Posted in 1K Serials

1K Serials: Legacy Of Death, Ch. 9



By Richard Paolinelli





Nick Bolton’s apartment was a madhouse.

Police cars, Coroner’s vans, media vehicles, lights, cameras and the obligatory looky-loos had completely surrounded the complex. Mac Bolton hadn’t spoken a word as he’d ridden in the Chief’s car, barely registering anything that Kiner had said to him or while on his phone seeking updates.

Bolton ignored the flash of the still cameras and the glaring lights from the TV crowd, quickly making his way past the throng being pushed back by the patrolmen on the scene. He ignored the expressions of sympathy and the occasional apology offered by his colleagues and walked straight into the bedroom where the covered body of his father lay sprawled across his bed. Sanchez was working the scene for any trace evidence.

Bolton reached for the covering but paused before pulling it back, bracing himself for what he was about to see.

“He put up a fight Mac,” Sanchez said quietly. “He must of heard the attack on the nurse in the kitchen and was getting up to see what was going on. The killer took her out very quickly and was probably entering the room just as your father was getting to his feet. There are some defensive wounds on his hands.”

Mac silently nodded in acknowledgement and drew back the plastic only enough to expose his father’s face. There was a look of surprise frozen on his father’s face. Mac would have expected a look of anger or pain as had been found on the others victims’ faces. His father would have been angry at the intrusion. There should be anger there, not shocked surprise, Bolton thought.

Puzzled, Mac carefully examined the scene and was drawn to the position of his father’s left hand and a trail of blood that led from the out flung hand to the pillows at the head of the bed. Or was it the other way around, Bolton wondered. Without a word to Sanchez, Bolton leaned over and felt under the pillows.

His fingers quickly made contact with a small object and he swiftly withdrew it. Lying there in the palm of his hand was a gold locket attached to a few links of a chain. There was a smear of blood on the locket, obviously torn from the killer by his father who had hidden this small piece of evidence before his death.

Nick Bolton had done this last act because he knew this small piece of jewelry would identify his killer. He’d known this because he recognized the locket just as his son now did. Mac Bolton now knew who the killer was.

* * * * *

Steve Foster didn’t know who the killer was, but he had a very good idea where the killer would strike next. He had a hunch and was playing it, staking out an area near Buena Vista Park where he thought the next attack would occur. The idea had struck as he was looking at a map of the city with pins marking the sites of each attack. He thought he had spotted a pattern, not enough of a hunch to warrant a full-scale stakeout, but enough for him to set up shop and keep an eye on the park.

He’d been at it for hours now and hadn’t yet heard about Mac’s quasi-arrest and the death of Mac’s father. Technically, he had been off-duty for twelve hours and he had spent all of them moving around the park looking for the killer.

So far, he’d come up empty. But he wasn’t about to give up just yet. Sipping from a cup of coffee as he leaned up against a tree in the park, he watched a couple of early-morning joggers pass by, quickly disappearing from sight and leaving him all alone.

A snap of a twig made him whirl around, dropping the coffee as he reached for his gun.

“You scared the hell of me,” Foster said in relief. “I thought you were somebody else. So what brings you out here C….”

Foster’s voice cut off in shock as the knife struck his chest.

“No,” Foster gasped as he fell to the ground ahead of the darkness that was threatening to claim him. “It can’t be you.”

* * * * *

Bolton waited for the car to pull out of the driveway and turn the corner before stepping out from behind a truck parked across the street. It only took him a few seconds to get past the front door and he was lucky enough to not have to worry about the security system. The resident had forgotten to arm it before leaving.

He wasn’t worried about the resident returning to the house. He wasn’t planning on staying long anyway. He’d been in this house before, been in every room except one and he was long overdue to pay this room a visit.

It was for storage, he’d been told, and was rarely opened. There was a table stationed in front of the door to the room and Bolton quickly moved it away. The door was locked but provided no more delay to Bolton’s progress than the front door had.

But when Bolton pulled open the door he was stopped dead in his tracks. Inside lay a horror beyond comprehension. It was all there, clippings of news stories on every killing, articles of clothing and possessions from each victim, trophies for their killer, all arrayed on an altar to shear madness.

There was an old journal on a side table with several large candles, a few of them had been burned down to about half of their original size. Bolton picked up the journal and started reading. Less than an hour later, Bolton exited the house and walked three blocks to where he’d parked his car and got in. But instead of starting the car, he just sat unmoving behind the wheel. A person he’d come to know so well, had let get so close to him, was responsible for the slaughter of so many innocent people. Had tried to frame him for the murders and had killed his father. The only question when Mac got his hands on his father’s killer would be would he arrest, or kill, his quarry.

In his anger and his grief, Bolton was afraid of what the answer would be.


*     *     *     *     *

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