The Trouble in No Answers

Vivid Black begins here:

Henry Waters paced as he thumped his fist on his forehead. What happened? Everything was jumbled in his head. Sarah Jane wasn’t suppose to be there. Her dad warned his daughter to stay away from the Zombie Gauntlet and she promised. Waters spied Max behind the yellow tape, hands in pockets chewing on his lip, fighting shock.

Through clenched teeth he hissed, “Max, why was Sarah Jane here? Ray was under the impression she would stay away until these murders are resolved.”

Max’s face etched with fear and sadness answered, “Man, you know how that girl is, er, was. Thinks she’s knows, knew, everything she needed to know.”

Henry scrubbed his face trying to find questions to ask to get him out of the trouble he’d found. The Chief was on the way. He knew the trouble Sarah Jane found was now his trouble. His investigation had no leads; just bodies and every fifth Friday another innocent, surrounded in crimson.

A bright winter morning eight months ago, a body was found. Henry took the call with his partner Jerrod McEwin and CSU. Demarion Jones was viciously stabbed to death the night before. Deep bites covered his body. The investigation began and Henry was confident he would hang on to his record as best closer on the squad. Confidence waned into ambiguity as a pattern emerged with the third body. All the murders happened on a fifth Friday during one of those Zombie Challenges.

“Max! Sit on the curb and wait for me. We’ll finish this at the station.” He growled the order and pointed a finger to emphasize his words.

Blue and red wigwagged, capturing eyes while the siren’s shriek pierced hearing. Henry swiveled around as the white Tahoe rocked to a halt and Chief of Detectives, Ray Jacoby bound out of the truck.

He scanned the faces behind the tape, found Waters and stalked through. His happiness eaten away by grief and anger he grabbed Henry and snarled,

“Where’s my daughter!?”

After Henry shook his boss off, Max saw him shocked,  off balance as he searched for focus. Knowing the distractions, he chose to slide slowly into the crowd, absconded custody and went home.


After a number of comments expressed the thought the Zombie Gauntlet murder of Sarah Jane in my fiction piece “The Agony of Defeat” could be turned into a serialized piece, I decided to heed the advice. Thus, a yet to be named story continues.

I’m continuing the story using two prompts as inspiration.

First, Trifecta: Week Twenty-Seven

Use the word trouble with the following rules:

  • Your response must be between 33 and 333 words.
  • You must use the 3rd definition of the given word in your post.
  • The word itself needs to be included in your response.
  • You may not use a variation of the word; it needs to be exactly as stated above.
  • . trou·ble noun \ˈtrə-bəl\
    . the quality or state of being troubled especially mentally
    . public unrest or disturbance <there’s trouble brewing downtown>
    . an instance of trouble <used to disguise her frustrations and despair by making light of her troubles

Second, Write on Edge’s Red Writing Hood:

Write On Edge: Red-Writing-Hood

In 400 words or less, write a story or memoir which relates to choices and/or consequences. Because of the word limits, you may choose to focus just on the choice, or just on the consequence. Remember to capture a moment using dialogue, action, and reaction.


8 comments on “The Trouble in No Answers

  1. i’ve always loved a murder mystery! this could easily become a very good story


  2. “You know how that girl is.” I love how you said so much in those six words.


    • debseeman says:

      That line probably had more edits than anywhere else in the piece. I changed it 3 or 4 times. Just proves minimal is best.


  3. I like this and I’m keen to find out where you take it. It’s a cliffhanger of an ending. I hope we get to find out! Thanks for linking up.


  4. Chelle says:

    It’s official! I’m hooked on your zombie story!


  5. Gina says:

    Love a good mystery that leaves me wanting to know more. Please.


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