This Is A Serial Killer?


cassidy2_icon.gif coren2_icon.gif elisabeth_icon.gif felix_icon.gif

Scene Title This Is A Serial Killer?
Synopsis Coren and Cassidy join in Elisabeth and Felix's missing persons case when Jessy Delany's family is found murdered in their home.
Date July 27, 2009

NYPD Headquarters

The New York Police Department Head Quarters is an old stone building, renovated many times over the years. The plaster walls are not as cracked and in need of repair as the various Precinct buildings around the city. The fluorescent lights give the room a rather sterile glow. Old posters, civic reminders, duty rosters and newspaper clippings are tacked up on the walls, rustling every time one of the doors opens. A high, wooden desk sits on the north wall, manned by two clerks, who records all visitors and arrests.

The way out to the street lies to the south, while doors to the offices of the Head Quarters lie to the northwest.

Coren hangs up his desk phone and looks over his desk to his partner's, "I swear to God, if I have to make one more dead-end phonecall I'm going to commit Harakiri." He rubs his eyes as he scratches one more name off a list. "I think I preferred the paperwork during my recovery. People shouldn't just disappear with no bloody trace. It's highly suspicious." Not to mention unsettling.

"Yeah.. alright.. right. Well, if you hear anything. Okay." Cassidy drones on sounding rather bored herself. Glancing at her partner when he looks her way, she continues to drone on. "Well, you have our number. Uh huh.. Thank you." Pulling the phone away from her ear she drops it on the cradle with a loud clatter. "Partner… you are preaching to the choir." Giving him a half smile she returns to her own list and marks off a name. Grabbing her mug she looks in it with a frown. "I need another cup." She holds out her hand for his cup, while getting to her feet.

Setting her own phone down, Elisabeth shoves her hand through her blonde hair. "Shit," she comments softly. "There's just nothing there. I don't even know where to go from here. I know it's not what it looks like, but I can't prove it." She looks toward Cassidy and Coren, and then toward Felix's desk.

Where, miracle of miracles, he is for once. Fel is a hyperactive little bastard at work, and his desk is really just a place for him to accumulate paperwork. "I agree," he says, coming around a cubicle wall, cup of tea in hand. "I know there's something obvious we're missign, but not what."

The last of Coren's tea is quickly drained before the mug is set back down on his desk. Then his phone rings. "This better be something useful," he says as he picks it up. "Detective Shelby." There's a pause. "Wonderful. We'll be there as soon as possible." When he sets the phone down he stares at it a moment, before looking back up. "Morgan and Cory Delany are dead." He reaches into his desk and pulls out his service piece, which he secures in his shoulder holster as he stands. "Murder-suicide. Three units are there along with CSU and the coroner."

Cassidy stares at her partner for a long moment and then slowly sits back down in her chair. "The… " She motions at the interview room where the two had been, she doesn't need to say who aloud, he knows who she's talking about. "Seriously?" She doesn't want to believe it, even though she knows the truth. Her eyes shift over to Elisabeth with a sort of 'Oh shit' look, "Well… damn." She just doesn't have much to say about it.

Elisabeth blinks and hauls to her feet a split second after Coren speaks, her voice tight. "Let's roll," is all she says to Felix, grabbing her hip holster and clipping it onto her belt as she moves.

Fel immediately gets that tight-lipped look, and sets his cup of tea down with exaggerated care. Other than a stack of paperwork, his desk is surgically clean. "God DAMN it." he says, biting off each syllable with great care. "Once is chance, twice is coincidence, three times is conspiracy, to badly rephrase Ian Fleming. And this shit is fucked up." He's already wearing his shoulder holster - it's like the damn thing is jewelry, really. He nods to Liz tightly.

When a person expects to go home, they don't usually find three squad cars, a CSU van, and the coroner's van out front of the building. To the averageman, it incites a level of fear and concern rivalled only by the most dire of experiences. But for law enforcement, it's something else entirely. By the time the investigators reach the floor of the Delany condominium, most of the scene has been left untouched, the crime scene unit waiting for the investigators. Just stepping in the front door reveals the massacre. Morgan Delany, mother of Jessy Delany, is on the floor in a pool of her blood, throat slit. Cory Delany, brother of Jessy, is nearby in his own pool, kitchen knife clutched in his now limp and bloodied hand.

"Well, I wasn't expecting this," Coren says, his eyes tracing the entire scene, looking for anything amiss. Aside from the rug that has been shifted and crumpled onto itself in what can only be assumed to have been Morgan fleeing her son, nothing looks like it's been moved.

Standing next to her partner, handy dandy notebook in hand, Cassidy looks grim a corner of her mouth pulled back a touch. Quietly she writes, various observations without looking at the scene. Of course, it's everything Coren is noting in his head. "Yeah… " she sighs softly, her memories going over the interview at the police station. "With how she — felt —" she points at the mother with her pen. "I expected she would have done it."

Elisabeth looks over the scene and says quietly, "I'd have Becca come in, but I have a feeling she doesn't really need to see this. The question is, what the fuck happened here??" She's angry. Beyond angry. "What did we miss?"

"What's special about Jessy. What about her makes her worth killing her family and her boyfriend for? Unless she did it. She's not Evo, that we know, right?" Fel says. He's gone flat, and tight, for all the world like he should be asking for a Mr. Anderson.

"That we know," Coren says, walking further into the condo, treading lightly on the hardwood floor. "Of course, you know the case better than I do." His eyes travel down the main hallway. A pink clay plate on the end door catches his eye. "I think we should take a look at her bedroom. See if we can't find out the answer to that question."

It's kind of eerie to watch as Cassidy's eyes move to the door at the same time her partner's does. "Not a bad idea," she murmurs eying the door and it's pretty plate name plaque. "I hate pink." She comments suddenly. "My mom painted my walls pink.. my furniture white with pink flowers." A glance goes to Liz and Felix. "Pink phone too. I hated it." Of course Coren gets to see the whole nasty pink mess she had to grow up in. "So.. as a teenager.. I wore all black."

Elisabeth blows out a breath and nods, her rage at this senseless violence nearly uncontainable. It's not bad enough that she's barely back to work after dealing with a madman and the aftermath of a huge battle all weekend, now she feels like she has totally failed this family because she didn't move faster. Yet another case where that's the situation. She walks down the hall toward Jessy's bedroom and says quietly, "I want Becca here to touch things inside Jessy's bedroom. Maybe she'll be able to come up with something notable in there." She pulls a pair of latex gloves out of her pocket, having taken them from a CSU tech when they arrived, and starts riffling through the nightstand intently.

"I agree," Fel says, simply. "A psychometer would be an immense help," He's still cold and dry about all of it, only that tightness around eyes and mouth betraying that he's swallowing his own rage. He produces his own gloves with the reflexive flourish of a stage magician, and goes to quarter another part of the room.

"I've always thought pink was cute," Coren comments, as he idly amuses himself with thoughts of making his guestroom more pink, just for Cassidy. That is until he spots something that unsettles him to the very core.

The nightstand is home of an old diary, though the last entry in it dates back to 2002. Coren has his own gloves on, but his eyes ignore everything in the room save one thing. That item sends a cold shiver down his spine, and the hairs on the back of his neck prickle as he walks towards it, overturning the chessboard onto the bed. The board is quite literally tossed aside onto the floor. Clearly, it's the pieces he is interested in. He kneels down on the floor and begins to examine each of them intently.

Snapping on her gloves, Cassidy follows after the others intent on looking over things in her own quarter of the room. Pausing midstes, Cassidy's eyes unfocus a bit and she gives a quick inhale of breath out of fear. It's from her partner, "Meg?" She turns around slowly and narrows her eyes at her partner. Slowly she moves to kneel next to him on the floor, she rests her hand on his back as she asks softly. "Coren? What about Meg?" She doesn't watch what he's doing, she watches his face.

Liz looks up from her quick skim of the diary, searching for anything more recent in among the girly things she finds in the drawer — ribbons, rings, stationary, glitter pens, nothing of interest. "What is it?" she asks the British detective.

It's like watching one dog notice that another dog has found a milkbone. Fel reorients on Coren, his own niggling bits of reconnaissance forgotten. "Whatcha got there?" he asks, in a tone positively Dug-like in its enthusiasm.

"Fuck." His voice doesn't carry that uncharacteristic language very far, but in the eerie silence of the room, it's quite likely everyone heard it. Coren holds a single chess pawn, which is very similar yet distinct from all the others. "It's hand-crafted," he observes aloud, holding the piece up and squinting at it, as though it were giving out a bright light or else had some indistinguishable detail he is trying to make out. Then just like that, his head snaps first to Elisabeth then to Felix, "Was there a chessboard in Jessy Delany's apartment?"

Searching his face, Cassidy is quiet but her brows low slightly as if hearing something. Then the red head's eyes widen a bit and her head jerks a bit as she looks at the chess piece. "Oh shit.." She murmurs, though to what.. it's a mystery. She glances at Liz and Felix, her faces a mix of emotions before she turns back to her partner, hand still against his back… Not caring what others think, she rests her forehead against his shoulder hair falling to screen her face. I'm sorry.

Fel's face is a study in….nothing. Because he pulls on the 'I am totally interrogating Thomas Anderson' lack of expression. Do they teach you that at Quantico? "This clearly has meaning to you," he says, prompting them. "I remember a chessboard at her place, but I don't recall any pieces on it in any special sense."

Elisabeth looks at the chess piece and her brows pull together still further if that's even possible. "Yeah," she replies slowly. "There was one near her bed. But I didn't see one at the boyfriend's apartment." She looks to Felix, silently asking if he noticed one at that scene. Then back to Coren. "Why? What's the significance? If chess was a game she liked, it'd make sense to have a board both places," she comments.

"It would make sense. It also helped him pick his victims. Made it harder for us to tell it was him, until he started to leave these," Coren says, gripping the piece tightly in his hand and showing the gold lettering on its base. "It looks just like all the others, clearly crafted in the same style, until you turn it over. Then you get this gold 'A'. If you really look closely, the wood's of a different grain. You'll probably find one of these buried somewhere in the boyfriend's apartment, if this son of bitch killed him." He drops the pawn down onto the chessboard and stands up a look of concern playing across his face. "Jessy had a roommate, right?"

Climbing to her feet, Cassidy picks up the piece in her gloved hand, her expression still grim. Looking it over, she frowns a bit. Reaching down she pick up another piece and then looks them over side by side. Then slowly she holds them out for someone to take.

Felix holds out his hand for the piece Coren's found. "You think this is his calling card - this is a serial killer?" he wonders, eyeing Coren over the rims of his glasses.

Elisabeth blinks and looks puzzled. Coren's leap in logic escapes her, but she looks over Felix's shoulder to see the differences in the pieces. "We already pretty much figured that out — it's highly improbable that THESE people killed one another or themselves. The boyfriend? Maybe. Maybe not. But no way did these two do it," she says adamantly. "Which means the boyfriend's death, which was already bizarre anyway, pretty much has to be considered murder. So … let's go ahead and take a chance here. Rebecca's a forensic specialist along with a post-cog. She may be able to tell us who was IN the room."

His leap of logic would make more sense if his mind weren't spinning around like a hurricane. "This man was the reason I left the Bureau. I couldn't let the case slide and let if affect my work," Coren admits. "And now the son of a bitch is back. We never figured out how he picked his victims or abducted them, for that matter. And he got one girl out from under our noses… twice." Elisabeth's observations go mostly unheard, but he agrees nonetheless, "Yes, we should see what she has to say about all of this." His mind, however, is spinning rapidly through all the details of the case as he tries to grab some sort of bearing. That's when it hits him. "Ten years ago. We discovered the MO exactly ten years ago today. He killed two blonde roommates at a dormitory and left the first signature piece behind."

Fel stiffens at that, and he's almost glaring at Coren. "Wait, shit, you've dealt with this joker before? This isn't John Maclaine type personal, is it?" Felix has watched way too many movies. This guy'll be in the Bureau records, right?"

Cassidy actually takes a few steps away from Coren as she tries to get her own bearings under the onslaught of information and emotions coming off her partner. She has to close her eyes against it. Then they snap open as Coren makes his realization. "The roommate… " She looks at Liz her expression worried.

Elisabeth's head snaps around at the description of the MO and she says, "Fuck!! You're shitting me, right?" She heads for the bedroom door and raps out to the uniformed officer in the main room of the house, "Colchester! Get on the radio and get Jessy Delany's college roommate under surveillance. Jackie Wilcox, room 42 in Brittany Hall, NYU."

"Case file nineteen ninety-nine, six five three one two four seven." Yes, Coren memorized the case file number. God knows how many times he pored over it, trying to figure out what he missed. And he always blamed himself for Meg Manning's apparent demise. "Nine crates." And by crates he means file boxes. "And that's just the files." He turns to Elisabeth, "Jessy's roommate was blonde?" At this point, his voice has that incredible tired and worn out sound to it, yet it was mostly just bored earlier. Now he's just plain weary. "Oh, we are so fucked."

Fel turns into the Magic Cellphone Bitch. HE doesn't precisely have a secretary of his own, no personal Bureau Betty. But he's already on his cellphone to the FBI HQ in New York, curtly requesting that all the info relevant to that case be pulled and sent to his desk in the NYPD building. And then he snaps it shut, and notes, "Might wanna take her in to protective custody, if we think she's the next target."

A hand moves to rest on Coren's arm, as Cassidy moves up along side him again. "No… " She says calmly and rather resolute. "No we are not… Not yet." Her fingers grip his arm to make him look at her. "Last time it was just you, Coren." She nods to Felix and Liz both. "There are more of us this time. I'm not gonna back down, if you don't." I'm here… right here. Her brows lift a bit as she adds, "He's going down."

Elisabeth turns to look at the man who, for all intents and purposes, has become her partner recently — though SCOUT officers don't officially seem to have such most of the time — and says, "We can't take her into protective custody without being able to corroborate Coren's gut. The fact of the matter is that to all appearances Jessy Delany *ran*. She was not kidnapped to the best of our knowledge. Best we can do is put eyes on her right now. Maybe she knows something about all this, maybe she's a victim, but we're not going to know until we find her." She glances at Coren. "Going through the old case files may help, and I'm wouldn't rule it out, but … "

"If she's not already dead," Coren says, grimly. "He was active two years, ninety-nine and two thousand before he vanished, along with the last victim, Meg Manning. I imagine, if it's escalated to this point, with three known deaths, corroboration is probably waiting for us at Brittany Hall."

Fel doesn't like that answer. "True," he concedes, reluctantly. "Can bring her in as a POI, though. We'd just not be able to hold her. I'm tempted to try and spook her right out of this guy's range, for her sake. Assuming he has one. The victims in the cases you dealt with - how were they connected?"

"They had blonde hair and attended post-secondary. That was their only connection. We traced him across seven states, twelve cities. Nothing beyond hair color and their student status tied them together, at least that we found. Some played chess, some didn't. There was nothing geographically significant that we could determine either. We worked on it for two years, and I worked on it for three more before it ended my career there," Coren responds. "Once you get all the files, I'll walk you through everything."

A frown creases her brow, and Cassidy looks at Coren. "You really think she's dead already?" Blue eyes move over his face, before glancing at Harrison. "I dunno about his gut.. but you know how my gut is… and my gut feeling is to trust Coren on this." She doesn't look happy to admit it.. the things running through his head… she doesn't want this to be true.

There's a scowl and Elisabeth tells the officer, "And Colchester? You tell whoever's heading there to make sure they PUT EYES on the girl, and once they do, they don't let her out of their sight. We're going to head over to pick her up." She strips off her gloves and looks at the group. "Cass, you come with me for now? Felix'll need to sign for those boxes and log into the Feeb databases to get to the information we need. We'll pick her up and meet you guys back at the precinct."

Coren lets out a sign and nods to Cassidy and Elisabeth, "You two do that." He doesn't want to be right anymore than Cassidy does, and he doesn't have to verbally share with her that he's almost certain Jackie is already dead. Hell, she didn't even really have to ask the question, it's all there in his gut. "I just hope she's still alive."

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