Although Mia didn’t realize it, she was the mainstay of the operation. Although Jones was the head of the department, the staff looked to Mia for direction and support. She was a natural. Automatically giving what was required without a second thought.
Mia assessed people and situations quickly. Out in the field, when someone was directionless, she automatically gave them a task that assisted the investigation sending it in a positive direction.
When it came to victim’s families, she was caring, supportive and gave them the truth, cushioning the blow, the possibilities with a delicacy that was extraordinary. She had a knack for giving them the information they needed, without offering false hope that could shatter them later.
Franklin needed her now. This woman was going to lose it before they could obtain any information and if she did, it would be hours maybe days or longer before they could glean any vital information to forward the case.
He watched Mia approach with relief. “Glad you’re here.”
“Missing daughter. Genevieve Masters. The mother is understandably distraught but if we don’t talk to her now, she’s going to shatter. Her daughter was her world. Only child, husband deceased, and they were close.”
“Ok. On it.”
Mia walked to the woman, whose agitation was obvious. “Hi, Mrs. Greggs?” The woman nodded. “I’m Detective Grimes. I’m sorry, but I need to ask you a few questions to assist us in finding your daughter.”
The woman seemed to visibly relax and replied, “I don’t know what I can tell you.”
“I understand you’ve given us a detailed description of your daughter, that’s a great start. Can you tell me more about her friends, her activities and interests?”
“Well she was a regular teenager, spent a great deal of time chatting with friends on Tik Tok Snapchat and…” tears began sliding down her cheeks. “It was the only bone of contention between us really. I was always after her about it,” she confessed.
“That’s good, we can track her movements through that, it’s helpful, thank you.”
“Did your daughter have a boyfriend?”
“There was a boy she’d been chatting with. She showed me pictures and I saw some of their chats. I didn’t much like him. He seemed cocky, pushy…it wasn’t just a mother being cautious, there was something about him…something in his eyes, his manner I didn’t like at all.”
“Do you remember his name?”
“Mason, Harry Mason.”
“Do you know if your daughter took her phone with her when she left?”
“I noticed it in her hand. She dropped it in her purse, gave me a quick hug and left for work.”
“She works at Monroe’s?”
“Yes, she’s been there a year and a half, while taking university courses at home. She wants to be a criminologist.”
“We can always use more criminologists, it’s a worthwhile endeavour.”
The woman smiled a watery smile. “Do you think she’s alright?”
“That’s what we’re here to find out.”
“She’s never late for work, hasn’t missed a day since she started.”
“Do you know if she’s close to anyone she works with?”
“Everyone loved her. She has such a witty humourous come back, usually when you least expect it. I met a couple of the young women when they met to go off to do together.”
Mia Grimes talked with the woman for several more minutes before gently touching her arm, “We’re going to do everything we can to find your daughter.”
Mia gave Franklin the information she’d gleaned and asked him to look into the boyfriend and while he was finishing up, headed to Monroe’s to talk with the staff and friends there.
As with all her cases, it started slow, with lots of leg work, questions, deciphering fact from fiction and more importantly, determining when someone was holding something back. It never seemed to surprise her that a vital tidbit of information that could have cracked the case was left out until much later. Usually, some little thing that seemed inconsequential but ended up being vital.
When she’d left the Masters’ home, the woman was holding it together, for now. After suggesting she call a close friend for support, she hoped it was enough for now; there would be more follow up to come.