I was in the back seat of Dad’s Infiniti G35, looking out the window and listening to my brother, Vincent, breathing like a pig being hurtled at the L.A. county fair. I could see all of the Mexican ice cream men as we passed by. They seemed happy and not all that happy either. I don’t blame them, it’s social security problems they’ve been having – I know we had some problems before mom died.
As we drove, the sun glared into Dad’s sparkling hazel eyes and my sister, Michelle, head banged to Mick Thompson’s guitar riff to ‘Left Behind’. It made me dizzy.
Vincent whispered to me while pointing his bony little finger, “Reuben, do you see that?”
“Yeah, now leave me alone, tonto,” the annoyance in my voice was to show Vincent that I didn’t care.
“No, look again!” he replied enthusiastically.
I turned to face Vincent and the window that he was looking out of and saw a glimpse of an abandoned Chevy Suburban the color of green unfertilized grass.
“Take a better look,” Vincent said.
It appeared he wasn’t just looking at the car just to look at the car – he was looking at two large plastic bags in the shape of…people. There were stains on them that that looked like blood splatter.
“Dad?!” I demanded in a soft tone voice.
“Can we pull over? I want to show you something that looks…abnormal.”
“Not right now, Reuben, I’m driving.”
At that point I wanted to jump out of the car go to the parking lot of the abandoned truck and just investigate the bodies. I guess dad felt my pain because he looked at me whenever I mumbled.
“Can we please go see it, daddy?” Michelle said while flashing her eye lids.
He’s never going to say yes, I thought…
“Of course we can. Anything for my little sweetheart…” Dad said and turned the car around.
When we arrived at the truck, I found myself bleeding in the inside and wanting to escape fate but it was too late. Michelle and I had asked for it. The smell of a substance that smelled a lot like sulfur penetrated everybody except for dad. I guess he’s used to it because he was in the marines for quite a while.
“Okay so are we just going to stand here looking at the bodies or are we going to go investigate?” said Michelle.
Michelle opened one of the body bags and discovered they had a blow to the head with a .357 pistol and strangle marks on the neck. The blood and the body disgust me in ways people haven’t experienced.
“Hey dad! Here’s a wallet. Would you be interested in investigating it?” asked Vincent.
Dad viewed the drivers license and the wallet which read:
Andy Ramirez 1257 N. Bronson AVE. Los Angeles 90012
Hgt:5’9” Wght:173 pounds Age:25 DOB:4/17/85 Driver Class: C SEX: Male Driver license:H6335712
“Can we go look for some clues in the alley?” asked Michelle.
“Yes, be careful though,” replied dad.
We searched until we found a small blood trail.
“Can we follo…” an interruption occurred which seemed to sound like a car motor.
“Stay here and be quiet,” whispered dad.
We waited until the truck left the lot and we all ran to the car and followed it.
“Reuben! Call 911 and tell them to give us back up on 5th and Flower street,” Dad said.
I could hear my heart beat faster than I could push the numbers on my phone. I was in complete shock that dad would let us do all of this.
“Uhh, dad, I think he knows we’re following him now,” Michelle said.
“How could you tell?”
“Because he has been going in circles…Look, we’re still on 5th street!” exclaimed Michelle.
“I finished calling. They are on the way.” I said.
“Okay, you guys stay here and I’ll look for the truck,” dad said pulling a picture of mom out from the glove box,”Mi Amor” he said while looking at it.
Dad jumped out of the car and disappeared. About 20 minutes later I saw the cops come by and dad was chasing a guy in a black suit. Dad took an extra step and caught up to him. He turned him in to the police and said that we had to go out of the police station.
Several hours later we met the murderer face-to-face.
“I will come after you and your family and separate your limbs piece from piece!”
That scared me a lot. The police then put him in his jail cell and from that day on I haven’t been scorned nor despised by others because they know what happened to me.
Nothing hurt me anymore. In fact, everything went right through me. To me, everything was like another echo in the silence.