London 1888 The fog was still thick and damp in the air and the smell of urine from the night’s drunks permeated it like a subtle vinegar bouquet. Detective Walter Andrews stood a few feet back from the body on the cobblestones. It was the same killer, he was sure of it, he and Constables’ Clarke and Whelan had just been call from a similar crime scene in Dutfield’s Yard, but the other was not as brutal as this one. The victim didn’t deserve to be left in such an undignified fashion, especially in the open of Mitre Square. Andrews took off his bowler and scratched at his head, a habit he had picked up from his father. Clarke, who was examining the body turned to him with a pale countenance. “What’s the bleeding matter Constable?” Andrews spat. “It’s ‘im isn’t Inspector. Everythin’ is pointing that way. But two lasses on the same night? That’s brutal Inspector, brutal. Inhuman is what it is.” “I had better take a gander I suppose. Go and take a few deep breaths, and see if Whelan’s got anything useful.” Andrews said as he took the young man’s place beside the body and the blood spattered cobbles. “Yessir.” Clarke nodded before disappearing into the fog to find the other Constable, who was looking for evidence around the crime scene. Andews took his wire frame reading glasses from his breast pocket and pulled the hooked arms behind his ears. He looked over the macabre spectre before him. Forties, not dressed properly for the cold air, and out after midnight in Whitechapel, she had to be another young harlot. Poor girl. Andrews had seen the other bodies and the drawings from the police surgeons and experts, this fit the original modus operandi . This had to be the work of ‘Leather Apron’ the Whitechapel butcher. Clarke and Whelan emerged from the fog, their boots clicking on the cobbles. “Sir.” Whelan declared respectfully. “What is it Constable?” Andrews replied standing. “We have company sir.” Whelan gestured behind him. Andrews was confused. He stood glaring at Whelan. “Who is it then?” “Sir, it’s a Mr Lorde sir.” Whelan was looking back at the inspector and shrugged with an expression that told him that he had no idea who the man was either. The figure stepped out of the dark and the fog of the Whitechapel’s early morning. “Detective inspector Andrews I presume?” The newcomer said. Andrews nodded and withdrew his pipe and a pinch of tobacco from his left breast pocket. The man was dresses as any of the Yard’s Detectives would be, a long black coat dark waistcoat and a bowler the same as his own. He was clean-shaven with shoulder length brown hair neatly tied back. “And who might you be then? You are out at an ungodly hour, at the scene of a murder investigation. I find the visit rather surprising to say the least.” Andrews began filling the pipe, but raised a suspicious brow in the direction of Mr Lorde. Jack smiled at the inspector and nodded in agreement. “The hour is late I’ll warrant, but Scotland Yard is paying me for whatever hours are required in the conclusion of this investigation. John Lorde,” He held out a friendly hand, “a pleasure. I’ve met your young Constables already. Quite thorough lads I’m proud to say. They were scouting for evidence in a very professional manner. They could have only learned good habits like that from a very thorough detective indeed.” Detective Walter Andrews nodded his approval. “A pleasure Mr Lorde. It is always refreshing to meet someone recognizes good police work.” There was a spark of pride in Walter’s eyes, and the two Constables had their heads held very high. The Inspector must not be as free with his compliments. Jack smiled. He could tell that this man was going to be a tough person to work with already. “What branch of Scotland Yard are you working for exactly? Forensics? Criminal Psychology? Or are you being paid to make sure I’m doing my job?” Jack smiled. “I am…from an independent party wishing to remove the instigator of these killings from human society.” “Independent party? I know all eyes are on us with this case, but surely Her Majesty hasn’t hired her own eyes and ears for the investigation?” “Ah, no. Outside interest, though Her Majesty has approved.” Andrews raised his brows. “The Ledbrook College. I can say no more about it, except that Scotland Yard has agreed to let me be part of every aspect of this case. I am to work with you and Detective Inspector Moore until this case is at a satisfactory conclusion.” Jack said nodding toward the body. “May I? The morning is coming quickly and this square will be a bustle of activity within two hours. We need to get what we can, now.” Andrews took off his bowler and scratched his head again. Whatever the Yard say I suppose, but I will write to Abberline in the morning when I have breakfast, if I can stomach the food. “Fine, yes of course. She’s all yours Mr Lorde.” Andrews stepped aside and gestured to the body. “What can you tell me that I haven’t seen already?” The two Constables looked at each other warily. They could feel that there may be a bit of competition between Mr Lorde and the Inspector. It wasn’t a surprise, because Inspector Andrews didn’t trust the ‘sciency’ types that were being utilized by the Metropolitan Police more and more often. It was another excuse for the Inspector to flex is detective muscles. Jack knelt down and nodded as he looked at the body. “Okay, you may have gathered already, that, due to the wet road, we won’t find any dripping of blood from a fleeing assailant. It will simply diffuse with the existing moisture.” Andrews nodded and lit his pipe, and began to puff. Jack continued. “Right. A woman, approximately mid forties, a prostitute. Cause of death would be two cuts across the throat, slashing the carotid arteries. Post mortem injuries are rather awful.” “You’re telling me.” chuckled Andrews. Jack withdrew a rolled up leather package from his coat, and unfolded it. Andrews looked on with curiousity. No investigators brought tools like those to a murder scene. “What’s all that then?” He asked gesturing to the collection of shiny medical tools. “These? These are standard issue surgeon’s tools, and a few lock picks. You never know when you’re going to get in a jam.” Jack smiled and drew out two long hooked probes and used them to shift the exposed organs. “Hmm…this isn’t good Inspector.” “Lemme’ guess. Uterus is bloody missing?” “Modus operandi.” He nodded. “And more, there is no left kidney Inspector.” Andrews frowned. “What? Can you tell if she could have been born without it?” “I can. It has been removed.” Jack wiped the tools on the woman’s tattered dress, put them away and stood looking down at the mess. “Constables, we have precious little darkness left, and we have at least two bleeding organs removed. One of you sweep the area for any sign of the missing organs. The other, get the local department office and get more Constables down here for the clean up and canvas of the area.” “Well, taking over as well Mr Lorde?” Andrews shook his head. “Sorry inspector, I forgot myself. Your crime scene and your Constables, I am clear.” Andrews nodded. And looked back at the body. What a mess. * “Well Mister Bond?” Detective Inspector Abberline demanded. “I… I can’t be conclusive Mister Abberline,” the man said shaking his head, “I’ve had the body for only a day. There are so many tests and comparisons to make.” The Police Surgeon took the cover off the body and the men in the room stepped back a little from the small, even though they all had scented handkerchiefs to their noses. The room was a big red-brick space that the Coroner was using as a base of operations while the Whitechapel case was open. Mister Bond’s young assistant Joseph handed the surgeon the book of notes he had been making on the collected victims. “Inspectors, Constables and Mister Lorde. I have reached no firm conclusion at this stage, but I can say that the wounds and style of killing here exhibits evidence of a single individual.” “We know that Mr Bond, just give us the facts so we can see it from your perspective.” “Of course Inspector.” Mr Bond nodded toward the body. “This woman here…did we get a name?” “A Mrs Catherine Eddowes.” Constable Whelan said after examining his notepad. The surgeon, Mr Bond, thanked the Constable and continued. “Mrs Eddowes here suffered a similar fate to Mrs Chapman. And from the wounds, I would guess that Mrs Stride would have as well, had the murderer not been interrupted.” Mr Bond examined his notes again. “Our man favours the cutting the carotid arteries for method of death. While he has a morbid fascination with dissecting the victims, especially in the lower abdomen. As you can see here.” He pointed to the body of Mrs Eddowes. “This is the second time the uterus was removed.” The surgeon stared down at the body with pity. “This could questionably be a morbid medical curiousity or a ritual, we simple cannot tell.” He took a deep breath. “We live with such monsters gentlemen.” “May I examine your notes Mister Bond? I just wish to bring myself up to speed, and I process it more efficiently if see it handwritten.” Jack asked. “Of course Mister Lorde. I heard you were sent by the Ledbrook College? Very high and mysterious repute so I’m told. It would be an honour sir if you assess my notes.” He handed the ring bound folder to Jack so that he could examine the records. The other men milled around talking about the various suspect’s occupations and the nature of the wounds and so on. Jack just stood and read the documentation. “Not blaming the butchers or dockies yet Mister Lorde?” It was Mr Bond’s bald assistant Joseph. “Not yet Mister…?” Jack had not been formerly introduced. “Grateful.” The assistant nodded. “Joseph Grateful. I don’t know how my parents survived the torment of such a strange family name.” Joseph Grateful was about Jack’s height and age; roughly late thirties. He was a well dressed and good humoured gentlemen. Jack raised his brows. “Lorde can be amusing, I’m sure. Though I don’t have the pleasure of dining with those that would make it funny. And as to your previous question, Mister Grateful, I have no opinions as of yet. What’s your take on all this then?” Joseph laughed and said in a harsh whisper, “Mister Lorde, I am just grateful if I get through the days working with the old goat.” He referred to the Doctor Bond. Jack smiled and continued his reading. There was something strange about what the killer was doing post mortem. The uterus? Why the organs? Was he a doctor or a surgeon, or some kind of psychotic cannibal? Jack had other thoughts too. Maybe the suspect is not human, but this was not how the cabalus hunt or feed. Could it be another kind of creature? Maybe the blue eyes were finally in London? After several minutes examining the logbook he returned it to Doctor Bond and turned to leave. “Where are you going Mister Lorde? We have not made any decisions about our follow up action.” Andrews called as Jack approached the door. “I need to write a letter.” Was all he said as he left the Whitechapel Coroner’s Office.
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