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Double Exposure
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Molly Maltese
Molly Maltese
Old Shoe

Jul-7-2010 12:44

At least four things had gone wrong in the relatively short expanse of Molly Malteses morning. One, her daughter Annabelle had once again given her nurse the slip and was now not in lessons as a girl should be, but presumably venturing around the streets of New York like a rampant little urchin.

Two, she hadn't had a respectable case in a good long while, and her understatedly extravagant lifestyle would soon be getting mighty uncomfortable if the veritable drought of business didn't end soon. She was a private investigator in New York, for heavens sakes, one would think there was a murder on every street corner to be looked after.

Three, she hadn't had coffee this morning, and so she was very irate in general. And four, the police were currently handcuffing her hands behind her back.

"You're sure this is the one you saw?" the older of the pair asked the man standing on the sidewalk. He had a deep, rumbling voice and grey whiskers. The man on the sidewalk nodded vehemently, and the younger officer took this as a cue to yank Molly towards their van, throwing her off balance wildly.

"I've never seen this man before in my life!" she said in supremely haughty tones, drawing herself with effort up to her impressive height of 5"11. Her green eyes were hard peridot, casting a glare sharp enough to cut.

"Yeah, because by all accounts you were too busy murderin' that poor fool to notice!" the younger policeman barked in her ear, yanking her head back by her long curtain of vibrant copper hair. She gasped, and taking that as a sign of his victory, the officer sneered and threw her into the back of the car.

"I was home all evening, you bloody imbecile!" she barked, furious as tears welled up involuntarily in her eyes in direct reaction to having half her hair nearly pulled out.

"Tell it to the judge." was all she heard the policeman mutter before the door slammed shut with an authoratative bang. Molly swore colorfully, then took a deep breath.


Molly Maltese
Molly Maltese
Old Shoe

Oct-9-2010 14:38

The rap came sharp at the door, and Mollys head whipped around alertly. Marc had left 10 or 15 minutes before- he wouldn't need to knock on the door of his apartment. Thinking quickly, she tore off the wig and the glasses, casting them into a corner behind the couch.

A knock came again, and then a sharp voice.

"Police. We know you're in there, Miss Maltese. Open the door or we'll break it down!" She narrowed her eyes. She recognized that voice. Detective Andrew Corelli.

She picked up a knife and hurriedly scratched out a series of letters on the wall. The clock was ticking, and sweat beaded on her brow.


Throwing down the knife, she ran to the window and threw it open, clambering out onto the metal fire escape just as the door shuddered dangerously. One heeled shoe disappeared out of sight just as it splintered inward.

She raced down the ladder as fast as her precarious heels would allow, imagining the officers tearing through the apartment upstairs. Reaching the last rung, she sighed in relief and turned around- to bounce square off of Detective Andrew Corelli's chest and go staggering backwards. He smiled at her, a gun in his raised hand.

"Sorry, Miss Maltese. Oldest trick in the book, fire escapes. I hope you'll go quietly." he said, showing her the handcuffs he gripped in his other palm. She narrowed her eyes at him.

"Corelli, you don't understand. Its a frame-up, I didn't do in that man. If you arrest me, you'll never catch her."

"Catch who?" he said in the lazy tone of someone who didn't believe a word of what he was hearing.

"The double." she said with quiet conviction. Corelli gave a chuckle, and seeing her expression didn't change, sobered.

"Really, Miss Maltese. Thats the weakest story I've ever heard." he said indulgently. "Come along now."

"I'm serious, Corelli. It's so unbelievable it works, and she's not done causing trouble just yet. If you take me in now, we're all headed for some serious trouble."

Andrew Corelli
Andrew Corelli

Oct-10-2010 22:21

That was the first miracle Corelli saw in the interrogation room: a resurrection through coffee, Molly Maltese was quite calmed even in her circumstances, she was even enjoying the coffee while Corelli was looking at the file.

"Molly Maltese, profession: private investigator..., known associates: Marc Lacrimosa, Joseph Zeo..., age: ... I never thought that you..., Sorry. Well, miss Maltese, as you can see we have a file about you, we have files about everyone, and I must say it looks really good, not a single antecedent which is kind of strange on the other hand, so tell me, why do you murdered mister...?"

"Oh, my... I told you, you're making a mistake, it was my double and we need to go after her before..." her white-like-porcelain face remained calmed.

"Look, miss Maltese, I've already heard that one, as a matter of fact, this file also includes a really brief note, it suggest the possibility that you're not who you say you are" the porcelain lady took a really good hit and she wasn't breaking, Corelli continued "Apparently a long time ago there was a girl by the name of... Amelia de Maltesse, a socialite, married to some local rich, mister... oh, yes..., Jack Billings, well mister Billings claimed that her wife died in some tragic incident, an apartment on fire, have you heard something about it?"



Andrew Corelli
Andrew Corelli

Oct-10-2010 22:21

"No smart comments miss Maltese? Well, it looks like the coroner in the case identified the remains of Amelia de Maltesse, the detective on charge of the case wasn't quite happy with the results and found that someone set on fire the apartment, and even that the victim wasn't Amelia de Maltesse, some politicians put a lid on the case..., and then, a few years later, out of nothing enters into scene the detective Molly Maltese, who, according to some witnesses, looks exactly like the late Amelia de Maltesse, and starts a crusade against Jack Billings' Hellfire club. So, Miss Amelia de Maltesse, it looks like that thing about the double isn't a new thing, wouldn't you say?

Molly Maltese listened Corelli's rant, her blue eyes looking at the steaming coffee, thinking; after a few minutes, when she was about to say something, Harry opened the door.

"Detective Corelli, I... uh... think we need your help..."

"Harry, for god's sake, I'm busy..."

"Outside there's a group of armed men, and it looks like it has something to do with the suspect, Miss Maltese."

"Come on, Miss Maltese, it looks like this isn't going to be an easy case"

Corelli removed Molly's handcuffs and they left the interrogation room.

M. Lacrimosa
M. Lacrimosa

Oct-11-2010 20:52

The bar that Marc walked into wasn't far from the building where he had left Molly. It was about a five minute drive, just around the block. Marc walked in to find his "contact" as Marc called him. His "contact" was somewhat similar to the city's shady guy who sat in the back of the Tricky Mister. Marc sat down in front of him and the man smiled.

"Marc Lacrimosa," the man said with smile that revealed yellow teeth, "it's good to see you around here."

"You too Sal," Marc said, "but I'm not here for chatting. I need some information and quick. I haven't got much time. I need to know about a certain double."

"A double? Like a twin?"

"Well, sort of. A friend of mine is being accused of a crime she didn't commit. She claims that it is someone who looks like here. Of course, the police wont' listen to here because that's what everyone else has said."

"I know nothing about a double for your friend." Sal said. His attention quickly went out side the window and back to Marc. "But I will tell you this. If you are going to find your friend's 'double' then you will need to start outside the city and work your way in. She is not safe here. You need to get her and get out." Sal continued, "I know some information about doubles being involved in murders. There have been cases of a few look-a-likes that have landed innocent people behind bars."

Marc cut him short. "Thanks, Sal." Marc said and left leaving Sal a small reward. Marc stepped outside and lit up a cigarette. No sooner had he put out the match when a couple of cars sped past where he was standing. His eyes followed them. The driver..Andrew Corelli. And in the back was none other than Molly. Swearing under his breath, Marc ran back inside the bar and grabbed Sal. "They got Molly." Marc said quickly.

They got back to the safe house and could see the room and the open window where Molly had tried to go out through the fire escape. "Let's go," Marc said. He and Sal got out and ran up the stairs and into his room.

M. Lacrimosa
M. Lacrimosa

Oct-11-2010 21:07

"Look for any type of clue," Marc said. Not twenty seconds later that he said that, Sal spoke up. "Found something," He said.

It was a message carved into the wall by Molly. YZGGUIB YLZIWDZOP. MLLM.

Marc closed his eyes and sighed deeply. They had gotten her. And now he was going to have to get her out for the second time.

"Damn it!" Marc yelled slamming his fist down on the table. "There is no legal way to get her out, Sal" Marc said. All Sal could do was nod in agreement. Marc was now pissed off. And he hated being pissed off.

Marc and Sal sat down looking at the door that had a hole in it. Marc shook his head and placed his face in the palm of his hands. "I have no clue what to do."

Sal said nothing. After a moment of silence, Sal spoke up. "I have an idea. We need to get your friend an alibi for the time of the murder. " Sal said. "The question is, will she play along with it if she knows that we are trying to help?"

"I guess we'll find out, won't we?" Marc replied grabbing his car keys. "Let's go, I think I have an idea." Marc said. Then they headed to the police station.


Oct-12-2010 10:03

Vulkie saw how Marc and a pal of his jumped into the car, heading towards an unknown destination.

"So you're in it too, Marc? Trying to help a friend out?" Vulkie murmered and she quickly walked towards Molly's apartment, clicking with the high heels she was wearing.

As Vulkie entered the apartment, she saw something carved in a wall.


Vulkie grabbed a pen, some paper and began to think up loud what the solution was.

As she noticed an open newspaper, she saw a hint that gave it away. "That's it! Clever, Molly, veeeerry clever" Vulkie thought and began to decipher the message.

"An E there, an N there... Yes, that's it. Now I know where to find you. Don't worry Molly, I'll help you. No matter... what" Vulkie murmered, as she had a small flashback of what she and Molly went through in the past few years.

Suddenly, Vulkie was a bit scared by a blow of the wind and as she turned back to the message, she saw a figure sitting at the other end of the table. A figure she had not seen for a while...

"Ace... My friend... she's in trouble... The police probably took her away, as I noticed that the door had a hole in it. Molly wouldn't shoot just randomly, unless she got a reason for it. And believe me, she has a few reasons to do it, only for one person" Vulkie said to Ace, trying to keep a grin away from her face.

"Go to the place she wanted to meet your other friend, Marc. She'll probably show up there when she is free again..." Ace replied and as another blow of the wind shut the door, Vulkie turned around and quickly looked back, staring at the empty space where her boyfriend would sit, if he was alive...

Vulkie took her coat, went to her car and started it, shifting it into the right gear.

"Hold on Molly... I'll help you" Vulkie murmered and Vulkie pulled into the traffic, heading to the place where she wanted to meet the person who could decipher the code...

Molly Maltese
Molly Maltese
Old Shoe

Oct-13-2010 10:37

Molly followed Corelli curiously, absently patting her hair down and swiping under her eyes for any errant traces of mascara. As they rounded the corner, a burst of gunfire exploded with a quick rat-a-tat-tat! Molly shrieked and dragged Corelli down as the wall above them exploded in a shower of plaster. A few more explosions of bullets spraying into the walls, and then the sound of running feet and silence.

"La Cosa Nostra." Molly said, disgustedly picking plaster out of her hair. Andrew Corelli turned to look at her.

"How do you know?" he asked suspiciously, and she fixed him with a look that was deeply ironic.

"Who else would try to pull off an assassination attempt with so little subtlely?"

He nodded, and she sighed.

"Corelli, I know you don't believe me. But its almost noon, and if LCN is involved it means the doubles with them, which spells BIG trouble. I have some friends, some private investigators like myself, meeting with me at noon at an undisclosed location. Come with me if you like, but I must be there. We must get to the bottom of this!"

She waited impatiently for Corelli's reply...

Andrew Corelli
Andrew Corelli

Oct-14-2010 11:31

"This is getting really complicated..." Corelli took a deep breath and let out a long sigh "Fine, but no tricks this time" Corelli looked around and then "Harry, I need you to stay in here, I'm going to call you every hour, if I don't call you then inform the FBI..., hope you don't mind, Miss Maltese"

Then Corelli stood up and helped Miss Maltese to get up.

"Ok, time to go with your friends"

M. Lacrimosa
M. Lacrimosa

Oct-16-2010 08:29

"Okay," Marc said, "read that code one more time." He was driving and Sal was in the passenger seat as they headed toward the police station.

"YZGGUIB YLZIWDZOP. MLLM." Sal repeated. Marc repeated it two more times out loud and once more in his mind. "Any idea?" Sal asked.

"I think...yes, that's it!" Marc said. "Sal, get out the note pad and write it down. Write down the letters of the alphabet too. Each letter equals a different one." It took only mere minutes to decode it. "You sure that's the place? I mean, if we rearrange it, it could be something else." Sal said. "No," Marc replied, "that place is secluded. Not many people go there. Most people that do are private eyes, and crooked cops who beat people into a bloody pulp for money. What time is it?"

Sal looked at his watch. "Almost noon."

"Alright, let's go. If Molly is able to pull it off and convince the police to get her there, we should be getting there around the same time." Marc floored it and his car hit top speed.

As if it were a slap in the face Marc realized something important. And it wasn't good. Within half an hour, Marc parked his car where he was supposed to meet Molly, who pulled up just as he did. He and Sal got out of the car and approached Molly and two other detectives.

With out looking at either one of them, Marc looked at Molly. "Molly, please tell me your daughter is safe right now because I got a bad feeling about this case."

Molly Maltese
Molly Maltese
Old Shoe

Oct-16-2010 22:59

Molly narrowed her eyes at Marcs words. She had always been able to trust his instincts.

"I sent her to a friends nearly 24 hours, I haven't had a moment to check in since." she said seriously, light green eyes searching Marcs face in earnest. "What do you suspect?"

She turned to the group at large without waiting for a reply.

"When we're done here, we will go to the address I sent her to. If she's not there for any know what that means, and who we'll have to call." The nearly imperceptible grim lines that formed at the corners of her mouth told Marc just who she meant.

"Is there anyone else coming?" she asked, business-like once more.

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