He was attending burlesque shows, seeking those who might tend to be for sale.
He had money—he had paid cash for Melody.
“Is there anything you can tell me that can help me find the man killing these women? I don’t need a lecture—I’ve seen the Ripper files,” Jude said.
Fullbright looked at him, confused. “Jude, her clothing is over at the lab. I haven’t anything on the body. We’re in serious trouble when he decides to take his next victim. He’ll emulate the murder of Mary Kelly, and you’ll recall, he killed her at her apartment. He took his time, and he wallowed in a complete bloodbath.”
Jude turned on his heel and left. He kept thinking about Whitney’s suggestion that they might be dealing with someone in law enforcement. Someone who knew what the task force workers were doing—and how to avoid them.
It was a thought he didn’t want to consider.
He looked at his watch; he wanted to get out to the garage, and he wanted an interview with Bobby Walden. He decided to deal with Bobby first, but when he checked with Ellis Sayer, Ellis told him that he’d been trying to pin down Bobby Walden all day.
“He was supposed to be filming some kind of a gang scene today, and he said that he wanted nothing more than to cooperate with the police, but he wouldn’t be finished until five. Want me to get up to the set? I’m at the garage now. And you’re going to want to see this. It’s the most piss-poor security I’ve ever seen—there’s a gate where the cars come in and out and register. And then there’s a back fence with a gaping hole in it a mile wide. Anyone who knew where the keys were kept in the office could have walked through the fence and taken one of the cars out. Management has apparently planned on fixing it for months, but they just haven’t gotten to it—never had any kind of trouble before, so they say.”
“Make sure someone goes through all the cameras from the Brooklyn Bridge because I believe they might have caught something. The car had to have come back over.”
“Yeah, we’ve done that,” Ellis said. “I’m pretty sure we found the car on the film, but we’ve enhanced and enhanced, and you can’t see a face.”
“Muddied, front and back. We couldn’t even go into court and verify it was the same car,” Ellis said. “This is the most organized killer I’ve ever come across,” he said. “I know my job, Jude.”
“I’ll go up to the set,” Jude told Ellis. “I’m going to bring Jackson Crow with me. Maybe he can tell me if there’s something strange I don’t sense in any of the actors up there. Keep working the garage—look for anything that can help us.”
He hung up, realizing that he didn’t want Ellis questioning Bobby Walden. Ellis? He couldn’t let himself become paranoid. Logic, timing.
Good old Ellis wasn’t a killer. Unless he could teleport.
He still wished that Monty wasn’t in the hospital.
And he realized that, since he’d spoken to Whitney, he suddenly mistrusted everyone. That was no way to run a task force, and yet, maybe it was the way that he had to be.
Andrew Crosby said it was fine for the little trio to come over when Whitney called him. He didn’t question their motives.
But, first, they stopped by Blair House for Jake’s laptop so that they could access his codes and programs. The street had reopened, but the police presence in front of the House of Spiritualism site and Blair House was still heavy. Will had remained at Blair House that day, following the police proceedings and studying the markings on the wall. Angela was with him, going through the film from the night before in hopes that one of the cameras might have caught something. They had both agreed that it would be good for the three of them to settle into Andrew’s house for the afternoon, especially if they intended to look up records on New York’s finest.
Whitney told Angela that as ridiculous as it might sound, she was wondering about Ellis Sayer.
“No, but it is curious, the way he was the one to find Captain Tyler. And it is curious that Captain Tyler was kidnapped from the veterans’ hospital—and that Ellis found him wearing the coat,” Whitney said.
“I think we’ll get him over here later tonight,” Angela said. “With just Jude, if we’re growing suspicious of everyone else. I don’t like to believe that the culprit could be a cop or an agent. But we can’t eliminate any possibilities.”
Angela watched her curiously as she spoke. “Hey, help me out in the kitchen for just a minute before you leave, will you?” she asked, “Hannah, you and Jake don’t need Whitney if you’re only going to grab a computer, do you?”
“Of course not!” Hannah said.
Angela drew Whitney into the kitchen and leaned against the counter. “I didn’t get a chance to talk to you last night. You knew where the second victim in the double event was going to be found. How?”
“Oh, Angela, I was having the nicest evening of my life, and then I fell asleep. I dreamed I was here at Blair House, and the dog came to me—and all the victims. They led me back to the foundations of the old House of Spiritualism. And that thing—that seething black shadow we keep seeing on film—rose and became a silhouette of the movie image of the Ripper. I think…that the old ghosts were trying to warn me, except that others were with them—Sarah, Jane Doe—she didn’t give me her real name—Melody and Virginia Rockford. Somehow, it goes back to the site. I wish I could figure out how!”
“We need to visit the site again,” Angela said. “And you need to pay heed to that dog. He led you right to his mistress’s grave site—and to the other skeletons.”
“But last night was a dream, Angela. When we found the skeletons, I was awake when the dog came to me.”
“We need to find out what that site has to tell us,” Angela said.
Jake stuck his head into the kitchen. “I’ve got the laptop.” He arched his brow. “You need more time?” he asked quietly.
“No, let’s go on over to Andrew Crosby’s apartment,” Whitney said. “You never know what he may have to tell us.”
The cast and crew of O’Leary’s was valiantly struggling on, a man in a sweatshirt bearing the title of the movie informed Jude and Jackson. He was one of the film’s executive producers, Griffin Byrd. They were having the assistant director work with crowd scenes that day, and they weren’t avoiding Lower Manhattan, they were merely choosing sites to the north because there was obviously more space. Or so he put it.
“I can’t believe that Angus Avery is guilty and, of course, he has our support,” Griffin told them. “This business is terrible—absolutely terrible. But you’ve had our cooperation all the way. We were out of the Broadway site before the investigation really began, and we’ve opened our props and costumes to the police, and the sets, of course. To our knowledge, everyone has cooperated fully. Sherry wasn’t on the shooting schedule today, and I understand that she did come into the station. Bobby is just finishing a gang scene. I’ll have him in here—” he paused to indicate the trailer where they sat, apparently Byrd’s on-set office “—to speak with you as well.”
“Mr. Byrd, if I were you, I’d shut down production until this situation is solved,” Jackson said.
“But you’re not me—shutting down would cost us millions,” Byrd said.
“I thought this started out as a low-cost production,” Jude said.
Byrd seemed to smirk at him. “Yes, that is millions,” Byrd said.
Jude forced himself to smile. “Mr. Byrd, the killer dressed up in a costume from this set.”
“That’s why you arrested Angus Avery, isn’t it?” Byrd responded.
“Mind if we watch the filming?” Jude asked.
Byrd frowned, as if that was a confusing question.
“It’s a closed set—there’s been so much publicity,” Byrd said.
“But I’m FBI,” Jackson said politely. “And Detective Crosby is NYPD. We’re hardly your customary gawkers.”
Byrd apparently wasn’t happy, but he couldn’t think of a sound reason to refuse.
Jude was glad they had come out; the scene had just finished shooting, and Bobby Walden seemed to be hurrying away from the office.
“Mr. Walden!” Jude called.
Still in costume, breeches and a drab gray poet’s shirt, Bobby paused. He turned back slowly, and then waved to them. “Hey, I was just going to change.”
“We only need a few minutes,” Jackson said.
A score of extras was walking behind the facade; flats that had nothing behind them except for the costume and prop tents that had been set up. The camera people were pulling equipment, and techs were running around as well, closing down for the day.
Bobby strode toward them. He smoothed back a handful of dark hair. “Bummer, huh? Who’d have figured old Angus, eh? And I guess he really was innocent—or had an accomplice.”
“May we use your trailer?” Jackson inquired of Griffin Byrd, making certain that his tone implied that they wished to interview Bobby alone.
“Naturally. I’m just in from the West Coast, gentlemen, so you’ll forgive me if I leave you for the day? I’m always available,” Byrd assured them.
Jude glanced at Jackson, and he knew that they were thinking on similar lines.
Byrd didn’t give a damn about any of the actors. He was a money man. He’d help the police; he’d hand over his own mother if that meant saving the movie.
Bobby came into the trailer and threw himself on the sofa, as if he were a nineteenth-century tough. He stared at them. “Guess you guys had something wrong, though, huh, what with what happened last night. There you go—another major bummer.”
Jude realized he didn’t like Bobby. He really didn’t like Bobby Walden. But that didn’t mean that he was guilty of anything other than being a self-serving prick.