Looking about the burned ruins of the publishing firm's main office, eyes glancing out the window onto the darkened streets, the detective sighed. A victim found with their limbs and head severed, arranged in a ritualistic fashion splayed out from the torso. The detective knew this pattern.
Slowly, he took out his cell phone. Almost immediately, it rang, and he pressed the button.
"I assume this is one of yours?"
The detective's brow furrowed.
"I know. I just don't care..."
The furrowed brow turned into a scowl.
"You kidnapped a man from his home to be brutally murdered, burned down a building, destroyed a business, and you expect-"
Rage crossed the detective's face.
"No, you listen to me, asshole, I-"
The detective froze, horrified.
"... I'm sorry... No... No, we'll handle this..."
Slowly, the detective looked around.
"... Right... ... Right... Okay, I'll confirm that in the report... ... I understand... ... Understood... ... All of them? I-... fine..."
He looked down at the man he would pin the blame on, sighing.
Brian Kwembe. The dental records matched. His wallet had been conveniently spared the fire. Every piece was in place to pin the crime on one of its victims.
"... That will be fine... ... Disappear... ... Drowning. You sick- ... Fine... Yes, that's fine... Thank you... ... Good bye."
The detective hung up, disgust on his face as he looked around the ruins of Inspired Publishing's office, at the ashes of blank pages that were going to be turned into books this coming morning.
Pulling a cigarette from his coat and lighting it, he took a long draw, turning to leave and let cleanup do their job. He felt small. Powerless. A mere chess piece on the board, or more accurately perhaps...
... A tiny cog in a vast machine...
Turning on the local Vale news...
Last night, a fire at Inspired Publishing inc claimed the life of one man. Brian Kwembe, age undisclosed, was found in the ruins of the building. Police describe the fire as the result of criminal mischief, lewd conduct, and arson on the part of the deceased, who was caught in the resulting explosion. Police are looking for a man, believed to be a teenager or early 20's, black hair in a single pigtail, martial artist attire, for suspected terrorist connections to the incident. Other publishing firms throughout the city have been put on high alert.