Michael’s phone rang. “Thank God for mobile technologies” Michael thought sarcastically. He looked at the display and saw it was Lt Hill, “It’s Lt Hill,” he looked up at Ray, both were partly stunned and partly curious, Michael answered. “Hello” Michael said.
“Hello Michael. I’m glad to have reached you. Things sound as if they were pretty hairy for you up at the house.”
“You can say that again,” Michael agreed.
“But you’re alright?” Lt Hill queried.
“Yes… just” Michael exclaimed.
“So you saw Ray?” Lt Hill questioned.
“Ray?” Michael repeated, staring straight at Ray who with this silently shook his head placing a finger over his lips. “No, I didn’t manage to” Michael lied, “have you found Ray?” he returned the question.
“No,” replied Hill “but we do have Helen, and she said something quite strange.”
Michael’s voice went cold “Really, what?”
Lt Hill sensed the unexpected change in attitude that Michael had towards her, “She told of how she had ‘attacked you in self defence’.”
“If that’s how she put it. Then, yeah you could say that. I’m not sure about the self-defence part…” Michael paused for a moment “…Listen Lt Hill, I think you need to be really careful with Helen.”
“Helen? Why?” Lt Hill sounded a little baffled, but not quite as surprised as he could have.
“She’s not the Helen I knew and was looking for.” Michael’s comment was confusing and didn’t seem at all like he had thought it should be.
Lt Hill looked through the parted door between the office in which he stood and the office in which Helen sat. He noticed her staring right back at him as if she could hear what they were saying. He turned his back on her and whispered into the phone, “What do you mean she’s not the Helen you were looking for?” he suddenly experienced a cold shiver and closed the door behind him completely with the back of his foot. “This is Helen, her ID checks out and everything. You should have seen her when they brought her in. She was pale and shivering…”
Before he had a chance to finish Michael butted in, “She’s faking it. Yes, technically she is the same person, but there’s something not right with her. There is no way she was treated badly at Ray’s house…”
“But I thought you said that you were worried about her being there… you were worried all along.” Lt Hill interrupted Michael.
“Yes, but that was before I knew about the change.”
“Change?” Lt Hill questioned again.
“All I can say is be very careful, and if at all possible, lock her up in the most secure cell you have.”
“You’ve got to be kidding, why?” Lt Hill gave a ridiculous laugh as he had begun to think Michael really was crazy.
“She can hurt people.”
“But she told me of how Ray’s man Friday had killed someone, her kidnapper in fact, and then how Ray had turned on him.”
“Don’t believe it” Michael said desperately.
“I’m sorry Michael, but unless we’ve got anything on her, we have no reason to keep her. And besides, why the hell would she wait out the front of the house for us to arrive? What would she have to gain by being brought in by the police?”
“Ray” Helen whispered to herself as she stormed down the sidewalk of a busy Maine street.