Down By The Sea

“What’s under the boardwalk?”

He didn’t care to check it himself, not long having had breakfast. He’d seen enough victims, bodies defiled, incongruous in innocent settings; a picnic spot, a park, the beach. An image could last a lifetime, returning in a succession of night terrors, forcefully waking in clammy sweat. He couldn’t let the kid do it, fresh out of cadet school. He might have the stomach, then he might not. He wasn’t an inconsiderate man. His sergeant would go.

What was that tune? The Drifters. Holding hands with my baby. He couldn’t remember the last time he held hands with anyone. He’d lost that memory. So many memories overthrown by horrors. Why him; why this job? Where had it begun? He looked across at the young detective causing him to smile awkwardly. What could he know?

His Sergeant came up, singing that tune, a mellifluous baritone good enough to be annoying. He snapped,

“Well?”, instantly regretting the tone.

“Nothing”, the Sergeant replied, his hands coming away from his sides in emphasis.

How could he be feeling disappointment at this? He turned again to the younger man,

“Get the car, please, will you?”

The inevitable would have to wait.

(200 words)

Written for Flash Fiction For The Purposeful Practitioner 2018: Week 41 Photo Prompt

image credit: August MorgueFIle 2018 1415390688o66bl


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