The Fourth Woman: Chapter 5


Shortly after sunset, the area came alive with law enforcement from various agencies throughout the northern part of Nevada. The rock formation was laced with caves and hollows that needed to be explored.

As the hours passed, April and Janice sat in separate interview rooms at the county lock-up repeating their answers to questions that detectives had repeated a dozen times. It was early morning when they were released only to learn that neither of their friends had been located.

“So what about those two bikers the women say they saw?” the younger of the two detectives asked.

The older one sipped his half-cold, stale coffee and shook his head, “Personally, I think that story’s a bunch of crap – but we won’t be able to prove it one way or the other till we get out there and have a look for ourselves.”

The two wandered out into the parking lot, to an unmarked patrol car and got in. No sooner had the key turned in the ignition than the radio crackled to life, “They found something and want you out at the scene, pronto!”

Minutes later after pulling up to the site and getting out of the car, “So what do you have for us?”

“A tennis shoe,” came the answer

“Do you know for sure it belongs to one of the women?”

“Matches the description of what one of them were reported to be wearing yesterday.”

“Well, we need to verify that. Bag it and give it to me and we’ll head to Reno and see if either of the other two women recognize it.”

“While were here, we should see if we can find those bike tracks.”

“Yeah, let’s head up there and see if we can get our bearings and a lay of the land.”

Leaving the command center, the two detectives climbed to the top of the largest rock at the site. They looked in the direction that the two woman said they saw the motorcycle riders.

The older of the two checked his wristwatch, “Damned watch has stopped.”

“Hmm. Mine’s gone tits-up as well,” stated the younger of the two, adding, “Must be some sort of magnetic field associated with this outcropping.

The distance from the rocks to where the rise in the hillside began to fall away was further than either man thought. However, once there, the two spread out and quickly located two sets of motor bike tire prints in the loose dirt.

“We need someone to take casts up here,” the younger one radioed to the command center below where they stood. Once they pointed out the prints and watched as an officer took pictures, then carefully poured the plaster, they left for their car.

There wasn’t much conversation between the two men during the drive to Reno. Both were lost in their own thoughts of the investigation, besides there would soon be enough talk to fill a book.

“Did you find her?” April asked after assuring the detectives that it was one of the shoes Marilyn had been wearing. Janice sat on the divan beside her, hoping for good news.

“Not yet, but we’re gonna keep looking.”

April broke down, crying more than she already had. Janice, amid her crying, tried her best to comfort her friend.

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