Willow was nervous but trying not to show it. It had been years since she’d had to go on patrol and she knew she had to give the impression that she was calm and in control. But she was in unfamiliar territory, armed only with a brief description of a dangerous perpetrator. Technically, she was just supposed to be patrolling the streets, but the department had been briefed that morning and told to be on the look out for an elder female wearing a skirt. It wasn’t much to go on, but Willow was determined to find the culprit and apprehend them. She had to prove herself all over again at her new station.
At first the streets were quiet. Too quiet. But then Willow spotted something that seemed unusual. A woman jogging in the morning wouldn’t seem strange to most people, but Willow’s instincts kicked in: why was an obviously wealthy woman jogging in such a poor neighbourhood? The woman stopped briefly next to chat to another suspicious character and jogged on casually.
Willow stopped to speak to the second woman, she was one of those fabulously dressed extras that had been roaming the city since the recent movie studio merger. The woman was defensive from the start, demanding to know why she was being harassed by a police officer. Willow explained that she was chatting to lots of people to see if anyone had any issues they wanted to raise, since she was a community police officer. But the woman was intent on making a scene, probably in the hopes of attracting press attention and getting some more film work.
A small crowd started to gather, and Willow was aware of a few women matching the description of the culprit on the APB. Unfortunately she was unable to calm the woman down, and had to arrest her, meaning she had no time to speak to any of the other suspects.
Back at the station, the other officers were impressed that Willow had got into a fight and arrested a perp. Apparently things like that were big news in the suburbs, while back in her old post at the city these things were an everyday occurrence. The naivety of her colleagues made Willow all the more determined to solve the case, she picked up the case files and started going over the details. There wasn’t much to go on but she trusted her intuition and knew something would reveal itself in time.
Things were definitely different in the suburbs! Willow was shocked to see a woman march straight into the cell area to speak to the criminals. When she questioned it, she was told the woman was the chief of police and that she shouldn’t be challenged. This seemed wrong to Willow, who was used to following strict procedures.
Willow knew she’d stepped on a few toes and she was kicked back out onto the streets to patrol an area of Windenburg. Apparently, the country village had a thriving party scene and things could get a little out of hand. Willow was to patrol the village centre and keep an eye on the revellers. She didn’t mind the assignment, it was nice to explore the different areas of her new precinct.
Plus, she had some new leads to look into. Her careful review of the case files had revealed a few details that had previously been overlooked. Which meant she could rule out some of the suspects who didn’t fit the complete description.
Willow also knew from the case files that the perp had been reportedly seen hanging around a club in Windenburg, and she was keen to investigate this for herself. It was early in the evening and she was able to speak with the bar manager who confirmed her suspicions, the suspect was known to hang out there and the manager didn’t want that kind of riff raff hanging out in her club!
‘And here she is now,’ the manager flicked her eyes to the door and turned away casually.
Willow couldn’t believe it, the suspect was the chief of police! (Genuinely… this is the story the game played out! The suspect really was a senior police officer!)
‘Ma’am,’ Willow approached her humbly, ‘I was hoping you could assist me with my enquiries.’
‘Of course, dear,’ replied the suspect with a smug gleam in her eye, ‘I’m always happy to help junior detectives who are struggling with a case.’
Willow was feeling pretty smug herself, ‘Well ma’am. You see, I am confident I have cornered the suspect. I have a concrete description. I have a reliable witness. And what is more… I have evidence that the suspect communicated with known felons. Will you come quietly? Because I’ve already had one fight today and a few more scratches won’t dissuade me from taking you down.’
The suspect was shocked and knew that she had no choice but to allow Willow to arrest her.
Back at the station, Willow was feeling pretty pleased with herself for catching the unlikely suspect. She lead her to a cell far away from her co-conspirators and went to speak to her department head. Unfortunately, her boss seemed a bit rumbled about the whole thing. Maybe he was scared of losing his job for arresting a senior officer. Willow patiently explained all the circumstances of the arrest to him, but he demanded more evidence.
Well… if it was more evidence he wanted, then it was more evidence he’d get! And Willow would get it by following procedure and doing her job diligently. It was time to officially book her suspect in. The perp looked smug again, she obviously thought she was going to get away with it. Maybe she had friends in high places who were eager to say that Willow was a rookie who had ineptly collared the wrong person. But Willow knew she had the right person, and she just had to prove it.
While frisking the suspect, Willow found a small antique doll which most officers would probably overlook. However, Willow remembered from the case notes that an antique doll’s house had been at the crime scene and she was sure that the owner would soon notice if one of their prized one-of-a-kind dolls was missing. Willow confirmed this was the case and triumphantly deposited all the evidence on her boss’ desk.
Willow should have felt great! She had gone above and beyond what duty had asked of her, she’d taken the initiative to review the case files and draw attention to details, and she’d single-handedly identified and arrested the ringleader. So why did she have an awful feeling that there was more to this case than it seemed?