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murder by any other name

The City

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a part of murder by any other name, by tallyrabbit.

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tallyrabbit holds sovereignty over The City, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

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The City

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Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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The latest victim of the string of assassin hits was forty-five year old Emily Price, the upperclass trophy wife of the great Richard Price, owner of Price Textiles. She was found in the alley behind her recently opened boutique, her lips still red and her dress still immaculate - almost. The blood from the stab wound had thoroughly soaked her little black dress, leaving it hard and crusty by the time forensics got out to her.

A passing squad car patrolling the area had noticed her feet, still decorated with large nude pumps, visible from behind a dumpster. Forensics arrived soon after to help secure and manage the scene. Katherine DeLise arrived on the scene before the rest of her new team, having been sent directly from the main branch as soon as the call came in. She pulled her Jeep partially up onto the sidewalk, turned and pulled the key from the ignition, and stepped from the vehicle.

The cop first on the scene approached her, a frown upon his lips. "Ma'am, this is a crime scene," he warned. "Please return to your vehicle."

"My apologies," Katherine said with a smooth smile. She drew her new badge from the pocket of her blazer and flashed it his way. "I'm Lieutenant Katherine DeLise. I'm under the command of Jett Ryder."

He made to apologize, but she pressed past him, knowing full well that his apology would not spare him from his awkwardness. He hurried after her and held up the tape for her to pass under, which she did with a thanks. Katherine's dark heels clicked upon the worn out concrete, alerting the forensic team of her presence. She made her way to stand in front of the victim's body, peering down at the woman with a sigh. After collecting a pair of navy latex gloves from her pocket - extra small, stocked for her hands only - and crouched down to get her chance to examine her before the medical team arrived to take her away.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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#, as written by MadMax
Arriving at the scene of the crime, Jett Ryder was completely at ease. He parked his truck along the side of the road and headed towards the blocked off area. The place was very familiar to him, it was his crime scene after all. Not that anyone would ever figure that out.

Darren Fisher, the cop keeping watch on the scene lifted up the tape to let his Senior Officer through, giving him a head nod as he did so. "Officer Ryder." He greeted.

With his 'mask' in place, he smiled at the greeting and nodded back. "Fisher."

After passing under the tape, the victim, his victim, could be seen lying on her back behind the dumpster. Of course, Jett already knew everything there was to know about this woman. He always made sure to do a background check on a target before going in for the kill. This particular woman was an easy target, she was dumb and gullible, two qualities he disliked in a person. Therefore, she made for an unsatisfying kill, making him eager to receive another target.

Crouched above the victim's body was a woman, one he had never seen before. Seeing as she must be with the police to be allowed entry into the crime scene, there is only one possible person that it could be. Katherine DeLise. She is the new lieutenant they assigned, the one that has had experience with serial killings. Jett moved to crouch down beside her, donning his own pair of latex gloves.

Tuning to look at her, he introduced himself. "Officer Jett Ryder. I'm assuming that you are Katherine DeLise, the lieutenant that was just assigned." he pretended to scan his eyes over the dead body. "I would shake your hand, but we have a body to examine."

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There didn't seem to be anything that stood out about the victim. Katherine ran her hand over the black dress, feeling for anything hidden by the folds of the fabric. Nothing. She chewed her tongue, a habit of hers when she was categorizing stimuli in her thoughts, and was just about to look at the knife wound when someone crouched beside her.

She tilted her head to examine the intruder, her hair falling as she did. She recognized him immediately, even before his introduction, as her new superior: Jett Ryder. He was perhaps a few years older than her, though still very handsome and youthful in complexion. He had sharp green eyes that now looked at the body before them. There was a cool confidence about him that cast a frown over her lips. She'd never liked authority figures.

"That's correct," she confirmed, returning her attention to the victim. "You may have heard me referred to as Kat or Kitty in your debriefing concerning my transfer. Despite what you heard, please call me Katherine." She wanted his respect. Both nicknames made her feel lower in status, and that was the last way she wanted to be feeling in the new environment.

Katherine icily refocused her attention on the body. She didn't like people getting in the way of her examinations, but now it couldn't be helped. After peeling back the ripped section of the dress, carefully so not to disturb the wound, she eyed the point of entry. "Likely a smooth blade," she noted aloud, "with an irregularly shaped hilt, judging by the tear in the flesh and the sub-dermal bruising. Length unknown at this point, but it's likely a switchblade or something similar."

Her interest in the body decreased exponentially after examining the wound. She stood, glancing once more at Jett. "We should check her bank statements, medical files, and insurance; any one of those may provide a clue into the reason behind her murder. I'm sure there isn't any evidence of the hitman, so it's likely better that we start there and work from motive to murderer."

The medical examiner and an ambulance had arrived and two gentlemen were walking towards them. One was young, likely an intern, and trailed behind the older gentleman like a puppy. The other man was a silver fox, his eyes dark and excited.

"You must be Katherine," he greeted. She de-gloved her hands and held one out for him, which he grasped and kissed. "My name is Dr. Warren Gray. I'm the chief medical examiner for your team."

"It's a pleasure," Katherine smiled.

"This is Morgan Johnson, my assistant," Dr. Gray continued, though his eyes had moved on to Jett. "Good to see you again, Jett," he added cheerily. "Perhaps not, however, given the circumstances of our meetings."

"Dr. Gray," Katherine spoke back up, still smiling warmly. "I'd like you to check if she had any sexual relations within the last hour or so of her death, if you could."

The doctor cocked his head to the side. "It isn't part of the assassin's MO to--."

"No, I'm aware," she cut in. "Only, if I were off to meet a partner of mine, I'd wear a pair of shoes like that. The only other place nude platform heels are worn are at weddings or clubs, so there are a number of possibilities we can strike out."

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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#, as written by MadMax
Jett found her obvious dislike of him to be amusing, though he didn't show it. He felt a strong urge call her kitten, but ignored it. Politeness was the way to go, polite people didn't bring attention to themselves.

His eyes followed her, not the wound, as she described what kind of blade was most likely used. Her description was pretty much on point which immediately told him that she was in fact, as good as she was supposed to be. She suddenly stood, glancing at him. He studied her now that he had a better view of her. She had a round, almost heart shaped face with dark hair. Overall, Jett found her to be stunningly attractive. Unfortunately, he didn't mingle with his female coworkers and she didn't look like the type to accept his offer of a one night stand either. He never has had an actual relationship with a women before, if they get to close to him, they begin to see the monster inside of him and he can't have that.

Bringing his mind back to her suggestion of motive first, murderer second, he responded with, "You read my mind."

When Dr. Grey and Morgan Johnson joined them, Jett stood from his spot on the ground and took his gloves off. With his 6'3" stature, he towered over Katherine. Dr. Gray seemed to notice her beauty as well considering the show he put on of kissing her hand. He internally rolled his eyes at the man, but smiled brightly when Dr. Grey addressed him. "You too, Doc."

Katherine seemed to brush right over the introductions and get straight to business. Her idea of checking for sexual relations was clever and Jett was impressed. It wouldn't lead her any closer to finding him, he was much to thorough for that, but it was closer to the truth than any of the other officers would ever get.

Looking at Dr. Gray and Morgan, but speaking about Katherine he said. "Quick and to the point, I like her."

Then talking directly to the doctor and his assistant, he said, "Make sure to run a test on what kind of weapon was used on the victim. Lieutenant DeLise believes it to be a switchblade or something along that line and I agree, but we need to be sure exactly what kind of weapon was used along with it's precise measurements."

"Anything else you'd like to add before we leave them alone to do their job, Miss Delise?" he asked politely.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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With Jett now looking down to her, asking her if she had more to say, Katherine suddenly felt very small next to her new boss. She refused to look back up at him, not wanting her presence and authority to be diminished by their differences in size. Even in her heels, slight as they were, she only came up to the lowest point of his chin.

"No, I think that's all for now," she replied with a nod. Her gaze returned to Dr. Gray. "Please contact me as soon as you have your initial findings. My number is on this card." She passed him her business card, which he gladly accepted.

"Of course, Lieutenant, I'll be in touch," he grinned, expression cheeky.

She noted his interest in her, shoved it into the pocket of her brain, and decided to forget about it. She waited for the two to head on towards the body before she took a step forward and swiveled so she was standing before Jett. From her pocket she produced a pack of cigarettes, one of which she removed, then replaced the pack and wrapped her painted lips around the end. She lit it after a moment with an expensive looking lighter - a gift from an ex - and after a drag blew the smoke at Jett's feet.

"I've only been given an overview of the case so far," Katherine sighed, the smoke curling through the air around her brunette locks, "and I was told you would talk to me a little bit about what we know. Now, I've just come from a twelve hour shift and I'd like to get to my new apartment to finish unpacking and setting up."

Her cold dark eyes met his green, clashing against them. "If you're willing to exchange some leftover Chinese takeout and a glass of wine for a little manual labor to help me out, we could go ahead and have that discussion today." She paused to release another stream of smoke. "Or, if you're eager to get back to the station and continue being oh-so-successful at solving these murders by yourself, then that's fine as well. Regardless, I'm leaving. All of my contact information, including my address, was emailed to you likely within the hour."

Katherine dropped the remainder of her cigarette and smothered it with her heel with a twist. She left without waiting to see what he was going to do, not caring that it was disrespectful. She didn't care about this place. She'd come because they made her and she wasn't about to let a man who had been highly unsuccessful at his job call the shots. A scowl playing with her lips, she backed her Jeep off the sidewalk and rejoined the streets just in time for some enjoyable afternoon traffic.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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#, as written by MadMax
Yet again, he internally rolled his eyes at the Doctor's obvious interest in Katherine. Jett was glad when they finally left to take the body away, leaving Katherine and himself alone. Watching her pull out an expensive looking lighter, he was shocked to find out that she was a smoker. She didn't have that distinct smell of cigarettes that surrounded most smokers and he wouldn't have guessed her to be a smoker based on her looks. He, better than anyone, should know not to judge a person by their looks, but it was part of human nature he supposed. It did irritate him that he didn't realize that though, he normally caught onto everything about a person from first glance.

After her little speech, she smothered the remainder of her cigarette and took off in her jeep without even giving Jett a chance to answer her. The corner of his lips turned up slightly when her car drove out of view. What an interesting women, he thought. Her words gave away a lot about her personality. She likes to be in control and is used to bossing people around. Jett understood that, as he himself is the same way, which was why he disliked her disrespect towards him. However, it excited him at the same time. Excitement for him was hard to find, outside of killing people that is, so she was like a fresh of breath air.

Her little jab about him solving the murders was hilariously ironic considering that the murderer was literally standing right in front of her. She probably meant to insult his intelligence with that comment, but she actually insulted her own intelligence without even knowing it. It was conversations like that, that made it difficult for him to hold in his laughter.

Hopping into his truck, he headed towards his apartment to change into something more casual. Upon arriving at his apartment, he took his suit off and traded it for a white button down shirt and a pair of jeans being held up by a black belt. When he was fully dressed, he moved to where his laptop was and scanned through his emails until he came across the ones about Katherine. He committed her address to memory and walked out the door.

Arriving at the address specified in the email, he went up the door and knocked, waiting for Katherine to let him in. If kitty wants to play, then play he shall. After all, he always did love games, especially dangerous ones.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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Katherine's apartment had been supplied for her upon her transfer. Her superiors, understanding her financial situation, had agreed to give her six months with the team, six months to catch the killer. In her mind, that was all the time she needed. Even if she didn't catch the guy, she wouldn't be hurting for money because of it. Everyone knew she was good. Everyone knew she was an ass. But everyone also knew that the team hadn't come anywhere close to finding their hitman, so if she failed it wasn't a big blow.

Still, the apartment was modest, with outdated but generally modernized appliances and facilities. The floor was scattered with boxes and out-of-place furniture, making her only way to her bedroom a maze. Katherine kicked her heels from her feet and opted for something she didn't mind sweating in - in this case, a cropped black tee and some shorts that she never wore out. She popped a piece of nicotine gum in her mouth to obscure the taste of smoke; she'd been so close to quitting before she'd been relocated and now she wasn't so sure how quitting was going to work.

She hadn't expected Jett to show. Katherine was someone who found it extremely difficult to trust others, and especially more so to form a solid relationship with anyone. While her work ethic allowed her communications flow smoothly, she'd never befriended a superior. She was the little shit they put up with because they knew she was good. The fact that Jett was standing on the other side of the door when she opened it made her question his intentions. She'd already known him what she was like. So why had he actually showed?

"I won't lie, I'm surprised you're here," she murmured, narrowing her dark eyes at him. She stepped aside to let him through, and once he'd passed she shut and locked it once more. "Do you prefer red or white wine?" she asked while paddling into the small kitchen area. "I've got both and it doesn't matter which you choose, because at this point I need to a little intoxicated to keep me alive."

Katherine went ahead and pulled two different wines out when she pulled out the leftover Chinese. She nuked it in the microwave, then separated it out into two portions and placed one plate on the counter for him.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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#, as written by MadMax
A smirk settled onto his face at Katherine's greeting. "I'm just as surprised myself." When she stepped aside he took that as an invitation to come in and walked into her apartment. Boxes littered the floor and furniture was scattered about, making it difficult to get anywhere. The disorganization bothered him, he was dying to clean the place up.

"White," he answered. "though I do like red wine as well."

Trying to ignore the mess, he moved to join her in the kitchen as she heated up some leftover Chinese food. The outfit she wore was cute, definitely more casual than what Jett would ever wear, but then again he preferred to stay well dressed. He only owned one pair of sweatpants and it was rare for him to ever wear them.

He leaned on the counter when she laid out a plate for him along with the wine. "So, you brought me here to get intoxicated? I was under the impression that I was invited here to go over details of the case?" he teased.

Grabbing a chair he sat down, picking at his food as he wasn't all that hungry. Despite his efforts to ignore the mess he kept glancing around, the clutter making him feel anxious. It wasn't a feeling he was fond of. Jett typically had a calm demeanor about him and preferred to stay that way. Whenever he broke free of his calmness, people tended to see him as odd or suspicious and he couldn't let Katherine think that. In the hopes to settle himself down, he grabbed the bottle of white wine.

"Do you have any glasses around here or are we drinking straight from the bottle?" He raised his brows in question.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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"It's called multitasking," Katherine snorted. "Talking and drinking can happen at once, no? Don't tell me you're a light weight?"

Per his request she opened a few boxes in search of a couple of glasses. She found two unmatched glasses, but they would have to do; she passed both of them to him before moving back to her plate of food. Between the last minute move and the new victim, Katherine had unfortunately had little time to take care of herself. Truth be told, she didn't even really like Chinese food, but the hunger in her stomach demanded a sacrifice, so she forced a few bites down.

"I've been told very little about the intimate details of the findings," she said, eyeing him where he sat. "I know that there has been at least fourteen victims attributed to a specific hitman. I know that there has been a surprising lax of evidence found to identify the guy and I also know that the victims don't tend to share any characteristics other than the fact that they all tended to have pissed off a few people - not surprising in light of their murders."

Once he had poured the wine, Katherine took a sip, letting the smooth taste remain in her mouth for a moment before swallowing. She took a few more bites of her food before turning to examine the rest of the boxes scattered around. Many of them would be easy to empty because they held larger and fewer items; others were filled with smaller nicknacks that were area specific. A sigh on her lips, she pulled her hair back from her face and tied it up in a ponytail. As she did, a scar - bright and potentially fresh - appeared just below the meeting point of her jaw and her ear.

She began to put dishes into the cabinets, reaching what she could. She had a step stool somewhere, but instead of searching for it to reach the higher shelves she instead placed them on the counter.

"So what exactly do you know about this guy?" she asked coldly. "You've been lead on this team for quite a while and supposedly you're pretty good. I'm surprised I haven't been given more evidence to work with."

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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#, as written by MadMax
"I'm no lightweight." he responded.

Katherine went to search for the glasses and passed two mismatched ones to him. As she talked, Jett poured wine into both of the glasses and then handed one to her. At this point he was done eating and took a sip of the wine at the same time she did.

He watched her as she looked at the boxes piled in the apartment and sighed, pulling her hair up in a ponytail. His green eyes, both sharp and calculating honed in on the bright scar that went from her jaw to her ear. It looked fresh and Jett wondered how she got it. A bad occurrence with one of her previous cases? An ex boyfriend with a temper perhaps? It is always possible that it happened in a simple accident as well he guessed.

Noticing that she couldn’t reach the higher cabinets, he moved behind her to help as he could easily reach the top shelf. Every time he picked up a dish, his front brushed against her back. Once the dishes were all put up and she was done talking, he moved to lean against the counter, freeing her from the caged position he had her in.

"I wouldn't say that I'm that good, I prefer the term mediocre." That was a lie, Jett knew he was the most intelligent person in his unit. However, sometimes it was best to play dumb. If people knew how smart he really was they would be suspicious. Plus, it wouldn't make any sense as to why someone who was known for being highly intelligent would fail to find the murderer after such a long period of time. It didn't hurt his ego to be called an idiot by his fellow officers because he simply didn't care about their opinions.

"I don't know what to tell you, the guy is good," he tilted his head down to make eye contact with her. "He leaves no evidence at the crime scenes and never makes a mistake, no fingerprints, no stray cigarettes, no hairs, no chewing gum, nothing." He crossed his arms across his chest. "In fact, the only lead we have is that we believe him to be someone who has been professionally trained to carry out hits considering the lack of evidence that he leaves behind."

Jett paused for a moment before looking around as if he was nervous about what he was going to say next. He wasn't, but he wanted Katherine to think that he was. Then after taking a deep breath, he leaned in close to her. "I have this hunch though. It's a longshot and I haven't said anything to the other officers yet because I know it would create chaos among them, but I think that the killer is someone that works in criminology." With his palms facing outwards, he put his hands out in front of him. "I know it's a big accusation to make, but I can't shake the thought from my head. I mean, just think about it. He never leaves any evidence or clues, and always seems to evade the police at every turn. What better place for a killer to hide than among the police. That way, he can get access to all the police files and information, and can easily stay one step ahead of the cops."

Shaking his head he continued, "I hate thinking that a fellow member of the police force could be behind these heinous crimes, but there are too many facts pointing in that direction for me to just ignore it. It could be anyone really, a simple cop, someone in forensics. Hell, it could even be a medical examiner. Anyone that has experience with crimes could be a suspect." His hands ran through his hair in frustration and looked at Katherine with as much pain in his eyes as he could muster. "The worst part is that it puts the people in my unit under high suspicion since we have been the ones working on the case. These aren't just my coworkers we're talking about here, these are my friends. I would take a bullet for any one of them without hesitation." Also a lie. "If I were to find out that one of them was a murderer, I don't know how I would be able to handle it."

Saying these things is a risky move on his part. In chess, this would be like moving his queen into a vulnerable position where she could get taken out at the slightest misstep. However, if the move was successful, as he believed it would be, then he would have a huge advantage over the rest of the game. To win, one must take risks. Without risks there is no reward.

"Despite my personal connection to these people, I feel that we must consider them all as possible suspects." His eyes were filled with fierce determination as he spoke. "I plan to catch this bastard, no matter the cost."

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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Katherine heard Jett approach and glanced over her shoulder, wondering what he needed. She turned her face from him as he reached above her, towering over her easily to put the plates in their correct spots. As he did, brushes of physical contact ignited between them. Was he doing it on purpose? Or was he simply trying to help?

Regardless of his intentions, Katherine didn't ask. Instead, she finished unpacking the last few boxes as he began to explain what they knew about the hitman. Once she was finished, she sat upon the counter across from him and took another sip of wine. He suddenly paused, expression tense, and leaned in to explain his hunch.

It all seemed to make sense. Of course, if it was someone the police entrusted then they could misdirect the team and prevent evidence from being categorized or noted. She swung her legs as she considered the implications of his words.

"It does make a lot of sense that our hitman could actually be posing as a good guy," she said slowly, nodding her head. Katherine gave him a one over, surprised that he seemed to be a genuine person. Whatever vibes she'd received from him at the crime scene must've been wrong, because he seemed genuinely concerned about the case.

"I do think it could be dangerous to start poking fingers at people in the department, though," she thought aloud. "so I think you were right in not pushing this theory forward with the rest of the team. Let's keep it on the down low and I'll poke around a little when I meet everybody."

Katherine took another taste of her wine. Maybe he wasn't a lightweight, but she definitely was. She could already feel the alcohol running through the back of her head. "Mediocre doesn't seem likely," she said out of the blue, eyeing him with intelligent chocolate orbs. "I think you're a lot smarter than you let on. You don't become in charge of a special team like this unless someone high up thinks you've got brains."

Her eyes fell away from him to the clock on her microwave. The night was still young, but she could feel herself drifting. "If you could help me with at least moving the boxes to their respective areas, I'd appreciate it. Other than this kitchen and the bed and bath in the back, it won't have to go far. I just need it organized enough that the path from the door to my bed is unobstructed."

She pressed the wine back to her lips; a red mark had begun to form on the glass from her dark lipstick. "By the way, I apologize if my attitude with you took you aback, " she said, slipping from the counter to start moving some boxes into the bedroom, "but that's the way I have to be at work, otherwise they see I'm a woman and they never see anything else special." Katherine rummaged through a few boxes to discover their contents. "My family gets whiplash when they see me work, because they've only ever seen my introverted submissive side. But you saw how Dr. Gray treated me. He'll never get past it, I guarantee you."

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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#, as written by MadMax
Katherine's words delighted him. She'd bought his words hook, line, and sinker, and why wouldn't she? It was the truth. While he was internally grinning, he only gave her a thoughtful look to indicate that he was listening to her.

The lieutenant wouldn't let him have a complete victory though. She saw right through his mediocre comment and called him out on it. Saying he was mediocre may have been a misstep on his part, but he hoped she would just think he was being modest when he said that. Unfortunately, he can't play dumb like he has done in the past now because then she'll think he's purposely trying to mislead the people working on the case. Her chocolate brown eyes had a way of seeing through him, minus the whole him being a murderer thing.

"I guess your right. I just don't like having attention on me, it makes me feel uncomfortable." He said sheepishly.

When she suggested that he help her move the boxes he was more than happy to agree. "Thank god, you mentioned that. They've been bugging me since I walked in." He put the wine glass to his mouth and tipped it back, downing the entire drink in one smooth move before following Kathrine to the boxes. Regardless of his need to clean, he couldn't help but admire the headstrong brunette. He unashamedly stared at her ass as she rummaged through the boxes and who could blame him? She was beautifully formed in every aspect of her body. He may be a murderer, but he was still a red blooded male.


For a moment Jett was lost in his own head, before he shook himself out of it. It was probably her use of the word submissive that did it. "I'll admit that I was a bit shocked by your attitude, but in a good way. I like people that are interesting and you, Miss DeLise, are very interesting." he said in a deep voice as he moved right beside her to help sort the boxes. "If I were you, I would just ignore Dr. Gray, he is world-class man whore that only ever has one thing on his mind when it comes to women. Any person with a brain can see how strong and clever you are. I only just met you and I've deduced that much." he said with sincerity.

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Character Portrait: Jett Ryder Character Portrait: Katherine DeLise
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"If you're going to call me Miss DeLise, please do it behind my back," Katherine groaned, glancing up at him. Had he always been that tall? She was convinced that one day he'd trip over her and squash her like a bug. "I hate being called that. Katherine is fine." She sorted a few more boxes into the bedroom before returning to the kitchen to collect her wine glass, not nearly intoxicated enough to truly be herself in front of a coworker, let alone her boss. She finished it off. "But anyway, that's nice of you to say."

Being nice to him was hard. She didn't like being so much smaller than him. Perhaps it was tiny-chihuahua complex, but Katherine felt extremely intimidated by him, both by status and gender. Although he spoke kindly, often shyly, she didn't feel that he was that way at all. There was an intentionality to the way he spoke, to the way he moved, and Katherine couldn't figure him out.

Katherine ditched the wine for a spike lemonade. She struggled for a moment to twist off the top - why not just make them regular pop-offs? - before succeeding and tossing the top into the trash. "Anyway, Jett, you're kind of weird," she said with a small laugh, the alcohol making her more honest than she normally was. "I don't think I've met anyone with your stature and looks who 'doesn't like attention' because it 'makes them uncomfortable'. I bet you go home and turn into a whole other person, with lots of ladies and booze who loves the attention." She grinned into the bottle before returning to the remaining few boxes.

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#, as written by MadMax
Jett laughed when she expressed her dislike of being called Miss DeLise. For now, he would respect her wishes and stick with Katherine, but that didn't mean he wouldn't call her that when they were on duty. He noticed that she went back to her wine and finished it off. If she keeps drinking at this rate she will be intoxicated.

He dropped off a couple more boxes in her room before walking back into the living room to see her struggling to get the lid off of a spiked lemonade. She did seem like a different person compared to the way she acted earlier at the crime scene. Most would probably see her as two faced, but Jett could relate. His mask had become a permanent part of who he was. In the blink of an eye he could put it on, hiding his true self from the world. So knowing that Katherine also had two sides to her, made him see her differently. Sure, what Jett was hiding was infinitely more disturbing than what she was hiding, but this similarity, however faint it may be, made him feel like he wasn't alone. He didn't know how to feel about that. He was used to being a lone wolf, an outcast. That feeling of connection was not something he ever thought he would have.

It was funny that as he was just thinking about being an outcast, Katherine called him weird. Weird is one way of putting it, he thought. Hearing her call him that was also alarming though. Most people found him to be generally likeable and normal. If she thought he was weird now after only spending a small amount of time with him, what would she think of him after they work together for weeks or months? Would she figure out who he was, what he was? He needed to calm down and stop jumping to conclusions before he did something stupid. At the moment she was clueless to the fact that he was the hitman, so he had nothing to worry about.

Turns out that her calling him weird had to do with the fact that she was somewhat drunk, if the rest of her statements were anything to go by. She definitely knew that the shy and kind guy act he had put on was fake, but what she didn't know was that attention actually did make him uncomfortable. Not because he was shy, but because he killed people as a side job and didn't want to make that public knowledge. If only she knew what kind of person he turned into when he was alone, if she did, she wouldn't be making jokes about it. Ladies and booze didn't have much appeal to him , he simply used them to get what he wanted. He drank to get rid of the emptiness that haunted his mind and soul, and he slept with women for lustful reasons only. None the less, he found her words to be amusing.

Grinning back at Katherine, though she wasn't looking at him, he snuck up behind her. "Wouldn't you like to know." He whispered huskily into her ear.

With that he grabbed two more boxes and headed towards her room to put them up. Walking away, he internally cursed himself for flirting with her. He knew better than mess around with co-workers, it was against his rules. There was something about her though, something he couldn't quite put his finger on, that awakened something inside of him. Being a person that hates losing control, he did not want to figure out what it was.

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Katherine's face filled with color instantly. Yeah she did. Shit. What was she doing? Placing her drink upon the counter, the smoothed a hand over her hair, letting her fingers drag through the end of her ponytail. Between the sleep deprivation and the alcohol, she'd put herself in a precarious place. This is what she got for drinking, even though she knew how she got when she did. She'd let her guard down surprisingly far for him, considering what he meant to her professional career.

Her mindset changed very quickly. She rounded the counter into the kitchen and ran a little water through her hands to pat upon her face, as if it would refreshen her and extract all of the stupidity of the last hour or so.

Her eyes flickered to the clock over the microwave. "Hey Jett, that's enough for now," she called over her shoulder. "It's getting late and I really do need to be going to bed."

She took a deep breath and for a few moments she felt like that was enough. Katherine, as someone who had always had to work her hardest in order to gain respect for what she did, was drawing a not-so-great picture of herself in Jett's eyes. And even though she was attracted to him, she didn't want that tainting her image. If he wasn't her boss, and if she'd been a little more drunk, well... Perhaps it would've been a different story.

Once satisfied that she could face him again, she turned back around the kitchen to stand by the bar, watching him with tense eyes. "Like I said earlier, just sorting the boxes out for now helps immensely. I should be able to knock out the rest of it tomorrow night, assuming we're not preoccupied." She paused, then added, "With the case. I'm sure you're tired too after a long day, so it's probably best to stop here."

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#, as written by MadMax
Relief shot through him when she called out to him from the kitchen. This little get together was getting to be too personal for his liking. Sitting down the boxes he had in his hand, he returned to the living room where Katherine was watching him almost anxiously. She wanted him to leave as much as he wanted to leave.

Jett's brows shot up at the word preoccupied. Her pause and further explanation showed that she realized how suggestive it sounded. He took her apparent nervousness as a sign to take off.

"I think your right." He rubbed his hand along the back of his neck. "Thanks for the wine and food." Pausing awkwardly, he headed towards the door. Before he went, he glanced back at her. "I'll see you in the morning, Katherine."

Closing the door behind him, he got in his truck. The mask slipping from his face in mere seconds. As he drove home, he wondered if Katherine was sold on the personality he played. He found it unlikely that she did, she was too clever for that and he could tell that she had great instincts. All the more reason for him to stay away from her. She'll be nothing but trouble, and as much as would like to play with her, he couldn't.

Walking into his apartment, he hung his keys on one of the hooks by the door. Everything in his apartment had a place. With his obsessive cleaning habits, the whole place was immaculately clean. It would be almost impossible to find even a hint of dust. His crime scenes are the same, that is why he is always so confident that no one will trace the murders back to him. Only twice has he left something behind at a crime scene, and both times he was able to successfully destroy the evidence when he arrived at the scene.

Once he reached his bedroom he changed out of his clothes, placing them neatly into the hamper, before he laid down on his large king size bed. The bedframe was made out of a dark black wood with an extravagant padded headboard to match. He covered himself with the smooth satin sheets and stared at the ceiling. His eyes, which were normally sharp and mysterious in public, were now dull and lifeless. It was at night when his urge to kill was strongest. A constant worry of his was that one day, he would lose control and kill without being given an order to do so. Already, his monster threatened to come out on a daily basis.

After staring at the ceiling for he didn't know how many hours, he finally drifted off into sleep.

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Katherine found sleep especially easy, considering how busy she'd been in the last forty-eight hours. She didn't plan on going into work early, deciding that she deserved the extra rest, but her phone began to ring a quarter past eight, rousing her from her slumber. A groan escaped her and with groggy hands she searched blindly for it. After realizing it had fallen in the night, she leaned off the edge of the bed and grasped it firmly.

"Lieutenant DeLise," she answered, struggling into a sitting position.

"Ah Katherine, did I wake you?" It was Dr. Gray, his voice amused. "You told me to call you if I found any interesting things from our victim's body? Well, I did. Can you come down to the office?"

Her ears perked and her mind jerked from its groggy state. "Of course, I'll be there as soon as I can."

"Wonderful," he replied with a laugh. "I look forward to seeing you."

Ending the call, Katherine tossed the phone onto the bed and struggled across the room in the dim light. She dressed quickly, another pant suit, and detangled her hair much less gently than usual. Not wanting to take much longer, she opted for minimal makeup, much more natural than her bold-lipped design from yesterday, and rushed out the door.

Dr. Gray was sitting at his desk when she arrived. He glanced up at her, staring at her for a moment before a wide smile spread his lips. "I didn't expect you to arrive so quickly," he said. "You look lovely."

"The body, Dr. Gray?" Katherine demanded and awarded him with a scolding frown.

He didn't seem to mind. "This way." He led her back through the building towards the examination tables. "Do you want to wait for Jett to arrive? I sent him a text, so I expect he'll be here soon." The expression on her face answered his question. He stopped at an empty table, likely where he'd done the post-mortem. "Well, when I was examining her body I found two things," he continued. From a rolling cart next to the table he produced two evidence bags, which he handed to Katherine. "In the wound, the tip of the blade chipped. It won't help us much until we find the weapon, but then we can match the missing fragment to the blade to confirm everything."

"Are these fibers?" Katherine asked, her eyes more interested in the second bag. "Or threads?"

"Threads, yes," Dr. Gray confirmed. "They were on the dress near the puncture, likely caught by the blade or hilt when the murder took place. I don't want to get your hopes up, Katherine, but you may pass it on to forensics for testing. They could pick up some clues or DNA off of it." He looked as though he wanted to say more, but his phone began to ring and he excused himself into the next room.

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#, as written by MadMax
Classical music was blaring through the fairly large apartment. In the exercise room, Jett was currently doing pushup's. His goal for the morning was 150. He had already went out for a run earlier as he wakes up every morning at 4. His day always started off with exercise. His job as a hitman required a fair amount of physical strength and endurance, so he had to stay in incredible shape to get the jobs done. Weighing 217 lbs. of pure muscle, it was easy to see that he took his fitness very seriously. As the Johannes Brahms piece neared it's end, he reached his goal and went to take a shower.

With the music still blaring, he let the scolding hot water flow over him, soothing his muscles and sending him into a state of relaxation. He was in and out quickly and wrapped a towel around his waist as he went to turn the music off. Walking into the kitchen to grab the protein shake he had in his refrigerator, he picked up his phone so he could check his messages and emails. Jett reached in the fridge and chugged the odd tasting, but nutritious drink. After sitting the empty cup down, he turned his phone on.

Emails notifications popped up quickly along with a text message from Dr. Grey. Curious as to why the doctor had sent him a message, he opened it up first. His hip, still clad in a towel, was propped up against the large black marble island in the kitchen as he read the contents. Then he reread it several more times.

The doctor found something interesting in the victim's body. Jett's victim.

For the longest time he stood frozen in his spot staring at the message, until the panic set it. Frantically running to his room he threw on the first suit he found, tripping over himself as he put his pants on. Then, grabbing his watch, and tie he went back into the kitchen. Apparently, he had dropped his phone as it was now lying on the tiled floor in the kitchen. It wasn't cracked, so he stuffed it into his suit pocket and grabbing his keys, flew out the door. Seconds later, he reentered the apartment to grab his I.D. and badge before leaving once again.

Driving to the department, his hands shook on the wheel, the only sign that he was frantic aside from the questions that ran through his head. What did Dr. Grey find? How did he find it? How did I mess up? Do they know that it's me yet?

He replayed that night over and over in his head, searching for any sign of a misstep. He had worn his gloves, so no fingerprints. No one had seen him kill her or heard her muffled screams, of that he was sure. He couldn't remember dropping anything and his mask was in place, along with rest of his outfit... Shit. His suit. That damn suit!

The night that Jett had killed Emily Price, he had been busy with work. He had almost decided to reschedule the killing for another night because of how busy he had been, but he hated straying from a plan. So, when he left work, it was very late and he didn't have time to change out of his suit. So, he just grabbed his mask and gloves from the secret compartment in his truck and tracked her down through the tracking device he had put into her phone. The kill had been moderately simple, but Emily struggled more than he expected and jerked suddenly before he shoved the blade into her. He remembered feeling a slight tug on the cuff of his suit, but since he couldn't see anything with the naked eye, he ignored it. Now that idiotic move was coming back to haunt him.

Rolling up to a stop sign, he slammed his hands on the dashboard in anger. "Fuck!" he roared. Then he peeled out, driving at a dangerously high speed. Once he was near the department, he slowed down both his driving and his erratic breathing. Taking in deep breaths, he prepared to compose himself before walking into the station. He pinned his badge onto his suit and attempted to put on his tie. When he was done though, it was uneven and loose around his neck. Hurriedly going inside, he ran his hands through his hair to keep it from looking unruly, and went straight to the doctor's desk. However, the doctor wasn't there, Katherine was.

Great, he thought. Out loud he said. "Do you know what Dr. Grey found? He said that it was something interesting." He hoped that he would be able to pass his nervousness off as being anxious to finally have a lead in the case.

Looking for an answer, his sharp green eyes searched her chocolate ones with urgency.

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While waiting for Dr. Gray, Katherine took a seat on one of the examination tables, mulling over the two evidence bags in her hands.

The knife fragment wasn't the most exciting thing in the world, but she supposed it was better than nothing. There was a time and place that it would become more necessary - especially if they ever found the murder weapon. Even so, it was possible that they could test to see if there were any specifics about the blade's makeup that could give them some direction to follow. A manufacture's list of clientele could add some names to their suspect list.

It was the fibers that made her more excited, however. It looked to be a higher end, sturdier thread, so it was likely that it came from some sort of suit or dress shirt. Even if no DNA could be pulled from it, the color of the fibers could be cross-listed with the dyes used in local stores, providing them with another way of expanding their suspects.

Jett pushed through the doors so suddenly that Katherine flinched. She looked up at him, for even as she sat on the table he was much taller than her, and gave him a once over. "You're looking a little rough," she said instead of answering his question. "Got excited when Dr. Gray gave you the news, huh?"

She reached out and grasped his tie, pulling him closer to her so she could fix it for him. "The tip of the murder weapon broke off in the wound - probably connected with a bone - and was buried in the tissue, so that's one thing," she finally explained. "The other more exciting news is that they found some fibers near the puncture wound that didn't belong to the victim's attire." Once she finished straightening his tie, Katherine waved the two evidence bags at him so he could see, but then placed them the inner pocket of her blazer.

"I'm going to take them to forensics in a little bit," she added, "but first, I heard back from the victim's bank. Apparently she'd been depositing large sums of money every month. Sounds like she could've been blackmailing someone."

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#, as written by MadMax
Jett nearly groaned in response to Katherine's comment about his appearance. She was testing his patience, but at least she seemed to think he was excited about the news rather than nervous.

"Of course," he replied. "Now please stop stallinge and tell me what he found." His tried to hide his irritation.

It slipped away however, when he was pulled to the petite woman by his tie. His body mere inches from hers as she fixed his tie from her spot on the table. His breath turned shallow from the sudden surprise and near proximity of her. Ignoring his body's response to her touch, he focused more on her words. Taking in every piece of information and locking it in his brain.

The news about the knife was unexpected, he hadn't even noticed that the tip was missing so it must have been a very small piece of the tip. The tip of a knife however, wouldn't do much for them though unless they found the weapon, which wasn't going to happen. Before he had time to be relieved though, Katherine confirmed his previous fears. Fibers from his suit had been found near the victim's wound.

This wasn't looking good for Jett, it wasn't looking good at all. If they found a fingerprint or even a partial print on the fiber, then he was done for. By law, all policemen were required to have their fingerprints logged into the database, so it wouldn't be long before the print was matched to his. He had worn gloves while he made his kill, but had he touched his sleeve earlier in the day while he was at work? It didn't matter, he couldn't take the chance. That tiny fiber had the capabilities of giving them valuable information that would lead them closer and closer to him, so he had no choice but to take it.

He was so eager to have it, in fact, that when Katherine showed him the evidence bags, he was ready to snatch it from her fingers. But of course, she put them into the inner pocket of her blazer. The information about the blackmailing didn't interest him, he didn't think that it would direct them to him. He was more concerned about how he was going to get those evidence bags.

"I can't believe the Doc found a fiber from the killer's clothes." He said incredulously. "Someone needs to give that guy a raise. That kind of evidence is invaluable to a case like this, we may finally find the killer because of it."

How? How was he going to get it? It wasn't like he could reach into her jacket nonchalantly. He needed a diversion.

"Blackmail? That's interesting. It would give someone a motive to want her dead." He moved a bit closer to her, making sure that she didn't get too far out of his reach. "It's definitely something to look into." Then he leaned towards her to whisper inconspicuously, "Have you been keeping your eyes out for possible suspects?" His hand slithered towards her jacket, reaching out, but ready to retract at a moment's notice.

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"I'm not so sure about finding the killer simply from a few threads," Katherine replied, raising an eyebrow. "They're likely been contaminated somewhat, considering it was by a dumpster. If there isn't any DNA on them, though, we can try to backtrack and look for the manufacturer."

He seemed off, but she couldn't figure out why.

"We'll have to go through her personal effects to figure out if blackmail really is the truth," she said with a sigh, "but I wouldn't be surprised by it. It's always the same amount, same day, every month. If we can find someone connected to the blackmail scheme we may be one step closer."

Katherine's ears peaked interest at the mention of possible suspects. "I'll be meeting more of the team today," she answered quietly, "so I'll be able to get some reads on people then. I'm most interested in the forensics unit, since they handle most of the evidence, so it's convenient that I have a reason to be there."

"My, my, you two seem to have hit it off." Dr. Gray, who had just returned from his phone call, eyed the two of them, but his attention was mostly on Katherine.

"You're funny," she retorted while gently pushing Jett out of her way so she could slip from the table. "By the way, Dr. Gray, did you find any evidence that the victim was sexually active before her death?"

A sly smile curled his lips. "Hm I wonder if I should tell you, Kitty."

"Please don't test my patience, Dr. Gray." Her dark eyes bore into him, unblinking, but the tips of her ears flushed red.

"Yes, yes," he sighed, looking amused. "It seems likely that she was, but there wasn't any material to collect. Now excuse me, I actually have to be getting to a meeting." Dr. Gray glanced briefly at Jett, waving his hand between the man and the lieutenant with a quizzical expression on his face. Are you together? he seemed to be asking. After pausing to see if he'd get a response, he gathered his belongings and left the room.

Katherine returned her attention to Jett upon Dr. Gray's exit. After leaning upon the nearest wall, arms crossed, she said: "We may want to speak to the victim's husband - Richard Price - and see what he was up to yesterday. If he wasn't with her, we could have another motive on our hands."

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Katherine's words went in one ear and out the other. The only thing he was focused on was getting the evidence bags. His fingers were nearly inside the pocket of her blazer when Dr. Grey barged in. Startled, he smoothly drew his hand back and ran it through his hair.

He smiled briefly at the doctor, but inside he was glaring daggers at him. Jett had never liked him, he was too intrusive, and annoying. That's not considering the fact that he was a womanizer and didn't even try to hide it. Why was it that most people let themselves be controlled by their sexual desires? It didn't make sense to him, but he supposed that people in general didn't make sense to him. However, Katherine's presence was beginning to give him an insight in that particular subject. Never had he been so attracted to a woman before. Even now, as she pushed him away to get off of the table, he felt himself being drawn to her.

His dislike of the doctor grew with every moment he spoke. He especially didn't like it when he called Katherine kitty. The way he said it was very demeaning and suggestive. That was why when Dr. Grey silently asked Jett if he and Katherine were together, the only response he gave was a slight smirk as he rubbed the back of his neck. He though it best if the doctor assumed that they were together in the hopes that the man would stop openly hitting on her.

In response to Katherine's suggestion he nodded his head. "Yes, I believe that would be the right move."

If he couldn't get the evidence, he needed to find some way to mess it up, or pin suspicion on someone else. His mind began searching for a solution, for the best candidate, until it finally came across the perfect person. Jason Morris. Jason worked in forensics and while he wasn't as experienced as some of the others in the field, he had great potential. He was incredibly bright, something that Jett had quickly figured out upon first meeting him, but had an odd personality as well. He seemed kind, but had a certain energy to him that didn't seem quite right. The best part though, is that Jason wears fine suits when he isn't working, some of which are the same brand as Jett's. He didn't know for sure if he owned any suits that were the same brand of the one he wore the night that he killed Emily, but he was out of options. Plus, Jason also has a gambling problem, so maybe they would believe that he works as a hitman to pay for his gambling.

Jett had to be smart about how he put suspicion on him though. He couldn't tell Katherine outright that he thought Jason was suspicious, he had to provoke things out of Jason secretly, uncover parts of his personality without doing much of anything. "So what do you want to do first?" he said to her. "Look into the blackmail possibility, talk to the victim's husband, or stop by forensics?"

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"I'd like to drop this evidence off first, then go to the husband," Katherine thought aloud. She eyed him, noticing that he'd become more calmed, more like he had been the day prior at the crime scene. Was he tired from last night? Or was there something else going on? He'd seemed to be in a rush to hear out Dr. Gray's findings, but was that really all it was? Not wanting to nose into his business, however, she kept her thoughts to herself.

"We might as well go together, since there aren't many other leads to follow," she added with a small frown curling her lips, though it disappeared quickly and lifted into a smirk. "I would like to see the face Richard Price makes when I accuse him and his wife of blackmail. Considering his political power in this city, it wouldn't be reasonable to assume that he forced his wife into it."

For a mere moment, as she spoke about taking the man down, a flicker of pleasure crossed her face, but the expression didn't linger.

Katherine glanced at Jett, eyeing him from her position across the room. "By the way, next time evidence shows up, you collect it." Her eyebrows furrowed. "The less I see of that slime-ball doctor, the less he'll convince himself I want to sleep with him." Glowering, she stalked towards the door to head down the hall to forensics. As she passed Jett, under her voice escaped: "If he does that again, I'll kill him."

Forensics wasn't far down the hallway, especially considering this building had been designed specifically for police use. Not knowing her way around, she waited for Jett to join her and take the lead.