I sigh as I am finally released from my confinement. I spent long enough in that interrogation room as it is. I scan the precinct bullpen, mildly noting that there were only technological differences that made it different from the 21st century, with the clickity-clack of a series of consecutive typewriters replacing the hums and clicks of computers. I wonder how they kept all the info, such as rap sheets and what not, on file back then.
I really need to stop thinking that I don’t belong here. It will not get me anywhere when it comes to tracing down Kennedy’s supposed killer. I am going to need to blend in with this old fashioned society to be able to work successfully.
Unfortunately, the first person I happen to lay eyes on is Mr. Paranoid himself. He glares at me, and I unflinchingly meet his gaze, trying not to smirk at the one small victory I achieved today.
“I cannot believe my brothers were stupid enough to let you go!” His voice booms through the precinct, causing more than a few heads to turn from their work.
“Look, we kind of got off on the wrong foot…” I begin
“Breaking into someone else’s apartment will.” He interrupts.
I sigh, frustrated and impatient by his loud, boisterous tone that tells me I will get nowhere by making amends.
“Look Nick,” the blond detective breaks in. “We told you that it was all a misunderstanding. We hired her to do some work for us and we gave her the wrong apartment number is all”.
“Work,” Nick scoffs, “You mean work by infiltrating the NYPD and taking all its secrets and weaknesses back to her motherland.”
Now this claim is so ridiculous, so preposterous, that I have to bite my lip to keep from laughing outright. Part of me wants to like this man called Nick. A very small part of me. The same small part of me that wants to like a certain writer who follows certain members of the NYPD around back in the century I belong.
“We showed you her birth certificate!” Jarrod interjects coming in from behind me. She was born right here in New York the same as you, Heath and I.
“Well we will just see about that,” Nick responds, his voice calmer but still angry. “Ya don’t have to be from Russia to be a spy.”
He approaches me, jabbing a finger in my face. “I’m going to prove what you’re up to lady, you can be sure of that”.
As he walks away I feel my facial muscles stretch into a grin. It’s been a long time since I have met someone truly this entertaining.
The blonde detective, apparently named Heath, smiles back at me. “Well now, if you can handle my brother’s shenanigans then I don’t think you will have much trouble with the job ahead,” he tells me vaguely.
“How do you..?”
“Not here,” he stops me. “Wait till I take you to the sight, there at least some of your questions will be answered”.
"We will meet each other again, Detective. For now, you just follow my brother's lead," Jarrod says, gazing at me in a way of respect I have never quite seen.
I nod, once again making the choice to trust these strange men. “Lead the way.”
He escorts me down the precinct’s back stairwell, until we arrive at the parking lot down below the building.
“Unit three,” he tells me. I try not to totally geek out at the 1960s police cruiser, I must do my best to make sure I appear to be calm and professional.
I wordlessly slide into the passenger side, and as soon as he sleds in and makes himself comfortable we are off. We drive in silence, as I make a note of all the buildings and surroundings, noting the discrepancies between 1960s NYC and 2015 NYC.
After what seems like ages, we stop at what seems like the most obvious of locations, the Empire State Building.
“Quite the discreet location,” I remark, unable to keep the sarcasm out of my voice.
“Sometimes it’s just better to hide in plain sight,” is all he responds with as he opens the driver's side door.
We enter the skyscraper, a monumental testament of progress for the city during the time it was created. I note Heath’s body language in the crowd and how he appears to be none too concerned, but his gaze is flirting to and fro looking for any sign of disturbance. I decide to fall back on my training and do the same for now, even though I really don’t know what I am looking for.
I cannot help but feel a general sense of foreboding as the elevator begins to ascend the skyscraper. It is not as if I have not traced down countless number of killers by now. It's just, the very act of tracking down a killer of a murder that technically has, yet has not happened yet leaves me feeling uneasy, like there should be some sort of law against it somehow, someway.
The doors finally slide open with a ding to deposit us at an unknown floor, as I have not really cared to pay attention to the numbers as we ascended. The blonde detective, Heath is apparently his name, says not a word to be but gestures for me to follow him down a whitewashed hallway, past abandoned office after abandoned office. I wonder to myself about why they were going to such lengths to keep things secret. After all, would not making things just a little more public deter whomever may be planning to kill the president?
My thoughts grind to a halt however, as Heath opens one particular door to an abandoned office to let me in. I am immediately filled with relief as soon as I enter.
"Thank God you're ok!" Victoria exclaims, rushing to embrace me in one of her rare bone-crushing embraces. "As soon as I woke up this morning and did not know where you were or where I have been taken I..."
"Oh, sorry," she somewhat sheepishly lets me go. "We have a problem".
"Of course we have a problem, we have to stop JFK's killer".
"That is not the problem".
"Of course that is the problem! Within a few months..."
"...the president will be in Dallas and.."
"....Lee Harvey Oswald will be the one to fire the shot and, well..."
"Do you not comprehend the fact that we don't belong in this decade!?"
"We have bigger problems than stopping the murder of a president who has already been dead for fifty years! We have to..."
"Not to worry, Captain, Detective," a familiar voice breaks in from behind us. "As soon as the work here is done you both will be sent back to the same moment as when you left in the year of 2015".
"Now why should we bother to help you?" Victoria asked as she spun around to face the man who obviously was the voice on the phone earlier.
"For the good of the country, that’s why," the man replied evenly, not in the slightest bit phased by Victoria’s tone.
"Now we don't know your name, how do you expect us to trust you?" I ask cynically.
"You shouldn’t," Heath, who has been silent for this whole exchange, tells us. "With the nature of the work you two are about to undertake you should not take the risk of trusting anyone, not even us".
The grey-haired man smiled. "What Heath is trying to say is that in this investigation, anyone and everyone is a suspect. As for my name, you can just address me as agent".
Now it was my turn to be infuriated. "Agent!" I exclaim. "What are you, some sort of masochistic..."
"Hardly, Detective Wilson," agent responds, raising an eyebrow. "I respect both sexes equally for what they each are capable of".
"And that is..."
"Okay enough!" Victoria snaps, sending me a scathing look. "Now is not the time to argue about the roles of men and women. We need to get back to business here".
I glance back at Heath, who is suppressing a smirk. That blonde detective has been too quiet so far for my liking, and I don't trust anyone that quiet.
"Okay," I say with a sigh, resigned to the work ahead. "So the obvious place to start with is Lee Harvey Oswald".
"We already brought him in thanks to his suspicious soviet ties and questioned him," Heath counters. "We have every reason to believe he is innocent".
"Well, Detective!" I snap. "Who do you think is behind this?"
"We suspect either LBJ, the Soviet Union, perhaps a combination of both," the grey-haired man answers for him.
I immediately fall silent, chewing my lip as I process this information. There are a lot of conspiracies floating around out there on Kennedy's murder. If we don't know for sure who killed Kennedy, and we only have three months to work, then I suppose...
Victoria looks at me, drawing the same conclusion as I have just come to. "Looks like we are about to get intimate with the most powerful family in the nation".
Yup, this investigation is only gonna get weirder.