Hard Boiled

Gretz’s Trail

From Beauregard's Perspective

“It’s been a few days since we turned in the surgeon to the police, and just about a week after we brought Emma back to her home. I’d intended to pay her a visit, to shed some more light on Gretz’s notes, but she was ahead of me, though for different reasons. Can’t say that I didn’t enjoy the short break, to take a breather, and think about what to do next…

Emma says that Gretz is back in town, and hanging around City Records. And more than that, he’s not paying her much attention. The nerve of the guy. Still, she’s worried about him and wants us to trail him. I accepted the request, since this case reeks enough to warrant attention, without the need for compensation. And, while she was at the office, I gave her Gretz’s notebook to look into the records for us.

We had some time while waiting for Nancy and Watson, so I decided to get some lunch. Amos still doesn’t trust me to go out alone after…what happened last week, so I decided to take him with me to the White Chateau. Sure, it took pulling a string or two to get him in, but I thought it’d be worth having a pleasant lunch with my…associate. I had my steak as usual, and, unsurprisingly, Amos had the priciest thing on the menu. I thought it was going well, and we even chatted for a while, until another sir decided he had a bone to pick with Amos. I should have said something for Amos, he was my guest after all, but I suppose…I suppose my moral standards froze for that moment. Fortunately–though that’s debatable–Amos took the matter into his own hands and cast a bit of voodoo on the man and his cronies. Needless to say, I won’t be coming back to eat there any time soon…

After we joined up with Nancy and Watson, the crew dropped by City Hall. Nancy and Watson checked the records office while I stayed in the car with Amos. Gretz was in the records office but, as Emma said, wasn’t paying her any particular attention. He eventually left and started driving off, so we tailed him in two different cars. Oh, and I saw that cowboy hat again.

Gretz stopped by some rundown grocery store in Treme and met with someone who, as the crew determined, was probably a voodoo practitioner. Afterwards, he started driving again, this time to Hellstromme property. Now, I always knew Gretz was sketchy, but this…I’m still not sure what exactly Gretz is after…

After Gretz went into the property, we decided to investigate his car. Moreover, he didn’t even bother locking it. I had Watson take out the papers from the car, and we found a map with some locations on it…And a little reference to Dr. Kettensage. The former was of greater interest, but there was another thing bothering us: an infernal smell coming from the back seat. After some scrounging around, we found something of a makeshift lever and I pried the trunk open…Only to see a reeking, skinless, disgusting body there. After some looking, Nancy found a very important clue: a gold tooth in the skull’s mouth. Memory serving correctly, Emma described Gretz as having such a feature. Of course, now the question was, if Gretz was dead, here in front of us, then who was that who went into the warehouse? It certainly looked like Gretz, and what happened to the body, well, it seems just like a skinwalker’s doing.

Oh, and the cowboy was still stalking us. For God’s sake…

Anyways, Nancy, Watson, and Amos followed the living Gretz into the property. I stayed by the cars with rifle. A bit later, Gretz literally came running out of the warehouse with the other three on his tail. To sum it up, we failed to get a hold of him, and now we had Gretz’s body on our hands, almost literally.

Called up Frank. He was not pleased. At all. However, I did arrange for the body to be picked up. And, as I expected, the surgeon got picked up by the Rangers, which means that the cowboy isn’t tailing us because of the surgeon. Now, we just have a bit more digging to do with what we got.

We waited until the next day before going back to Emma. As much as I hate being the bearer of bad news, it had to be done, though I didn’t think it wise to give all the details, for her own peace of mind. She was distraught, as expected, to know that Gretz had been killed, but at the same time, she was still very helpful with procuring the records regarding the codes in his notebook.

I headed to the library to look into it a bit more, and though the librarian wasn’t very nice, she was at least very helpful…The Bayou Vermillion Railroad Company. Can’t say I’m familiar with them, but the owner, one Baron LaCroix, certainly rings a bell. A lot of the papers dealt with financial deals, transactions, and inventories. What really caught my eye, as it pertained to Gretz’s notes, were the invoice for medicinal chemicals, with a number of barrels unaccounted for. Now, I’m just spinning ideas, but I think this might be what Gretz was looking for. Based off what Duval said, LaCroix supposedly had some sort of resurrection fluid, which may just be these chemicals. As much as their purpose may be a travesty to God and humanity itself, I can imagine such a substance fetching a nice price on the black market; probably even enough to pay any old debt…

Convened with the rest of the crew. The grocery store in Treme seems to be affiliated with the Red Sect. Not exactly sure how to approach that lead, if at all. What would a skinwalker want with the Sect? Unless maybe it’s just as curious about the resurrection fluid as Gretz was? I can’t even be completely sure, where Gretz trail ends and the skinwalker’s begins. We don’t have a real estimate of when he died, after all. Damn. I honestly thought this commission would be short, but it’s just opened up a whole can of worms.

Oh, and Amos started acting weirder than usual. I apologized to him for what happened earlier, and even offered to treat them all to dinner. Then, he started talking about not reading the newspaper tomorrow. As I was about to ask him about it, he answered the door, left the office, and then shooed the visitor away without even telling us who it was. I don’t like to make assumptions, but why do I feel like Amos just let his big mouth get a hold of him, and that I’m the one who’s about to pay for it.”

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