Non classé, prose, short story, writing

Negatives (#4)

The sun was coming down, it was nearly eight. Isn’t it beautiful? When the days are getting longer and longer. When it gets so warm that you feel at ease everywhere, all the time. I was sitting on a bench on my own, minding my business, or not minding it as the case was. Moments like that have a tendency to make you forget about everything else. Isn’t that an enjoyable quality? Not far from where I sat, a couple was walking their dog, a very young-looking spaniel. I watched them pass in front of me and then vanish in the distance, and I thought, somehow, this could be me. Have you ever wondered about how you interact with people? I know I do. All the time. One day you are walking down the street, you bump into someone and there you have it, the first connection. Then things happen, words come out flying, and you are acquainted. Then you meet for coffee, you talk more and more, and the more you do, the more excited you are. It is as if your life has taken a new meaning, something thrilling is happening to you, and you need it constantly, you are restless until you get your next fix. It is always like that, it really is, until it slows down. And then like most things, it goes away. You see the people you have met, you have talked to, you have loved, you see them go away – or you go away. The scenario is never clear on that point, there is always a choice to be made it seems. But all in all the result is always the same, you feel lonely, you ask yourself if there is something wrong with you, you long for that person who will be able to stick with you, even after all of the mystery is gone. And you sit somewhere, and look at people, and wonder if they wonder about the same things as you do. It’s nothing but an ever-eternal circle, I would not say vicious though. Just, never-ending.
“You look like one of those people we photograph and put on postcards!”
Jason had finally arrived, he was late as usual.
“You’re late.”
“Well what can I say, whenever you’re concerned, it always takes me time to come … Sorry, that came out wrong.”
It was three days after we last saw each other; I had asked him to look into the case. Three long days during which I could not sleep, eat or work any leads, for that matter.
“Anything?”
“Well, I had to enter, hum, rather illegally, a dozen of websites before getting something interesting. Trust me, whatever you’re looking for concerning William Bryce, someone does not want it to be found.”
“What did you find?” I said in a rasp voice, I almost believed it was my father talking.
“Okay so before I was greeted with a nice trojan, we hit it off right off the bat I can tell you that …”
“Jason…”
“Shutting up, sorry. Bryce used to work at Kingsely Corp, that’s all I got. But before I battled the trojan, I was able to retrieve this.”
He drew a picture from his bag, and handed it over to me. It was pixelated and blurry, but you could make out Bryce’s face smiling at a young woman, blonde, probably in her mid-twenties. He was standing outside the  Kingsley Corporations building.
“That’s it?!”
“Look at the date …”
He was right, the picture was only two weeks old. How was that possible? Jason had a smirk on his face :
“I know, right?”
Edward Kingsley had came to me for help, that he had made clear. He wanted me to find anything I could on William Bryce who had been going missing for a close to a month, and he could not put his people on it because he was suspicious about everyone he was surrounded with. That was it, that was the only little nugget of knowledge I had about the case. How can you work your way up with that? That is purely impossible, I thought; I was a fool to say yes, even for that amount of money. For all those little things I knew, there were lots of bigger things I had yet to figure out, like who Bryce was to Kingsley, the reason behind his disappearance, and most importantly why Kingsley could not afford to put his people on the whole thing. I was the worst detective on the face of the earth, I knew it, he knew it, Kingsley probably knew it, and Wilson … Well Wilson, I wondered what he would have done.
“What are you going to do?” Jason asked.
“There are too many things I don’t know. He asked me to look into this guy, I don’t even know why.”
“You want me to look into Kingsley?”
“No. Not now. I think I know what I have to do”
I thanked him and we went how separate ways; he home, I to have a drink. I knew what Wilson would do, and it was exactly what I was going to. I had to make this case mine.
I called Kingsley the next morning, and still hungover, I did not let much out. “Corner of Lemire and Asken, fifteen minutes, alone, be there”, I had said. And even if I was feeling broken, even if my breath reeked, and my leg hurt, I felt like I was playing my part perfectly. There was a long day coming, and I was intent on making sure it went my way.

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