Home > adventure, crime, secret identity > The Black Lion – act 1

The Black Lion – act 1

Malibu Beach is exclusive, but lately it seems not as exclusive as the rich and powerful residents might prefer. One mysterious murder in the beachfront community set the pot to simmering under the local homicide authorities. A second homicide along the same stretch of exclusive Pacific Ocean shoreline set the stew to bubbling. When the third victim showed up, we had a rolling boil bubbling fiercely as the California Bureau of Investigation was called in.

The community was stirred up, and when this community gets stirred up, officials act. Along this strip of prime real estate are homes that belong to dot-com billionaires, movie stars, producers, directors and a few writers. There was the question of connection among the victims, and there certainly was, from several points of view. One thing is obvious to all: each victim was very wealthy and powerful. That’s the only kind of people who can afford to live there. Each victim was a white male and owned a self-earned fortune. No inheritors or lottery winners among the three. One thing that might be involved is that each was known to have lived with black women for several years before eventually marrying white women.

I was following the cases for The Malibu Story, a local cable news show. My name is Angel Cooper and I want to be a major crime reporter. I graduated journalism at Tulane at the top of my class. I chose to work on a small cable show because it’s Malibu Beach with all the special people. I hope to someday work for a major network. These three murders on my territory might be my ticket to ride. I look right with my café au lait complexion and fairly Caucasian features. From the neck down, I have nothing to worry about for visual appeal.

I was among the mob of journalists when the Chief of Police made his statement about the murders. They were quite certain they’re connected with each other, he said. As usual, they gave out as much information as they thought they safely could. They always hold back a vital piece of information, so if a suspect mentions the holdback fact, they know they’re looking at a participant in the homicide.

In this case, the holdback info was much more interesting than usual. In this case, every victim was found face down on his bed. Each was completely naked, with his mouth filled with his own underwear and gagged firmly with duct tape. I was the only person other than the police that knew all the details of all three murders. Most interesting of all, each had been branded on his right buttock with a silhouette of a black lion.

Autopsies revealed that each had been branded with a hot branding iron before he was killed. That explains the overstuffed mouths taped over to muffle screams of agony. Obviously, the perpetrator intended to inflict a lot of pain before ending the victims’ lives. How do I know all this if the police didn’t release the information?

(to be continued)

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