Chapter Seven

VII

Ramona Fiasco, by the airport

Yeah, her parents called me a few weeks ago. Said the police weren’t doing enough, but I didn’t find much more to be honest. Her friend told me she met a boy and was spending time with him. She left home a few months ago. She didn’t want to give me a name, too scared. Maybe this will get her angry enough.” 

            It’s a strip of service road and a regular looking treeline where a body was spotted by an electrical worker high up in his nest servicing a power line. 

            Ramona really can’t stay near it too long. It makes her more sad than nauseous. She was called down because she was flagged as a private investigator hired by the victim’s parents. Standard practice so if anything comes up the police can compare notes, work with the investigator and what she knows. She brought her notebook. It’s small but thick and the notes are jotted down neatly and organized using every available space but not bleeding into the margins. 

            She goes through the investigation with the special-airport constable, a French-Canadian woman who looks like she would have been a hippie when she was younger. A homicide detective from the city police joins them and Ramona repeats her investigation to him as well. He thanks her and says she’s free to go. She asks if he has any other leads himself. He tells her no and she walks away after realizing there’s nothing for her to do or anybody to talk to. 

            In the office she updates her notes on a spreadsheet but stops halfway through because she knows there is nobody that will read them. Frank never reads them, she just repeats everything to him over the phone. It’s dark but the sun is still out somewhere. It’s a drawn-out evening, the temperature dropping lower and lower. The streets are deserted, she knows without looking outside. It’s that time of the year. 

            She continues with the spreadsheet. Around her are loose leaf paper and sticky notes with reminders. Call Jenna. Follow up with Anola. Go to Mercelas house.She’s much more organized than her partner. She’s more focused and sharper. And still she struggles to close cases. Lists of missing persons, mostly girls, who haven’t been found. She knows they are out there because she has met them at the grocery store, at the clinic, at the bus station. Runaways and the like or just persons needing to leave their parents. 

            She goes on into the night. The clouds outside cover the moon and the fluorescent light in her office takes its place while she goes over the same reports. By the time she leaves nothing but the wind is moving outside. The streets lights glow orange and, in some spots, no light shines leaving only shadows of trees and cars, dumpsters and fence posts. There might be an animal following me, she thinks, and while thinking about a racoon or alley cat creeping along the walls of the neighbourhood a gang of young people--shadowy figures wearing pelts and chains and other metal ornaments, moving together like a procession of monks led by a woman in black looking cultish with a big pendant on her chest and vampire like hair--catches her off guard. They walk past her singing. She continues down the one-way street past some parked cars and oak trees until she gets to where she lives in an older house with roommates. She waits outside not wanting to finish yet, feeling like she has a lot more to do, but she doesn’t know what she’s on about. She gets up the steps to spend the rest of the night averagely.