him. “The body was found by a jogger going down the river path this morning. The victim is a little over middle-aged Caucasian male, impaled through the back by a sharp weapon. Time of death was sometime around 9:30 to 11 p.m., about two or three days ago.” Pierce filtered through the papers, nodding. “The body’s been in the water since at least an hour after his death, so we don’t know exactly when he was killed.”

Pierce folded one of the papers up to see the one under it. “Have you identified the body yet?”

The analyst nodded. “Michael Callahan; 45 years old, married with one son who graduated college a few years back. We’re already waiting to contact and question them about any rivals Mr. Callahan has had.”

“Good,” Pierce nodded. Arriving up to the crime scene, some other investigators were surrounding the body.

Another detective was speaking with a few investigators, his eyes focused on the person he was talking to. Narrowed and serious, he held a hand out in front of him, motioning as he talked. Pierce watched him speak with the investigators until their conversation ended. The detective noticed Pierce, looking over and giving him a smile. Approaching him, his hands in his pockets, the detective tilted his head to the side.

“Well, well, well. Didn’t expect to see you on this case, Pierce.” chirped the detective, Pierce chuckling.

“Oh, really? And here I thought you were the one who put me on it,”

“I’m afraid not; Lieutenant Jackson is the one in charge of case assignments.”

The detective standing before Pierce was Detective David Taylor. About half a foot shorter than the other, David had brown hair and grey eyes. He was a bit more put together, his hair styled and outfit a bit less bland.

David and Pierce were a competitive pair of detectives, constantly seeing who could find more evidence and put together the better argument. They even liked to fight over who deserved to get warrants of arrest.

“Well, I guess I should see the body.”

Detective Taylor smirked. It was smug and challenging. “Yeah, you really should, I already started writing some theories.” Pierce rolled his eyes as the two headed over to the crime scene, ducking under the yellow police tape. Pierce and David stood side-by-side as they reached the body.

It was a man with dark brown hair and slightly tanned skin. He laid with his limbs bent in strange ways, pushed out of the river by the running water. There was a dark stain coming from the middle of his back, his face pushed into the mud. The man’s clothes were muddied and damp, not fully dry from when he was washed out of the river. One of his shoes was missing, his sock half-pulled from his foot.

Pierce knelt down next to the body. “So he died about three days ago?” David nodded. “Are we sure we got the rigor mortis accounts right?”

“Yes, we triple checked, per usual.” David knelt next to the other detective. “My current theory is that Mr. Callahan was jumped. Likely a mugging or something. He tried running and the mugger caught up with him, stabbed him in the back, and Mr. Callahan fell into the river and he was dragged away by the waters to where you see him now,”

Spotting a red mark on Mr. Callahan’s arm, Pierce leaned a little closer. “And what’s this?” he asked. David narrowed his eyes.

“Huh, I don’t know… I’ll have labs run it to see if it’s a rash or something similar,” the shorter of the two stood up, brushing off his fall coat. “In the meantime, we should get around to gathering some suspects, should we speak with Mrs. Callahan?”

“Well, we’re pretty much done here until the more detailed autopsy is released, so that seems like a good idea,” sighed Pierce. “Should I drive?”

“Be my guest,”

David opened the door to the car’s passenger seat. Before Detective Wolfe entered the drivers side, he glanced to the left. On the side of the river was a brown wallet. His hand stopped reaching for the door handle. Heading over and kneeling down to the piece of evidence, Pierce pulled on an extra pair of gloves, carefully picking up the wallet. Opening it up, his eyes traced over the driver’s license.

It was Mr. Callahan’s alright; and opening the wallet revealed twenties, tens, and fives that were all in cash.

David came up behind the blond detective. “Did you find something?”

“You might want to log this as evidence,” replied Pierce, lifting the wallet for David to see. “I don’t think this was something as plain as a mugging,”

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