DI Jim Bobbins had always wanted to work for the police, and now here he was coming out of his South London flat; the twenty-four year old had changed out of his fresh new uniform. To his side was his trusty old Jack Russell, Rover, pulling on his brown leather lead. As the bright young man retraced his steps from the security door to the bus stop, he noticed how exciting the world around him was compared to the dimly lit prison that was his office. He wished his retirement would come sooner. He wondered why the grey tarmac of the pavement was more exciting than his new job in law enforcement; why there never seemed to be any murders on the ground beneath him to investigate. This was the usual routine for Jim after work.
However, on this particular night, Jim turned right at the end of his road into Skinner Street, a typical urban street with early twentieth century terraced housing. He knew that there was a park at the end of the road; his mother had mentioned it to him when she gave him Rover as a leaving home present. She said it would be safe to let the young black and white dog off his lead for the first time.
"He's a good dog now."
As he approached the park, he realised how unexpectedly big it was. There was a football pitch, a grassy clearing beyond the trees framed by two white-painted goalposts. He could see a peeling wrought iron fence through the dense wood surrounding the pitch, which, as he approached, appeared to have a pond behind it. At this point, he let Rover off his lead, and to his surprise, he stayed close to Jim's heel.
Jim found a stick of what seemed to be a reasonable size and both man and his best friend played fetch until they both collapsed on a vandalised bench by the fence around the pond. DI Jim Bobbins watched the lily pads float along the water with the wind, with Rover's head in his lap, listening to the birds sing and the occasional car pass along the road, his ears dancing accordingly. Jim was thinking his usual thoughts. Why weren't there ever murders or other crimes for him to investigate? The papers were always talking about them. His superiors had always told him they were just far enough away to be nothing to do with their station. But his fellow Detective Inspectors were always busy on something. Now he knew it! He wasn't good enough at his job! It was the same when he was a mere policeman. He had always been left to do the paperwork, or look after reception. He felt a mixture of emotions. Anger and negativity jumped above the rest. He had always known he was a failure/. Jim wasn't going to have someone else know that too! He was going to phone his superior or leave him a message, whatever it took! He jerked up suddenly. Rover's head had removed itself from his lap. He was going home now. He ran back towards the football pitch with Rover heading towards the left. He wasn't going to lose his beloved dog, but what he saw Rover looking at would result in him losing his life.
Jim crouched over the body and fumbled for his mobile phone when he heard footsteps behind him. He hadn't even turned around when he received the blow to his head. His head exploded as he landed on the ripped trousers of the dead woman's body. He had become the murder case he had been denied investigating for so long, as Rover's barking echoed in the wood around him.