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Blackbird Fly Part Eleven

The Investigation Begins

By Rick Henry Christopher Published about a month ago 6 min read
Image created by RHC using NightCafe Studio, Microsoft Word, and Photoshop

If you haven't read the previous parts to this ongoing story, here are the following links:

Part One:

Part Two:

Part Three:

Part Four:

Part Five:

Part Six:

Part Seven:

Part Eight:

Part Nine:

Part Ten:


The Heartbroken Blackbird

A thousand blackbirds swarmed and swirled close to the surface of the green earth. One by one, each bird ascended into the sky until only one was left — a heartbroken blackbird locked in a cage. He looked up toward the sky as the other birds flew away.

"Please come back," he thought. "Let me out of this cage. Remove these shackles."

One bird returned, landing in front of the cage and looking inward at the lonely blackbird. "Fly, blackbird, fly," he said. Then he spread his wings and flew away, leaving the lonely blackbird imprisoned with only his puzzled thoughts and blinded eyes.

Jack's intense shouting echoed through the safehouse at midnight, "No, no, don't leave me. I'm trapped. I'm being kept hostage. Help me."

Hearing his cries, both Jack's mom, Sheryl, and his sister, Emily, ran to his room to find out what was happening.

Jack's breathing was labored and his body was wrangling with the sheets as he twisted and tossed to find comfort. His mom gently rubbed his face and said, “It's okay Jack. Everything's okay. You're just having a bad dream.”

Jack calmed down, but he was so emotionally distraught that he could barely acknowledge his mom. He mumbled something before falling back to sleep.


TV Night in the Safe House

The days seemed to drag slowly while the Amsbury family lived incognito in the safe house. It seemed like weeks but the reality is they've only been there for three days.

It's noon, and Ray, Jack, and Sheryl are sitting in the living room watching their favorite game show, Family Feud. Emily is in the kitchen reading a magazine.

The family would usually be laughing at Richard Dawson's jokes at the opening of the show, but this time they quietly watched him as he played around with a fencing sword he received as a gift from one of the families. Then Ray shouted out, “Read,” after Richard asked the question, “What specific thing do you like to do when it's raining?” Sheryl yelled out, “Watch TV.”

Jack drew back and became lost in his thoughts as he stared blankly at the TV screen.

“How is it that this is all happening to me? I've lost everything: my girlfriend, my job, my freedom. I'm trapped here. I'm a hostage of my own life. I'm like a caged bird with no way of opening that door.”

In the background, Jack's parents yell out “trash,” “dishwasher.”


Supervisory Special Agent Gordon

“I have called this meeting today for Special Agents Tandy, Lomeli, Cole, Forbes, and Levinson. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss what we know so far and to create a game plan for the case of Xochitl Jimenez.

Let's begin with Special Agent Tandy. Please give us your assignment and what you know and don't know so far,” Supervisory Special Agent Tiffany Gordon said, handing the conversation over to Special Agent Tandy.

“Greetings team, my name is Joe Tandy, and I have been assigned to investigate Sheriff William Sampson's involvement in Miss Jimenez's disappearance.

Yesterday, I met with Sheriff Sampson. He reopened the case on Miss Jimenez on Monday, August 30, 1982, and mentioned that his office is now in the process of closing it as of October 13th. He seemed surprised when I brought up it up.

Here is a summary of what we know," Special Agent Tandy pointed to the blackboard and read its content aloud.

" - Xochitl Jimenez has been missing since June 27, 1979. She was possibly abducted in a green car, maybe an Impala.

- Her friend, Angelita Cortes, who is also Jack Amsbury's girlfriend, went missing on Saturday, August 28, 1982.

- Mitchell Gannon, a classmate of Jack Amsbury, appeared on the morning of August 29th, the same day Jack was found asleep on the shoulder of the 55 freeway.

- Also on August 29th, Sheriff Sampson visited the Amsbury house to question Jack about Angelita's disappearance.

- On Wednesday, September 8th, Mitchell got Jack drunk and took compromising photos that made it look like they had a sexual encounter.

- September 9, 1982, Jack received an envelope with the photos and a blackmail note.

- A few days later, it was discovered that the initials W.S. were embossed on the back of one of the photos.

- Mitchell Gannon went missing on Wednesday, September 15, 1982.

- On September 17th, Jack drove to Mitchell's apartment, which was cordoned off. When he left, a silver Mercedes followed him. Sheriff Sampson drives a silver Mercedes and has the initials W.S., but it is not confirmed that the car following Jack was Sampson's.”

Excellent detail Tandy,” Agent Gordon commented, “Is there anything I can get you to continue your investigation?”

“Yes, I need two agents to work with me. One to tail Sampson during the day and one for the night shift. We need eyes on Sampson at all times.”

Agent Gordon decidedly made the call, “Cole you're on AM detail, Forbes you're PM.”


The Gardener

Back at the safe house Jack and Sheryl were in the kitchen preparing lunch for the family.

“Jack, can you get the mayonnaise for me.”

“Yeah, sure Mom. But I don't want any mayo on my sandwich. Just mustard, turkey, tomato, and cheese.”

“Alrighty Jack, whatever your heart desires.”

Outside the kitchen window, a loud rumbling sound started. It was so loud Sheryl and Jack could not hear each other talking.

Jack took a look out the window, “Someone is cutting the front lawn.”

“That’s strange. I was not told about anybody taking care of the yard,” Sheryl said, “Jack get your dad and make sure all the doors and windows are shut and locked.”

After the house was secured, the family sat quietly in the living room while the young, ethnically ambiguous man continued to cut the grass and trim the shrubs. When he was done, he rang the doorbell.

The family agreed that they would not answer the door. After a few more tries, the young man slipped a piece of paper through the mail slot in the door.

Ray walked toward the door to retrieve the paper. He read the note: “Greetings, I am your friendly Classical Music Yard Services lawn and garden technician.”

Emily scoffed and said, “What a dumb name for a yard service company.”

“Maybe not so dumb Emily,” Sheryl responded, “If you're an FBI agent.”

Sheryl walked toward the window near the front door, cracked it open slightly, and asked, “What do you have to say?”

He answered, “There's nothing like the soothing sounds of a requiem to set the mood for a cheerful evening.”

Sheryl responded, “Mozart's Requiem in D Minor operates on a higher plane than any other.”

With that conversation, Sheryl opened the door and welcomed the young man into the house.

He had his FBI badge in his hand and quickly introduced himself, “I am Special Agent Victor Lomeli. I'm working with Special Agent Tandy and Supervisory Special Agent Tiffany Gordon on your case. I'm here to ask Jack Amsbury a few questions.”

“Please have a seat, Agent Lomeli,” Sheryl directed him toward the sofa where Jack was sitting.

Before Lomeli sat down, Jack stood up and introduced himself, “Agent Lomeli, I am Jack Amsbury.” The two men shook hands and then sat down.

“Jack, it has been documented that on Thursday, September 17th, 1982, you were followed by a silver Mercedes after leaving Mitchell Gannon's apartment.”

“Yes, that is true. Mitchell wasn't there. His apartment was cordoned off.”

“Were there any unique identifying marks on the car? Maybe a window sticker, bumper sticker, a dent, a specific brand of tires?”

Jack sat for a second trying to remember, “Gee, I really don't recall. I only saw the car in my rearview mirror. He followed me to the FireHouse where my mom works, then he took off.”

“You said the driver was a ‘he,’ did you see the driver?”

“Not really. It was hard to tell who was driving because the sun was shining brightly into my face that day.”

“So, you're not sure who was driving?”

“I am not sure,” Jack answered.

“What time did you arrive at Mitchell's apartment on that day?”

“I arrived there around 11 am.”

“When did you leave?”

“It was shortly after 11:30 am.”

“What time did you make it to the firehouse?”

“It was a few minutes after noon.”

“Thank you, Jack, that's all for today. You've been a big help.”


Stay Tuned for Part Twelve


With Love, RHC 💜🩷💙

Young AdultThrillerPlot TwistMysteryFictionCliffhangerAdventure

About the Creator

Rick Henry Christopher

Writing fulfills my need for intellectual stimulus, emotional release, and soothing the bruises of the day.

The shattered pieces of life will not discourage me.

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Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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  1. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  2. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  3. Masterful proofreading

    Zero grammar & spelling mistakes

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

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    The story invoked strong personal emotions

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Comments (7)

  • Mariann Carroll28 days ago

    The beginning of the story got me confused until I learned he was just dreaming. Nicely done with this series

  • Novel Allenabout a month ago

    Tiffany never mentioned this undercover job. So much happening, hard to keep up. Twists and turns and mysteries to untangle. Sure hope it all gets sorted out. Written like a pro Rick. Nicely done.

  • Vicki Lawana Trusselli about a month ago

    Mystery theater rocks again .💯

  • Dr. Jason Benskinabout a month ago

    Love this, keep up the good work.

  • Babs Iversonabout a month ago

    Awesome chapter!!! Loved that Tiffany is on the team!!! Waiting for the next one!!!❤️❤️💕

  • Tiffany Gordon about a month ago

    I'm so happy to see the story continue! I am honored to be a part of the investigative team! I have a special place in my heart for little Jack. I would love to help find Xochital and Jack's beloved Angelita. Nicely written chapter! I really enjoyed the music dialogue/secret code section of the story. It was a very nice touch! Great work Cousin! I'm excited to read the next piece of the puzzle! No pressure intended but how soon before we receive the next installment? Lol 😆

  • Ronna Curtisabout a month ago

    I like the main character's attitude toward solving the mystery of missing persons. This is the first story I have read of yours, so I believe I will return and read the others.

Rick Henry Christopher Written by Rick Henry Christopher

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