Rhonda sat in a chair behind a computer monitor in managers’ office at the Massage Soleil Spa. Gary leaned over her shoulder to get a good look at the surveillance footage they were reviewing to try and find clues about Blake Adams’ disappearance and murder. Gary took in a deep breath to enjoy how pleasant and fragrant Rhonda’s skin smell. As a country boy, he recognized the scent immediately. It was sunflowers. Issy Myake was Rhonda favorite perfume, and Gary loved the way it smelled on her. He resisted the urge to drift off into a daydream where he would fantasize about making sweet love to Rhonda after a picnic in a flowery meadow on a warm spring day. They had a job to do. Gary tried hard to stay focused on the task at hand. It didn’t take long for them to find surveillance footage from the day Blake arrived in Jacksonville and came to the spa for at the St. Johns Town Center for a nice morning massage.
“That looks like him walking in the front entrance right there,” Gary pointed at the screen.
“Yes, that’s him for sure,” Rhonda said, “and it looks like he’s talking to someone.”
“Look there,” Gary pointed again. “He’s got a blue tooth ear piece. He’s probably talking to someone on the phone. Try to turn up the audio on this footage, Banks.”
“Let me see. Here we go right here,” Rhonda said as she turned up the volume all the way.
“Ugh dammit,” Gary grunted. “I can’t quite make out what he’s saying. Can you?”
“No, I can’t hear either, Black, unfortunately,” Rhonda stated. “The best we can do is save this video on a flash drive and send it to the field office here in town to see if they can enhance the audio.”
“If my memory serves me correct, the FBI field office in Jacksonville ain’t that far from here of J. Turner Butler Blvd,” Gary recalled. “Let’s go ahead and keep watching to see what else we may be able to find out about his visit to this place.”
“Good idea,” Rhonda agreed. “Hmmm. I’m not noticing anything out of the ordinary so far.”
“Neither am I,” Gary said. “Looks like he’s alone. There he is walking up to the counter to confirm his appointment.”
“And here comes the masseuse to escort him back to the private room to get his massage,” Rhonda noted.
“Yup, and there are no cameras in the private massage rooms,” Gary pointed out.
Rhonda sighed and said, “Yeah. Let’s just fast forward to when he’s leaving to see if there’s anything else useful on this footage.”
“There he is again leaving. Looks like he’s still alone. That’s all we got, huh?” Gary asked his partner.
“Yes, our best bet is to save this footage to send to the techs in the lab to see if they can clean up the audio.” Rhonda said.
“We should also ask Jerry which one of his employees gave Blake his massage that day,” Gary suggested.”
“Of course,” Rhonda agreed. “Masseuses are a lot like barbers or hairdressers sometimes. Their clients will confide in them. We need to find out what, if anything, Blake talked about that day while he got his massage.”
Jerry had decided to take quick smoke break to calm his nerves after he gave the FBI access to the company’s surveillance footage. He had really dodged a bullet on that one, and it really was a close call for him. He planted his secret cameras so long ago and hoped he would be able to avoid detection for a long time. The risk of jail time or losing his job did not override his overwhelming obsession with being a peeping Tom. He sat in his car and sparked up a Marlboro Ultra Light cigarette. Jerry took a long drag and exhaled the smoke slowly. Then he reached in his back seat to retrieve his laptop. He powered it on. Special Agent Banks and Special Agent Black had no idea that one of Jerry’s secret camera’s was planted in the very room that Blake got his massage in that fateful day when he came to Massage Soleil Spa. Now Jerry was himself curious to see what may have happened in that room that day, so he perused his video files to find the secret footage from that room that day.