Jessica spun around wildly, “No!!!!” She banged on the door behind her. “That is not…”
Before she could finish, the door was casually opened by one of the officers. “Please come back inside.”
Jessica collected herself and followed him back in the room she had just left. The men in the lineup had already been led out, and it was just Jessica and the officers.
Suddenly Jessica felt like there was a giant spotlight on her as she stood in the dimly lit room with all of those faces staring at her, looking for an explanation of her outburst.
She stood in silence, trying to gather her thoughts. She couldn’t tell them where she recognized number 4 from. They would think she was crazy. Maybe she was, maybe that was the kid, and she just put his face into her dream. Dreams are funny that way, maybe Rodney didn’t look the same every time she saw him. She couldn’t really remember what the kid looked like.
But somehow she knew that number 4 was not the robber. And now, because of her crazy dream world causing her to linger over that familiar face, she had gotten some guy she had never met into a lot of trouble.
And what was the deal with him watching her? Wasn’t it supposed to be one-way glass? He couldn’t have seen her, right?
After going through all of this in her mind, she finally said quietly, “The robber was not one of those men.”
The detective stood up and walked toward Jessica. Suddenly he seemed about twice as tall as Jessica was, and very intent on getting this over with as quickly as possible. “He wasn’t here, was he?” He walked around behind her back, “Then why did you look at number 4 for so long?” He walked back around her other side, “Has he threatened you?”
Maybe they did know that she had pegged the wrong man in a lineup before.
“Does he have something he is holding over you?” By now the detective was directly in front of Jessica, looking her in the eye, towering over her as she continued to shrink like a raisin.
What could she say? “No. I don’t know who he is, I have never seen him before, he just kinda looked familiar.”
“Like someone you saw in a panic and couldn’t describe even if he was standing right in front of you?”
Jessica couldn’t argue with this. She was seriously beginning to doubt herself. “No! I have never seen that man before in my life!”
“Are you really so sure?” The detective continued to pace around her, as she could hear her heart pounding in her ears. She had no idea how she knew, or why it was so important, but number 4 could not get in trouble for this.
“He looks like someone I met in dream!” She finally blurted out, before realizing that this will probably not help her case.
“You know that you only see faces in dreams of people that you have met before.” The detective was talking to the officers assembled in the room, and not to Jessica.
Jessica responded meekly, “I had the dream before the robbery.”
“There, you see, you must have met him before the robbery, dreamed about him, and then he showed up and shot Kenzie in cold blood before cracking open the safe and leaving before the authorities showed up.”
Jessica was amazed by this blatant disregard of the facts. “He didn’t mean to shoot her! He was scared! She opened the safe, not him!”
The detective had continued his slow stroll around Jessica until he stopped, facing the officers, “Man, I have heard some whoppers in my day, but wow. First she says it wasn’t him, then she tries to say that it wasn’t that bad!” The officers laughed in chorus. “What do you all think, is she brainwashed or crazy?”
Jessica was past nervous now, she was mad. “You are supposed to be impartial!!! You aren’t supposed to interrogate the victim!!!” She turned around and stormed out of the room.
As the door closed she heard a few whispers, “Mad,” “Crazy,” “Stockholm,” Once it was shut she broke down into tears and leaned against the wall, sliding down to sit in a heap on the floor.