Bursting into the station like a mad soul, I entered the sheriff’s office without so much as a knock. Skipping the pleasantries, I went right to the point, ‘What have you found?’. Agent Thompson and John were looking at a computer screen where the image of a woman being interrogated appeared. ‘Who is that?’ I probed, waiting for an answer that seemed to make Agent Thompson smile. ‘That is Nina Parks and guess who she was having an affair with?’. Slightly confused, I was enlightened by John who also seemed to find the situation amusing, ‘Nina has been having an affair with James, Mia’s husband.’ ‘They’ve been entertaining a relationship for the past six months according to her and somehow the men that took him out had no idea about it.’ Agent Thompson added with the face of a storyteller who didn’t believe the tale he was telling.
‘That’s odd. How did you find her? It seems rather convenient we’ve suddenly found some secret lover that could lead us to these people.’ I debated, finding it strange some woman had just shown up out of nowhere with information we just happened to need. ‘Indeed. She just showed up to her local police station and ‘confessed’ everything she knew. They sent us this footage an hour ago.’ I eyed him warily, studying his expression to figure out if he bought this shit but his face was blank giving nothing away. ‘You believe her?’ I enquired, choosing to use my words rather than trying to read his mind, ‘Not even for a second. Like you said, it’s strange we find such a big puzzle piece all of a sudden. My partner’s been checking her out and ‘Nina’ -if that’s her real name, has no affiliation to the city she says she lives in. She gave a fake address, has no job there and online she doesn’t even exist.’
‘So she’s lying. Why go through the trouble though?’ I pondered. ‘Either she’s trying to make sure we don’t have any real leads on Mia or…’ he paused, looking at John as if asking for permission to say what he wanted to say next. ‘Or?’ I pressed, needing to know. ‘Or she’s trying to tie loose ends and find out if you’ve told us something about them so they can take you and your family out.’. I understood the hesitation in his voice now. The reason I had brought Mia to my house in the first place was to protect my grandparents and now they were still in danger. Agent Thompson showed some empathy in his expression, leaving some empathy roaming around. He didn’t seem like the kind to care much but he humanised his expressions enough to not look impassive to other people’s suffering.
‘Why did she not come straight to this station? Surely she knows where I live.’ I questioned despite seeing the reasons clearly. ‘She’s trying to be close to the situation from afar. If she comes here, she’s too close to it. This way she gets informed by the developments of the case and she has no link to this town and Mia’s disappearance whatsoever.’. A light bulb kind of moment formed in my head and I immediately jumped to the conclusion that maybe Nina wasn’t the only persona this woman had taken upon herself lately. ‘Would it be possible for Nina to be the one doing this because she personally knows Mia?’. John checked a file in front of him and searched for any connections, saying ‘No. She doesn’t mention Mia at all in her answers. claims she doesn’t know her.’
‘What are you thinking?’ Agent Thompson asks, ‘Could this be the same person that came to get Mia and is now giving statements about James to throw us off? She could be closer to the situation than we think. Murderers return to the scene of the crime after all.’ John looked at me with a glint in his eye, impressed by my understanding of the situation with Agent Thompson continuing my theory, unfazed by John’s reaction. ‘If she came here in person to get Mia, she risked someone seeing her. So, if she makes up this love story with James we rule her out as Mia’s kidnapper and see her as the unofficial widow who lost her soulmate.’
‘Don’t rule out Thompson’s theory about you and your family. You need to be careful. We’ll arrange for someone to watch you 24/7 in case anyone approaches you, especially Nina. Something tells me she’ll want to get close to you.’ I nodded in understanding, eased by the idea that my grandparents would be somehow protected, but pained enough by the fact that we still had nothing on Mia. She’d been gone for a week now and the FBI hadn’t found much to lead them to her. ‘Did Nina say anything about the people James was involved with? Why they killed him?’
John stepped in, reading from a file ‘He never told me anything about that. He was always secretive about the business he did, but lately he said we would be gaining a better life and that things were going to change.’. I laughed at the statement John was reading where Nina was trying to say nothing by saying a whole lot of things. Lawyers often advised clients to do this in hopes of confusing those investigating. Vagueness was a powerful thing which now made her look like she’d been tricked by her lover and was never a part of his illegal activity. ‘What’s our plan?’ I ask both John and Agent Thompson. ‘We play her game and wait for her to make a mistake that will lead us to these people.’
‘What about Mia?’ I press, hoping to hear they were not giving up on her just yet. ‘It’s been a week. If she’s still alive, she won’t be for long. We’re doing our best to find her.’ but their best wasn’t enough. The thought of her lifeless body lying in some ditch crossed my mind so many times a day I was starting to go crazy and as I was about to start asking some more questions about the investigation, the office door opened with John’s assistant -Laura, wanting a word.
‘What is it, Laura?’ John rushed her, not wanting to interrupt our meeting. ‘I’m sorry John. There is someone here to see you. She says she’s got something to do with that big case you’re working on.’. The three of us shared a look of suspicion and John asked Laura to bring this person in. We were waiting for an agent of the investigation, some friend or family member of Mia or James. Instead when the office door opened again, we had Nina Parks in front of us, hoping to ‘help’ us with the investigation.
Note: Thank you for reading the next part in the MB series. I started this not thinking I would write more than an article and yet, here am I posting the 19th part. I hope you enjoy it and if you’re reading it for the first time go to my blog to find the story from the beginning. Thanks for reading and don’t forget to like this and subscribe to my blog.