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Anna Lockwood: A Short Story

There was so much more to life than work, so people would tell her. For as long as she could remember, Anna Lockwood wanted to be a police officer, and not just any officer, but a homicide detective. She’d immediately taken the route from school straight into the academy. One of the reasons for her passion was that her father had served as a small town sheriff, she’d ridden along with him when she was a teenager. Despite the influence he’d had on her to begin this line of work, he was one of the main people who told her there was more to enjoy than just her job.

In fact, he found it worrying how much she worked. Anna didn’t know the meaning of procrastination; every night she would work late, weekends, holidays. She’d only been working there a few months, yet she was managing a load of work for an experienced officer. Anna’s father now worked in a bank, it was certainly a good change of pace, for him. Anna couldn’t imagine giving up her job for anything in the world. Over the past two weeks she’d been told that there was an opportunity for her to move to homicide. She’d caught on swiftly and had been able to adapt with ease. She was a perfect candidate.

Finally, she was going to reach the place she’d been dreaming of for so many years. Part of her drive for such a job was her need to help people; of course. She didn’t wish to help the living, but the dead. The people who couldn’t defend themselves any longer or obtain any form of justice for what someone had stolen from them. Anna wanted to catch killers, she wanted to be the one they feared. “Night shift again? ” An older, feminine voice piped up as Anna settled down at an old oak dining table that had earned several scratches and slight discoloring over time. “It’s not a big deal, I get paid extra and it’s fairly quiet. What Anna hadn’t told her mother was that it was her first night in a practice placement for the homicide team.

They’d told her that there was a new case and they needed extra hands; this was her lucky break. She would have to prove herself to be irreplaceable during this time. No doubt it was related to the recent articles about a new serial killer that had just been linked to several crimes. Anna couldn’t wait to begin; it would be her first real case. This is what she had been training for. The twenty-five-year-old had visited her mother for a cup of coffee before going to work, it didn’t seem to be as enjoyable as she’d predicted.

All her family seemed to do these days was pick at her choice of profession, they seemed to think there was something wrong with the way Anna was so dedicated to catching criminals. “Well, I better go,” Anna began as she rose, grabbing her bag from the empty chair beside her. “Oh, Anna,” Her mother chimed, handing her a note. “A friend of mine has a son in town. He works for the district attorney’s office, I figured you could see him after work for drinks. ” It was possible, Anna was working until ten and seemed to work only a few minutes walk from the bar.

There was a hint of confusion rippling over her features; oh her mother was trying to be sly, but it didn’t work. She was trying to set her daughter up. “Well, I thought you could use a male friend. It’s been so long. ” Anna simply grabbed her bag and made her way through the creaky home. “You know what mom, next time, don’t bother. ” She called out before shutting the front door. The audacity of her mother was infuriating. Anna didn’t need to be set up. Of course it had been a while, she’d been fixated on her job, as she should be. How could she expect to make a living if she was off chasing men?

A soft sigh escaped her lips as she climbed into her old beat up Ford Fiesta. The red car has served her well despite it’s increasingly disheveled state. She didn’t understand why her family couldn’t just be supportive. It felt like at every turn they had to comment or pick holes with her choices. It wasn’t their life, they didn’t have a choice in what she did, so why did they keep feeling the need to attempt to guide her to what they thought was best? Her thoughts kept reeling in her mind as she drove to work. Maybe she’d go on one date to shut them up, at least she’d have tried.

The moment she arrived at work she was greeted by a colleague, who led her toward a board room in the modern building. The room was separated by glass panes, it all looked incredibly new and inviting. The white florescent lights illuminated the large rectangle glass desk that sat toward the end of the room, black leather chairs seated on either side. “Take a seat, we’ll be in soon. ” Her colleague, who was quite a few inches taller with thick brown hair and piercing blue eyes held the door open for Anna to enter. Now that’s a man she wouldn’t mind dating, polite, good manners.

Anna could only hope that her blind date was going to be as nice as him. It would certainly make the date somewhat entertaining. The briefing took a good deal of time. It seemed she was being placed a high profile serial murder case. It was fascinating to Anna. The killer took pieces of his victims, it was the only similarity. Anna had put forward ideas that this killer was finding his way, he was testing out different methods. However, it did occur to her it may even be to throw the police off. It would be hard to connect murders definitively considering the lack of similarities.

Thankfully, the team had done a good job so far with linking the minimal evidence they had into a file. For the rest of her shift, Anna began reading over the material, trying to see what the killer was seeing. Why was he taking pieces? Memories? Food? Defiling the body? Humiliation? It was hard to say what gender the killer even was; for some reason, Anna swayed toward a he. No doubt that was ingrained in her from media influence. By the time she’d packed up, Anna hadn’t realized how quickly the time had passed. She was running an hour late. Swiftly, she scooped up her spare bag and made her way toward the locker room.

Anna wasn’t unattractive, that wasn’t the reason why she didn’t date; she just didn’t have time for a relationship, for the commitment. With haste, she tugged out a dark purple dress that clung to her hourglass curves. Her figure was somewhat petite, smaller than the average woman but not by much. She was blonde, had green eyes and a warm smile; not that many people had seen it. At work, she was all too serious, as should be the case. The dress cut off above her well shaped assets, allowing her collar bone to be seen. Then, she slipped on a pair of black pointed heels and gave herself a once over in the mirror.

Her light blonde curls were up in a neat pony tail, she figured that would be fine. After all, she was running late. Showing up at all may be a relief, if her date hadn’t left yet. A hurried power walk later, the female found herself taking a deep breath before entering the thriving bar. The lights outside were a luminescent cyan blue, lighting the side walk and nearby cars. It almost appeared like a club inside, loud music, drinks freely flowing. The difference was there were quite a few clearly expensive oak tables littered across the establishment. Anna made her way through the crowd toward the bar.

It didn’t seem like there was a man waiting for someone, most of the people she saw were somewhat occupied. It only occurred to her then that there wasn’t much else on the note. Only that he’d be wearing a blue shirt. What kind of game was this? “Red wine please,” she called out to the bar tender as he passed. The tall, slender male gave a nod before going to fulfill her order. As she gazed around she noticed a handsome man amongst the customers. She wondered if tonight would be the night she actually found a man interesting enough to take him back to her apartment.

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