Okay, so a while ago I posted blog called, "My Muse." That belongs to a whole complete separate story that I'm not currently working on, so I dont have anything new to present to that, but my novel, King of Hearts, is coming along amazingly! It's really going very well.
Shannon Dern is a former Homicide cop turned PI who lives in DC and takes cases helping Metro Homicide, Metro Narcotics, Baltimore PD, and occasionally (if they ask for her help) the FBI. She's unmarried, a real suffer-in-silence type, beautiful, fit, and hates men who break her heart. In this break out novel, she was working on a missing persons case with Metro until the case ran cold. So when Metro handed it over to the FBI, she went with, being the only person briefed enough on the case to be able to help them...willingly. Throughout the novel, you see bits and pieces of flashbacks that made Shannon who she is.
These two pieces of literature are tied hand in hand. The first, Shannon is remembering the moment she really became a cop, deep in her heart. Unfortunately, it wasn't until a year before she quit.
Every cop has that moment when they really, really became a cop. It wasn’t they got their ID or their desk, or hell, even when they brought in the suspect from their first solo case. For me, it was near the end of my time with Metro—not very average for most great moments—approximately 7 years after my first year, when the whole department was fighting to find a missing little girl, only 5 years old. Why was Homicide looking for her? Because our suspect here was also a suspect in four other open murders of children less than ten years old.
For every night of those three weeks, I stayed up until all hours, working this from every possible angle, alongside every single cop there, meaning my partner, Jacob, and my boss, the Chief of Homicide, Hansen Kory, and more than four dozen others. Eventually, we found her raped, bruised, and beaten body in a ditch by the side of a suburban road.
The coroner did the autopsy rather soullessly, obviously needing detachment from this hell on Earth, but the real moment that made me feel this hell, was three days later.
I was pointing my gun at the father of the child, Phoenix Weber, because he was pointing his Glock at the suspect, Alan Mann. Mann’s fingerprints had been found on the barrettes in the girl’s hair, the skin of her lifeless body, and all over her clothes. DNA from his sperm was still inside her and his saliva was still on her neck when we processed the evidence. Our forensic technicians had worked day and night for this case just like everyone else.
Weber shook with rage. Metro had finally had enough evidence after all results had been accounted for to arrest Mann, but Weber beat us to the bastard’s house.
Alan Mann stared at the group of cops surrounding him—ultimately more than two dozen—and the victim’s now-childless father. But his eyes showed nothing that I could comprehend until later. It wasn’t fear. It wasn’t relief. It was…pity and confusion. He hadn’t believed he had done anything wrong.
My partner calmly spoke to Weber, but it was like trying to talk a dying man in pain of a ledge. The man wasn’t thinking. The man was only feeling—feeling the pain of having his only daughter taken from him. I never forgot the moment when Mann stepped forward, confident he wasn’t going to die; and when the father did the same, bringing them hardly two feet apart, I felt the whole sea of cops tense.
Jacob whispered from his spot next to me, “Suicide by cop.” I swallowed hard. Could I pull the trigger? Could I kill a man for wanting revenge over the death of his daughter and save the murderer’s life? My gut told me no. My brain told me no. But before I fell asleep, every night since then, I still pictured me pulling the trigger as soon as the safety had been taken off with a click. My only solace: the other two dozen cops had done the same thing. And Weber was autopsied with about 20 bullet holes in his body.
Alan Mann stared at us, smiling. I threw up.
That was the first time I helped kill a man, but not the moment I became a cop. That time came years after, during my first year as Lieutenant, when Alan Mann crossed my path again, this time having killed a 15 year old after getting her pregnant. When I cornered him in that abandoned warehouse he kept them in, I shot him without a second thought, without hesitation, and my three taps in the chest brought him down with a thud.
Next, this is the serial killer's POV from King of Hearts. He's facing a young girl who he's had with him for three years, and who has stabbed him in the side while trying to get away. Unfortunately for her, he caught up and now has his weapon pointed at her, considering the best way to make her sorry for her hurting him. This is where we learn what this serial killer wants.
The man with the gun stared at it, his strong, tanned hands shaking, causing the weapon to become unsteadied as he aimed at his target: the 14 year old girl who had stuck that knife in his gut when all he was doing was making her feel good… Except she’d claimed many times to be feeling that opposite. But with his side bandaged and his pride on the floor, his hands steadied in anger and the need for revenge. A shot in the foot? The leg? It wouldn’t kill her. Just damage her a little bit so that he could get back to doing what he wanted—the same thing his parents, his sister, and his brother had done to him until he disappeared.
He wasn’t disgusting. His family was perfectly fine. They had created him, and everyone saw him as normal, so obviously there wasn’t a problem. But still his thoughts lingered on his little sister, the bitch who’d he’d loved but had almost broken his heart. So he almost broke her neck. Unfortunately, she didn’t die until years and years later, when she was still in the coma.
“Kill me, you bastard. I’d rather die than spend another moment with you.”
He shook, opening his eyes after suddenly realizing he’d closed them.
He took aim at her ankle and aimed. She flinched but the bullet ultimately missed its destination. Hope flickered slightly in her naïve eyes. Her captor wasn’t a very good shot considering that he was hardly two yards from her.
A snarl formed on his lips and he hissed in his obvious displeasure. “Dammit,” he whispered, looking down at his hands.
When he glanced up, her eyes were pleading with him, those pretty green eyes…
“Because there’s no way you’d release me now. And I can’t spend another minute living with you.”
Her pure hatred made him wince slightly. No one he’d ever known had ever showed that much passion in such a…negative form. Well, besides the other six men and women he’d taken. 3 women, 3 men, not including the stallion in front of him. The youngest of them all was her. The oldest, Esposito, was 34 years of age and he’d been very instrumental in his gathering of information about a certain Private Investigator that killed his father after he’d done nothing but take what was rightfully his: twelve young girls, the youngest 5, the oldest 15, the other 10 ranging in between. He was positive his father wouldn’t have done anything wrong and if he’d taken the girls, it was for a damn good reason. The PI couldn’t understand that, even if she had been a cop back then.
I’m just like my father… The thought came unexpectedly.
And the truth was, in some ways, he really was. He was the sick and twisted boogey man that came to take what was someone else’s for selfish reasons or none at all. But his father had been taking females for his sick game, while Andy Bishop, he just took people for exactly what he needed. A few times he miscalculated, took a girl while her friend was expecting her so then had to take the friend, too, but it wasn’t as easy as it seemed. The game was something he could derive from whenever he needed to. Give or take, make the victims—although he didn’t consider them victims—suffer or rejoice. Because, as he saw it, he was brilliant and he was the only one that knew what was good or bad and he was the only one capable of making things good or bad.
The real brilliance of his plan, leaving his calling card, had only come into play after he had taken his first two victims, the young girls. But after he’d felt like he was being too much like his father, a man he cared for a respected but did not want to be compared to, he switched it all around, knowing that with his expertise, nothing would go wrong. Whatever he wanted, Andy Bishop was going to get it.
Andy Bishop wanted this PI, her face, her name, her reputation, to be in his tiny wood cabin in the woods of Bethesda, Maryland, dead. Her PI license stretched half-way down the East coast, so getting into an area with her simple jurisdiction—like DC, perhaps—would not be a hard thing to accomplish.
Slowly, he shook himself into awareness. The girl was still there, staring at him.
“I can kill you, Alexa.”
“So do it already.”
He had to remove all former thoughts from his mind in order to continue with the current pressing matter at hand.
Shaking his head in disappointment, he lifted the gun from his current aim at her shin to aim at her heart. “I thought you were different. But, Alexa, I’m going to be kind. No torture. Just plain, simple death. And when nobody finds your body after two more weeks, nobody will care anymore, and you’ll be just another name in the papers, just another hiker that got lost.”
He could see her mind running, trying to think of a way out. But her muscles loosened, her gaze turned watery and sad, and she looked at the ground, a sob breaking out of her chest as she said, “You’ll never get away with this.”
He shrugged and cocked his gun, finally realizing that the girl was right. It was her time to die. She’d spent three years with him up here—his very first victim—and all she’d produced was a child that he’d immediately killed and hidden, not needing anymore evidence stacked up against him that might possibly get him locked up with those freaks that everyone related him to: criminals. Andy Bishop was not a criminal. He was simply working against the law in pursuit of his own version of retribution. And this version started with tempting the fascination of Shannon Dern.
This time, the bullet didn’t miss its intended mark.
I enjoyed writing this last one because it's always been interesting to me how criminals don't often believe they've done anything wrong. My favorite line from this story appears at the end when Andy and Shannon finally go head and head. But you'll just have to wait for me to post it...
I hope you enjoyed it! Please tweet me or email me or something if the website wont let you comment!
So much love and thanks,