“This sign literally says ‘Do not cross’. We really should go back now”
Celio shushed his friend with a vague hand gesture and didn’t even look back at him. Instead, his attention was rather caught by the bright yellow caution tape that was kind of blocking their way. “Yeah, but have you seen what it also says?” He pointed at the black words on the tape and impatiently waited for Flavio to read them out loud. Obviously, Flavio refused to do this basic task and soon enough, Celio just kept going anyway. “It says Crime Scene” He explained loud and clear, as if educating a third grader.
Flavio was barely listening as he casted an anxious glance around. He did not want to risk someone catching them. “Yeah, which is another reason for why I think that we really shouldn’t be here” He mumbled, but his words clearly fell on deaf ears.
Celio had already grabbed a part of the tape and lifted it up to provide an entrance. “Look, we don’t even need to break it” He tried to convince his friend smiling like a 12 year old who knew exactly that he was about to mess up really badly…but was thoroughly enjoying it anyway. “No one’s gonna know that we were here” Without further ado he stepped through the hole between the tape and kept holding it open, waiting for Flavio to come along.
“Okay, I still think that this is a really bad idea” Flavio muttered under his breath, but followed anyway.
“And I think that you need to learn to have some fun”
Flavio frowned in visible discontent. “Yeah, no, that’s not the problem here. I think our ideas of fun just…differ from each other…” There was no way of telling whether Celio was even still listening. “…a lot”
“Yeah whatever, kitty”
For once, Celio was the one putting a finger to his lips and demanding for Flavio to be quiet. “I didn’t wanna use a bad word”
Flavio snorted. “We’re at a crime scene” He hissed, upon which Celio spun around on his heels and made an extravagant gesture out of booping Flavio’s nose. “Yes, we are” He whispered and could not have been glowing brighter with pride and excitement.
Flavio clicked his tongue and exhaled deeply. This was going to be a long night and the sooner he came to terms with it, the faster they might get out of here.
The police had already been here and had done their part of the job, hence, the caution tape. There were yellow signs and white chalk marks on the ground everywhere and Celio had already begun to inspect every single one of them with eager curiosity. There was also blood splattered around the room, but it was mostly centred around a wooden chair. Flavio was looking at it in disgust. He did not like this at all. This had been a mistake from the moment they had entered the old factory building — really, could it get any more cliché? How did Celio even find this place?
“Don’t touch anything” Flavio instructed his friend harshly, but Celio was already way ahead of him, crouching in front of obvious official evidences with his finger hovering dangerously close over them, making Flavio visibly uncomfortable as he was just awkwardly standing in the middle of the room with his arms crossed in front of his chest. Unlike Celio, he was trying to stay as far away from everything as possible. Of course, this would have been easier if they had simply stayed in the circus in the first place.
“We’re too late again” Celio eventually deducted after a great deal of thinking while getting back up.
Flavio raised an eyebrow. “You think?” The obvious sarcasm, however, went right over Celio’s head. He nodded gravely, rubbing his chin, then took another look around. “I still wonder what happened, though”
“You know what? I’m actually good not knowing any of the details” Flavio made another disgusted face.
“You know what’s weird?”
Flavio exhaled deeply and rolled his eyes. He honestly just wanted to go, but he also did not want to leave his best friend here alone. He was far too worried that either the police or the murderer would come back at any given moment. Someone had to be here looking out for Celio…or at least be in this together with him. Or so he was trying to convince himself that he had made the right decision by coming along.
Somehow Celio was still expecting an answer, though. Apparently he had found a piece of clothing that had not been marked as evidence by the police. He had picked it up with a pair of tweezers — Lord knows where he had gotten them from — and was having a closer look at it.
“No, Celio, I do not know what’s weird”
Ah. Just the question the magician had been waiting for. “There’s no dead body”
“What do you mean, there’s no dead body?” Flavio made a sweeping gesture. “Of course there is no dead body. The police have been here already. They obviously took it” His voice remained calm. He was just stating simple facts.
“Yeah…but what about the chalk marks? You know, like, in the movies?”
“This is not a movie, though. Which is precisely why we should just go home now…we have no business here”
Celio shrugged and dropped the piece of clothing into a plastic back that he then carefully put into the inside pocket of his tailcoat. They had not bothered changing out of their performance clothes before Celio had heard about the crime and urged them to go and check it out. Celio was convinced that they were looking cooler that way. Flavio just felt like an idiot.
“They had marked the position of the body at all the other crime scenes we’ve been to, remember?”
Flavio did remember. He remembered quite clearly. He just rather wished that he did not. Especially because he did not want anyone to know that they had been to crime scenes like this before. More times than he would care to admit. Not like anyone was listening or even just giving a damn, but he still cast another anxious glance around. The factory building was huge after all. There was no possible way of knowing that there was absolutely no one else hiding in the shadows right this second.
“Well, maybe the victim has been sitting on the chair. That would be impossible to mark down. Look, there are even some pieces of rope still tied to the chair…”
Celio nodded and took a step closer to said chair. He crouched down to take a better look and repeatedly made noises like “hm” or “aha” while inspecting it. “Not bad. I’m really liking that detective vibe you’ve got going on there” He got back up, pointing a finger at Flavio, then laughed quietly. “Glad to see you coming to terms with our new duty”
“I mean, maybe it wasn’t even a murder. Maybe the victim escaped”
“With all that blood?”
Flavio really did not want to think about that blood anymore and nodded briefly.
“I don’t know…I still think it’s weird”
Flavio was not really the gut-feeling kind of person. He was more of a brain person. And his brain was clearly telling him to leave this place. He raised an eyebrow, a silent question directed at Celio: Are we done yet? And Celio seemed like he was about to reply. Already relieved about that decision, Flavio turned to leave when his friend held him back one more time.
“Wait a second”
Flavio’s shoulders sank. So close.
“Do you see this liquid on the ground?”
Flavio refused to look. “Blood? Are you talking about the blood?” He replied tonelessly.
“No, there’s something else…it’s already dried up…but you can still see its marks…see?”
He was pointing at a couple of small dark circles on the stone floor, like drops of oil they were still somehow visible.
“This used to be a factory…someone has probably dropped it here years ago. If the police didn’t note it as unusual, then it probably isn’t” Flavio tried to reason with his friend, but Celio was not convinced.
“Yeah…except that I saw drops like this on all the other crime scenes as well”
Flavio shook his head briefly. At least Celio seemed to be ready to leave now.
“You’re probably just imagining things”
But it was already too late. Celio’s interest was caught and he was determined to the case.
“Maybe I am…” He caught up to Flavio who was eager to finally get out of here. “…and maybe I am not…” Celio put an arm around his friend’s shoulder and he just let it happen. “But either way…I am going to crack the case. The police are not perfect, you know. And imagine that. We’re finally going to be on the front cover of the New York Times”
Flavio snorted again and for a moment it seemed as if he was not going to argue with that. “What’s the headline gonna be? One idiot and his friend arrested for breaking and entering a crime scene?”
Celio laughed heartily. “First of all, don’t talk yourself down like that. You’re not an idiot. But since you have asked so nicely…Arrival of the new superheroes: New York’s finally save again”