Trolls And Bridges

Entry by: Tauren

31st March 2017

“Carlson. So what`ve we got?”

“The bodies down here. Watch your step, the banks slippery as fuck. You aint going to like it, it aint pretty.”

“Since when is murder pretty…..Shit,” detective Bergman grabbed the uniforms arm to steady himself, as his feet tried to slide out from under him.

“Told you it was slippery,” Officer Carlson said, grabbing the bridges stonework to stop both of them sliding to the bottom. “Just edge yourself down sideways,” he told the detective, “use the bridge to steady yourself.”

As he slowly worked his way downward, detective Bergman tried not to think what the mud was doing to his loafers.

When they reached the riverbank Carlson pointed under the bridge, which would ordinarily be in semi-permanent shadow, the street lights not reaching under here, but was now well lit by portable spotlights. “The bodies behind that pillar,” he said.

“Awww shit,” Bergman said when he saw who it was. “Svenson; there`ll be hell to pay for this.” He looked around, studying the soft ground, he didn’t have to look far, the prints that surrounded the body were unmistakable, “Awww shit,” he swore again.

“All right ladies and gentlemen, I`m going to make a brief statement, then I`ll take some questions.”

Captain Pederson shuffled the papers on the dais.

"At nine thirty eight last night two of our officers responded to a call. An unknown person phoned in that there was a disturbance by the North West Bridge and reported that she had heard what sounded like someone screaming. Officers Carlson and Hansen arrived at the scene and discovered the body of Olgar Svenson under the bridge. A preliminary examination of the body by the coroner has determined that Mr Svenson died of multiple blunt force traumas to his head and body. Mr Svenson, a three hundred and forty two year old Troll had been living under the bridge for the last eighty two years, mostly without incident.”

He shuffled the papers once more and gripped both sides of the lectern, a sign, those of the assembled press who knew him recognised, that meant he was ready to take questions, hands flew up.

He pointed to a blonde woman in the front row, “Yes. Helga?”

“Do you have any idea how many attackers there were, and what their motive for assaulting Mr Svenson was?”

“According to the coroner there were at least three assailants, he was able to identify three different blunt instrument types. As for their motive; I`m not going to speculate on that.”

“Yes?” He pointed to another female reporter.

“Brigit Holsen, Daily News Network,” she said, “We have sources that indicate this was a hate crime, would you care to comment on that?”

“As I`ve already said Brigit, we`re not going to speculate on the motive for the attack. But I will say this, the Torsvale police department has a zero tolerance policy on hate crime.”

“Yes. You sir?” he pointed to another reporter.

“Brent Olsen, Herald Times,” the reporter said. “Is it true that you`ve identified three suspects, brothers, that are well known to the police?”

The captain tugged nervously at his shirt collar, “We have, uh, we are looking for three, uh, brothers, yes. But as yet only as material witnesses; I`m not going to name them here, but, uh, officers are, uh, as we speak, uh, looking for them.”

He pointed to another reporter, “Yes. Ben?”

“You said,” he looked down at his notes, “that Mr Svenson had lived under the bridge, mostly without incident, would you care to elaborate?”

“As I said Mr Svenson lived for the most part without, uh, coming to the attention of the authorities. Except for a small number of incidents of public intoxication, and, uh, public lewdness.” He spoke the last two words in a soft embarrassed tone.

The reporter who hadn’t sat down asked, “Public lewdness?”

The police captain visibly reddened, “Mr, uh, Svenson, he, he was not willing to wear clothing in public, said it was his constitutional right to go about as the maker intended; his words not mine. But with the help of the Troll community we were able to convince him to don a loin cloth made of lichen. So that, uh, issue resolved itself, and he has been... was, a law abiding citizen since then.”

A uniformed officer hurried up to him. The captain shielded the microphones with one hand as the officer whispered something in his ear, the cameras caught him mouth the words; Damn, and, Okay. He pulled his hand away and faced the reporters, “I`m sorry,” he said, not sounding sorry at all, “but I have an urgent matter that needs my attention.” Without another word he strode away, ignoring the sea of waving hands, and the cries of “Captain, Captain.”

The camera pulled back, dipping slightly to focus on the blonde reporter, she raised a microphone to her mouth, “So there you have it. The police are looking for three assailants, possibly brothers, identities unknown. This is Helga Holsen for Danish news here at the Torvale police headquarters, and now back to you in the studio.”

The picture changed to the female anchor as she turned away from the screen with Helga`s smiling face on it, “Thank you Helga. And now for more on this story, Adrian.”

The shot switched to her co-anchor, “Thank you Dorit. We go live now to Frans, who is coming to us from the Troll quarter. Frans, I believe you have Counsellor Harald Peterson there with you?” he turned away from the camera to look at the screen behind him where a reporter stood microphone in hand.

“Thank you Adrian, I do indeed,” the picture changed to a full shot of Frans. “Here with me is Counsellor Harald Peterson, thank you for agreeing to speak to me Counsellor Peterson.” He said, holding the microphone at arm’s length above his head.

“Harald, please,” a deep voice said, the camera pulling back so it could take in both the reporter and the seven foot two Troll that towered over the man. The Troll was impeccably dressed in a three piece suit, his fingers adorned with gold rings, only his feet were bare.

“Can you tell me counsellor…. Harald, what is the mood among the Troll community at this moment?”

“Well Frans, as you can imagine it is one of shock. A Troll hasn’t been murdered in this region in over one hundred and fifty years, this is a great tragedy and our condolences go out to Mr Svenson`s family in their time of grief.”

“And what…” the reporter started to ask, before he was interrupted by a female voice. “It was them Gruff kids, they’re the ones that killed Olgar.”

A female Troll in a floral print dress and a straw hat pushed her way into shot, “It was them Gruff kids I tell you,” she said grabbing the reporter`s hand, pulling the microphone down level with her mouth. Frans winced as she nearly crushed his fingers.

“Now Lene....” Harald said.

“Don’t you now Lene me,” she scolded him, “It was them Gruff kids and you know it.”

“Please mam,” Frans begged, trying to free his hand.

“I won’t be silenced,” she said, ignoring his pleas. “Them Gruff kids plagued poor old Olgar. Clipping and clopping back and forth across his bridge at all hours of the night the poor dear couldnt get a wink of sleep. Calling him names, names so foul I won’t repeat because there might be little ones watching, that`s how awful they were, he was at his wits end. All because he wasn’t civilised,” she pronounced the word civilised as if were something disgusting.

“He only wanted to live like we always did, as the maker intended. But no.. he had to wear clothes, and he was told not to live under the bridge, he`d lived under that bridge from the day it was built, did you know that, did you?” and before Frans had a chance to say he did not, she went on.

“One hundred and eight years, that’s how old that bridge is, and now.. and now..” she sniffed, pulled a kerchief from her handbag, noisily blowing her nose into it. “Now he`ll never…” she broke off to blow her nose once more.

“Now Lene don’t upset yourself,” Harald said, resting one enormous hand on her shoulder, she shook it off.

Looking straight to camera, she said, “In the olden days we`d have dealt with you ourselves.” She held out one hand, then snapped it shut into a fist, “We`d a squished you,” she put her fist to her mouth, miming tearing whatever she held in her hand in two with her teeth. “Then we`d a eaten ye. That’s what we`d a done; in the olden days, before we got civilised,” she spat the word civilised once more.
“You better give yourselves up to the police, ye hear me Gruffs, give yourselves up before we find ye.”

“Alright Lene,” Harald said, obviously alarmed. He planted his hands on both her shoulders this time and half pushed; half turned her away from the camera. Reluctantly she released Frans hand as he was pulled along with her.

“Sorry about that,” Harald said, "I just want the people of Torvale to know we in the Troll community have every faith in the police, and will do nothing.. NOTHING," he emphasised the word, "to interfere with their investigations."

Off camera Lene was heard to call, “Squish ye and eat ye,” there was the sound of others shushing her.

Harald grinned awkwardly, “Sorry about that,” he repeated. “Lene`s still adjusting to the new way. It is strange for some of the older Troll`s to find themselves living in houses and buying their food in the supermarket…..” nearby there was a yelp and someone cursing in Trollish, Lene`s voice could be heard getting louder once more.

“Excuse me,” Harald said, “I have to take care of this,” and he turned away, bellowing what sounded like curses at someone. Whoever it was, and it sounded like Lene`s voice, gave as good as she got.

Frans turned to camera, switched the microphone to his other hand, vigorously shaking the one that had gotten half crushed and said, “This is Frans Laursen for Danish news, and now back to the studio.”

The pair of anchors turned away from the screen, shaking their heads in unison, “We`ll be right back after these messages,” Dorit said, “With more on this story as it unfolds.”
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