Monday, September 30, 2013

Diffle County Update: How to Catch a Killer in Diffle County - Chapter 4

Family History

They were third cousins once removed when they met at a family reunion in Dalton, Georgia- spittin' distance from Tennessee's southern border.   She was a fifteen year old raven-haired beauty with a wide mischievous smile, a small pointy nose that gave her mouth an even larger exposure. Her teeth were perfect in order, perfect in placement, and perfectly white.  She was tall for her age, standing flat footed at five feet, ten inches, small-breasted and slim- which made her head seem slightly too large for her body.  She perfectly coiffed her hair to provide a maximum amount of wavy coverage down the small of her back. She was the girl next door, with a bit of an edge because she was also an All-American brat.

Her parents were convinced that she would be a big star one day. In the Spring of her 15th year they packed up and moved to Los Angeles, California- land of swimming pools and movie stars- and pushed her towards their destiny and million dollar paychecks.  With summer smog in the L.A. basin reaching critical levels, she and her mother drove back to Georgia to stay with family for the season.. Her father remained behind to manage the blossoming career of Linda Malone.

He fell in love with her at first sight.   He was twenty-seven at the time, unemployed and high on pot every day from breakfast to bedtime.  He was tall and lanky, his straight brown hair pulled back into a pony-tail, with a few stray whiskers on his face staking claim as a mustache.  He looked younger than his age and he often acted that way too.

He had a few other faults.  He was raised in the North by his mother and step-father - a harsh, bitter man who never liked him and sold him on that truth every drunken day. When he was younger and more impressionable, his mother- Maria was her name-  insisted he take his step-father's name and he did so, but deeply regretted that decision later.  Between the age of twelve and eighteen, he was beaten and spit on more times than he could remember As soon as he turned legal age, exactly 12 hours after his 18th birthday, Mark Westin Jones left home and moved to the Southern side of the Mason-Dixon line. He landed a job in the maintenance shop of a  West Virginia Strip Mine.

He had never met his biological father but he had heard the stories.  Three dead in a  hotel room in Knoxville and his father found guilty of the crime. The crime scene was one of the "worst I've ever seen in my 25 years on the force" said the homicide investigator at the trial.   

Tequilla and LSD will do that to a man if he isn't careful.  They executed his father on an antique electric chair. It took five shots of current and 18 minutes to completely kill him. Johnathan Matthew Marcus Jones, on the morning of his execution, shouted a few short comments for the press.  "We come from a proud family of righteous killers!"  was one comment.  "I wish I had taken out a few more of them cowardly Coles!" Then he swore long and loud making sure everyone would hear him long after he died.  

His last statement was hard to understand with a his head covered in a hood and foam filling his mouth, but some witnesses insist they heard him say, "Make me proud son!"  Johnathan Matthew Marcus Jones knew long before he was removed from Earth that his son was the apple that dropped near the tree.

A Summer Affair

And so they met, at a picnic table with all the fixin's, burgers, dogs, chips, rolls, soda, and her priceless, emerald eyes.  Before long, they were united in purpose as they shared a mocking view of their families, shared a hamburger, shared a joint behind an old Beech tree, shared a soft kiss along the nature trail, and then shared their bodies in a field of high grass.  

The cousins met every day after that and made love, small talk, and future plans.  They found their common bond, the cruel world was against them because of his age, her age, their shared family history, and anything else that didn't seem fair or inconvenient.   It was the greatest summer of his life.  By the time she was packing to return to Los Angeles, his love had evolved into obsession.

Back in L.A. after a torrid summer with her older cousin, Linda Malone soon found friends and work to keep herself occupied and by November her love letters to Mark had dwindled down to one of two a month. Meanwhile he had built a shrine to honor his lover and prayed for her safety and deliverance to him.

















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