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C R E S C E N D O - The Creeping Frost (IC)

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Cylarn
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Founded: Nov 25, 2011
Left-Leaning College State

C R E S C E N D O - The Creeping Frost (IC)

Postby Cylarn » Wed Jan 20, 2021 10:05 am

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CHAPTER 1 - The Howl





0825
February 23rd 2012
Daramont County Sheriff's Department
Eaton City, State of New York


Jim stuffed his hands into the pockets of his parka as he stepped outside, the imposing brutalist facade of the sheriff's department behind him. Layers of clothes - thermal underwear, forest green cargo pants, snow boots, a thermal turtleneck, tan service shirt, forest-green Goretex DCSD jacket, and black fleece cap - did not offer complete protection from the below-zero temperature. Jim walked over to the steps ascending from the sidewalk below. The parking spaces in front of the building had long been plowed; Jim's unmarked black Tahoe sat idle and running in one of the parallel spots. Falling snow slowly cascaded onto Eaton City and heavy grayish clouds hung overhead, barely obscuring the sun. Main Street, running right in front of the Sheriff's Department, carried lines of undaunted travelers up and down the Uptown area. A handful of pedestrians, heads tucked down and hands tucked into their pockets, made their way despite the snowfall. The roads and sidewalks had been plowed, salted, and subjected to a repeat of that process. Everything else, on the other hand, still bore the snowy blanket from November.

Jim took a look at the watch on his left wrist. 8:25; the crew should be pulling in here soon. Behind him, the glass double doors of the sheriff's department opened, an audio sensor emitting a loud but non-threatening beep sound. Jim stepped ninety degrees to his right, looking to see who was walking out. A tall, tan-skinned woman with black hair, dressed in a uniform of green cargo pants and a tan uniform shirt, made her way towards Jim. She smiled faintly; Jim gave a respectful nod.

"Hey Lori," Jim said, turning to face his superior. Lorraine Fielder was a fairly attractive woman for her half-century of age; her complexion barely weathered in spite of a thirty-year career. Her presence was firm, commanding of respect from superiors and subordinates alike. In her right hand was a handheld radio. Static crackled out from the line, and Lorraine held it up for Jim as if to make a point. Her expression was stoic, to say the least, but Jim spotted the concern in her brown eyes. Lorraine's eyes were routinely intense, something that Jim attributed to her Mohawk heritage.

"Bracco started transmitting five minutes ago," she said, continuing on . "And that's all that has come through. Not an actual word from him, but enough that I have Comms figuring out his exact position."

Jim nodded in response to the news. Deep down, he absorbed a pang of guilt. Devin Bracco, the rookie, had gone to Lake Malton on Jim's order. It was a decision that Jim had put little thought into; Bracco was riding solo now that he had completed his probationary phase, and it was not uncommon for deputies to head up the zig-zagging mountain highway and answer calls in Malton. It was even less unusual for lieutenants of the DCSD to dispatch officers by name. A simple fucking welfare call. That's all it's supposed to be. And now the button on his radio is being held down. He shook the thought from his head, and motioned to a road parallel to the north wing of the department.

A Ford F250, emblazoned in the colors and decals of the New York State Police and towing a snow mobile in the bed of a trailer, sat as the first vehicle in what was a very long, figuratively "blue," line. A quartet of four DCSD Crown Vics sat in waiting behind the State Police vehicle. And behind the Crown Vics was another DCSD vehicle - this time an '01 Dodge Ram pickup in department colors. At the rear of the line, was a blacked-out Suburban that gave off some very "federal" vibes. Jim frowned, he and Lorraine pacing about the department courtyard and surrounding sidewalk to see that the street was barely long enough to hold the entire line of law enforcement vehicles, and that line was now blocking traffic in two directions on the street behind it. Lorraine shifted her attention to the parallel parking spaces lining the street.

"Jim, there aren't enough spaces for all those cars," she said.

He looked over at the spots, and saw that a few civilians had already parked where the line was due to form. His left hand went to the mic that was clipped to his parka, and his index finger held down the transmission button. Communications within the sheriff's department were held in plain language, as opposed to ten-codes.

"Riker to all units in the vicinity of the Sheriff's Department," he stated, beginning his broadcast. "Every second Crown Vic that's pulling up is to pull around the south end and use the rear parking lot. Not enough room up front. Over."

Jim released the mic, and turned back to face Lorraine. "I can take things from here and get everyone brief."

She nodded to the affirmative. "I'll leave you to it then, Jim. You guys be safe."

"Bet on it," Jim replied. Lorraine let out a faint smile, and turned one-eighty to re-enter the building. Jim keyed his mic again, slowly walking out towards the street, eyes focused on the State Police vehicle.

"Everyone come around to the front once you've parked. If you're up front, leave it idle. Rally on me. Over and out."
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Tayner
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Tayner » Wed Jan 20, 2021 1:40 pm

Daramont County Sheriff's Department
February 23rd, 2012
Sameera Kader


Sam woke up at 7:45 to the sound of her alarm violently blaring, and herself being face down on the carpet of her bedroom floor. She looked around groggily, before slowly standing up and running her hand through her hair. She walked towards the device, smacking the top in a motion that she had done a hundred times before, effectively silencing it. She shambled out to the kitchen and grabbed a clean glass, filling it with cool water and promptly pounding it before getting a pot of coffee on. While it brewed she found herself taking a quick shower, cleaning her hair and using a blow dryer to dry it out.

Wet hair in the cold fucking sucked.

She thought about how much she drank last night. She started with beer, killing a six pack rather hastily. When that ran out, the handle of Jack that stood up on top of her refrigerator looked more and more appealing. She ended up doing shots as she watched some documentary on Netflix until she promptly passed out on her way to bed. How many shots did I take? She thought, having lost count after six. She suddenly felt sick, sending the contents of her stomach into the toilet before rinsing out her mouth and brushing her teeth. Rookie mistake, beer to liquor you're in for a night, liquor to beer you're in the clear.

She got dressed in her winter gear, filled a Yeti cup with her coffee, grabbed her backpack, and promptly exited her home, locking the door behind her and hopping into her assigned service vehicle. She sighed, the engine struggling to turn over a few times before it finally did, Sam having to shift it into neutral for it to work. It was just as cold inside the cab as it was outside, and the heat wouldn't kick in until she had reached the police station anyways. She let it warm up a second while she knocked the layers of snow and ice off of her windshield, and once a spot big enough on the windshield was cleared by the defrosters, she set off.

Sam had arrived in one piece, just on time for what they were being called for. Thankfully, she wasn't driving a Crown Vic, so she got the opportunity to park out front. She looked at her watch, 8:28. Not bad, from hangover to work in 43 minutes. She'd had better times, and a worse time every now and then, but she always made it before the start of their shift or before it would be considered too late to clock in. She hopped down from her vehicle, lighting a cigarette and taking a sip of coffee as she followed Riker's instructions, leaving the truck idling and finding him not too far away.

"Morning Sir." She said as she drew near, her breath staining the air as she spoke. Riker was the officer she rode with on patrol when she had first arrived to Daramont County. The two got along well enough, he'd been kind enough to invite her to one or two of the get togethers he and his wife would hold for his fellow officers, a small gesture that made her feel less like an interloper in the town and more like someone who belonged. He'd often tell her to knock off the 'sir yes sir,' but something inside her wouldn't let their friendship get in the way of respect. Maybe it was something she kept from the lessons her parents tried to teach her, maybe it was the Army discipline, but she would be damned if she didn't at least give the man the greeting of the day.
If anyone askes where we were Saturday at 14:30, we were at The Pub, understand?

-If it's stupid, but it works, it ain't stupid.
-No Combat Ready unit has ever passed inspection.
-No Inspection Ready unit has ever passed combat.
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Disclaimer: The sig is out of date and I probably won't update it

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Recon
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Founded: Mar 10, 2017
Democratic Socialists

Postby Recon » Wed Jan 20, 2021 9:23 pm

Mike Walsh
08:28
February 23rd 2012
Daramont County Sheriff's Department
Eaton City, State of New York


Mike slid the Crown Vic into one of the spaces at the front. He left the engine idling as ordered and turned to look at the passenger seat and the shopping bag sitting on it. He had stopped off at home to pick it up, after the message had gone out over the radio.

He leaned over and peeled back the plastic handles,

All there.

The shift had started about an hour ago; his only job so far this morning had been heading over to Jimmy’s. Not just for the coffee. He had taken Jimmy aside and asked about any tourists passing through. Many would stop off for a hot drink or to use the restroom. Mike wanted to know how many had mentioned they were coming from or going to the resort in the past week or so. It had been a little strange Jimmy had said, there weren’t many coming back down, but perhaps he had missed some, he did love to talk and not everyone wanted to share exactly where they had been with a stranger. Probably city types, keeping to themselves. Mike had pressed it just a little to make sure and to his relief, Jimmy remembered that a few cars had headed up that way.

This is just some mistake.

It wasn’t uncommon for the phone and power lines to go down in the mountains, usually it was the bad weather or just the difficulties maintaining it all out there in the cold. The cell reception always had been poor, the guests complained year after year, but there wasn’t much you could do about mountains.

This is nothing.

It was easy to convince himself, this was just a detour. They’d spend a few hours driving up there, hopefully stick around for a little while and perhaps be snowed in? That would be ideal. If not, at least he’d get to see Sam, so it wouldn’t be a wasted trip, even if he was going to spent this entire shift driving up and down one long ass highway.

He pulled out his phone and tapped on the screen. Unlocking it and navigating to the messaging app, he opened the chat with his wife.

17 February 2012

Going on duty now, will call you later. 06:56 ✓✓

Ok, Im pretty tired, so if it’s ok just call me tomorrow. Goodnight. X 19:49 ✓✓

Sleep well. X 19:57 ✓✓


18 February 2012


You up? X 11:12 ✓


I think there might be a problem with the signal again. Message me when your free and we`ll sort out a call. 11:17 ✓


19 Feburary 2012


Something going on up there? 09:43 ✓

Call me when you get these messages. 09:43 ✓


His fingers searched for the keyboard and hesitated before inputting the message,

Today


We are coming up today, one of the deputies got lost near the resort. If the signal returns before we get there, I’m looking forward to seeing you. X 08:28 ✓


He heard a pinging noise as the message was sent. He watched and waited for the second tick, he paused for a few seconds and then checked the signal strength,

One tick.

Rubbing the back of his neck, he sighed and suppressed a yawn. Hopefully they would be on the road soon and be up there for lunchtime.

That'd be nice

Reluctantly he stuffed the phone back in his pocket, put on his gloves and stepped out into the cold. As soon as he closed the door, he remembered the coffee and went back in to retrieve it.

Boots crunching on the snow, he strode quickly towards Riker and Kader, once he was close he waved with the coffee cup,

“Mornin LT, Morning Sa-… Morning Kader,”

Sam

Dismissing the thought, he put on a smile;

“Still no word from Bracco?”

Mike could feel his stomach was beginning to churn, he took a sip of the coffee.

“I guess we are going up to get him then. Let’s hope we won’t have to dig him out”.

He turned to look back at the blocked traffic, wondering who the other cars were and what they were doing here.

“Did the Sheriff call in a favour? It looks like we’ll be in good company heading up the highway.”

Still it wasn't the worst way to spend a shift
Last edited by Recon on Thu Jan 21, 2021 12:36 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Herador
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Posts: 6985
Founded: Mar 08, 2011
Democratic Socialists

Postby Herador » Wed Jan 20, 2021 11:54 pm

0655
Eaton City
Apartment 203

Damon's phone ringing had woken Alaina with a start, and now she was trying to listen to whoever was on the other end over the dull rattling of their bedrooms heater.

"Harrison." he answered, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. "Yeah." A pause, Alaina strained to hear what the person on the other end was saying, but couldn't make anything out. "Right now? " Her gut started to twist, he had just got home five hours ago. "Yeah, I'll be there soon."

Damon tossed the phone onto his nightstand and got up with a grumble. Alaina had been here many times before, the calls waking them up and sending him to a crime scene. She watched Damon make his way to the bathroom and turn on the shower before she stood up herself, pulling a thick robe close against the winter cold, and followed him. Standing in the doorway, she leaned against the frame and watched him for a minute and thought about how hard these calls were on him, both of them really. Every night she would curl up next to him and pray they would be allowed to get ready for their day together. With a sigh she told herself she knew what she was getting into, he had warned her when they had first started dating after all, and stepped into the bathroom. She wouldn't bother him. Damon was just like his father, they both needed to take time and wrap their minds around something before they would open up, so she took one last look at him and turned on the bathroom's space heater before heading to the kitchen.

She had lit her votive candle, it's warm glow lighting up the image of Saint Michael and giving her an object to zone out on while she idly fidgeted with her Rosary and prayed. This had happened so many times before and Damon had always come home fine, maybe Saint Michael really did watch over him? But even taking comfort in her faith didn't really dispel the anxiety. Alaina looked up as Damon came into the living room, already dressed in work jeans and tucking in his thermal shirt. She smiled when he looked at her and he smiled back, a look in his eyes letting her know he was present again.

"I made us some breakfast." She put the plates of toast and cups of coffee on their tiny two-person table.

Damon sat down across from her, "You don't get up for another hour hun, eat now and you won't get back to sleep." He slathered one of his pieces in jam and took a bite.

"I have today off, I didn't tell you?" She was lying, of course, but she had a twist in her gut over this and it wouldn't let her go back to sleep. She would work from home today. Damon looked confused, trying to recall when she might have said something, but before he could say anything she carried on. "Must have slipped my mind." She waved it off like it was nothing. They took a few more bites before she spoke again. "So, what's going on?"

Damon looked mildly uncomfortable. They had an agreement with each other, he would tell her what he could about his work, gory details and all, and she would do her best to understand. When they started dating, they both knew that a big, maybe the biggest, cause of friction in a police relationship was the sense that the other person just didn't get it, so they believed that if Damon shared everything he could she could better understand and avoid that big problem. It had worked so far.

"I'm not sure yet. Apparently, something is happening in Malton and they're sending a few of us up to take a look."

Malton? She thought. Nothing happened in Lake Malton, just drunk tourists and shoplifters. Damon must have seen the look on her face because he smiled and took one of her small hands in his.

"I'm sure it's nothing big Alaina, I'll probably be gone and back in a day."

She wasn't so sure, and the feeling in her gut was only getting worse. "Wear your vest."

"Alaina, I don't thi-"

"Wear it." She didn't mean to snap, but the stress was tightening more and more.

Damon gave her hand a reassuring squeeze, "Of course, love."

She relaxed a bit, picking up his empty plate and cup while he got his things together. She liked watching him get ready, Damon always seemed to have a special kind of purpose every morning while he was going over his things, Alaina liked to think this was her little window into his world when he was at work. At home, Damon was always making bad puns and playing games and without a care in the world. But this Damon, Detective Harrison? He was a different man, focused and with an eye for detail, he even moved differently when he put on his badge. She turned around and pulled out his good travel mug, pouring in the rest of the pot. When she turned back around she saw him finishing up and clipping his extra magazine holder to his belt and sliding in his spare mags.

"Don't think anything is going to go wrong." He reassured her, "But if I'm wearing the vest, I might as well."

Under normal circumstances, she'd smack his arm for the sass, but right now she was happy he seemed to take her worry seriously. Lighting a cigarette, she leaned against the kitchen counter, wrapping an arm around her chest. "It just feels different this time. They never call you in so soon after your last shift."

He shrugged and wrapped her in a tight hug, "Curse of youth, love, I'm the youngest Investigator on staff." Letting her go he looked at her with his usual warmth, "All the other old fuckers would throw their backs out in this weather."

She smiled despite herself and kissed him. They shared her cigarette, said their I-love-you's, and he walked out into the cold.

0825
Daramont County Sheriff's Department

Damon walked quickly towards the Supply Clerk's office, he was running late and he certainly didn't know Lieutenant Riker well enough to be late. Not that he had been given a specific time, per se, but it had been over an hour since he was called and he really didn't live far enough away to have a good excuse. He opened the heavy door to the door into the Equipment room and slid to a halt in front of the window.

"What's the rush?" The clerk asked with a laugh.

Damon didn't bother to explain his snow caked boots and returned the smile. "Andy, how you doing? They got you in the supply closet now?" Andy was still as small as ever. He always looked out of place in a DCSD uniform, no surprise he was always on desk duty.

Andy just nodded with a resigned shrug.

"I need to check out a Less-Lethal and a tube's worth of beanbags. Riker's got a posse going and I got voluntold." His friend turned around to gather the gear. "How's Britney doing?" Damon Called after him.

"Doctor says she's due any day now, plus she finally caved and asked the OB what the gender was."

"And?" Damon asked, leaning forward.

Andy turned around, shotgun and shells in hand, leaning in, "I'm having a baby boy!"

Damon hugged his friend from across the counter "Fuckin' A buddy, so happy for you both!" Andy was grinning ear to ear. "We'll talk more when I get back ok, gotta meet Riker for this thing, fingers crossed I'm back by tomorrow and we'll go out for a beer." Before he was out the door, Damon turned around, "And I'm buying!"

Damon took off briskly down the hall, shotgun slung over his shoulder, as his mind drifted back to home. Alaina had been scared, she was always worried when he got called out, it would be odd if she wasn't, but she was never scared. He touched the pendant of Saint Michael he wore around his neck, a gift from Alaina on their first anniversary and one she insisted he wore. He wasn't particularly religious, and what little religion he had, it wasn't Catholic, but his soon-to-be wife put a lot of stock in it and if it made her feel better when he was on the job? Well, he could live with wearing a necklace. His mind drifted further off to the wedding she was planning, Catholic of course, but it wasn't going to be large, which Damon was certainly happy about. They lived well below their means, saving every penny so that one day they could buy a home. With that thought, he was suddenly thinking about their home, they wanted to build their own. He was broken from his daydream by Riker's voice over the radio,

"Everyone come around to the front once you've parked. If you're up front, leave it idle. Rally on me. Over and out."

Damon changed course quickly, sliding a ways and almost losing his balance again, and made his way back to the station's lobby and out into the cold. He spotted Riker, Kader, and Walsh standing together. He moved past them quickly and popped the trunk of his Crown Vic, more cars had shown up while he had stopped by his desk to get a few things set for the day crew to look into and it seemed like he had missed everyone pulling up. Damon secured the shotgun and ammo into the rack attached to his trunk and took stock of everything inside, sighing with relief when he found all of his kit was there. Satisfied, he closed it up and made his way over to the group. He didn't know Riker well, Damon never really met with Senior Officers often but what few interactions he had with the man he seemed like an alright sort. He had, however, run into both Mike and Sam before. He recalled liking them both in the kind of way you like a coworker you've only spent a bit of time with. He was sure he had worked a case Mike was involved in, maybe back in Property Crimes? He lit a cigarette, he still wasn't awake enough to remember. How did he know Sam though? He knew her full name wasn't Sam but he couldn't remember what it was, maybe he had met her at a retirement party once? He recalled she could hold her liquor, but maybe that was just an office rumor.

Damon made sure to pick a spot downwind and took a puff of his smoke, pulling his wool cap lower against the wind and waiting for a pause in the conversation. When he saw an opportunity he chimed in,

"Sorry I'm late Lieutenant, I'm Investigator Harrison. What'd I miss?"
Last edited by Herador on Thu Jan 21, 2021 4:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
I know what I'm talking about ~5% of the time, the rest is drunken shitposting

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Endem
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Founded: Aug 19, 2018
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Endem » Thu Jan 21, 2021 4:01 am

Alexander Shaw
08:26
Daramount County Sheriff Department


shit

Well, or at least that was what Alexander would describe the situation as, a small town going dark during winter, especially here in the Crowleys, they've probably been caught in a blizzard or some shit. But then Bracco was dispatched there and gone missing, it was either a f*ck-off huge blizzard, or something suspicious was happening.

He didn't know Devin Bracco well, all he knew was that he just completed probation, but still, that guy was now part of their Department, and now he's either goddamn dead or whatever happened to the rest of Malton. He parked his Dodge Grand Caravan marked in the Department's colours, and left the engine idling, hopefully, they'll depart soon enough to Malton.

Briefly checking his equipment that he did not forget anything, thankfully nothing was forgotten, he left his apartment in a hurry, from what it looked like half the department was up-in-arms. He said a brief prayer, ever since getting shot in New York he'd been taking spirituality more seriously, he's the only Catholic in a family of Evangelicals, except the Undersheriff of the Department, to whom he was related distantly, thank God that was the case because that man saved his ass back in 2002.

He exited the vehicle, seeing Riker, Kader, Walsh, and Harrison already there, he jogged up to them, giving a brief salute to Lieutenant Riker, he then said

"Good Morning, anything new from Malton?"
*insert cliche signature here*

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Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States
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Posts: 20015
Founded: Feb 20, 2012
Democratic Socialists

Postby Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States » Thu Jan 21, 2021 4:42 pm

18.12 hours
February 22nd 2012
O’Connell residence driveway
Roscoe, Sullivan County, State of New York


“Yes, I understand it’s the middle of the season, but…” Sebastian tried to interject, but like an avalanche, the woman on the other end of the line could not be stopped once she started rattling off. Like vinyl record that had been played over and over again, she seamlessly spoon-fed her well-rehearsed story from the deep grooves the player had left in her mind.

“And the middle of the week, but…” He tried again, but there was no stopping Madeleine Brechtman, owner of Madeleine’s Motel. Sebastian wondered how long it would take her to stop if he hung up now, and as fiddled his car keys with his non-dominant right hand, the urge to test it out became bigger and bigger.

“… and no-one is allowed up the pass anymore, but surely that has scared someone/i] away from…”

He let out a slight curse as he tried jamming the keys to his snow mobile into his car door.

“No, no, that was not meant for you, ma’am” he tried to explain, silently chastising himself and wondering why [i]that
was the one thing she did listen to. But there was no use; almost the entire town of Eaton had been booked. There were stranded holiday-goers, fully packed with skiing and snowboarding gear, eager for communications to be re-established. Those who hadn’t found lodging had taken their losses and returned home, but if you were rich enough to spend a few weeks up in Malton, then you were probably not used to getting ‘no’ for an answer. And apparently, over the decades, that had broken something in Madeleine Brechtman.

“Alright, I’m just going to look…” tried Sebastian, heaving one leg into the passenger seat of his chevvy. “Yes, no, I understand, bye-b… Yes, b… I under…”

“Charlie! I got one!” came a cry from the door of his house. Sharon was holding the landline and waving it around frantically. Sebastian sighed with relief. For the past hour, ever since the call came in from HQ, the two had been desperately phoning every establishment in Eaton that could provide a warm place to sleep.

“No need to book lodging, you could just go first thing in the morning…” his chief had told him. Yeah, drive six hours from Roscoe down the Hudson River Valley, only to drive on to Malton for his trouble. No, thank you. But getting lodging so close to the Crowleys in the middle of skiing season had proven difficult, at least for prices that didn’t force them to take a mortgage on their home. HQ would refund it, but they would have to eat in the meantime.

“Willing to do check-ins between midnight and 1 am!” Sharon shouted, apparently quoting whoever was on the other line. Sebastian pitied whoever that was, having their own words screamed right back at them. After hanging up their respective calls, Sharon grabbed her coat from a hanger and sprinted towards the chevvy, having to drop Sebastian off at the station.

“Say hi to Felix from me” Sharon said after they kissed goodbye, and she drove off again. The sun had set by then, and Sebastian felt a pang of pain as he saw his wife depart. He would have to miss her for a few days again, and the few moments after they departed were the worst. Sebastian took a deep breath, pounded himself on the chest, picked up his bag and marched into the station to pick up what gear he didn’t have at home. And to get the Ford F250. And Felix.

Felix, as it turned out, was none too disturbed by all this, and spent most of the drive up north asleep. As the clocks struck 10, and then 11, Sebastian envied his K9 companion somewhat. It was snowing slightly, and in the dark, the pristine beauty of the River Valley was invisible behind a shroud of darkness, mixed with the downpour of falling snow. After 12, driving up the roads to Eaton, Sebastian was periodically blinded by oncoming cars fielding their fog headlamp, apparently confused why someone would be driving there at that hour.

At half past 12, Sebastian arrived in Eaton City, thankful that the Mountainview Bed and Breakfast had actual accommodations, and wasn’t some scam that had lured him there. For a moment, the balding man behind the counter wanted to argue about the presence of Felix, as no pets were allowed in the lodgings, but a stern look from Sebastian (who might have let his hand wander to his firearm) was enough to convince him that K9s were not technically pets, and as such, it was alright. Sebastian thanked him and went up to his room, where he undressed and went directly to sleep.

For exactly five hours and 40 minutes.

08.24 hours
February 23rd 2012
Daramont County Sheriff's Department
Eaton City, State of New York


Sebastian was staring blankly at the road in front, still covered with a powdered layer of snow. By arriving the night before, his Ford had apparently transformed into the lead vehicle of a badge caravan. When HQ had said that ‘others would be there as well’, Sebastian had expected there to be a local sheriff and some deputies, as well as some colleagues from the State Police. There were seven cars in the column in total, and more still coming in, apparently. At first, Sebastian wondered what so many different law enforcement agencies were doing here.

But then he looked up the Crowley mountains, and the valley road that would eventually take them to Malton. He could not describe the feeling, per se. But he felt looked at. Normally, mountains would give off that feeling, as if someone was being observed by them. But this did not feel the same. It was as if the air, the shadows, the space between the peaks, was staring at him. As if there was some presence laid over them like a blanket, with whisps of itself streaming into Eaton. Sebastian shuddered as he sipped from his coffee, an early brew he had fetched himself from the Mountainview coffee machine. He liked his with milk and sugar, but those were luxuries that were lacking from the Bed and Breakfast, which made this cup as much an ordeal as the six hour drive there had been.

Slowly, some people started to seep in. From the building itself came a forest-green lieutenant, looking intently at the line of vehicles and checking his watch. From context clues, Sebastian made out that this was lieutenant Ryker… Riker? Something like that, Sebastian had never seen it in writing. His point of contact, so Sebastian considered his options. He really should go outside to mark himself present. He reaaaaally should… Unsure, Sebastian looked at the ever-increasing snowfall outside, and at the frost slowly creeping up his windshield. He had only just gotten all the night’s snowfall off, and already, he was going to have to do it all over again. Sebastian looked over at Felix, sitting in the passenger’s seat, hoping for some canine acknowledgement of his predicament. Instead, Felix yawned, looked unimpressed, and then began staring at lieutenant Riker, who was now joined by the sheriff.

“Yeah, I know…” Sebastian said. With an inaudible moan, he opened the car door, only to almost have it ripped off by a tourist Toyota. Checking his mirrors for certainty, he carefully opened the door and walked over to the passenger side, where he opened the door for Felix to exit. Felix looked down at the snowy ground, felt a few snowflakes hit his nose, and then immediately turned around to jump on the back seat. From there, he stared at Sebastian, as if to communicate his unwillingness to exit. The State Park Policeman sighed.

“Alright, have it your way. But you’re going to have to come out someday”

He closed the door and started walking up to Riker, who by then was joined by a few others. They apparently all knew one another, but Sebastian had only recognised Lorraine Fielder, who was heading inside again. Sebastian hoped that at least some State Police would join them, or even some Feds, because being the third wheel in a group of Daramont County police was as close to a nightmare scenario as he could think of, especially after having to drive six hours to get there. He decided to just introduce himself, and hope the others would take it from there.

“Morning” he said simply, trying to sound both professional and laid-back at the same time, but coming across mostly as cold and uncomfortable.

“Sebastian O’Connell, New York State Park Police. But call me Charlie”

He pointed at the car, hoping that the presence of his dog would at least soften some of the frozen hearts.

“Felix, the big coward, is guarding the Ford. Please wave at him to make him feel self-conscious”
The name's James. James Usari. Well, my name is not actually James Usari, so don't bother actually looking it up, but it'll do for now.

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Liberal Democratic Socialists

Postby Kentucky Fried Land » Fri Jan 22, 2021 1:59 pm

Deputy Wyatt Meadows
4:49 AM
Home is Where the Heart Remains

“Fuck!” He wiped his brow and kicked the door. Paint dripped onto his jeans, onto the plastic under his leg. “You just…” His fingers curled up in front of his head. He closed his eyes. Counted to ten. Maybe write it in your journal? Ten seconds passed. Wyatt opened his eyes and saw his mistake again. A brutal white paint job on the door descending into his basement, air bubbles and inconsistencies streaked across each splinter in the wood. The door itself was perfect; factory made, robot handled, trained professional-supervised. Wyatt wasn’t a painter. His knees were propped up, the paint he shook from the door now curling around his ankle.

He spent the next hour scrubbing the floor he had ruined. His bedraggled assortment of plastic had been a weak safety net against the aerial onslaught of skewed coloring. The paint had hardened while he picked the plastic up, dotted breadcrumb reminders of his own ineptitude. The bits that weren’t wiped up were broken and dumped into the trash, then Wyatt proceeded with breakfast. He ate three and a half Pop-Tarts while listening to music from his iPod, headphones draped. He had bought the device from his nephew who had since moved on to bigger and better things, for example, the iPhone.

He moved to his bathroom and showered. It was a twenty-minute ordeal plagued by poor mumble-singing and a pithy frowny face. He didn’t look down once. After bathing, he avoided the mirror and dressed in his police uniform. He drank a full cup of coffee before he needed to get to work, a sordid black roast he let sit for an hour before drinking lukewarm. Within the next thirty minutes Miriam would be here to pick him up. He liked her. She was a good friend - she went out of her way to talk to him when he first arrived, though he showed little interest in initiating conversation with the others. Wyatt figured some of them didn’t like him; if they did, oh well. There was nothing he could ever do about it.

He was sitting on the loveseat in his living room. He checked the curtains and his eyes bulged. A police cruiser sat on the curb of the road and Wyatt sprung to his feet. “Shit.” He muttered and hurried outside, stepping onto his sidewalk. He waved to his ride and smiled as best as he could, then routed an anxious spin and stumbled to lock the front door. With this last notion, he set the rest of his day into motion. Wyatt stomped through the snow and crumpled himself into Miriam’s cruiser, groaning as he did. “Yeah, sorry. Get caught up in myself sometimes.”

He accepted one of her energy drinks and noted her own black eyes in reflection of his own. “Ah, breakfast. Thanks.” He stared at his lap and cracked it open, then chugged the poison mix. While his throat contorted and cringed in response to the drink, Wyatt soaked in Miriam’s words of wisdom. “Right, Bracco.” He hadn’t talked much to the guy. Was he nice? Sure. Was he anything else? Wyatt didn’t know. “I hope he’s alright.” This was the truth; he did hope he was alright, above all else. Despite Bracco’s opinions on women in the service, Miriam had confirmed Wyatt’s suspicions of him being an “okay guy” and “okay guys” didn’t get found dead in ditches, missing without a trace.

“How was…” He spun a finger through the air trying to find the words. “How was your night?” He listened intently to her problems. He had known about them for a while, offered to help a few times, but he knew there was little he could do. Her sister was a job for family or another woman, not a neurotic cop with a penchant for caffeine. Besides, her addictions were biological; his were self-prescribed makeshift pharmaceuticals. “Nothing wrong with a boring life.” He pulled down his sun visor and his head flinched. “If that’s… that’s your thing, y’now.”

He had another idea. “I like to think I’m pretty exciting. You never know when I’m gonna come out the front door. Keep you on your toes.” His tone was still lackadaisical, borderline monotonous. He dropped the empty can into a grocery bag in Miriam’s backseat, then picked up his next. He scanned it and cocked his head. “Blue agave. That’s a new one.” He stretched and prepared his gullet for the next cauldron. More sugar; more caffeine. It tasted horrible, but he needed it. “You really went all out this time. You expecting this to be big?”

He heard her answer and nodded along, then her story about Andrews. The man was a sob story, a Vietnam vet who loved liquor, but could never marry her. “Next time he throws up I’ll spray the back.” His mouth curled into a dissatisfied stupor. “He’s gonna kill himself.” Wyatt hesitated and took another gulp. “There’s an AA group out in Harrington. I could drive him.”

With Miriam’s dejection of his offer, Wyatt nodded, his eyelids drooping. “Yeah. I guess so.”

They reached the station in due time. Traffic was hot today, nine-to-five workers combined with panicked citizens trying to contact friends and family in Malton. How long until the news got all over this? How long until the news blamed Daramont sheriffs for not acting fast enough? The more he mulled over it, the more it didn’t sit right. Were all the phone lines down? What about their Internet? Had their entire infrastructure been destroyed overnight? He groped at his throat. Wasn’t Mike’s wife in Malton? He shuddered at the idea of the man’s demeanor, his mind.

“Yeah. More people than I expected.” He looked for reporters, shirking his head back in case a camera were to find their car. He got out just as she parked, putting his gloves back on and leaving the half-empty can of blue agave in its cup holder. I’ll be back for you, buddy. They pushed through the crowd, Wyatt’s mind turning to solemn electricity in the confuddled conversations plaguing the station. He nodded to Miriam’s advice of finding a seat, following along with her and catching each of the faces. Most he didn’t recognize; only some were his fellow officers. “Excuse me. Excuse me. Sorry, excuse me. I’m sorry. Uh, excuse me.”

Didn’t they have contingencies for blizzards? He couldn’t shake the thought off his mind. For a small town in upper New York, you’d think they’d have prepared for this. Everything was down? What the fuck happened? He pulled his gloves off as they found their spot with the other deputies, then rubbed his hands together for warmth. His toboggan was still left on; the cold was especially harsh today.

There were the usual suspects there. The young detective Harrison, an unusually youthful member of the team. The man was clearly born with a silver spoon; no degree as far as Wyatt knew. It was a blatant offense. He had driven himself into debt, spent four years of his life to study to become a detective; and for what? If had been born white and under the right family, he could be a detective right now. Then there was Kader, the local cop drunk. She was Arabic like him, but they shared little similarities beyond that, despite what residents of the town thought. The two turban fellows from the Big Apple; peas in a pod. He thought she was alright; she was nothing like him.

Mike was the other local. They hadn’t talked much, but they were amicable. Wyatt maybe unfairly lumped him in with other locals; ones who saw him as another soulless transfer, the uncaring boy prospect who came to make their lives hell. Wyatt didn’t try to make their lives hell; had he?

He had lived his entire life under the thumb of others’ misconceptions, the flower boy bomber, the pig traitor, the traitor pig. Kickings to the ribs, chases through the alleys. He wanted to like Mike. Mike was a nice guy, but there was that preconception that Wyatt gave him. Then there was Shaw, the weirdest of the bunch. Wyatt was afraid he had been giving New Yorkers a bad name, a bad tell, a rotten core. He was strange, bizarre, more so than Wyatt had ever been. There was resentment there, unintentional or not. Finally, Riker came up. He was a nice man with the disposition of protecting his deputies first and foremost. Others said he had a light accent, but you give a New Yorker even a hint of Southern and it was like a whole other world.

They found their place next to Mike, who Miriam began to talk to. Wyatt pursed his lips and looked at him, smiled, nodded once. Christ. His fucking wife.
Last edited by Kentucky Fried Land on Fri Jan 22, 2021 4:49 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Hastur » Fri Jan 22, 2021 2:01 pm

0633
February 23rd 2012
Eaton City, State of New York
Miriam Julia Langenberg





Miriam remained inside the police cruiser, the late winter and fresh dawn chill outside holding her securely inside of the automobile. She peered towards the residence in which she had been many times. A small, ordinary suburban home submerged in snow that had been tormenting them for a moment, from November in fact. Inside was her patrol partner and friend, Clive. She had been carpooling with him for a while, and it was her turn to do so. Miriam had phoned him a few minutes ago and suspected he was getting ready. The grasp of anxiousness brewed in her mind. The task that they had enlisted her for today was a troubling one at that.

Bracco. The new guy of the department had failed to return from his welfare check up in Malton. She liked him; he was a pleasant guy when she rode with him as part of his probationary period when nobody else could fill that role. Excitable, but he was constantly well meaning outside of that one derogatory comment he made that she took offense to. He was a good guy.

The presumption had been that it was a simple communications blackout in that mountain town. They happened from time to time in secluded places like this. All the department needed to do was send someone up and find out. He got signed up for it, a simple enough task for the new guy to do solo. Now he hadn’t come back. He must have got lost or stuck. That was the solution that made the most sense to Miriam.

The winding roads got little service during the off seasons, and the snowstorm that they got had been a bad one. The roads this year were likely caked in thick snow. It would be easy for an automobile to get stuck up on those hills. Hell, it had happened to her on not one but three such occasions throughout her life. That’s not what worried her however, it was the fact he wasn’t answering his radio. Poor reception? Or had something worse occurred? The idea of a freak accident ran riot in her brain.

She had got the call once to a collision. The driver had hit a trophy buck. An enormous and majestic animal that ended up going onto the hood. The antlers going through the windshield and impaling the forty something driver to his seat. By the time anyone had found the trashed car, he was dead. The guy wasn’t even anyone she knew, just some poor nobody from out of state who was going god knows were. It was the second dead person she saw. The animal had pierced his lung, resulting in him drowning to death on his own blood. That’s what the coroner’s report had revealed. A freak incident. An event that could happen to anyone. She pondered about it from time to time. It stuck with her, his vacant expression and the perception of arbitrary, dreadful events transpiring at random.

Perhaps something like that had happened to him? Why wasn’t he responding to his radio calls? Miriam irked herself, deciding to terminate the unpleasant speculation. She had a pattern of assuming the worst. That’s what Angela, her therapist, had said. It was a manifestation of everything that had brought her to the present. Multiple occasions shaping her thought process into what it was. She often wondered how different she would be if those milestones had never happened. Maybe she’d be working as an attorney at law rather than pushing the black and white like her father. It was his fault she was in position. A series of “unforeseen consequences” which directly affected her sister and herself. Bringing the already rocky home life to ruin.

Her therapist had told her (in a rather roundabout way) not to blame him, that he didn’t mean for what had happened. That seemed to be the story of her life at this point, him doing things that he and then being surprised when those actions have consequences, affecting the people around him so negatively. Maybe if he’d paid attention to his family life for once rather than chasing his job and hedonism he would have noticed that it was put together with decaying duct tape. Maybe if that had just been once, she could live and forget, but it had been multiple times. He had lost it all now, and she could help but feel sorry for him despite it all. That is why she was here, and that sense of depression was coming back again. She had to stop dwelling. It was what Angela had said.

Hearing a soft slam, Miriam stopped pondering as she observed her friend exit from his home. Wyatt scurried over to the car as he sought to get in from the cold. He was dressed in the recognizable Daramont County Sheriff’s Department uniform. The black fleece cap, green trousers, black snow boots, thermals, tan shirt, and green jacket. All the same material she was wearing. She watched quietly as he climbed into the car, glancing over to the passenger seat as he got seated.

Wyatt had transplanted from the NYPD a few years ago, and he was probably the closest thing to a best friend she had at the moment. A generally quiet guy, the two often found themselves partnered up, having worked the Drug Interdiction Task Force together. She knew about his past, and the burns. Everytime she thought about them she couldn’t help but feel sorry for him, but she refrained from talking about it. The conversations usually turned into that of work, after work and their families.

“Took your time.” She stated. A sunken and anxious presence in her eyes as she attempted a smile despite the worried expression persisted on her face. “I got that stuff that you like. You know the stuff that tastes like ass.” She continued, the expression slowly fading but to her neutral expression as she pointed towards a bag that sat near the centre console. It was crammed with assorted groceries, mainly snacks and energy drinks. The several five-hour energy shots were for her. She foresaw it’d be a long day, and she had got little sleep the night before.

Wyatt made a comment about it being breakfast. Miriam sighed silently at that. Watching him take out one of the disgusting drinks she swore only he liked. She didn’t even like the five-hour energy shots, but they were essential in the line of work for long shifts. Miriam wasn’t even sure if they had a physical effect. She had a high caffeine tolerance, but it was more of a psychological requirement. “Lunch and dinner, I’m afraid. We’re going up to Malton, you know, Bracco? the task force? Likely going to be up there all day. I hope he’s alright.” Miriam added as that sense of dread reappeared on her face as she put the vehicle into gear. She looked forward, mentally punishing herself. She had to stop being so neurotic.

Wyatt quickly grabbed her attention as he struggled to find his words, wagging his finger in the air before asking how her night had been. What a joke. “Ok. Helped my dad with some stuff. Saw my sister at the halfway house, who is doing better, by the way. Nothing exciting. I live a boring life. My excitement is this, dealing with old drunk bastards and delinquents.” She went on. A short, forced smile appeared on her face as she sought to hold up appearances before handling a turn.

She took a right towards the station, it now being an hour or so ride in that direction. Wyatt mentioned boring lives were fine, if that’s what you were into. Miriam just wasn’t into hers. He later made a quip about how exciting he was, in how he liked to make her wait outside in this numbing weather. He was trying to be amusing in that usual way: sarcastic, monotonous. “Fuck you.” Miriam returned, producing off a swift flash of her middle finger towards him before withdrawing her hand back into the proper ten two position. The discussion quickly shifted back to the drinks she brought, Wyatt asking if she thought it was task today that big of a deal. “Yeah, he’s not answering his radio.” She answered as she got into the city limits of Eaton.

“I had to deal with Andrews again last night.” She said, electing to switch the exchange quickly. “Right before the end of my shift, too. Jesus Christ, if I deal with him after his eighth vodka and coke, I am going to kill him. Barely got the smell of puke out of the car the last time.” She continued, her face subtly twitching in distaste as she remembered the stench. Wyatt offered to take him to an AA group in Harrington, Miriam simply shook her head in response. She’d tried that twice before, but it didn’t work. “I think he’s past that point. Needs to get out of it himself.”






0825
February 23rd 2012
Eaton City, State of New York
Miriam Julia Langenberg





As the squad car pulled within sight range of the department, she spotted a distinct problem. They occupied the front parking area with vehicles of all types. The task force today wasn’t fooling around, the sheriff really was dropping in the cavalry to find him and what was wrong with the town. It made her feel marginally better about it, at least as she pulled in.

“They’re really pulling out all the stops, huh?” she said to Wyatt, nodding towards the crowded front. “That’s probably not even all of them.” A familiar voice broke over the radio, a general announcement to all units. It was Riker, her supervisor, a voice easily identifiable from the faint southern drawl he had. A general request for them to pull around the south end and use the real parking lot, before directing them to meet at the front. Miriam quickly did so, pulling her vehicle around, navigating the bustling area and bringing it to a stop in a parking space near the back end of the building.

“We better get a move on.” She declared, climbing out of the vehicle as she proceeded with Wyatt towards the building. Keeping a brisk pace as she got inside. They crowded the lobby area with cops of all catalogues. People in various uniforms, and some not even in a uniform at all. The bulk, however, were her co-workers. Walsh, Harrison, Kader, Shaw and Riker were there.

Miriam knew most of them well enough. She’d grown up around and went to the same high school as Harrison, but never actually engaged with him much back then, outside of the occasional cop family get together. Harrison was like her. Another local with family in the law enforcement that ended up following along, going in the same repeating circle. Due to him being a detective, she hadn’t worked with him enough. How the hell he made detective without a degree and at twenty-two had her curiosity, however. It always struck her as nepotistic, but she kept her mouth sealed. She liked him well enough.

Shaw was a maturer man, a transplant from New York. There were a bunch of them in this department and she found transplants got a lot of shit from the local deputies. She didn’t mind it personally and found the attitude rather foolish. With Shaw however she could maybe get it. She’d worked with him a few times and found him strange. Guy liked to take risks. Other than that, she had nothing much else to say about him.

Kader was another transplant, but around her age. She’d moved fairly recently, within the last few years. Having served in the army before arriving here, ending up as a cop. Miriam had hung out with her frequently and thought of her as a friend. That being said, however, she loved her liquor. It was more than a routine occurrence at the get-togethers for Miriam to end up driving her home. She had become good at evading it recently, bailing before Kader reached her tenth or so drink. Because it generally resulted in Miriam getting roped into more drinking, which didn’t bring out the best in her. Miriam got depressed when she drank too much.

She knew Walsh well. He was a local who had worked with her father when she was growing up throughout her teenage years. Miriam did a portion of the community activity with him and recognized his family well. Hell, she’d been round his house more times than she could count and even coached his girl in basketball, who had some talent for defense Miriam had discovered. She appreciated him and they got along well when they worked together. She guessed if anyone was a great candidate for a promotion, it’d be him. The only negative thing she could honestly say was the man was a stickler for paperwork and protocol. But he remained where he was, stuck as a senior deputy. He must really loved the position he was at.

Riker was the last transplant she could see, but he was unique in two respects from the rest. He was a former port authority and had family here. A line of blood connecting him here. His grandfather, Ed, had been one sheriff in the county. He was one of the good ones as far as she could recall. As Miriam’s lieutenant, she worked under him a good bit, mainly within the Drug Interdiction Task Force. She respected him as her boss and looked at him as a friend. He had her back on that complaint she’d got a few years ago over her aggressive outburst.

“Come on, let's find a spot.” She said before she began moving through the crowd. Trying to find a position to stand alongside Wyatt. She got as close as she could to Walsh as she did. She was worried about him; she knew that his wife was up in Malton. She figured she’d be ok, the most likely cause was a power outage. But if she were in his position, it’d be driving her crazy. She assumed the situation, even without factoring in Bracco, would be stressing him out too. “Morning Mike.”She said, her mouth shaping up into a friendly smile. “You doing alright? How's Morgan?”
Last edited by Hastur on Fri Jan 22, 2021 10:19 pm, edited 4 times in total.
The limbed and headed machine of pain and undignified suffering is firing up again. It wants to walk the desert. Hurting. Longing. Dancing to disco music.

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Tayner
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Tayner » Fri Jan 22, 2021 6:35 pm

Daramont County Sheriff's Department
February 23rd, 2012
Sameera Kader


Walsh was the next to arrive, greeting the two as they began to huddle up at the rally point. “Mornin LT, Morning Sa-… Morning Kader,” He spoke, stopping himself from slipping up. It was a slightly awkward situation, her going by a nickname that also happened to be her coworker's significant other's name. It often led to some confusion when she first joined the department, but eventually Walsh came around to calling her by her last name, which she had no problem with. Her time in the Army had been spent with her responding to her last name only, and as a deputy things weren't much different. She regularly was only addressed by her first name by her closer friends and only when off duty by the rest. Sam wouldn't be loosing any sleep over it, in fact she was so used to hearing her last name that she didn't give it a second thought most of the time, unlike when people used her first name. Hell, it had been a while since she even heard her full first name, something only reserved for formal introductions and paperwork at this point.

Walsh's wife was up at Malton, something that concerned him greatly, something she noticed even if he tried to conceal it. She had been through similar situations before, battle buddies in a different element being ambushed further up the MSR in Iraq, her having to sit and wait until the leadership decided exactly how they were going to charge in and save the day. Instead of waiting, she'd wish they'd just act. Time wasted was lives wasted, and she respected the guy for being able to restrain himself from charging up that mountain alone.

Harrison arrived next, a local good ol' boy who was practically born into the job. Some though it was nepotism that led him to be such a young investigator, but Sam had only heard good things about the deputy turned detective. Maybe his record was good enough to get him there on his own, maybe his parents called in a favor, either way the guy was good at his job, so even if it was nepotism Sam couldn't complain. There definitely could be worse options. He seemed like an okay enough character, the two meeting once or twice at department functions or in the station's break room. A smile, wave, and normally a greeting or remark about the weather composed 90% of their interactions, but Sam did congratulate him when she learned he was engaged.

Shaw was next, one of the transplants. A good officer from what she had heard, one who had the scars to prove it. They shared little in common, but they had always been cordial, him being a fellow patrol officer. She'd backed him up a time or two for some domestic calls. A little old to be just a country town equivalent to a beat cop, but maybe he enjoyed the work, or simply stayed where the department needed him. There was always a need for good deputies on the streets, and Shaw was such.

A statie arrived next, bearing LT's bars and a K-9. Kader didn't hate state officers getting into local affairs as much as others did. Sure it was annoying when it came down to jurisdiction, but manpower is manpower at the end of the day, and state cops weren't nearly as bad as feds. He introduced his partner, and Sam obliged his request, smiling and waving at the dog who was smart enough to stay within the warm confines of the man's pickup truck. Sam would be lying if she said she didn't have a soft spot for canines in her heart. She'd often leave food out for strays back in the city, and some of her fellow soldiers worked with canines back in the Army. "I'm Kader, nice truck." She simply stated, introducing herself, although electing to keep her hands in her pockets due to the cold. Hopefully he'd understand.

The next to arrive were Meadows and Langenberg. The two made quick friends, Meadows being a transplant and Miriam Langenberg being a pilgrim who returned home to take care of family matters, ending up staying on. Meadows was similar to most others, kind in passing. The two had shared a few conversations and worked together a few times, but they shared little in common than the color of their skin and where they grew up. Meadows went to school after high school though, got an education. Sam had tried the same after the Army but it didn't work out for her. Thankfully, her training was good enough on her resume for the department.

Miriam was one of Sam's few friends on the force. Sure, she was friendly with most, but Miriam was one of the few who she actually got along with outside of work, even if it was mostly her being her designated driver. Besides Riker, Miriam was one of the few she actually shared details of her service in the Army with, even then she left a lot of the harsher stories out and watered down what she did share. She doesn't need to know that when I got hit by an IED two other soldiers got torn to pieces, Sam figured. Miriam was also one of the few she met who bothered to try to keep pace drinking with her. She rarely matched Sam shot for shot, but she often came close when neither one was driving, although Sam doubted she did much drinking outside of social events.

Some figured Sam had a problem, but she saw it otherwise. I'm an adult, and I'm an American. She thought. I show up to work on time and sober, what I do in my free time is my business. She'd picked up the bottle when she was in the Army, although she was underage it wasn't hard to avoid getting caught as long as you covered your bases and knew a guy who'd pick it up from the store for you. She didn't start drinking heavily until a while after she got out. She didn't know why, but somehow it helped with all the baggage she carried, and she rarely had a better night's sleep than when she went to sleep hammered. She had enough experience to not do anything too stupid, and a cold shower and cup of coffee always fixed her up before work.

She greeted each person as they arrived, smiling and and pretending to be ignorant of her reputation, nothing good would come of getting defensive about it since she was mostly left alone. She looked back at the lineup of vehicles, besides the Sheriff's Department and the Statie, there was a bigger SUV with blacked out windows that screamed federal. Sam sighed, although she was once on the federal payroll herself, things were different now. It wasn't a jurisdiction thing in the Army, but rather everyone had the same mission and worked together to accomplish it. Now it was like two dogs fighting over a piece of meat, except for things weren't so cut and dry between where the lines of jurisdiction were as well as the paperwork that accompanied such a joint endeavor.

This wasn't the first time Malton had gone dark, but they usually had things back up and running before long, and the fact that the deputy they sent had yet to come back, she herself was concerned. It could be a coincidence, but some disaster could've struck, and with the winter conditions they were experiencing, Sam didn't like the way things looked. Someone further up the chain of command obviously shared the same sentiment, leading to the task force being thrown together. At best, it was some extra overtime, at worse, well- Sam cut the thought short. Just focus on the job, go out there, figure out what's wrong, fix it, and come back. A simple enough task.
If anyone askes where we were Saturday at 14:30, we were at The Pub, understand?

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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Bolslania » Sun Jan 24, 2021 10:08 am

Mattock pulled into the small town of Eaton, he had been driving for 6 hours. The trip from New York City to this northern town was a boring and long one. He had maybe seen 5 cars on the way up. His big Chevy Suburban was drawing some attention from the locals, the lights rigged to the underside of the chassis and under the headlights making it clearly some form of police vehicle. That and the ram bars. As he pulled over to the side of the road to look again at his GPS, he noticed something of a convoy of police vehicles heading down the street. They had a variety of insignia, some were local police, others were State Trooper vehicles. He decided to join in on whatever was happening.

He followed the police vehicles around the back of the Sherriff's Station, killing the engine and stepping out of the vehicle. He had spent enough time in the FBI to know that local police weren't fond of State Troopers, and even less fond of Federal Police, such as himself. He picked up his badge and holster with his pistol from the center console, affixing the holster to his waist and putting the badge in his suit pocket. He smoothed out some minor wrinkles in his suit and headed off towards the cluster of police assembling outside of the front doors of the building. He prepared himself for the hopefully subtle hostility he was about to be met with.

Walking up to the group, he introduced himself.

"Senior Special Agent Mattock, FBI. What's going on?" Mattock asked in a very professional manner, presenting his badge for the Sherriff to see before putting it back into his suit pocket. He thought that it would be best to not alienate these people immediately, at least more than he would anyway due to his career choice.
Last edited by Bolslania on Wed Jan 27, 2021 8:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Recon
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Democratic Socialists

Postby Recon » Mon Jan 25, 2021 9:24 pm

Mike Walsh
08:29
February 23rd 2012
Daramont County Sheriff's Department
Eaton City, State of New York


As the bodies filed in, Mike remembered to nod at each in turn. The faces were mostly familiar, usually the type you would say good morning too or talk a bit about the weather or the Giants and the Superbowl, nice enough types. Only a few he knew well. The reality that you were relying on whoever was in the car coming to back you up, meant cops in Daramont County kept it friendly enough, well Mike did. You never knew who you would be relying on or need a favour from. If there was a problem - and that wasn't unheard of, he liked to think he was the type just to get on with the job. Those deputies who were sloppy, brutal or took risks, sooner or later would run out of road. Better to let them burn themselves out, in a small town like this personal problems were costly, especially when you will inevitably run into someone downtown or at school or at church. You can't simply move a block and never see that person again, like down in the city, here there was nowhere to hide. The traffic had begun to clear and apparently the young FBI agent was the last to arrive, they were all here.

I hope so

They were quite the sight, seven deputies, a statie, his dog and a fed? This was beginning to feel like overkill. For a lost deputy and a bit of bad weather? What were they expecting up there? The only one who was going to make a killing when they got to Lake Malton would be the grills, with nine new and hungry customers. Bracco probably would be starving as well when they found him. Here’s hoping the kitchens wouldn’t be shut. It was a long way to drive for a sandwich.

Shifting the coffee cup into his left hand, he pulled back his coat sleeve to check his watch. The morning sun glared on the dial, so he cupped his hand to shield it, the minute hand was almost on the six.

8:30. The sooner we get up there, the better

Mike had made sure, as required by the department, that his cruiser was full of gas before the shift started. He had stopped off at the filling station on the way back to top it up again, just to be certain he was ready and on time. He was prepared, but the others? The statie with the trailer and the fed in the Chevy? How far had they driven?

We`ll be lucky to be on the road for nine at this rate

He could feel knots growing in his stomach; he took a deep drink of the coffee, hoping it would settle.

Just thinking of them going slowly in-line all the way up the highway to the resort or wherever Bracco had slid off the road, put his teeth on edge. Instead of wasting all this time, he could set off now, check the roads, check the conditions and get Devin out of there, out of the cold. Bracco was a young guy, enthusiastic but inexperienced. He probably hadn't strayed too far from the highway; he wouldn’t have strayed too far from what he knew. Or at least Mike hoped he hadn’t.

I`ve been up and down that highway more times than I can remember

But Mike could see how this was going to play out. Riker had already sent up one deputy and lost him. So now they would go slow and steady, methodically and carefully recovering Bracco and re-establishing contact with the town. Not an approach Mike would usually disagree with, it was the best way to get everyone home safely. But it still bothered him, he wondered why. It took a uncomfortable moment before he came up with a reassuring answer; it was the waste of personnel, the rest of the city would have to make do without them for much of the day. It would be hard to look after the city if we have eight deputies up at the resort all day.

That’s why

He felt someone stepping beside him, Wyatt and Miriam. They spent so much time together on duty; they were more than just partners, they almost lived in each other’s shadows.

Wyatt smiled and nodded, Mike nodded back.

He was a strange case, a city boy, another NYPD recruit and even worse a celebrity, fresh from his five minutes of fame and coming here at 25 for an early retirement. He hadn’t made the best first impression, he wasn’t the usual big city loud and brash type, he was quiet and aloof, something Mike – understandably- had taken as classic New York City contempt. The stars were aligning for him to just hate this guy. Why would someone like him choose little old Eaton? It was only after he found out about the nephew did Mike give him a second look. There are few secrets in a small town, especially for a cop. Most city types came up here for the easy life and don’t involve themselves too much in community. They were tourists or worse occupiers, coming here to take the pay check, enjoy the scenery and coast until retirement. Wyatt had followed his family up here; he had responsibilities, a deadbeat brother and his nephew, he had something to protect.

“Mornin”,

He smiled at Miriam, she was one of the few he knew well, one of the few who had their heart in the right place.

“Yeah I`m fine”,

The circles under his eyes and the weight gain said something different,

“Just ready to get going, I haven’t been up to Malton in a good while. It will be nice to see everyone and get Bracco back quickly. Sam’s pretty busy in season, so if we set off soon, hopefully we can have lunch together. I’ve got some stuff for her in the cruiser. I keep telling myself, only a few weeks now and we`ll all be together”.

How’s Morgan?

“Morgan? Yeah she’s good. I dropped her off this morning.”

He would have stopped there for most people, but Miriam knew Morgan and perhaps knew something about the school, he sighed.

Lowering his voice, so the others could -hopefully- not hear he continued,

“Someone at school found out about the phones going down at Lake Malton and they started making up stories. You heard anything about that? She came home very upset. I told her there was nothing to it. Just typical winter storms, it’s pretty normal for the phones to go down, batteries to run out and everything. I told her, I’d call her when I am up there with Sam. Get them both on the phone and put this to rest. Kids you know, they already have too much to worry about, they don’t need anything extra. She’s ok now; she knows we are going up there today. I told her in police work, the simplest answer is usually the right one”,

Usually
Last edited by Recon on Mon Jan 25, 2021 9:52 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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Cylarn
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Postby Cylarn » Tue Jan 26, 2021 11:58 am

Gradually, the members of the task force parked their vehicles and made their way to the indicated staging point. Deputy Kader was the first to approach Riker; the wind blew just enough for Riker to pick up the scent of stale alcohol and freshly-burned tobacco on her breath as she greeted him. Kader knew how to smarten herself up in uniform, but to Riker, she gave off the vibe of an ROTC cadet showing up hung-over to a morning formation. But beneath that tired exterior, Riker knew that she was more than capable at carrying out the duties of her profession. Kader was someone who remembered every bit of hardship that had come their way; he knew about Kader's miscarriage and the death of her marriage, and the deployments. It's all understandable, but everything comes to a head.. He cracked a smirk and reached into his pocket, revealing to the Arab-American officer a tin of wintergreen mints. With a light chuckle, he decided to crack wise at her expense.

"Forgot to brush again, huh Sam?" he asked impishly, flashing a grin as if to let her know that he was jesting. "Or did you use that new toothpaste made by Jack Daniels?"

"Morning LT, Morning Sa - Kader. Still no word from Bracco? I guess we are going up to get him then. Let's hope we won't have to dig him out."

Jim put on a welcoming smile and returned the wave to Walsh, but deep down, his personal empathy attacked at his heart. Walsh had gone to school with Valerie and despite knowing of Mike Walsh's disdain for the NYPD transplants, the two worked well together. Like many of the other deputies who would be joining the task force, Walsh was a frequent guest at the Riker house. And now, his wife was in Lake Malton; Walsh didn't have to say anything, as far as Jim was concerned. His wife is in Malton. He may be holding it together right now, but she is the first thing on his mind. If it was Valerie, I would feel the same. Jim shook his head.

Meadows and Langenberg approached just before Riker opened his mouth, offering degrees of supporting words to Walsh. The two had pulled up seemingly together to the department. Not uncommon for those two. Part of him wondered if the two deputies were in a relationship. Not my place to make an issue of it until it becomes an issue. All in all, the two of them were consummate professionals. Meadows and Riker, and Shaw as well, even had mutual friends from NYC. Langenberg and Riker shared a distinction of legacy within the department; their grandfathers served the county as elected Sheriffs, and were certainly among the most prolific in recent memories.

"Nothing yet, but we're only about 45 minutes out from Lake Malton," Jim said, hoping to offer some reassurance. "I'm not prone to freezing my dick off for too long, so we'll be there in time for Brunch."

Harrison showed up next, smoking a cigarette. While Jim didn't personally know the detective, he knew of Harrison's record, and it was nothing to complain about. He asked if he had missed anything. Again, Jim shook his head. "I'll get to that in a moment, Harrison. There's not much new, but I want to get everyone together for a proper briefing."

Shaw gave a salute to Riker, who responded by raising his right eyebrow. Is that supposed to be something, or...we don't salute. Jim decided to have fun with it, prefacing his next remark with chuckle and a smile. "Lake Malton did send word that you don't have to salute me."

Jim's attention was grabbed next by the arrival of the State Park Police. The F150 roared into its spot, and Jim witnessed the trooper hastily shut his door to avert an accidental impact with a tiny Toyota. Jim chuckled, walking over away from the group of officers. He could see a Bloodhound inquisitively looking out of the window of the truck, while its partner, a burly-looking park cop, strode over to the staging area. Jim looked down at the nametag; O'Connell. He also noticed the silver bars on O'Connell's shirt collar. I hope this won't be an issue of authority. But...what about that Suburban? Who is that?

But then, O'Connell addressed and introduced in such a manner that Jim dropped his concerns on authority. O'Connell was here to assist, and it appeared he knew his place. Jim gave a courteous nod to Sebastian, and held out his hand for a shake.

"I'll call you 'Sea-Bass,'" Jim poked in jest. "I'm Jim Riker."

After a firm handshake, Jim turned his attention to the alert dog watching him from inside of the truck. Jim smiled; dogs held a special place in his heart. Sebastian called out his canine companion, asking for the dog to be made self-conscious. Jim locked eyes with the dog and shot his head up towards the sky, making a sort of baying 'woof' at the animal.

Finally, Jim took sight of the approaching agent. The man carried himself with a professional strife, and carefully groomed appearance. FBI. The type wasn't hard to spot, and the agent - Mattock - wasted no time in laying out his credentials in his introduction.

"Senior Special Agent Mattock, FBI. What's going on here?"

Jim turned his body to face the agent, pausing before responding to the agent but maintaining eye contact. The presence of the FBI was not expected, although FBI cooperation - and that of other federal agencies - was not uncommon to the department as a whole. I don't know why he's here. Fielder would have said something. Jim looked down at his watch. 0829. He looked back to Mattock.

"Well then, Agent Mattock, you got here just in time," Jim replied. "I don't know if you've got business with CID, but feel welcome to listen in, because I got to brief these guys."

He turned to the group of deputies, and waved his right hand in the air.

"Yo, rally on me," he shouted, using his diaphragm. Once everyone was rallied up, it was time to deliver the orders of the day.

"We're waiting on a plow, but we can go ahead and get a move on things. First thing's first, our purpose is to go up to Lake Malton on a general welfare check of the community."

He looked over in Walsh's direction, but not directly at him. "It's been a few days, but this isn't out of the ordinary for a place like Lake Malton. It is a bitch to drive up to, and if you talk to the linemen and the DOT, everything running up that mountain - from the cell towers and powerlines to the highway - is bound to break. Worst-case scenario is that the power's out and the buildings have lost heat, so if that goes down, we will have to radio for a repair crew to drive out."

"And I know that there are concerns on Deputy Bracco's well-being. Some of you probably know that there is static coming from his end. Currently our Comms guys are working with the State to triangulate his exact position, so once we get closer and Comms sends us his location, a couple of you will be dispatched to rendezvous with him. But our first point of contact will be with the resort, given that-"

Without warning, each walkie talkie worn by the Daramont County personnel erupted with the roar of a shrill, high-pitched static sound. Startled, Jim jumped and reached down to his radio. It was particularly striking; inspiring among the officers, a feeling of certain unease. A howl.

"Christ!" Jim hollered, flipping his radio channel to a different departmental frequency and immediately keying his mic.

"Comms, this is Riker. What what all that? Over."

He released the button. Fielder's voice came through on the other end. "Not a clue; maybe interference. But that came through on Bracco's end. Over."

Jim's sunk a little bit lower. Something didn't feel right. He attempted to put a reassuring, stoic look on his face. What the hell?

"Did Comms find his location yet? Over."

"Affirmative. Texting you now. Are you ready to go? Over."

"Waiting on the plow truck. Over."

"We will have the plow come off the interstate and join you on the highway. Get a move on. Over and out."

"10-4. Over and out."

It's time to go. Jim motioned over to the collection of idle police vehicles parked before the department building.

"Right folks, time to quit dicking around. Pick someone to carpool with and load up."

Jim then turned back to Mattock. "I don't have much time, but why are you here, Agent Mattock?"
Last edited by Cylarn on Tue Jan 26, 2021 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Bolslania
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Postby Bolslania » Tue Jan 26, 2021 12:47 pm

Mattock internalized the Sherriff's quickness. Everything about the Sherriff was tense and quick. He rattled out a briefing, a deputy had gone missing up the mountain at a resort location. It appeared that all contact from that area was dead.

Oh shit. Mattock thought to himself, being from Maine he was more than familiar with the dangers of living up north. A deputy being unable to maintain radio contact meant only a few things. One, he was dead. Two, somehow radio transmissions had been interrupted. The town losing contact wasn't anything special, that happened all the time during a blizzard or something like that. Mattock twitched slightly when the radio static blasted the group, and the comms technicians alerted that the static was coming in from Bracco. Mattock observed the group around him, a Statie, and K-9 officer--who would be pretty useful-- and assorted Sherriff's Department officers. One of them had a definite military bearing, standing bolt upright. Mattock was beginning to regret not putting on his coat before heading up here, he didn't figure they'd be standing out this long in the cold. He had however grabbed winter gear that he had compiled in the back of his vehicle, he just had been too distracted by the police activity to grab it on the way out.

"I don't have much time, but why are you here, Agent Mattock?"

"I'm here for Zachary Lloyd. Wanted Criminal that I'm hunting down, we got a tip that he was heading here from New York. I was supposed to get your help with apprehending him. However it appears you have your own issues, and I am more than willing to help you recover your Deputy if you need an extra man." Mattock said, he appreciated the Sherriff's to-the-point behavior. It made working with local police that much easier. he didn't bother to ask about whether the Sherriff's Department had received the E-mail that the FBI had sent them to give the Sherriff a heads-up, quite clearly he hadn't. He wouldn't be asking otherwise.
Last edited by Bolslania on Wed Jan 27, 2021 12:08 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Hastur
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Hastur » Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:16 pm

0830
February 23rd 2012
Eaton City, State of New York
Miriam Julia Langenberg




Miriam stared at Walsh thoughtfully as he spoke. He insisted he was fine, expressing the ease of the job they had would be. His tone detached. It seemed almost surreal as he continued talking about having lunch with his partner and how they’d be getting Branco down from that mountain soon. The evidence told a different story, however. He looked heavier, and his eyes expressed a sunken expression. Being clearly worried about the loss of communication, losing sleep and failing to eat. He was in denial. A coping mechanism that often kept people going when they should break down. She’d been there before. When her mum passed in her own bed. Miriam just kept telling herself she was sleeping.

This was an extraordinary situation. One that Miriam wasn’t certain what to think. Power went out in rural places all the time, but for six days? Throw in the circumstance that a deputy had gone missing, and it didn’t look good. Two incidents that could readily take place individually and no one would bat an eye, but both at once? it makes people think, just like she had been earlier. That creeping thought that played games with her, making knots in her gut as anxiousness ran riot.

He proceeded on, informing her about Morgan. Miriam listened as he voiced his worries about other kids causing issues. Apparently the rumours about the loss of contact were already spreading, and they’d found out that her mother was up there. Miriam recognized the feeling all too well, and the emotional torture that juveniles could engage in. She watched him as he pretended there was nothing to worry about, rationalising it all. All while having that sunken expression on his face.

Miriam remained hushed for a moment, contemplating what to say. She feared for Branco's wellbeing and craved to express it. But she wasn’t about to voice her anxieties to Walsh. Miriam could tell he was on edge, an erratic blend of emotion that if played with could cause him to break down. They needed Walsh in a steady state. He was one of the most senior staff here, If he started showing weakness, fear would spread fast, and she didn’t want to be a participant in spreading it.

Miriam simply turned on her best smile, her face creasing up into a shrewd grin. A fake one she had gotten good at doing over the years. One she gave when she wished for everything to seem ok. Almost indistinguishable from her natural state, excluding the eyes. They invariably gave it away, the look of dread subtly showing itself. “Yeah, teenagers are genuine pieces of work.“ She added, her voice clear as she pretended it was all nothing. “I’m sure when we get up there we will clear this up.” She continued for a second, that fear continuing to linger in her head, peaking around in the recesses of her brain. “We’ll go up to the lodge together. Find her together, you, me and Wyatt.”

Miriam turned at Riker giving the order, watching him walk away from a rather professionally dressed man as the lieutenant ordered them to group up. She quickly rallied up as he began his briefing that he’d been preparing in the last few minutes.

She listened as he went over the plan. They were waiting for a plow to clear the road for them to drive them up the mountain and to the resort in order to perform a welfare check. She knew the roads would be packed with snow now if they hadn’t been up there for six days. It’d be hell if they had to take any sort of alternate route, especially in the crown vics. They just weren’t designed for driving in places like this, even with the right modifications.

Miriam watched as he glanced over at Walsh’s position, as he attempted to dispel some concerns. A few days was two or three days, six was a lot more than that. Miriam didn’t think that was ordinary. Especially when nobody had come down. The uncertainty only grew worse as he advanced onto Bracco. Mentioning the fact that it had been broadcasting static, and that they had been triangulating his position.

She realized that wasn’t good. Ideas wreaked havoc, causing chaos. If they picked up that static, it meant that communications were still working to a degree, and that he’d have to be holding the button down. Why isn’t he saying anything? What in the hell is going on? Her train of thought became rapidly broken by the shriek of her radio. The handset blaring out something she couldn’t understand. A loud outcry of static coming across it that caused her cringe in dismay. She observed as confusion spread throughout the ranks before Riker and the boys in communication established the location. Whatever it was, it was happening from Bracco's end.

Her breathing grew tight as her mind ran its course, her hands quivering as a chill shot down her back. Why did they just get that? Why isn’t he speaking? More questions of why ran through her skull at a mile a minute. Overloading anything else as it clouded her thought process. Her heart was pounding against her chest wall. An atmosphere of nausea brewing in her abdomen as it seemed like she was being suffocated. Fear was taking over in the pandemonium of speculation. Using it as a weapon to hold her hostage. She recognized what it was trying to do, and would not let it.

Miriam had no desire to look weak in front of her co-workers. She was not going to look weak. She may not have wanted to be here, but she was here. She was as good as anyone else, she wouldn’t let anything else say otherwise. Miriam shoved her hands in her pockets, suppressing the trembling hands as swiftly as they appeared. Taking a sharp breath as she battled against the feeling of suffocation. Clearing her mind of the issue as best she could. Beating the beast back into the recess of her mind.

Breathe. Breathe. That’s what he said when you get like this. Just breathe.

She had to stop assuming the worst. Miriam wiped her face with her now steady hand, the sense of suffocation dissipating as hastily as it appeared. The only way she was going to get clear of this uneasiness was by going up and finding out what actually happened. She hoped it was something explainable, quiet. That it was just a power blackout and that the new guy had become disoriented. But her gut told her otherwise that something was dreadfully awry. An instinctual feeling one gets looking into a darkened and uncertain room. A survival instinct.

The order came down for them to mount up, and to carpool with someone so they could get a move on. She could see Riker had a deflated look on his face. She was glad that she wasn’t the only one that felt unease at least.

“lets get a move on.” Miriam said firmly to her friend Wyatt. “See you up there, Mike.” She continued, showing off a weary wave with that phony smile as she headed back out the door they had come in. Walking out into the cold again. The frigid weather renewing its offensive against them as they trudged towards the old crown vic.

“I’m not going crazy, right?” Miriam asked, her fake grin long passed as a contemplative but worried look emerged on her face, a unique expression for her. “Like something isn’t right, you get that too, don’t you? Tell me I’m not over thinking this because I’m sending myself fucking crazy.” she inquired, opening the driver door to the cruiser as she clambered in, engine idling. She knew she could confide this in him. He would say nothing about it to the others. Miriam reached into the bag, capturing a five-hour energy bottle from it before throwing the shot down the hatch. Barely tasting the familiar mixture of caffeine, taurine and whatever sweeteners were in it as she did. “This is fucked. Fucked.” She continued, disregarding the empty back into the bag as she assumed the ten two position.
Last edited by Hastur on Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Kentucky Fried Land
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Postby Kentucky Fried Land » Tue Jan 26, 2021 4:19 pm

Deputy Wyatt Meadows
8:33 AM
Geared

Mike wasn’t entirely forthcoming about his worries. This was the type of response expected in Daramont Country, a place where “how are yous” were greetings without need of a monologue in return. Wyatt looked away and pretended he wasn’t listening. In not knowing what to say, it had become best not to offer failed sympathy. Mike was killing himself with his thoughts, every word a facade for the worst. Wyatt knew what it was to be a pitiful liar. Everything is okay. Was it ever?

Riker was talking now, addressing everyone, including a new man in a brilliant, plain coat. A suit in this weather; who was this guy? Was he the feared reporter, here to take a mismatched scoop from the lieutenant? Was he a federal agent sent to give them intel that would confirm the resort was doomed? Or was he a junior executive of the resort’s overarching corporation, here to threaten a lawsuit due to a lacking reaction? Six days and nothing. You motherfuckers waited a fucking week to check shit out? My fucking wife would have figured shit out quicker than you. What the fuck is wrong with you?

If God was good and the stars stayed true, they’d travel to Lake Malton and discover Bracco trapped in the bar, huddled under a blanket with a group of fellow travelers snowed in. His car battery would be dead, his radio shot. All of the Internet lines went down, all of the phone lines, the snow had blocked satellites from broadcasting cell service. Riker would slap Bracco on the back of the head for not maintaining his vehicle, then a helicopter would fly high above with a camera and a floodlight. They’d go home and laugh about it a month later at the next office party or bar meet. Static rose from the radio and the future disappeared.

Wyatt startled and shirked a gasp. He thought he heard a similar response from Miriam, leading to a quiet glance towards her. His eyes grew bulbous and he gulped. This had become hellish. The seniors Mike and Riker were worried, scared. Miriam herself had shoved her hands into her pockets. Riker was speaking with Lorraine now, who confirmed the worst. The static had come from Bracco. How? How could it have come from Bracco? Was Bracco trying to talk to them? Why was he trying to call now? Not earlier? Now now now now?!

Wyatt blinked and Riker had moved. What? He was talking about carpooling… what about carpooling? What did carpooling have to do with any of this? Wyatt’s mouth fell open with confusion, a mix of unease and middling terror stuck to his brow. “...what?” He muttered under his breath, then turned to follow Miriam as she left on Riker’s orders. What orders? Did she see that too?

He nodded to her and pursed his lips. He knew what this was now. You’ve lost time again. He panicked. There was nothing to be ashamed of, was there? It was an easy thing to get panicky about, but this hadn’t happened in so long. Disassociation, as his psychiatrist had called it; losing track of his head, losing it to a space time forgot. This couldn’t happen again, not today. He didn’t need this shit right now.

He climbed into the car after her and took off his beanie, defeated. It fell to his lap, and he offered a dazed glance to Miriam, who had been placed on the edge of a panic attack. “You’re not crazy.” He offered genuine glowing sympathetic eyes. The panic attacks, they were just a part of the job at this point, weren’t they? And with everything that Miriam already had to hold on to…

“It’s fucking with my head too.” He picked up his drink, then swished the remains around into a whirlpool. “Maybe it’s just a big coincidence. Maybe Bracco’s just been working on fixing the radio and he just now got into shape.” Wyatt tried to smile, but it wasn’t real. “Hey, maybe he’s pissed off that we took so long to pick him up.” He bored a hole into the side of her head, staring at an ear poking out of her hair. There was a hesitation, then he frowned. “Do you want me to drive?”
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Endem
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Postby Endem » Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:59 pm

Alexander Show
8:30 A.M
Eaton City


"Lake Malton did send word that you don't have to salute me."


"Sorry, sir, my brother, and father are military, I picked up the habit from them"

Shaw hastily explained to Riker in the embarrassment forgetting completely he probably did so already at some point, he didn't mind Riker's dicking around for a long time now, and he wasn't going to start now, especially since it was on him that he let the habit slip in, but at the same time, you could have said that his father taught him well when it came to addressing figures of authority. Meanwhile more vehicles rolled into the already cramped parking, Langberg and Meadows, the pair were always friends, though, for some reason, Alexander had a hunch that they didn't like him, especially Meadows gave him strange looks from time to time, Shaw then noticed a guy from park police show up, with a dog, for a second Alexander considered whetever not to ask the officer if he could pet the bloodhound.

Before he had a chance to ask the newly-arrived, he noticed another new face, suit, tie, clean shoes, obviously an agent, Shaw managed to overhear the introduction, FBI did shit get serious enough that federals thought they should get involved? Shaw personally never did get a chance to participate in any of their actions, he heard that federal agencies from time to time did cooperate with their department, but for Shaw, FBI, and other of their kind still had some air of mystery that surrounded them.

Riker then gave an order to rally on him, Shaw proceeded to do so, this time without a salute. Riker was seemingly giving a standard briefing, the plow would be there soon and they are going to Lake Malton to perform a welfare check on the community, standard stuff, and yet, there were some tension and uneasiness in the air.

Suddenly Shaw's walkie-talkie sparked to life, sending out a loud shriek of nothing but static, Shaw instinctively took it out, for a second looking at the device, he summed up every emotion that connected with this as a single word sentence "Shit". Then Riker asked the comms where it came from and apparently, it came from Bracco?! F*cking hell, what was that?! How!? Those questions raced through Shaw's mind.

Things went fast from there, Comms gave the position of Bracco to Riker, apparently, they managed to calculate it, and then Riker ordered everyone to carpool, Shaw didn't quite understand the justification behind it, most people had shown up in their cars, but an order was an order. "So, if anybody wants to carpool with me, I'll be in my car" he offered haphazardly before hurrying off to his car, seems like social stuff wasn't coming to him easily this day.
Last edited by Endem on Tue Jan 26, 2021 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Tayner
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Postby Tayner » Wed Jan 27, 2021 11:47 pm

Daramont County Sheriff's Department
February 23rd, 2012
Sameera Kader


"Forgot to brush again, huh Sam?" he asked impishly, flashing a grin as if to let her know that he was jesting. "Or did you use that new toothpaste made by Jack Daniels?" Riker teased, as he handed over a tin of wintergreen breath mints.

"I guess the store brand budget toothpaste isn't cutting it, huh?" She simply replied, accepting the mints and taking two before returning the tin. She had brushed, drank some coffee, and lit a cigarette, the first three things anyone would do when trying to cover up the odor of alcohol on their breath, but Riker had the nose of a bloodhound and saw, or smelled rather, right through her layers of camouflaging scents. If anyone knew how much of an alcoholic she was, besides the clerk at the liquor store, it was him. The beer provided at social events noticeably went quicker when she arrived, and it didn't take a genius to see the correlation. He never gave her too much trouble outside of playful jabs though, but on bad days they didn't land so playfully despite the man's best intentions.

Thankfully, today was a better day.

The task force rallied up, and their orders were given. Welfare check, find Bracco, figure out the issue, call in the repair guys, back in time for dinner. Straightforward enough until the radios all lit up with a staticky noise, inhuman, almost like a howl, maybe? Sam turned her radio down from full blast to half volume in a quick reaction. "What the fuck?" She muttered, before the group received their orders to mount up, carpool style. Thankfully, she had the truck, and running under the assumption that Bracco was stuck, and the fact that it was already a pain in the ass to get to Malton in a cruiser, she'd be driving. "Who's riding with me?" She asked the group as she climbed up into the truck, tossing her cigarette butt into the snow beneath the tire.

She looked over her gauges, no check engine light, plenty of gas, oil pressure good, battery good. She knew things liked to act up in the cold, but thankfully once the truck got running there were usually no issues. The problems usually only came after it sat in a parking lot for too long in the cold. Going forward, she expected little issue, less they get hung up waiting on a snow plow, wasting time because a DoT employee decided to take their time. Sam had never been stuck in the cold, and if the power was out in Malton, then they needed to get up there sooner or later. This time of year the weather wasn't meant to be taken lightly, and while people probably had come prepared with plenty of layers to sustain them, she didn't like the idea of leaving people in the cold for much longer than they needed to.

Sam had only been up to Malton a time or two, spending a weekend up there once and going up to help pull some tourist out of a ditch after they slid off the road. Thankfully the motorist wasn't hurt, and their car wasn't any worse for wear. Other than that, she had only patrolled the roads leading up to the resort a handful of times. However, when it came to driving a truck up icy roads, or pulling people out of ditches, Sam had become one of the local experts, being assigned a truck and learning how to use it. After all, it wasn't hard to attach some chains and engage four wheel drive, but it helped to have someone with experience on the matter around. At least, that's why she figured they brought her along, outside of the need for bodies to throw at the problem.

Just another day at the office. She thought as she took off her gloves and held her hands over the AC vent, feeling the heat sting her cold hands.
If anyone askes where we were Saturday at 14:30, we were at The Pub, understand?

-If it's stupid, but it works, it ain't stupid.
-No Combat Ready unit has ever passed inspection.
-No Inspection Ready unit has ever passed combat.
-There is nothing more satisfying to you then having the enemy shoot at you, and miss.
-Remember, your weapon was made by the lowest bidder.
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Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States
P2TM RP Mentor
 
Posts: 20015
Founded: Feb 20, 2012
Democratic Socialists

Postby Great Confederacy of Commonwealth States » Thu Jan 28, 2021 12:45 pm

“It’s been a few days”

Everything up to that point had made Sebastian feel rather at ease. Riker had already been violently charismatic; firm handshake, playful banter aimed at Felix. Eaton City had the air of a typical New York town, and with the snow covering the streets, Sebastian had almost slipped into some kind of latent holiday spirit. The amount of new colleagues to meet made it feel like a department Christmas gathering of some sort; the ones with cheap decorations and even cheaper food, everyone sporting their most disgusting sweater.

“It’s been a few days”, Riker told them, and Sebastian looked up at the Crowleys. Jagged, white-grey peaks towering… no, looming over various valleys, their huge mass breaking from the surface like waves on a stormy ocean. Only the closest peaks could be seen from where they stood. Beyond those, the snowfall cover turned the mountains to shadows. Sebastian shuddered, as those shadow peaks seemed to move and sway, and the wind sounded like a whisper. He hadn’t yet given the proposition much thought, even on his six hour trip up through the Valley. But now he was in the presence of the ribs of the earth, and a deep dread for those caught within it began to emerge.

The scream from the departmental radios pulled Sebastian right back to earth, letting out a tiny yell as he jumped up. The others seemed just as confused as him, and one by one, they moved their radios to a different frequency. For a moment Sebastian thought he was the only one who had heard a howl emerge from the static, but as he saw the faces of the other officers turn pale, he knew that it had not ben a delusion. He felt his wrist, where it had been broken on the day he came eye to eye with…

That was all the cold water Sebastian needed to return to his full faculties. The distant mountains were forgotten. He felt his heart pump hot, red blood through his veins, and he felt his fingertips tingle with a cold sensation. He beat his mittens together and jumped up and down a bit. He readjusted his cap, and as soon as Riker called for them to load up, he turned on the spot and walked… no, marched up to his truck. Felix was excited at first, but seeing the stern impression on Sebastian’s face made him jump in the back seat again. From the driver’s side of the car, Sebastian called out to his colleagues.

“Anyone with a sense of direction and a like for dogs gets to ride with the Sea Bass!” he called out, before disappearing behind the wheel. The car had gotten nice and warm with the engine running. Fully concentrated on his job now, and desperate to keep any other thoughts and feelings of dread at bay, Sebastian started checking his gauges. Fuel, oil temp, breaking fluid, windscreen wipers… Everything seemed to work. Parking breaks were on, too, which he engaged and disengaged a few times. Revving his engine, he needlessly checked whether his engine was in fact on. No matter; there was a door in his mind he was very much keeping closed.
The name's James. James Usari. Well, my name is not actually James Usari, so don't bother actually looking it up, but it'll do for now.

Lack of a real name means compensation through a real face. My debt is settled


Part-time Kebab tycoon in Glasgow.

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Herador
Negotiator
 
Posts: 6985
Founded: Mar 08, 2011
Democratic Socialists

Postby Herador » Thu Jan 28, 2021 7:33 pm

Damon had tuned out most of the meet-and-greet that had been going on, puffing absentmindedly on his cigarette before realizing he was just smoking filter and flicking it into the street and taking another out of the pack. He had been watching the dog the Statie had brought, Felix looked like a good boy with his big floppy ears. He liked dogs, so did Alaina, when they built that house they were going to get a dog for sure. Then his radio burst to life. For the first time since he had rolled out of bed that morning, Damon really woke up. It felt like he had mainlined an espresso shot.

"Fuck's sake!" he shouted, yanking the handset from his collar where it was clipped. Embarrassed, he looked around, convinced for a moment that it was just his radio only to see similar reactions from his colleagues.

"What in the hell?" He mumbled, taking the walkie off his belt and giving it a once over. It was charged, on Department frequency, and no error message. Giving it a few short raps with his palm, Damon put it back in its holster and turned his attention back to Riker.

"Right folks, time to quit dicking around. Pick someone to carpool with and load up."

Damon rolled his eyes, annoyed with himself for already stowing all his gear. Lighting the cigarette he had been rolling in his mouth, Damon made his way back to his cruiser and opened the trunk. Popping open his evidence kit, he put in his recorder, camera, and a few flares, attaching the medical kit to the side with the clip the kit had on it. Beanbags and flashlight in pockets and shotgun and shovel in hand, Damon locked his car and looked around. He knew that most of the Deputies were going to be riding together, they were all patrol and knew each other, and it seemed like Riker was chatting up the Fed, not that he was opposed to riding with either but he didn't feel like interrupting whatever was going on over there. That left the Statie and his 4x4. Four-wheel drive, a snowmobile, good company, and a dog? Could certainly be worse.

Damon tapped on the driver's side door with the tip of the shovel's handle and flashed a smile, "Hey man, think you and your partner might have room for one more?"
I know what I'm talking about ~5% of the time, the rest is drunken shitposting

"Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind"

These are tough times to be a dreamer.

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Recon
Envoy
 
Posts: 266
Founded: Mar 10, 2017
Democratic Socialists

Postby Recon » Fri Jan 29, 2021 1:52 am

Mike Walsh
08:33
February 23rd 2012
Daramont County Sheriff's Department
Eaton City, State of New York


At least the Lieutenant was confident, Riker had expressed exactly how Mike felt. This was routine, it was just another day and as professionals they were expected to simply carry on. Both he and Riker were the two most experienced members of the department going out this morning, perhaps there was something to that.

This could all be finished within the hour

Miriam was another matter entirely. He did not notice it at first, he was nodding along, in the moment, relieved even that they were on the same page. But quite suddenly he detected a hint of doubt. As a deputy, Mike liked to think he could sense a lie, every cop thought so, real or otherwise. There was the line in that old Temptation’s song, “The truth is in the eyes 'cause the eyes don't lie”. The smile did not reach her eyes. She seemed to confirm his worst fears about Morgan, that someone had been putting ideas into her head about Lake Malton. Perhaps her coach had heard the same stories?

Did she really believe it?

He lowered his head and broke off eye contact.

She is one of us, she knows we have nothing to fear.

Mike was disappointed, in a week; they would have all have forgotten this assignment, lost in the swirling haze of fatigue and sleep, which marked a deputy’s life. It would only remain as a joke, a funny story to discuss over drinks, a way to reflect on the strange way in which tension and stress bonded people together. Right now it wasn’t much of anything, but once they found Bracco and had shown themselves up at the resort. Turning up in a convoy, lights, sirens and finding only angry tourists sleeping off their hangovers, it would certainly be a story.

In a week, we will all be laughing about this

His chest was tightening; he could feel his breathing hitch. It was unpleasant, he tried to cover it was a cough.

Miriam pressed on, the words were perfect; the tone of voice, the sentiment was reassuring. He hoped she believed it.

“It’s a shame we won't be staying longer, I would love to have one last go on the slopes”,

If they hadn’t already agreed to save his holiday days for the summer, he would have loved to take the day off. Just spontaneously, take Morgan out of school and just head up, one more family memory. There wasn’t much time before the season officially ended. He thought of the storm which had apparently battered the resort, fresh snow everywhere, it would be ideal. Easier to grip, a smoother ride and for Mike, who frequently could not keep pace with his wife, most importantly a softer fall.

“I don’t know who she’ll be happier to see, you or me. We`ll head up to the lodge, make sure she’s comfortable”,

Mike put some forced joviality in his voice, as many men sometimes did when talking about their wives.

Then he heard Riker’s voice calling them in,

A little storm, just as I predicted

When the Lieutenant explained, their first priority was to check on the town, Mike nodded in agreement. Mike could see himself there, checking in with the businesses and keeping the tourists calm. He knew the people up there; he would be wasted out in the woods. If someone needed to stick around for a day or too, to wait for the repair crews…it certainly beat the alternative,

Spending the morning recovering Bracco, what a waste

Fortunately it didn’t seem that it would take all morning. Devin's location had been triangulated, Mike was just thinking of how easy it would be, when the howl began.

Instinctively his hand flew to his chest; the sound had come blaring out of the receiver clipped over his heart. He looked down as he mistakenly tried to find the dials on the receiver, the static was so loud, so piercing he could barely think. As soon as the noise began, it disappeared. There was shock and surprise from the assembled deputies, Riker included. He looked away as soon as he saw it. He didn't need to see that, he was already doing his best to keep them all on track. Again it took Mike a troubling moment to come up with something, anything to explain it. He blamed that on the shock.

A Coyote?

The truth came back at him directly,

It’s wasn't

He felt a coldness, a sudden realisation. A beat too late his hand jerked, the fingers closing tightly around the lid and the coffee cup slipped from his grasp, he heard it make a soft thud in the snow.

“Fuck,” he muttered,

Grateful for the distraction, he watched as the coffee stained the snow. He concerned himself intently with reaching down for the cup. As he picked it up, he studied the cup, the stains, the remaining droplets of coffee on the lid, there was still some liquid in it and the coffee splashed on his gloves,

Fuck

He carefully studied his gloves, they were stained.

They were ruined

By the time he began to listen to what was being said, Riker was telling them to mount up.

Langenberg and Meadows were already partnering up. Mike returned her wave, stained glove and all,

“See you at the lodge”,

It was only as they walked away, did Mike begin to wonder why Wyatt had been so quiet, hopefully he wasn’t quite as taken with the rumours,

He called after Meadows,

“Remember to get started on your shift logs on the way up; it’s easier to keep topping them up throughout the day”,

Mike felt most comfortable with order and routine, it had a place in moments like these. It helped him feel in control.

As the deputies began to depart, he headed the other way. Using his shoulder to open the door into the department's lobby and walked towards the toilets. After the door closed, he put down the cup, took off his gloves and turned on the tap. It was oddly soothing; to watch as the coffee stains were washed away. After being certain there wasn't a trace, Mike looked into the mirror, into his own sunken eyes. He put his hands together and threw cold water over his face. It felt cool and refreshing.

Washing his hands, he dried himself with paper hand towls and took the coffee cup back to the break room and refilled it. The tight chest, the coughing, the difficulty breathing, it occured to him there was another reason.

It didn’t have to be that

He put is gloves back on and headed out into the cold. Making his way over to his cruiser, he stepped inside and looked for the glovebox. His fingers felt for the latch, leaning forward he reached for the inhaler.

As he shook it and heard the reassuring rattle, Mile thought it would be better to ride alone. He had seen how they all reacted to the howl, they were all upset, all rattled, Langenberg was believing in rumours, he needed to keep a clear mind, to stay professional. To stay uncontaminated. He brought the device to his mouth and activated the inhaler. Hearing a slight hiss, he took a deep breath, and waited, hoping to feel his chest beginning to loosen and for his breathing to improve. As he waited, Mike started to write his shift logs, describing his morning and the briefing in bland and official terms. After that was completed, he began going through his equipment checklist,

Just an hour
Last edited by Recon on Fri Jan 29, 2021 11:46 am, edited 6 times in total.

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Cylarn
Postmaster-General
 
Posts: 14851
Founded: Nov 25, 2011
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Cylarn » Tue Feb 02, 2021 1:23 pm

Jim nodded to the FBI agent. "Go get your shit and load it up into my Tahoe."

Abruptly, Jim turned away from Mattock; his mind was on the "interference." I do not like this. I do not like this one bit. As he paced over to his Tahoe, he reached into his pocket with a shivering, gloved hand, pulling out his cellphone. With his left hand, he opened the door and quickly climbed inside. Immediately, he threw his head back hard against the headrest, in a spurt of frustration. Best-case scenario, there is no coverage up the mountain. Worst-case, he is keying his mic and unable to speak.

Jim looked down at the cellphone and using his teeth, removed the glove from his right hand. He opened the text message from Lorraine, and saw a combination of numbered coordinates. Setting the phone down onto his lap, his eyes went to the dashboard-mounted computer. The best weapon there is. His fingers went to work; Jim accessed the GPS program on the computer and typed in the coordinates. A basic map of the county appeared on the screen. On the highway leading out of Lake Malton, sat a stationary red dot. He's on the highway. Or at least his cruiser is. Jim held back a sigh of relief. Can't get ahead of myself.

Jim keyed his mic. They need to be aware. Maybe it will help with this unease. "This is Riker to all Malton Task Force vehicles. Bracco's position is just outside Lake Malton. We'll be reaching it before we get into town. Over and out."

He released the key and looked out the passenger-side window, waiting for Mattock to join him.
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If you are serving the US and its allies right now overseas, thank you for what you do.
Recipient of the Best Crime RP'er Award and the Best Crime RP Award for 2013 in P2TM. Recipient of the Best Crime RP'er Award of 2014 in P2TM.

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Bolslania
Minister
 
Posts: 2455
Founded: Mar 07, 2018
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Bolslania » Tue Feb 02, 2021 1:30 pm

Mattock nodded to Jim as he was told to grab his gear and carpool with him. Mattock briskly walked to his vehicle, threw on his coat, tucking a pair of gloves into his pockets. he had a layer of warmer clothing under his pant legs, so that shouldn't be a concern. He grabbed the duffel bag with the rest of his gear, and plucking his rifle off the gun rack, closed the door and locked the big Suburban. He opened the back door of the Tahoe, and set his rifle and duffel in the trunk. After closing the back, he opened up the passenger side door, getting into the seat. He closed the door and soaked in the relative warm of the car's interior.

He pulled out his radio and switched it into the Sherriff's Department frequency, which was dimly backlit on the dashboard of the Tahoe.

"Do we have a GPS location of him or his vehicle or is that blocked as well?" Mattock asked
Last edited by Bolslania on Tue Feb 02, 2021 3:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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