فصل 05

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فصل 05

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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CHAPTER FIVE

Lust

An hour later, Somerset was lying in bed when the phone rang. It was Tracy.

He looked at the clock. It was after midnight. “Tracy, is everything all right?” he asked.

“Yes, yes. Everything’s fine. I’m sorry to call you so late. I just… I need to talk to someone. Can you meet me somewhere? Maybe tomorrow morning?”

“I don’t understand, Tracy,” said Somerset. “You sound worried.”

“I feel really stupid, but you’re the only person I know here.”

“I’ll help you if I can, Tracy,” he said. He couldn’t imagine what he could do for her.

“If you can meet me tomorrow, call me. Please. I have to go now. Good night.” She hung up.

The next morning Somerset met Tracy in the Parthenon Coffee Shop near the precinct house.

“So what’s on your mind, Tracy?” he asked.

“You know this city,” she began. “You’ve been here a long time. I haven’t.”

Somerset nodded. “It can be a hard place,” he said.

“I haven’t been sleeping well since we came here. I don’t feel safe. Even at home.”

He didn’t know what to tell her. Maybe she should talk more with her husband. “Talk to him about it,” he said. “He’ll understand.”

“I don’t know why I asked you to come,” she said. Her hands were shaking. “You know that I’m a teacher,” she went on. “I’ve been trying to get work in some of the schools here. But the schools are… horrible.” She was starting to cry.

“What’s really worrying you, Tracy?” he said.

“I… I’m going to have a baby.”

“Tracy,” said Somerset. “I’m not the one to talk to about this.”

“I hate this city,” she said.

“If you’re thinking…,” he let out a long breath. “… about whether to have the baby…”

“But I want to have children,” she said.

“All I can tell you, Tracy,” he said, “is that if you don’t keep the baby, if that’s what you decide, never tell David. But if you’re going to have it, tell him now. That’s all the advice I can give you.”

Tracy took his hand as he got up from the table. “Promise you’ll keep in touch after you retire. Please.”

“Sure. I promise,” he said, and waved good-bye from the door.

As Somerset reached the precinct house, Mills met him at the door. “We’ve got another one,” he said.

Somerset felt tired and empty. But he wasn’t surprised. He knew it was going to happen again.


The outside of the Hot House Massage Parlor was painted bright red. Police cars were parked everywhere out front. Uniformed cops were trying to control the crowd of confused people, but they weren’t having an easy time.

Mills pushed through the crowd with Somerset just behind him.

A cop was trying to talk to the doorman. “Did you hear any screams?” he asked. “Did you see anything that seemed strange?”

“No,” said the man. He was a big, fat man, who looked like an ugly animal. “Everybody who comes in here looks strange. And they’re screaming all the time in there. That comes with a place like this.”

“You like working in this place, man?” the cop asked. “You like the things you see?”

There was an ugly smile on the man’s face. “No, I don’t,” he said. “But that’s life. Right?”

Mills and Somerset pushed past the crowd of people. Inside, the walls were painted red, and the red lights made it more red. The red light and the beat of the heavy-metal rock music reminded Mills of a scene from hell.

“Detectives?” A confused cop led them to a room with a strong light that went on and off quickly. “They’re in there,” said the cop, stopping at the door. “But I don’t want to go in there again. I’ll wait right here.”

Mills stepped carefully into the room. He was confused by the light. The music was just as loud in there. Two medical workers were trying to calm a man with no clothes on. He was about fifty-five years old, with dark gray hair. His hands were tied behind his back. On a large bed in the middle of the room was a body covered with a sheet. There was a lot of blood on the sheet. Some of the victim’s blond hair hung over the edge of the bed. It made Mills think of Tracy, and that made him angry. Why did anything in this hell make him think of his wife?

“He made me do it!” the gray-haired man shouted, fighting with the medical workers. “He had a gun!”

The word LUST was written on the wall over the bed. Mills was so angry when he saw it that his hands were shaking.

Somerset was looking at the body. “You won’t want to see that more than once,” warned the medical worker.

“He had a gun!” shouted the suspect again. “He made me do it!”

Mills was looking over Somerset’s shoulder. What they saw made them feel sick. There were no marks on the top part of the body - but lower down…

“He asked me if I was married,” said the suspect. He was quieter now. “He had a gun in his hand…”

“Where was the girl?” Somerset asked.

“The girl? W-w-what do you mean?”

“Was she on the street?”

“S-s-she was on the bed. S-s-sitting on the bed.”

“Who tied her down?” Somerset asked. “You or him?”

“He had a gun, a gun…” The man was starting to cry. “He had the gun in my mouth!”

Mills remembered the taste of the gun in his own mouth after Doe had hit him in the face. His stomach was turning over. He took out his notebook and turned to the page where he had written the-seven deadly sins.

Another one down, he thought, his hands shaking. Three more to come. Envy, wrath and pride.

He looked at the blood on the sheet. What next? he thought. Holy God, what next?

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