Everyone slept well at the condo after the busy previous day. Before Zeta and Carol went to bed, they had a heart to heart sitting out on the balcony. “I noticed you and Mark seem to be getting along quite well,” Zeta began probing.
“It just happened when we were out on the beach. We both started feeling the chemistry which was weird because we’ve been friends for so long, and suddenly …”
Zeta cut in, “You’re both older and different people now. You see the world more clearly than when you, we, were all growing up together.”
“So you’re ok if Mark and, if we…”
“I’d be thrilled. He’s not your brother you know,” Zeta said laughing and gave Carol a big hug. “You’ve got my complete and holy sanctified blessing.”
During the night Zeta heard Carol creeping carefully into Mark’s room. “Maybe she’s going to thank a war veteran for his service to the good ol’ USA,” she fantasized.
With the morning they all came into the kitchen one at a time where Justus was making breakfast. “How do you like your eggs?” he asked. The bacon, toast, jams, and orange juice were already on the table.
After breakfast, Zeta cornered Carol, “So how’d things go last night, get much sleep, you not so quiet sneaky devil?”
“I guess I just needed to be away from Mark for a while to realistically see who he is. I’m proud to say I thanked a wounded warrior for protecting me, and I think I’m falling for him,” Carol giggled like a school girl.
Out in the living room, Mark was reading the morning San Diego Union-Tribune. “This just makes me sick. This bastard has done it again!”
“What, who did what again?” Carol asked.
“That West LA Santa Monica serial killer they’ve been trying to catch for over seven years. Another twenty-three-year-old woman found in her apartment near the pier, with the same disgusting M O, a T carved on her. His killing field has been near the pier recently.
Carol sat down by Mark and said, “They arrested a guy named Gargiulo in 2008 for serial murders in Santa Monica. Cops think he killed more than ten women. He was a stabber too. They charged him with killing three women where they found his DNA. One of the women was Ashton Kutcher’s girlfriend.”
“I remember that. He was called the Hollywood Ripper and the Chiller Killer. He’s still awaiting trial. Now that’s an example of American swift justice,” Zeta added facetiously. “The Zodiac killer murdered thirty-seven victims around San Francisco in the 1960’s and 70’s and he was never caught. Detectives think this new guy may have killed thirty-six. He tortures rapes and kills them letting them bleed out slow. What the hell makes a man, I mean even a twisted creep, become so sadistic and evil?”
“One possibility is a defective or diseased brain frontal lobe that controls impulses and judgment. Researchers in London recently published that they’ve definitively identified the ventrolateral frontal cortex as the seat of human conscience, and it is unlike anything in the brain of other primates,” Carol elucidated.
“Maybe one day they will screen all humans, in rational technologically advanced countries, and determine whose brain puts them at risk to be a monster,” Mark speculated.
Zeta looked over at Justus and could see he was very troubled, and thoughts were stirring in his mind. “How about we take a little walk outside?” she asked him, “And give the lovebirds some privacy.”
Walking outside Zeta asked, “So what are you thinking?”
“I was planning on returning to Sedona to be with Aakifah tomorrow, but I don’t think I can let this one pass.”
“And that means?”
“I drive up to Santa Monica and put this psycho out of his misery before he kills again, and he will.”
“And you have his home or email address or can locate him on Google map?”
“No. When a human is as evil as this one, well, let me explain it this way. If you were outside walking in the woods or even down the block and there was a dead putrid body of a human or a large animal could you smell it, even from quite far away?”
“Yes, of course, if there was no wind or I was down wind.”
“A person as evil as this guy I can pick up from many city blocks away. It’s like a Geiger counter that detects radiation, and I sense it in my forehead and spine. The vibrations are intense.”
“Well now, just when I thought things might be normal for a while you’re off on another outing?”
“Yes, I might as well head up that way now. He’s in a very localized area near the Santa Monica Pier. Would you like to come with me?”
“I must be nuts, but at least I’m not bored. You don’t even have your car with you. So let’s take the Escalade?”
“Sounds like a plan, armored battle maiden. This has been an unusually busy time for me Zeta. Not typical.”
“What a relief to know that, maybe there’s a glimmer of hope to get a brief break from this whirlwind ride with you. Too much excitement can exhaust any human’s adrenal glands.”
“I can tell you I’ve never had so much happening in such a short time frame in my entire life, more precisely my lives, in Earth zone or the OD. But I’m compelled to do my best to take care of this dastardly situation in Santa Monica.”