2007-02-14: Murder By Phone

Starring:

oldXander_icon.gif Ramon_icon.gif

Summary: Alexander Weston Marx tells Ramon Gomez his theory behind his wife's murder. Also, another unveiling of secrets

Date It Happened: February 14th, 2007

Murder By Phone


Outside the Gomez Home, Queens

Ramon hasn't gone home. But he's gone to watch the house. He isn't quite ready to commit breaking and entering to get inside of Benjamin's apartment and nobody's answering the door, so he's sort of back to square one. So he's over at a relative's apartment across the street. Not a direct relative, but one of those winding chains of relationships in his ethnic community that is not so easy to trace. But he's watching through the window, so if anyone approaches, he'll see.

The apartment has the lights left on, though, at least in the front window. Its something Ramon always does, if only to make it look like someone's always home. A precaution, added to his security system, that he takes against New York's high crime.

Well isn't that just bleeding convenient. It was at this time that Xander had decided to pay a house call to the Gomez home, particularly since he was concerned over the matters of Ramon's daughter. Regardless, Xander is soon walking along the road, making his way to the apartment, and takes a moment to check the flat number he was given, before pressing a button, to try to buzz for the family, Ramon in particular. After waiting for a few moments and not getting a response, he presses the button a second time, waiting before muttering, "Perfect… Nobody's home…"

Ramon sees Xander and mutters a startled curse. He charges out the door. "Mr. Marx," he calls. "I was at a relative's. I'm sorry. Hello." He looks warily up and down the street. And this is all so complicated. "There's a wiring issue with my apartment. Perhaps I can buy you a cup of coffee down the street?" Standing around outside of his apartment, or hanging around in it, does not appeal. At all.

Xander blinks when he hears Ramon calling at him, and then turns around to spy the older gentleman, wondering where he was, before recieving an explaination, "Ah, no problem at all, Mr. Gomez, I just wanted to discuss a few things with you." Well, if thre's an electrical issue, Xander might have noticed, but he decides not to question, "Of course. A little coffee never hurt anyone…"

Xander proceeds to walk along the road, presumably along side Ramon, as he tells him, "I've spoken to your daughter, Elena, regarding the case, but I'm a little concerned… Did your daughter mention anything about what happened at her workplace to you?"

A darkness settles over Ramon's face. "Yes. The big black man." He stares over at Xander for a moment. Not trying to read his mind — he's starting to figure out he doesn't /have/ to now that he knows he /can/ — but just looking at him. "A lot of weird stuff has been going on. Really weird, strange stuff. And some of it does pertain to the case. New things." He looks like /hell/. The man seems to be sleeping in his clothes, though he's clean. The circles under his eyes are dark and deep, and the lines on his face seem to be etched in there. Nothing sleep wouldn't cure, but he does not look good. "I've got her staying with a friend right now because of that incident."

Xander nods a little, before replying, "I see… Well, Mr. Gomez, I should tell you, before we go further, that you look like a terrible wreck. Have you been sleeping well at all?" Once again showing concern for the people he's trying to help. "Well, do keep an eye out for the Haitian looking man… You'll do to call me if he tries to give you much more trouble."

After a few moments, he bites his lip, and tells Ramon, "Now, on the issue of your wife… I've looked into the case file, and I have to admit, it's somewhat difficult to rule out a suicide…" He pauses for a moment, before continuing with a grim look on his face, "But, after looking for similar cases, I've discovered something of a Modus Operandi. Your wife may have been the third victim of a serial killer."

Ramon stops right in the middle of the street at this news. He doesn't say anything right away. "But that doesn'tm mean there's a case yet, does there," he asks quietly. "That just means we're closer. I have information for you too. But first I have to thank you. You've already given this ten times the attention of any of the other people I have gone to, and for that alone…" He shakes his head. His voice had dropped an octive, gone to a lower shade of rumble.

Xander nods as he strides alongside Ramon, "It's quite alright, Mr. Gomez, I do the best I can. However, the MO is unfortunately too difficult to sell in court, if it was even possible…" He bites his lip and takes a moment to explain, "First of all, the victims. All of them mothers of devout faith. Secondly, all the victims were found wearing a black necklace was supposedly no on their person sometime before their murders. Thirdly, phone records indicate that they all recieved a phone call, before their deaths. I have reason to believe that they were speaking on the phone when they, in fact, killed themselves…"

Ramon reaches into his pocket and pulls out a white handkerchief wrapped around something. Its got a cross on the handkerchief, but when he unwraps it, he shows the big, black ugly necklace forming the "Squaring the Circle" symbol. "I have learned what it means," Ramon says quietly. "But the means I have come to learn this, it is disturbing. /No/ woman of faith, no truly devout woman, would purchase or wear this necklace." He holds it out, in case Xander wants it, and then leads the way to the coffee shop. Not a Starbucks, but a smaller, more ethnic shop where South American coffee is sold, permeating the air like a dark stab of wakefulness.

Xandr takes a moment to take the necklace from Ramon's hand, in order to look at it closer, "I'd been meaning to get a look at one of these… Interesting…" He trace his finger along the symbol, before saying, "This would explain the choice of victims… A theoretical reason behind the killings… Someone, possibly part of a cult, chose devout women in order try to corrupt them, and by having them kill themselves, send them to Hell, possibly as a sacrifice…" He pauses as they reach the coffee shop, and sighs, "Unfortunately, speculation will not get us anywhere, and we have the problem of nobody in the rooms when the victims were found…"

Ramon nods his head and orders his coffee, will let Xander do the same, get everything paid for and get everything over to a place to sit down. "There's more though," he rumbles. "I went to a bookshop with my daughter, a place we'd never normally walk into. Enlightenment Books. Because she needed something for her class that they carried. Realizing I was in that sort of bookshop I asked Cass, the owner, to look up the symbol for me. She didn't recognize it. But about three days after I went in? Someone left the book on her shelves. She doesn't stock the thing. Someone just left it. For her to find. With this symbol right on the cover." He pulls out his copy of Squaring the Circle. "This book. As if someone knew exactly what had happened in that bookstore."

Xander now sets the necklace down, and takes the book from Ramon's hands, taking some time to inspect the cover… "Interesting… It's possible then that someone had anticipated this kind of investigation…" He pauses for a moment more, before saying… "Whatever the case, this doesn't help prove the point that would be the most difficult to sell in court." He looks up to Ramon, and tells him, "Someone called the victims, and convinced them to kill thsemselves…"

Ramon thinks that through. He takes up his coffee and sips it, thinking. Turning it over in his mind. "So either someone was seeing her for a long long time, working on her, talking to her to the extent that he'd be able to convince her to go against everything she'd been and believed without her family ever noticing a change, or…something else is going on here."

The coffee inevitably arrives at the table, and Xander takes a moment to lift his cup up and sip on it, before setting it down, and saying, "Phone records indicate that there was only ever one such mysterious call to each of the victims… That would mean that the caller convinced or commanded his or her victims to kill themselves in the span of the single phone call…" Xander shakes his head, "As I said, if we can't sell that point to the courts, all those cases will remain suicides, because I don't know anyone who would accept that the victims didn't just tell the callers to just sod it, if you'll pardon my French…"

Ramon looks at him for a long, long time. His eyes are steady, and those, at least, don't look as worn out as the rest of him. The fact that Xander is willing to consider the possibility interests him. "I am beginning to accept that there are a great many truths that cannot be sold to the courts. Or to much of anyone at all. That does not make them less true. It just makes figuring out what to do about them that much more complicated."

Xander turns his head a little, and rolles his eyes, as the loudest thoughts cross his mind, ~Like why I keep getting hit by lightning and survive…~ "Of course. I myself would like to see some proof that it's possible for someone to control the minds of someone over the phone, but I doubt anyone will step foreward to prove something like that."

This time he couldn't help but hear it. Ramon sort of raises his hand almost to his head before dropping it. He thinks back to the courthouse and the light bulbs. Again he's just…thinking. Trying to figure out how to proceed. At last he says, "I can explain a bit, a tiny bit, of what you saw at the Starbucks with my daughter. But only what I understand myself." He speaks very slowly. "You seem willing to believe someone could exert some sort of voice control over a phone. Perhaps the rest of this will ring true to you as well. I think somehow it is linked. The Haitian man, he left Elena an ISBN number. I don't know to what book yet, but I have a sneaking suspicion its the one you're holding. And that's only the tip of the iceburg.."

Xander bites his lip for a moment as he looks at the book a bit more, before setting it down, "Perhaps there's something we should find in here… Perhaps… The Haitian might have done something, but who knows what…" He then takes a moment to sip on the coffee he's got again, before saying, "Anyways, I'm having a difficult enough time wrapping my brain around this theory. It would be easier to convince me that you could read my mind…" He just says this in an offhanded manner.

"You mean like how you just thought about how you get hit by lightning and survive?" Ramon asks, pitching his voice low, leaning across the table. Other than this reasonable precaution to swamp what he's saying in the ambiant noise, his face is deadpan and utterly serious. "I wasn't sure at first. It was you that convinced me I could. In the courthouse. I thought you were /saying/ everything, but then I realized your mouth wasn't moving for about half of it, and that was the half it made no sense for you to be saying." There is no joking in his eyes. None whatsoever.

Xander blinks and looks up to pay a little bit more attention to Ramon now, narrowing his eyes, "Really now?" Once again, the older had repeated what the attorney was thinking, but he wasn't going to let the old man expose his little secret on a whim. "Yes, I've been struck by lightning more than once. It was even in the papers once." Which was semi true, but he wasn't going to discuss it. "You said you knew that my father was murdered. Anyone can use the internet these days any learn interesting facts like that." He leans narrows his eyes, to challenge the man, "If you want to prove that you can read my mind…" He then proceeds to think out at the top of his head, ~Boingo boingo whoopsy knickers…~

Ramon gets the weirdest look on his face as he stares at Xander. "You British people are weird," he says. "What the hell is a whoopsy knicker and why is it boingo'ing?" His left eye twitches just a little bit as he drains his coffee. Boingo boingo…he just shakes his head.

Xander just listens to the man get weirded out entirely, and just starts chuckling as he shakes his head, "It means nothing really, I just thought four random words that popped into my head so I could test you." Xander folds his arms and smirks, "So… A mind reader… Rather interesting. I suppose that makes me feel a little more comfortable with being a bit abnormal." He takes this time to extend his finger a bit and allows a spark of electricity burst from his fingertip for only a second.

Ramon's eyes flicker because, even though he's attuned himself to the idea, seeing these things happen is still a source of wonder and amazement. That said, his face doesn't move much beyond that flicker. "I didn't tell you to be frivolous," he says quietly. "But because you are a good man, and I want to warn you that you, too, may be facing some danger. I'm no longer speaking of my wife's murderer, though based on what you've told me I suspect the murderer himself is…of a sort with us."

Xander bites his lip a little, as he nods in agreement, "I understand… The Haitian. There was something off about him. I couldn't even make the light bulbs flicker while he was around…" He shakes his head, and continues, "Anyways, I'd best get back to the office. I'll have them look into the fingerprint that was found on the necklace again. Something might have turned up in the last few years since that time…" He finished off his coffee, and sets the cup down, before standing up, "Thank you, Mr. Gomez, for the coffee. Give my regards to the family."

"I will." He stands up and says, "They kidnap people. With guns. The people the Haitian is affiliated with, or at least I think he is. But I saw a kidnapping." Ramon's face twists ruefully. "I just didn't report it. What was I supposed to say? That I couldn't get the license plate because a woman shot poison through me with her touch and the leads I have I lifted straight out of their mind? Be careful." He hands Xander a card. "Cell. Pager. If there's some way I can help you, call them. Or if you need to reach me for any reason. I'll answer or get to you the moment I can answer."

Xander nods and reaches into his coat pocket, pulling out his own card, "Here's my own card. You'll be able to get me in the office and on my cell. Call me if you have any more troubles with this organization…" He glances about, before saying, "Keep in touch…" With that, he proceeds to saunter off. He'll get himself a copy of 'Squaring the Circle' in order to see what's in it… And he'll try to get himself a copy of Activating Evolution, just to get a better look at the theories within.

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