A Jewel Whodunnit...

Chapter Seven: Jetta Demands
Jetta paused in her pacing of the bedroom, fixing Sadie with a piercing look. "I've 'ad enough of this, young lady. I've trusted you and you ain't provided any kind of evidence to keep Misfit Music behind you. I'm comin' to the point. Either you are goin' to tell me right 'ere an' now what 'appened that night, else the company are gonna 'ave to review this situation in a very severe light. I spoke to Pizzazz, I told 'er everything an' she told me that unless you came up with some bloody good answers there wasn't much more the company could do. It's time for the truth, kid. Spill."
Sadie stared up at her manager with a look of trepidation, swallowing hard. It was, she knew, only thanks to Jetta's interference once again that she had not been taken into custody, but this time there had been no escaping with excuses and plain denials, and as soon as the officers had gone - presumably in search of an arrest warrant - Jetta had whisked her off to her own room to get to the bottom of matters once and for all.
"I don't know what to say." She said now. "Jetta..."
"No, you don't leave 'ere till we've talked." Jetta sat down on the bed opposite her, and the look she gave made Sadie quiver inside. "I 'ave done everythin' in my power to protect an' 'elp you. I've arranged representatives an' kept you from jail, an' I've damn believed you at your word when you say you weren't involved. Now the cops are pullin' forensic evidence on us...I want to know the truth, Sadie."
Sadie swallowed hard, then,
"Do you promise that if I tell you, you won't tell the police?" She murmured.
"If it's somethin' they don't need to know, then I won't tell them anythin'." Jetta responded. "I jus' want to know I'm not backin' a losin' cause 'ere, Sadie. You told me you didn't do it - fine, maybe you didn't. But I want to know what you do know...because I know there's damn well somethin' an' it ain't got nothin' to do with bodies in the garden or anythin' like that."
"I didn't speak to Neal that night." Sadie said slowly. "I went to his house...right up to the door, and I knocked. There...there wasn't an answer."
"The police would love that." Jetta rolled her eyes. "Go on."
"Well, as I stood there I realised how dumb I was being." Sadie glanced down. "This guy had killed one girl and he'd threatened me. I knew that if I didn't leave then, well, I probably never would leave. I'd probably wind up like...like Marsha. So I left."
Jetta raised an eyebrow.
"Is that it?" She demanded. "What about the bruisin' on your arms? And what about the blood on 'is body? Blood don't travel through walls!"
"I was never in the room with Neal, dead or alive." Sadie said quietly. "I didn't know anything about it till the press conference when the police burst in on us. That I swear, Jetta. But there is one way I can think that my blood could have gotten onto his body."
"Go on."
"There was a guy I knew when I was...well, living round there. He used to sell drugs to Neal, and he was a sly character." Sadie began. "His name was Spyder - well, I don't suppose it was his real name, but he was known by it. Anyhow, the night Neal died, he stopped me as I tried to leave. He was real drunk - or stoned - or something similar and he grabbed me. He...he thought I was...someone else."
"Someone else?" Jetta echoed. "Who, the Mona Lisa?"
Sadie looked awkward.
"Sadie, dammit, enough with the games!" Jetta exclaimed. "Tell me!"
"My sister." Sadie said reluctantly. "Georgia. We...look kinda similar, and in the dark..."
"What in 'ell does she have to do with anything?"
"She...kinda hangs out there too. I knew she was involved with that group." Sadie twisted her hands together. "Anyhow, Spyder said that he wanted his money from Neal and he was angry. He said that if Neal wasn't going to pay him he'd take it some other way. He...didn't want to let me go."
Jetta's eyes narrowed.
"Do you mean what I think you do?" She asked quietly. Sadie nodded.
"He tried it on with me big style, but I learnt how to deal with guys like him and I fought him off. I was only a wimp when it came to Neal." She replied quietly. "He scratched me as I got away - I must've bled all over him, because they were deep cuts. They were still bleeding when I got back here and Copper saw them. I suppose it's just possible that if Spyder was angry enough he might have attacked Neal or gotten into a fight with him at the very least. If he had my blood on his clothes, it...well, I suppose it could have got there that way, if he went there after I left."
"So why all the secrecy?"
"I didn't want to get Georgia into trouble." Sadie admitted. "We've never had a good relationship, and more I thought about it I realised that it was her who must have sold my story to the press, not Neal. She needed the money...and the only thing that fits is that she needed it to pay Neal for drugs. When I realised it, Jetta, I felt awful. I mean, she's my sister, and I knew she was hanging out with them, because a friend told me she was. I did nothing - I ignored it. Even when she...well...sent me a not so nice letter I didn't do anything, I let Amber deal with it and forgot about it. I've been so up in my image and afraid of what everyone will think of me that I ignored her and the fact she was going down the same path I did. I realised I could've prevented it, and if I told the cops the truth about how I got my bruises that night Georgia would be busted for the drug business. It wasn't just that Spyder said he wanted her as payment, he actually mentioned her being involved somehow in Neal's dealing or something. I wasn't going to do anything to send her to jail. I mightn't have been as good a big sister as Alyssa was to me, but I'm damn well not letting my little sister go to prison to save my neck. It's the least I owe her for letting her down so badly."
"And you'd go down for murder, to protect 'er from a dealin' charge?" Jetta demanded.
"I've been to prison before." Sadie said slowly. "And I know what it's like. And, well, I kinda didn't expect the investigation to go like this. I didn't know that my blood would get on Neal's clothing and that they'd find forensic stuff to pin on me. I thought they'd drop the case against me and look elsewhere, you know? I didn't expect any of this." She sighed. "Georgia's only a kid, Jetta, but she's eighteen and they'd send her to a proper jail, not juvenile detention like I went to for my first offence. More, she's claustrophobic - chronically claustrophobic. She got shut in the cellar when we were kids for a whole twenty four hours and she's been petrified of locks ever since. I couldn't do that to her...no matter what she'd done to me. I know...I know she only did it for the money. I know how badly you'll act to get cash to pay for drugs when you're hooked on them."
Jetta's expression softened somewhat at this, for she understood first hand the fear and helplessness that claustrophobia could bring, and she sighed.
"Well, it's noble, but it ain't 'elpin' you any, love." She said at length. "You swear to me on your honour an' career as a Jewel that all of that is true?"
"I swear." Solemnly Sadie brought her hand across her chest. "Cross my heart."
"Then we 'ave to find some avenue of counter attack." Jetta looked thoughtful. "I'm goin' to call the police station an' find out exactly what evidence they 'ave on 'and to take you in for. Apart from the blood, they must 'ave somethin' more substantial. Your blood ain't a murder weapon, after all, and I ain't 'eard any talk of prints." She paused for a moment. "I suppose doin' a DNA test would do more 'arm than good, if it's your blood...but I suppose there's just a chance that if there is any other DNA evidence it might conflict...I dunno, kid. I'm rather strugglin' 'ere. I can keep their arrest at bay because I can undermine their evidence so far an' they know we got power behind us, but I can't put it off forever unless they got some evidence to take the 'eat off you."
"If a DNA test might help, even a little bit, then I'll do it." Sadie said quietly.
"But if it's your blood it'll tie you to the scene." Jetta pointed out. Sadie nodded.
"I know." She agreed. "But they said that they thought it was self defence. Whoever attacked Neal took on more than they bargained for - and if it was Spyder, well, he's a weed at the best of times. Neal would easily deck him out. And if they have blood and stuff from the scene, what's to say they wouldn't have anything else? I want to do it, Jetta. I'm sick of people wondering about me. Even the others aren't sure if they believe me or not now. I mean, they're trying to, but I dunno, I guess I wouldn't believe me either if I didn't know for sure I was innocent. I want to take the DNA test."
"I still think it ain't a good idea." Jetta sighed. "But if you're mind's made up then it is. I'll speak to the police."
"If I volunteer to take the test then maybe people will believe I'm trying to clear my name and I'm not the one they want." Sadie said softly. "Either way, Jetta, I want to do something. Even if it doesn't help, I'll have tried."
"It's your choice." Jetta shrugged. "I won't try an' stop you. After all, it is your neck on the line 'ere." She smiled slightly. "I'm glad you ain't a murderess though. I 'ave a clearer mind in tryin' to defend you now I know what's what."
"You won't tell the others anything, will you?"
"It ain't my business." Jetta shook her head. "I know nothin' about it."
"Thanks." Sadie flashed a smile at her. "I didn't mean to let you down, Jetta, and I'm sorry about all the mess this tour has been, but I'm not a murderess and I'm going to do my level best to prove to the world that I'm not, too."
"Well, let's 'ope it works the way you want it to." Jetta responded. "Else we're all gonna be stumped for a next move."

Chapter One: An Uncertain Reputation
Chapter Two: Reaction
Chapter Three: Questions
Chapter Four:  Back Home
Chapter Five: Complications
Chapter Six: The Net Closes
Chapter Seven: Jetta Demands
Chapter Eight: Startling News
Chapter Nine: An Unlikely Suspect
Chapter Ten: The Truth
Chapter Eleven: Amber

Chapter Twelve: Final Verdict
Copper, Nancy, Sylva, Anna, Blade, Raesha, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie, Justin, Elliot, Rosita, Luis and any other characters in this fiction which do not appear in the animated Jem series are copyrighted to me (E.A Woolley) as of January 2002 <unless otherwise specified> and are not to be reproduced without permission ANYWHERE. Jetta, Pizzazz, Stormer, Roxy, Raya and all other original Jem characters are the copyright of Hasbro Inc, Sunbow, Christy Marx and the other writers of the Jem series. The future world of Pizzazz, Raya, Jetta, Roxy, Stormer, Clash, Synergy, the fate of Jem and her memorial are all copyrighted to me. The future world of Kimber and Shana is copyrighted jointly to myself and Gemma Dawn.
The concept of 'Jewel' is entirely my own, and any apparent link with any fictional or actual person or persons of this name is entirely coincidental. Equally the characters in this fiction are not based on any real life individual.
The concept behind the future world of Danse, Aja and Craig, the idea behind Jerrica's futureworld and the split of the Holograms is copyrighted to Gemma Dawn, whose Teenangel Outsiders fiction is directly twinned with Just a Dream. The character Sammi and any of the other Teenangel Outsider characters mentioned in this fiction are entirely copyright to Gemma Dawn and appear here only with her permission.
Pay her page a visit!