Miroslav woke up first, his arm asleep because Thomas was laying on it. He ran a hand over his face and resisted a groan out loud. Fuck. His head was killing him and the guilty conscious he was on good-terms with raised its sleepy head and was quick to remind him about all the department’s policies they had just broken. Fuck.
Thomas remained asleep; it was, after all, still early. Miro shook his head and extracted himself from the bed as carefully as he could. He caught his phone before the alarm went off, a lifetime of rising early prepared him to beat even the electronic device. He redressed as quietly as possible; Müller remained asleep behind him.
For a few moments, Miroslav watched the younger man sleep. He noticed the bruises on Thomas’ hip. He didn’t even have to compare the size of his hand to know where they’d come from. Shaking his head, Miro turned and left the bedroom quietly, careful to find the right door in the unfamiliar residence. Thomas kept things neater than Miroslav had expected. The only really dirty thing were a couple dishes left in the sink. Everything else appeared to be tidy and have its own place.
The gray light of dawn illuminated the room enough for him to make his escape. Miroslav went down the flight of stairs and returned to his parked car. Once inside, he sent Thomas a text that he knew the other man would check when he woke up and realized Miro was gone. ‘Gone home to shower. See you later.’
On the entire drive home, Miroslav’s mind berated him with reminders of his position, his responsibilities, never mind the fact that he was Thomas’ immediate superior. How could he ever give Thomas an order about proper protocol ever again after what he had done?
When the guilt began to be so overbearing, he was feeling an anxiety attack starting to begin, he made himself think of something else. Something important, such as why Bastian would’ve killed Kevin.
Their case was currently entirely circumstantial and it left a bad taste in Miroslav’s mouth. He liked facts, truths that he could grasp onto and present to a court beyond a reasonable doubt that ‘yes, this person did this and this was why they did it and how they did it, when, where’ and so on. Miro tapped his fingers on the steering wheel as he waited for traffic to clear before he could turn onto the street his home could be found.
Why would Bastian have murdered Kevin Großkreutz? How did they know each other? Had Bastian ever been to Dortmund before? On that note, why had Kevin and his friends chosen Munich to vacation from holiday? Why not Berlin or perhaps even somewhere closer to Dortmund?
Miro had already made up his mind to re-interview Kevin’s friends before they left, as well as find out what the hell Schweinsteiger was actually hiding. That was, of course, if he could get around the man’s attorney, some smart-arse Dutchman Arjen something.
Making a plan of action, Miro pulled into his driveway and started out of the car to get inside his home and prepare for a day to actually make headway into the case that was currently driving him crazy.
Thomas joined Miroslav in the 5-series about four hours later. As Miro pulled away from the curb, once Thomas had his seatbelt on of course, Thomas looked over to his boss and smiled warmly, though it felt pointless because Miro wasn’t smiling. In fact, Miroslav looked very unhappy period. Something was wrong.
“Good morning?” Miro just nodded once but didn’t look at him. Thomas frowned. Something was very wrong indeed.
“We’re okay, aren’t we?” Thomas asked, all traces of the smile vanished like they had never been. He chewed his lip instead. “I mean: it’s not going to be awkward now is it?”
“Thomas…” Miro started but Thomas interrupted quickly.
“We don’t have to do it again, ever. If you didn’t enjoy yourself, I’m sorry. I know I had a good time, but if you didn’t, then it’s okay. We don’t have to do it anymore. I’m sorry. I—”
“Thomas!” Miroslav hissed and Thomas closed his mouth quickly. “Holger called. He finally had results on your DNA sample. He said he left you a message. The point is: Kevin Großkreutz and Sarah Brandner are related. Their half-siblings, sharing the same father.”
Thomas’ eyes widened and he stared at Miroslav, who only spared him a glance once he stopped for a red light.
“You mean my hunch was right?” Thomas whispered. Miroslav nodded and looked back to the road.
“It would seem so.”
“I bet my next paycheck that it wasn’t Martin either, was it?” Thomas asked and Miro nodded again. Thomas fist pumped the air and grinned with delight. When Miroslav still didn’t seem happy, he asked, “Is that it or…?”
“If you’re referring to the events of last night, we can discuss those later. For now, we’re on our way to the hotel to see Kevin’s friends before they leave. I still don’t think Schweinsteiger did this.”
Thomas nodded slowly, more than a little put off by the fact that Miroslav referred to one of the best nights of his life as ‘the events of last night’. Was that all he was to him? A quick, wonderful fuck and a drunken mistake? They hadn’t been that drunk, after all.
“Of course, Sir.” Thomas spoke softly, not catching it till afterwards the implications his words could be left open to interpretation. He thought he heard Miroslav sigh but the other man didn’t speak and Thomas was grateful to him for that. He’d already embarrassed himself enough since he entered the car, the least he could do was shut up for a while and focus on work. That was easier said then done when memories of fucking Miroslav kept crossing his mind. God, he’d been excellent in bed.
“Which one of his friends do you think did it?” Thomas asked after a moment of thinking on the case.
“Hummels and Höwedes alibied each other, so perhaps they are lying and covering for one another? And the other one, Reus, stated he was texting his boyfriend at the time. I haven’t checked the phone records yet, but I suppose that could be true. While waiting to interrogate him, he hardly put the phone down.” Miroslav started to think aloud. Thomas felt special to be included into his thoughts.
“Do me a favor and have Podolski stop work on the court papers for Schweinsteiger.” When Thomas raised his eyebrows, Miroslav continued. “I know. Have his attorney brought in as well. We’re going to find out what he’s hiding today also.”
Thomas nodded and pulled out his phone to do as Miroslav had asked. By the time he had finished, Miroslav was parking the car in the hotel’s parking lot.
Miroslav and Thomas entered the hotel where, thankfully, another receptionist was working instead of the original one that had treated them so poorly originally. Miroslav flashed his identification card and inquired as to if the three of them were still checked in. The clerk nodded and Miroslav worked out the arrangements while Thomas watched his boss at work.
There was a definite change in Miroslav’s demeanor today than there had been previously. Thomas knew he’d always been invested in the case, but something was driving him to get it done now. Thomas wondered what had changed. Was the innocence of one man spurring him forward to solving this crime? Was the love of a mother for her son so desperate to get Miro so involved? Was it the fact he regretted last night with Thomas and wanted a distraction, any kind of distraction at all, to forget about it?
Thomas hoped Miro was going for noble instead of the regretted decision. He had truly enjoyed every minute of last night and hoped for repeats, even though it was against the department regulations. Couldn’t help who you fell in love with, could you? Christ. ‘In love with’. Had he fallen so hard already?
Miroslav was walking towards the elevator and Thomas hurried after him. Like before, he was the one to hit the button and he waited as it arrived. He spared a glance to his boss and tried to smile at him, but Miroslav still looked unhappy.
“What is it?” he asked once they had gotten into the elevator. “You’re not yourself today.”
Miro shook his head. “I want this case solved, Thomas. Correctly and quickly.”
“And it isn’t because of last night?” Thomas asked again, chewing his lip. He knew he was pushing it now.
“No. It has nothing to do with last night.” Miro replied shortly. Sure it didn’t. Thomas held back a sigh and followed Miroslav out of the elevator and into the luscious hotel hallway.
They walked until they found the right hotel room numbers and Miroslav knocked on the door belonging to Marco Reus first. They waited for a moment and heard some scrambling around before a door opened and Miro raised his eyebrow. That was most decidedly not the man they knew as Marco Reus.
“Good morning, we’re looking for Mister Reus?” Miroslav stated to the shorter man while showing him his card as well.
The man glanced at the card and then nodded. “Of course. Let me tell him and he’ll be right back in a moment, ok?”
Miro nodded and watched as the door shut. He looked at Thomas with raised eyebrows. Both of them had the same thought. At least on the fifth floor, Reus couldn’t jump out a window and escape if he felt so inclined. That was a good thing.
A moment later, the man they did know as Reus opened the door and he looked as if he had dressed quickly. Thomas had a pretty good idea that he and Miroslav had just interrupted a ‘good time’ as it were.
“Yes? Detective, hi. Sorry. How can I help you?” He asked, running a hand through his styled hair. “Did you find out what happened to Kevin yet?”
“We are still making inquiries. Would you like to talk about this out here, Marco, or would you prefer to keep it more private in your hotel suite?” Miro asked politely.
“Here’s fine. I don’t mind. I don’t have anything to hide.” He flashed a smile and then pointed his thumb to the doorway. “Just don’t tell the other half that, he’ll ask me where we’re going for our honeymoon.”
Miro didn’t laugh at the joke, but Thomas smiled. Seeing that, Marco warmed a little more towards Thomas. They nodded to one another, both acknowledging a bad joke when they heard it.
“Very well. Marco, can you remember anything about where you were two nights ago?” Miroslav asked, causing Marco to frown.
“I thought Kevin died several days ago…?”
“He did. Can you please answer the question?” Thomas asked again.
Marco shrugged. “Me, Mats and Bene were a bit put off. We went out again to try and forget, pay homage to Kev, I guess. Mario joined us if you needed someone to check out our story.”
“Mario?” Miroslav asked and Marco nodded.
“He’s my better half, love of my life, all that.” Marco smiled a little and his tone noticeably softened when he mentioned him.
“I see. And when did Mario arrive in Munich?”
“The night Kevin died, actually.” Marco said and must’ve seen Thomas’ eyebrows raise at that fact, because he quickly added. “But it’s not like what you think. He was planning on coming with us anyway but he had a family thing he’d had to do first. He was coming in on the train, which is why I was texting him. I needed to know when we had to bounce to go pick him up.”
Miroslav nodded and appeared to believe the story. “Very well. Thank you Mister Reus.”
Marco nodded and put his hands in his shorts’ pockets. “Just let me know what happens okay? Kevin was a good friend of mine.”
Miro and Thomas both agreed and excused themselves, but not before Miroslav turned to face Marco again.
“And Marco? We’d be very appreciative if you and your friends continued to stay in Munich a little longer, at least until we know what happened exactly to Kevin.” Miro said and Marco nodded, hand hesitating a little on the doorknob.
“Of course, inspector. We’ll be here.” Marco gave another smile and then opened the door and walked inside.
As the two detectives walked towards the next room over, the one where Mats and Benedikt were sharing, Miro appeared to be lost in thought.
“Showing up the night your friend is killed is suspicious, especially when it’s later than the rest of them…” Thomas thought aloud. Miroslav nodded as he raised his hand to knock again.
“It is, Thomas. It is indeed.”
Why did you kill him? Why couldn’t you talk him out of it? You could have convinced him. Kevin didn’t need to die and neither did Sarah. You could’ve stopped yourself. You should have stopped yourself. Now he knows. And he’ll never forgive you for it. You have to stop him before he tells someone else. You have to stop him.
The voice in his head kept going around and around, telling him what he already knew. As much as he didn’t want to listen to it, he knew he would have to kill again. This time it would be one of the hardest things he had ever had to do.
Only now there was no choice. He had to die; He was a marked man and he had to go.