A portion of the reconstructed A Hot Day Down South…unedited…

“I’m headed to see IT, and then further down to records.”

“Okay, Konan. I’ll brief the chief.”

The IT Department was nothing more than a small office, larger than a broom closet but not big enough to call an actual office, and Ashton Fulton was the lead technician. He sat behind the counter powering down laptops when Konan walked in.

“We’re closing,” Ashton snapped. 

“We’ll open back up because I need something,” Konan snapped back. Ashton turned to Konan and glared at him and retorted, “Then it can wait until tomorrow. I have plans for this evening.” Konan gripped Ashton by the shoulders and spun him around. Ashton put his hands up and backed up hollering, “Whoa guy!”

His stringy brown hair fell into his eyes, and Ashton flipped it to the side with a huff. Konan closed with Ashton, his face millimeters away from the young man’s, and Konan growled, “I have a fifteen year old girl lying in the morgue, as well as one of our own, not to mention I just came from another murder scene, and it’s all connected. So, screw your plans, there’s work that needs to be done.”

“Okay, fine. What do you want?”

“You can start with running a recovery of the mainframe’s drive for the past decade.”

“That’s gonna take some time.”

“Then you better get started,” Konan snarled. “Call me when it’s done.” 

Konan turned and walked out of the office, and he could feel the heat of Ashton’s hate upon his back. Konan didn’t care, they needed a lead and he didn’t care who he angered in the process of finding one. Next stop, records.

Fredericksburg, Mississippi was one of the largest towns in the state, but in comparison with other major metropolitan areas in the country, it was average. To save on space, the department had to utilize the area it was given, therefore the Records department doubled as the Evidence Locker. 

The office was a cage, and that cage was guarded by an older woman with grey-black hair, a set of bifocal spectacles, and a serious dislike for chaotic beings. Her name was Patty. 

“How may I help you?”

Konan gazed at the woman for a long moment and then gave her his best smile. Patty wasn’t pretty, and she would have a hard time passing as cute, but the nasal voice went perfect with her appearance. She didn’t return Konan’s smile, but her yellow teeth flashed when she spoke. Her soft, round face was out of place with her slender body, and her eyes were dark, dead orbs deeply sunken into her face. 

“Yes ma’am, I’m looking for hard copies of notes I made about a case nine years ago.”

“Sign in on that pad,” she snapped, pointing at the yellow ledger. “I assume you have the proper paperwork to sign out said records?”

“Say again? Why do I need paperwork? They’re notes pertinent to my case.”

“The removal of  records or evidence require City Form 3643, and must be signed by yourself and Chief Janko, prior to you receiving said records or evidence. Surely, you knew this?”

Konan scoffed and glared at the woman; she didn’t notice, and even if she had Konan doubted it’d have any effect upon her. Konan opted to try to reason with her. 

“Ma’am, I’m in the middle of a murder investigation. I don’t have time for this bureaucratic nonsense. Why don’t I call Chief Janko down here?”

“He’ll need City Form 3643…”

Konan pulled out his cellphone and dialed Janko’s number but the call failed. Patty waved at him, and Konan turned to look at the woman. “Yes,” he growled in frustration. 

“We don’t receive a signal down here. You would need to use a landline to call someone.” Konan sighed and walked over to an empty set of chairs that lined the walls. He sat down and put his hands on top of his head and closed his eyes. 

“Do you have a landline?”

“Yes, but it’s only used by staff members.”

Konan took a deep breath and held it. “Five things I can see…blue in my jeans…black in my watchband…”  For a moment Konan considered throttling the guard, but he couldn’t reach her through the cage. With an exasperated sigh, Konan stood and turned to walk out. 

“Would you like me to call someone for you?”

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