Shot in the Dark (PG13) – Ch. 2

August 6, 2013 in Ongoing, SeeKo, Shot in the Dark by SeeKo

Chapter 2

Ordinary days for the most part, remained ordinary days. Case reviews, filing and archive management and sometimes when noone was looking, a quick glance at the book she had been reading the past few days. If it wasn’t busy, she’d sneak out to a cafe for a meal instead of eating the refrigerated garbage that was leftovers on white bread. Sometimes she’d throw in a smoothie or shake to wash it down with.  Such was life for Seo Juhyun, until the phone rang. Even then, it was an ordinary day. Phones rang on all the time on ordinary days. She lifted the receiver, gave her ordinary answer.

“Seo Juhyun speaking.”

Five minutes later she was on her way to the police department. Still nothing particularly out of the ordinary. She eased her car barely into a narrow parking spot and the engine grumbled as she turned it off. It was an old car, one that had seen much better days, but she thought that the clanks it made as she turned it on and the worn seats with stuffing poking out of the broken seams gave it personality and she’d rather than over a shiny new flashy thing anyway. Her heels clacked on the asphalt as she approached the entrance and an approving glance from an officer exiting before her reminded her that despite the heat it was probably a good idea to button up the top of her blouse.

The standard routine was in order as she reached the desk. Sign some forms, clip on her badge and she was good to go. The man behind the desk gave her a sympathetic glance as she continued on her way. She wasn’t sure what it was for. Then his gaze slipped south and she was scowling.

Still an ordinary day.

~ ~ ~

The bus system was dreadfully simple. One went north, one went south. Two routes, two directions. Yoona flipped a coin and went south. She paid for her ticket with cash and when they asked her name, she gave them the name of another lesser known Korean idol. In all honestly, she didn’t see the harm of giving them her actual name, but habits that had once kept her alive died hard.

She was still wearing the bikini from the beach yesterday. The local tourist store sold little in the way of undergarments and going without wasn’t a wise option seeing as the replacement shirt she had bought was white and a little too sheer. Yoona had no doubt that the blue outline was more than visible through the top. She would make do for now. Her faded jeans were still good though, so she decided to keep those.

There were many various terms that many an ignorant observer had used to describe Yoona. Hobo was the most common one. But in Yoona’s mind, hobo implied lack of choice and Yoona had a home, she just chose not to live there. Drifter was probably the most accurate one, but she didn’t like the negative connotations that came attached with the term. Yoona’s favourite term was trouble. She didn’t like causing trouble by any means, but trouble seemed to find her. Her boss, back in the day had often referred to her as such.

You did good today, Trouble.

Trouble, I got a new one for you.

Sorry to see you go, Trouble.

Goodbye, Trouble.

Yoona wondered if the same attachment to the past made it difficult for her to stay in one place.

You’re done now, Trouble. Time to get out. Settle down. Have a life.

Getting out, she could do. Settling down, she was working on.

The bus had air conditioning, but it wasn’t on, or it was broken. It was summer and very hot. The bikini top was digging into her skin but to take it off while she was sweating so prolifically wouldn’t be wise. The chilled bottle of water that came complimentary with the ticket was a distant memory now, as was the smooth, asphalt roads of the city. Now it was bumpy, dusty roads and the wind that gushed in through the open window carried grit and sand that stuck to her skin and got in her eyes.

Yoona glanced around and noted an elderly couple dozing off in the heat in one of the front seats and a number of couples sitting together at the back. Probably another tourist group that didn’t sign up for the weather, only the sights.

It was hot though.

So Yoona shrugged to herself and pulled her t-shirt over head.

Let them look if they want. She had plenty of other things to hide.

~ ~ ~

Seohyun went over the facts in her head one final time as she paused outside the interview room. She could hear hands slamming on tables as well as yelling, broken up by moments of eerie silence. It was a good sign; it meant her client wasn’t talking. It was always infinitely more difficult when they were already spilling their guts out before she got there to do damage control. Yelling meant frustration, so most likely, her client hadn’t said a single word.

Composing herself with a deep breath, she nodded to the officer standing next to the door who nodded back and opened the door for her.

“What is this? Some kind of joke?”

She was as curious as the detective but first things first, establish the rules.

“Don’t answer that Mr. Jackson.”

Seohyun met the eyes of the enraged officer, but the fury on his face seemed out of place. He scowled at her and snarled some choice words before angrily jabbing a finger at a piece of paper with writing on it. Her heart sank. A confession already? Was it signed? If it was, there was little more she could do. None the less she introduced as his lawyer and advised him to withdraw anything he had written. Maybe the situation as manageable

The detective grumbled something about it not being a confession, so she picked it up and quickly read it. It wasn’t much, just two words that meant nothing to her.

“So if your ‘client’ wouldn’t mind, perhaps he could tell me who the hell is Im Yoona.”

Seohyun would have liked to know that as well.

“Please allow me to speak to my client before asking any more questions detective.”

She got an angry glare for her troubles, definitely not the first, before the detective stormed out, slamming the door on the way.

The first problem was that the man looked guilty. Eyes downcast, shoulders slumped and fingers picking at a nail that looked close to bleeding. He didn’t look in good shape either. His face was mostly unshaved, his hair probably hadn’t seen the teeth of a comb in a long time, and by the pungent scent flooding the room, he probably hadn’t visited a shower recently either.

First things first though, she needed him to talk.

“Mr. Jackson, I’ll need your cooperation. The charges here are very serious, but I’m going to do the best I can to help you. Ok?”

A nod. Good, a response.

“Alright then.” She took a breath and wiped her sweaty palms on her skirt as she took a seat across the table from her client.

“So let’s start off with…” She glanced at the paper again, “Im Yoona.”

Another nod.

“Your friend?”

“Not really.”

“Then who is Im Yoona?”

“Just find her.”

Seo Juhyun sighed. The day had started so promising as well.

~ ~ ~

Four hours, nervous stares and several angry partners later, Yoona pulled her shirt back on – a difficult fete with the amount of moisture on her skin. The cotton fabric instantly glued to her skin and clung to her curves, not as lush as they once were, when she was well fed and more active. Out of habit, when there was about thirty minutes left to reach the city centre, she asked the bus driver if he could let her off early. She could tell he was going to say no, before he looked at her without her shirt on. He looked, once, twice. Then wordlessly he pulled the bus over to the side of the road and opened the door. She flashed him an appreciative smile, which he returned hesitantly, before exiting the bus, swaying her hips for good measure.

It wasn’t all for fun and games of course. The bus driver, if asked, would remember a scantily dressed asian female who semi-flashed her boobs. Letting the driver grab an eyeful of her rear end would give leave him remembering a person who existed less than the fake name she had traveled under. Another probably unnecessary habit, but there was nothing wrong with keeping up with practice.

She wasn’t sure where exactly she was, but it looked suburban and well developed. Large signs on the streets indicated a mall in one direction and a motel in the other. Choices, choices. Yoona looked down and spotted a twig. Picking an end, she gave it a light kick. It pointed to the mall. So, just like every other time in the past, Yoona turned in one direction, put one foot in front of the other and walked on to wherever fate dictated her.