Emery watched the crowd outside with a wary eye as it grew. They stayed on the other side of the barriers, not setting even a foot into the crime scene, but they were curious. He looked down and sighed. It wasn’t every day that a celebrity died. It was every day that the governor’s pet project came to investigate something – or it was but not in the eyes of the people outside.

“Can’t we just do our job and then leave out the back or something?” he grumbled at Hassett. “I hate crowds and I never know what to say to reporters. I mean, I know how to say we can’t comment on an on-going investigation. It’s all the other questions they ask.”

“How does it feel to be the youngest ever forensic mage?” Miles said from the window that he was examining for trace.”

“That’s the hardest one,” Emery agreed. “I don’t know, how does it feel to be the world’s biggest – ”

“Emery,” Hassett interrupted. “I hope you’ve never said that.”

“Just thought it,” Emery assured him.

“He usually just shrugs and smiles,” Miles added. “That’s not even the most bone-headed question they ask.”

“Curiosity, it’s what their industry runs on,” Hassett murmured.

“Ours too,” Emery said, putting his wand away. “I’m done and I have to do a stress test on the body. You ready, Mi?”

“Just about,” the younger Ballard responded. “Ready to face the crowd?”

“Never,” Emery replied, dread evident in his tone.

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