A Certain Amount of Unpleasantness

A Certain Amount of Unpleasantness

Postby Lent » Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:56 pm

"You look pretty bad, son, you know that?" Twice in the same week in the office for Detective Constable Kurt Lentham? Usually things would have to be quite dire indeed to inspire such a thing. Here he was, however, in his usual loose fitting uniform, blackjack quite visible at his side and lazy smile upon his face. He was heading right towards the High Constable's office.

On his right was Constable Charles McCoy, looking more than a little hung over. "You kept offering me that damn flask last night, Kurt! It's your fault."

"Hnn, No. You're old enough to take some responsibility. And hey, after yesterday, I think we both needed it. Not my fault if you can't hold your drink."

"Damn right you can handle it better! *I* didn't spend a year of my life slumped against the side of buildings and begging for wine mon... aw hell, Kurt. You know I don't mean that." McCoy looked even more sick when he realized what he had just said.

There was just a look and a shrug from the older man. "Least I had my reasons, right? Least you had yours yesterday. Hard to fault a man for that. Won't fault you for what you said, even though you're a blistering idiot. Come on. Calomel's almost certainly read your report by now." There was a toast for Cinnabar, with a drink out of his flask to go along with it.

The two of them had been down to the Baker farm the day before, questioning women (a widow and a few others) at Agnieszka Kaczmarek's say-so, and yes, they made sure to let everyone know just who brought them there. Even so, they did it kindly, so kindly that they hadn't even gotten anything out of it. They weren't about to make mourning women suffer unduly just to spite one uppity peasant girl who just happened to be a potential murderess. It still made for an upleasant day.

All of this was in the report that had been submitted to Calomel the day before, as was the summary of the entire interrogation of Miss Kaczmarek right up until the Brotherhood pulled her away. Now it was time to talk to the man about all of this, time again to see what he wanted done.

"Stop trying to straighten your uniform, McCoy. You look like you look. And it doesn't take a detective to tell why. There's no helping it. Just stop squirming and face it with dignity, huh. Got a feeling our High Muckety-Muck will understand just this once." So it was a knock on the High Constable's door. You know, this likely wouldn't be much fun either.
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Postby Cinnabar » Mon Sep 24, 2007 3:00 am

"Come in."

It's a fairly restrained voice that calls from past that door, and on entering Constables Lentham and McCoy may note that the Constable-Governor is looking... perhaps a trifle under the weather himself. Not horrendously so, certainly well enough to perform his duties, but there's still a slight gingerness to his movements, a studied care when he moves his head which hints at the likelihood of overindulgence the night before, an impression reinforced by the pitcher of water and half-full cup at one side of his desk. The very slightest of nods to the two Detectives, and Calomel waves them into the office and gestures towards the chairs on the other side of the desk from him.

"Constables. Please, take a seat." Hm. These two. That'll be... aha, yes. There's some shuffling of documents on his desk before he retrieves a specific sheaf of paper bearing handwriting that McCoy will likely recognise as his own. "I presume this is about the Baker murder. Anything new to report?" A brief glance between the two men, perhaps wondering which of them will be doing the talking today.
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Postby Lent » Mon Sep 24, 2007 3:24 am

"High Constable." McCoy nodded politely in greeting, and again in thanks before sitting down with surprisingly good posture into the first chair. "Thank you for taking the time to see us."

"Guv'nor." Lentham said with half a drawl before slumping lazily into the seat next to McCoy's, tipping the flask at Calomel but not drinking from it.

McCoy frowned slightly to his partner before nodding again to Calomel. "Very little after my report. Kurt felt it important to actually stick to his word and ask some questions, but neither of us wanted to cause undue suffering, not so close to the Ashfiend's attacks. This way, however, we can be sure that Miss Kaczmarek understands that her..."

Lentham waved him off. "High Constable can put those pieces together easily enough, else he wouldn't be the High Constable, son. Cut to the chase."

McCoy nodded, biting his lip just a little. "Oh, ok. Well, sir, we're a bit curious on what you want us to do next. We certainly weren't done questioning Miss Kaczmarek. You've read the report, I take it? Our interview with her was inconclusive, but she is still as much a suspect now as she was before we saw her, if not more so. It's hard to do more when we don't actually have access to her."
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Postby Cinnabar » Mon Sep 24, 2007 4:24 am

"Next? Hm." He skims through that report for a moment, then sets it down on the desk in front of him. "What I would ideally like is for you to bring Miss Kaczmarek back in for further questioning, given that the case remains open and she has not yet been cleared of suspicion." He takes a sip of his water, and pulls a wry face.

"Lieutenant Feul was acting entirely outside his authority in this matter, and I'm surprised no one stepped in to stop him." Another glance for that report, brows lowering to a frown. "Though to be honest it's probably just as well. The whole things could well have got out of control, as if we've not got enough crises already. The man's a bloodthirsty idiot, and I can do without such a creature putting any of my Constables in the infirmary. So." Slender fingers lace together as he considers the matter for a moment.

"Approach the Brotherhood through correct channels - Marshal Karolinger's likely the best man to talk to, you might as well go straight to the top. Put in a request that Sister Kaczmarek be made available for further questioning, with the advice that this is a criminal investigation and under Myrken law they are obliged to comply with your request. Also make it clear that failure to do so could be viewed as obstructing you in your duties, which is itself a criminal act." Calm, quiet and reasonable. Also quite unlikely to meet with anything but resounding failure. Still, the High Constable continues.

"If they refuse on the grounds that she's on active duty or some such rot, ask them when she'll next be available. A wait of a week or two is fine, as long as they agree to a date. If they decline your request entirely then let me know and I'll look into things myself. Personally, I'd recommend putting your request in writing. Makes it more official." He nods, smiling agreeably. But then there's one last glance for another report before he looks back to the younger Detective.

"And, uh, please don't draw your blade at Janeiro soldiers in future, McCoy, unless you absolutely mean to use it. Waving it around to emphasise your point just makes people jumpy and stupid, and that generates a whole heap of extra paperwork for all involved."
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Postby Lent » Mon Sep 24, 2007 4:37 am

Lentham had a twinkle in his eye that was growing gradually with every little word that Cinnabar had said. Unlike, oh, a good majority of the people in Myrken Wood, he wasn't a man to show his hand. That lazy smile remained. He simply nodded along in his usual disinterested fashion.

"Karolinger himself? Check." It was a good thing the Detective Constable was aleady smiling. To review, Calomel wanted Lentham to request that the Marshall turn over his lover to the Constables. This was gold. "I'll write it up and we'll get your seal on it then?" Oh yes, he would drop it off to Karolinger's hands in person. He had to see this with his own two eyes. Well, most likely McCoy would drop it off, but he'd be there, yes he would.

Speaking of McCoy, the younger man was more than a little embarassed(and hardly in a good way), certainly staring down at the table as Cinnabar spoke. It was probably the bravest thing he'd done in his life, pulling a sword on Jons, though he hardly knew it at the time. "Yessir."

Lentham slapped his partner on the back. No reason to dwell on that. "Come on then, son. We've got a nice, polite, and very official request to write up, don't we?" Hell, this would almost be fun.
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Postby Cinnabar » Mon Sep 24, 2007 7:27 am

"My seal? No, I'd prefer if this was handled as a routine matter to start with. Give the man a chance to do the right thing, hm? He shouldn't really have any legitimate grounds for refusal, since his... subordinate hasn't suffered any mistreatment at our hands." There's a slight grin at that, the word stressed to indicate that the High Constable knows precisely what he's asking. "And obviously he knows she's innocent, so that wouldn't be a concern." The grin broadens, and he touches fingertips to his brow in salute as the Constables get up to leave.

"Let me know how it goes."
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Postby Lent » Tue Oct 02, 2007 12:56 am

The report was there, waiting for Cinnabar, first thing in the morning. Constable McCoy had written it up, word for word, to explain what happened. Better to be complete on something so... so... potentially disasterous, he had thought.

Lentham, for his part, had looked the thing over but only added, in large letters at the top. "Don't blame the kid."

For once, the errant Detective Constable would actually stick around headquarters, at least for a time. There was a good deal ahead of Calomel, but he'd almost certainly want to see the two of them before long.
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Postby Cinnabar » Tue Oct 02, 2007 3:45 am

Unfortunately for McCoy's nerves, the Detectives will have something of a wait on their hands; the Governor is out of his office at the moment, and has been for the morning. Once he returns, though, some while after lunch, it doesn't take long at all before one of the Constabulary's young runners delivers a breathless message for the two men.

"Guv'nor wants to see you in his office." The young lad would appear to have sprinted his way around most of the Yard looking for the pair of them, and it takes him a moment for him to catch his breath.

"Right now. He ain't happy." And with that, the boy makes his excuses and hurries off. No chance of him being anywhere near this meeting, thank you. Besides, the Constables know the way by now.
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Postby Lent » Tue Oct 02, 2007 3:51 am

"Ohhh No. Oh no. OhnoOhnoOhnoOh... OW!" Constable Charles McCoy was the proud recipient of a swift knock to the back of his head.

"Show some dignity, son. It's done. High Constable will say what he says." Lentham yawned and took a nice sip out of the recently refilled flask. He certainly didn't seem very worried about anything. Then again, when did he? When you lost everything you had, including and especially your own sense of self, it gave a sort of freedom. Generally, he wasn't so reckless with it, though.

McCoy, on the other hand, had very much to lose, oh... his entire future, his inheritance, the ability to actually speak with his family. "My father, Kurt. My father what is.. Hey, don't hit me again."

"Tell you what, Charles." Lentham walked towards the High Constable's door. "I get us fired and you get a free shot back at me. Best offer I've made all day." And at that he was through the door with a very sheepish Constable McCoy behind him.
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Postby Cinnabar » Tue Oct 02, 2007 4:25 am

Perhaps on the way to the office the Constables might encounter a rather pale-faced Government clerk hurrying in the opposite direction, offering only a brief and nervous glance for the two men as they pass by. Nearer to the Governor's office there is an air of quiet, as if those who work in neighbouring offices are trying to avoid notice.

Inside the office itself, though, the scene is much as it always is. Calomel sits behind his desk, leafing through papers - in this instance, a rather thick sheaf, roughly bound along one edge, that Lentham and McCoy might recognise as a copy of the document shown to them by Marshal Karolinger. There is a certain tension in him that bespeaks of anger carefully constrained, covered and bound in order that he does not wreak some horrible violence upon his surroundings. A moment passes, and he waves towards the chairs without looking up.

"Sit."

A moment taken to cross-check against the other document before him, sheets of paper in McCoy's hand, and he scans the Brotherhood contract carefully for a short while longer. Eventually he looks up, and there is an undeniable glitter of silver to his grey gaze, which fixes upon each man in turn and with it brings a sense of seething anger, like the wash of heat from an open furnace door. It would explain the pallor of the government clerk they passed in the corridor, at least. He raps upon McCoy's report.

"He said this. In his own words, yes?"
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Postby Lent » Tue Oct 02, 2007 4:30 am

It was either to McCoy's credit, or to his discredit, depending on what side of the table you were sitting on at the time, that instead of answering immediately, he made a small show of wiping the sweat from his brow, of straightening his uniform. In short, he was giving Lentham a chance to speak on his behalf immediately, on THEIR behalf maybe. And then he even looked to Lentham, to see if maybe he had a change of heart.

Of course Kurt Lentham's heart simply didn't change, not anymore. Still, the sentiment deserved a grin and that's what McCoy got for his trouble. A grin, and then a nod to continue.

McCoy nodded back and with a wince replied. "Yes, sir. To the word."
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Postby Cinnabar » Tue Oct 02, 2007 6:00 am

"I see." Another quiet few moments, perhaps a respite for the Constables as Calomel's gaze drops to that report and that contract once more. A short time, while he cross-checks things once more, then nods.

"And Constable Lentham, ah, "defaced" the Janeiro charter?" A press of lips together at that, brows raised inquiringly as he looks up to regard each Constable in turn. A pause, then a nod which is... well, approving.

"No more than it deserved, gauging by this copy. I am told that Al'Nerun was mad by the end, and from the look of it the rot set in sooner than people might think." He throws the contract down with a gesture of disdain, and looks back to the Constables, fingers lacing on the desk in front of him. Still angered, still furious in fact, but it is becoming clear that his ire is not directed at the men on the other side of his desk. This time.

"I'm glad you brought this to my attention, gentlemen. Unfortunately it would appear that Marshal Karolinger's summary of Janeiro's charter is quite correct, which is obviously not acceptable. I will be raising the matter with Councillor Aldred forthwith, with a view to having the Brotherhood's current contract terminated. Immediately. It is, to be frank, bloody ridiculous, and I wish I could meet whichever blithering cretin approved this thing and shake him warmly by the throat." A pause, a moment taken to rein in his temper before he says anything further.

"I am thankful at least that it was caught before it could do any serious harm. So, well done. It was not an easy task, but you handled it well. I'd like you to hold off on interviewing Miss Kaczmarek until this matter of contractual... irregularities is resolved; after that you'll be free to bring her in." His gaze drops to McCoy's report again for a time, before he looks back to Lentham.

"In the meantime, though, I'd like you to take a look at the Roschen case." Grey eyes flick between the Constables for a moment. "Another murder, unfortunately. Someone stabbed him to death, in broad daylight, in the common room of the Broken Dagger. Find out what you can. Constable Lagrange has the files." A nod, and a tight smile.

"Dismissed."
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Postby Lent » Tue Oct 02, 2007 6:16 am

Lentham was up on his feet at the end there. It hadn't gone TOO far from what he was expecting. The only difference was that on top of the broken contract, he had thought that Kaczmarek would be brought in. Ah well. Win some, lose some.

McCoy, on the other hand, was just sitting there gaping. Well, his mouth WAS shut, to his credit.

"Come on, son." The grumble called to him from the door, causing a coughing fit in the younger Constable.

Finally, he rose to his feet and nodded to Cinnabar. "Thank you for your time, sir!" And he turn and ran after Lentham, still trying to work all of that out.

The Detective constable, however, had moved on. "So the Roschen case. Joy. What do you think?"

"From what I heard, uh.. his wife?"

"Not a bad guess, except for the fact that it's the sort of guess that will probably get you killed. You want to make a bet on it? Ah, no? Fine, fine, go get the files. I'll meet you at the Boar's Tusk." Lentham yawned one last time, made a stretch to go along with it, and headed on towards the exit.
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