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"All right, a murder-suicide. Why did you get me out of bed at three in the morning, hmm? And where's Forensics?" Aaron asked.

One man stepped forward and handed Aaron a ragged-looking leatherbound diary.

"Found it in the back pocket of the old guy," the cop said.

"Why did you touch the body? You numbskulls have compromised the scene-!" Aaron began.

"We thought, after reading a few pages, that we should get you. We're not sure what to do," the same cop said.

Aaron swore under his breath. Why is everyone around here such an idiot except for me? Shaking his head, he opened the diary. It was signed by a Dr. Robert Pierce. Aaron looked up.

"At least we know who the old guy is," Aaron said.

He closed the diary and slipped it into a pocket, "Get Forensics in here. I'll bring this to evidence myself. Do your jobs, for chrissakes."

"Yes, sir. Just make sure you read some of that. There's something funny going on with this," the cop said.

#

The next morning Aaron sat at his desk at the station. He felt like a zombie. Sleep hadn't returned when he got back from the crime scene. He hadn't even bothered to change his clothes. Even several cups of coffee didn't help, though they just tasted of ash anyway.

He leaned forward to shift some of the waiting stacks of paper on his desk. Something dug into his leg. He pulled it out. It was the book.

He muttered under his breath and started to stand. I'm so tired I forgot to bring this to evidence, he thought. It broke through sleep's hazy barrier and he remembered what he had said. Instead of running down all those steps to evidence he sat back down and flipped the diary open. He began reading.

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