The Irish Ripper (Chapter 6)

To the rest of the world, Sean’s darkest day was obvious, there could be no doubt.  A car crash and paralysis should surely stand head and shoulders over everything else.  But life is not always so straightforward and many can harbor dark secrets, which eat into their very souls. 

The day before Sean’s crash was no ordinary one; it was one that he would also never forget.  The thing that Sean had always liked about being a detective was the freedom that it gave him.  So long as he produced the results, they didn’t care much what he had got up to.  It suited him and them. 

 That morning had started like many others with a visit to a hooker.  Her name was Candice and Sean wanted to know if she wanted her laptop back that had been seized the previous week when her place was raided.  Of course, Sean would want something in return.   

Her place, presumably her home was a dingy two-bedroom flat in a large complex that would usually be a no-go area for lone Gardai.  But it was early morning, the “bad” crowd would be nursing their hangovers at this stage of the day and anyways he was in an unmarked car in civilian clothes, he thought to himself. 

Sean made sure to sidestep the needles and hold his nose as he quickly pranced up to the fourth floor, cocky that everything would go well.  On reaching the apartment, he gave the door a few hard knocks.  Nobody came to answer but he knew from previously checking her website; that she was definitely there, so he knew she was in there probably with a client. 

So; he knocked again and shouted out that it was the Gardai.  After about a minute the door swung open and what appeared more an old boy rather than a man quickly darted out.  Sean couldn’t but smile to himself that he might have just stopped that boy from losing his virginity. 

However, “Candice” to punters but otherwise known as Jane, looked far from amused with a wide grimace across her face.  It didn’t bother Sean though as he salivated at her large breasts, thin waist and long, flowing black hair that touched her buxom bottom.  He knew the drill having had done this, many times previously.  All that mattered was that he had something she needed and would do anything to get back. 

“What the fuck doo ya wan’” she said angrily in red lingerie in her strong Lithuanian accent. 

“Now is that any way to address a gentleman?  Especially one that has come out all this way with a gift?  Surely, not.”  Sean held the laptop forward in front of him so that she would see it. 

She came towards the door but he quickly withdrew it back behind him.   

“Obviously, I would want some kind of reward for my good behavior,” Sean said grinning, “about a half-hour of thank yous should do it…” 

“You coppers, all the same,” she said in loud resignation as she motioned her hands for him to enter. 

She didn’t need to show him to where to go, he remembered from the raid the previous week and headed straight to the bedroom in the cramped flat.  That was when he first set eyes on the beauty and knew he’d be back to have her. 

Not having much time to spare, he quickly took off his clothes throwing them into a pile in the corner.  Briefly, he wondered how many other men she’d had in the last few hours; not that he was the squeamish type.  He hadn’t had sex in a few days and nothing was going to stop him. 

After a few minutes, she appeared before him and asked what he wanted.   

Sean pointed towards his penis and she got on her knees.  His hands brushed through her hair, then began rubbing her breasts as she sucked.  This was what he had been waiting for.  But just as he was about to climax a group of three men entered the room and she withdrew, spitting in his face. 

For a moment, Sean just stood there stunned by the turn of events.  He recognized one of the men from his job; it was Joe McCraven.  A short, articulate gangster, renowned as much for his cleverness as his brutality.  It wasn’t every day you bumped into a criminal with multiple degrees and fluency in foreign languages. 

“Well, well – look who we have here – Detective Sean O’Callaghan.  You’re nothing if not predictable.  I told the boys here that you’d be back.  You see you have a pattern – like a dog who can’t stop pissing on the wrong tree,” he said laughing. 

“What do ya want?” Sean replied angrily, still covering his privates with his hands. 

“Put your fucking clothes on first you disgusting pig,” another of the men interjected, an opportunity he quickly seized. 

It was a set-up.  They knew he’d be back because he always was.  Now they had him on camera with a prostitute that he was involved in busting only the previous week.  His career would be finished in disgrace.  Now it was only about what they wanted in return – and they wanted something very big. 

The Gardai had been running a very successful witness protection program and they wanted details on a snitch by lunchtime.  Sean pleaded with them that they were being totally unreasonable and that there was no way he could get the information that quickly. 

But they were unperturbed, adamant that if they didn’t get the information they needed within that timeframe, Sean’s “porn” would be on the internet and a concerned member of the public would feel obligated to inform his colleagues. 

They wanted the details and in particular the whereabouts of one Stephen Clarke who had turned tout on his former associates after being caught in possession of a major haul of cocaine.  He was due to give evidence that afternoon.  That is why they were insisting on such a tight time constraint; they had been surprised by how long it had taken for their trap to spring. 

“Look man, I couldn’t give a fuck.  Not a fuck, just get his details or else,” said Joe menacingly. 

Sean knew he was skewered, there was no obvious solution.  He put Joe’s number into his mobile phone and told them that he would get they wanted.  They gave him a final warning that they were not the people to be messed with as he hastily made his way out of the apartment. 

His mind was racing as he quickly went down the stairs and into his car.  Once there, he tried to calm down.  He could feel his heart beating through his chest; he needed a plan and he needed it very fast.   

The information about informants was only kept on paper files in drawers in the basement of the station as it was considered too risky to keep them in an electronic format where they could be hacked and copied ad infinitum.  But you needed a swipe card to get down there, and Sean needed to think of a legitimate reason to go visit. 

Then it came to him in a flash.  Garda Laura Mulhern sometimes did the rather boring task of manning the basement some mornings and he was pretty sure that day was one of them.  He knew she had been having a rough time of it lately and having always wanted to bed her, he could kill two birds with the one stone. 

Garda Mulhern was having a dour morning.  A week previously she had broken up with what turned out to be a short-term boyfriend.  She was disappointed that things hadn’t turned out better, missing the sex and having someone to talk to.  He had dumped her, which made her feel worse.  He said that he wanted a girlfriend that would be there when he needed, not on shift work who sometimes wouldn’t show up. 

To boot, it was one of those mornings where she was tasked with manning “The Dungeon”.   It was given that name for many reasons; it was the oldest part of the station and you had to walk down a sheer set of stone steps bowing your head so as not to hit it which led you to an underground cavern.  This was where the station’s greatest secrets were kept. 

It used to be where prisoners were kept back in the day but the conditions were considered too squalid for them, so now it was just used for the torture of Gardai.  This was pure sentry work, making sure someone didn’t just come in and walk off with all the most important files.  It was a tedious job and sometimes she wouldn’t see anybody during her shift at all. 

So, she was quite surprised and somewhat excited to see Detective Callaghan walking down the steps.  She knew that he wanted her, he had made that clear and that fact enthused her, she wanted the attention.   

“How’s things, Laura?” was the somewhat banal start to the conversation, but it quickly turned sexual, with him telling her how sexy she looked in uniform to which she gave a wide smile.  She teased him saying that it would be taken off once she got home. 

She did find it somewhat odd, however when he asked her if she needed a break of any sort.  But she did need to leave for a few minutes and was thankful for it, telling him she’d be quick. 

Sean didn’t waste any time once she was gone, and went immediately going over to her desk, where the computer that held the database was.  All Sean had to do was type in the name and the cabinet number appeared on the screen – L15.  That was the easy part. 

The cabinets didn’t seem to be arranged in any particular order physically.  Cabinets labeled “Z” were besides those labeled “A”, for instance.  This was more likely due to general tardiness over the years rather than a clever security measure. 

Anxiously, he went from cabinet to cabinet, trying to find the required detail; he knew Laura wouldn’t be that long.   Then he paused for a second; it was probably at the very back, he thought to himself.  It was a hunch but he went for it and there it was.   

He quickly opened the file he was looking for, putting the address into his phone, but didn’t send it yet.  His heart started to race when he heard the door starting to open and he tried to quickly walk back to her desk but he only made it three-quarters of the way before she saw him.  He saw an expression of puzzlement on her face and knew he needed to think of something fast. 

“What about tonight?  I was thinking of calling over,” he said with a cheeky grin. 

Laura liked him being so direct; it was about time she allowed herself some fun.  

“Yeah sure why not?  I’ll be waiting for you..” she said with a smile. 

With that, he was out the door.  Things couldn’t have gone better; he had the information he needed and was going to get the sex he had missed out on earlier.  He would have thanked God had he believed in such things.  Actually, maybe he wouldn’t. 

He knew better than to send the details from his own phone so he memorized the address and left it at his desk, then left the station and bought a new pay-as-you-go phone with cash.  Then with some hesitation, he sent on the details, knowing that doing so was probably a death sentence. 

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