Through the Eyes of Madness "Chapter One—Part One"
By: David K. Montoya

The rain began to fall the moment Detective Dean Tidwell stepped out of his old and dirty red '89 Buick LeSabre. The metropolitan winter cold never was much of a care for him, he hated spring and the hay fever it brought, but there was something about the thick, frozen air and how it burned his lungs with each breath. His second wife used to tell him that it was from years of heavy smoking, but Dean didn't care, he liked his vice.

Most people had some sort of vice, some drank alcohol, some did street drugs, some even popped prescription pills, and those were the ones that masses talked about. Then you got into those dark and dirty vices the kind that they were ashamed to talk about for one reason or another.

When Dean was younger he leaned that his half brother, Damien, had a pornography addiction and his sister was heavily into Jesus and the church. But for Dean, it had always been smoking, though over the years it has taken its toll.

The thought of smoking increased the Detective's urge for nicotine and removed a crumbled green and white paper pack of his favorite smokes. With a stern pat on the pack one of the cigarettes ejected from a small hole on the top and Dean extracts it with his teeth.

Dean walked up to the crime-scene while he lit his cigarette, it was blocked off with a standard then yellow crime-scene tape. As he approached it he wondered how many times in the last thirty years had he reenacted this situation? Hundreds or perhaps thousand by now, he sincerely had no clue.

It was all the same though, a victim was found dead in a public place. Some were shot, stabbed, burned, decapitated, raped, clothed or naked, but the fact remanded that they were in some place at the wrong time and it had cost them their lives.

After he mused about it for what felt like an hour—but in actuality it was more like a minute or two—the Detective lifted up the yellow crime-scene tape and slowly entered the alley. Dean walked slowly toward the two patrol cops that guarded the scene.

It drove him nuts that today's detectives were so sloppy, they'd walk passed a clue and never noticed it because they were in such a damned hurry. Dean reflected back to his third wife, who started as his junior detective, and the wisdom he shared with her.

"Searching a crime-scene is like sex, if you're sloppy and rush through it the less likelihood you'll come out with the results you were hoping for."

The two patrol cops stopped him as he approached them.

"Easy boys," Tidwell said and flashed a brass badge that hung off a chain around his neck.

The two's body language relaxed at the sight of his badge, the older of the pair nudged the younger in a gesture of asking him did he know who stood in front of him. "Uh, Uh, good morning Detective Tidwell."

The younger cop's face lit up once he heard the detective's name. "Oh. Detective Tidwell... I did not mean to come across as a dick, sir. I didn't kno—"

Dean interrupted the younger patrol cop.

"No worries, son. I'm sure the picture that was painted of me is a far stretch of what I actually look like. Tell me, do I still have balls of brass, that every time they collide sparks fly out my ass?"

He is the first to laugh then the two men followed with perhaps a bit more forced chuckle than necessary. Tidwell did not mind the overacting, after all, he'd started the force at the age of twenty-five and could remember being nervous around the veterans. But, after thirty years Dean Tidwell was the lead senior detective on the force and his legend had become more myth than fact—which Dean was also all right with.

Tidwell decided last September when he turned fifty-five that he'd finish out the year and put in for retirement. Although the detective was not quite sure as to he's survive on Social Security pension, after his last wife took everything, Dean had to cash out his 401K to make ends meet.

At least he did not have to wake up and get out of bed at all hours of the night just to go work a case, that thought alone was enough encouragement for the veteran detective to turn in his badge and gun for good.

"Bloody hell," Tidwell mumbled to himself after the thought of his up and coming retirement.

Dean patted the two patrol cops on there shoulders as he passed in between them, "Keep up the good work boys, it's time for this old fart to get to work."

The Detective walked down a narrow and dilapidated alley just as the sun creeped into the sky and blanketed the city with a flood of light. Tidwell thought about how when he was younger, before he became a detective, his day would begin as the sun raised and he eagerly greeted it. But, those days were long gone, until the idea of retirement reemerged.

A tiny smile crossed his lips at the idea of begin able to greet the sun. With more thought to it Dean felt happy to retire in January, perhaps he'd finally have the time to complete his to-do-list. And, if he was lucky, maybe the veteran detective would begin dating once again.

The job he so excitedly fantasized about leaving was what cost him his last two marriages (his first wife left after she realized she could never convert him from being a pagan). Dean never blamed them, he perfectly understood them—how could they remain married to someone who's mistress demanded more of his time than anything else.

Yes, his job, was the mistress they referred to.

Once he became a detective for the department, Tidwell learned the hard way that the badge came first. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week and no matter the situation if worked called he'd had to come running. Which included birthday parties, movie nights, in the middle of sex and even the birth of his daughter, Dean loved being a homicide detective and would never let anything change that.

But now, now, he was ready to leave that behind him, no more interruptions—it was time Dean lived his remaining time on Earth as a carefree citizen.

Dean walked up to a group of plain clothed officers that huddled around an old green and ramshackle dumpster. One in particular caught his attention, it was Sanchez from Homicide, he held a folded newspaper over his poor excuse of a toupee.

He should just accept the fact he's bald and shave that shit off. Tidwell thought.

It was at the end of the path, where the chain linked fence separated the horrors of the alley from the peaceful and clean neighboring park.

Tidwell moved passed the plain clothed officers to the side of the dumpster, what he found was a naked and mutilated body of a young woman. The corpse was smashed up between the folded lids of the dumpster and the chain linked fence with her blood staining all of the surrounding pavement.

Dean covers his face as a reaction to the gruesome scene in front of him. "Oh Jesus, shit!"

"Well good morning to you too, Detective," one of the men which surrounded the body said with a self-amused grin.

"What's so good about it Jordan," Tidwell asked while he continued to stare at the mangled corpse. "It's certainly not a bloody good day for her now is it?"

"I hope and pray that when I get to your age that I don't get as grumpy and bitchy as you," snapped Jordan.

"If and that's a big mother fucking if, you make it to my age I'd be more concerned that my dick still worked," he said, "I hope you do live another twenty years, then you'll be blessed to learn the hardship of old age."

Jordan walked away from Dean and the others without another word said. Tidwell tried to take another drag from his cigarette but the rain pour extinguished it.

"Dammit," Tidwell cursed and flicked the drenched butt to the asphalt. "Does any one know has CSI already canvased the scene?"

"CSI already cleared the site, sir." Sanchez who continued to hold a newspaper over his toupee said. "They weren't able to get anything because of all of this rain."

"Fair enough," Tidwell grumbled, "it looks like the Fates have another long day planned for me... Lovely."

To Be continued...

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