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General


Cause of Death episode
Washed Up
Volume 1, Episode 1
Air date December 16, 2010
Volume 1 guide [v]
December 16, 2010

1. Washed Up
2. The Masks We Wear
3. Bad Medicine
4. Buried Secrets
5. Unmasked
6. The Devil's Island

Previous
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Next
Volume 2: The Connoisseur
Washed Up is the first chapter of Volume 1: The Maskmaker and of Cause of Death, overall. It was released along with the five other chapters of the volume on December 16, 2010. The chapter also includes the prologue.

Plot

Prologue

Sophie wakes up somewhere cold and dark, her wrists bound. Upon noticing a masked man in a black robe laying out his murder tools on a workbench, she either screams for help or attempts to sneak out of the room via staircase (player's choice). Either choice leads to both Sophie and the Maskmaker on the deck of the ship, and the Maskmaker injecting Sophie with succinylcholine to paralyze her. He then takes her back down to the cabin of the ship, lays her on the workbench, and applies plaster to her face, forming a white mask that suffocates her to death.

Present

Detective Mal Fallon of the San Francisco Police Department plays Texas Hold 'Em in a bar in the Mission District with his friend Diego when fellow detective Detective Ken Greene enters, informing him of his return to work on the Maskmaker case, despite his suspension.

Captain Maria Yeong of the SFPD fills him in on the case, explaining that the first two of the three victims were prostitutes, while the third was a college student. With the killer’s field of victims widening, Captain Yeong wants Mal on the case. Further information on the murders include that the victims were young, Caucasian women whose dead bodies washed up on shore, their faces molded into a plastic mask. The first two were drugged with chloroform and their cause of death was strangulation, with neither signs of struggle nor sexual assault. The only information on the latest victim is her name and occupation: Sophie Patterson, a Stanford student.

Mal meets Special Agent Natara Williams of the FBI at the crime scene, who is a profiler on the case. The two determine that the cause of death was not from strangulation; rather, it was most likely suffocation, according to SFPD forensic technician Eric Mills. They find a lead from her Zodiac animal stamp on her arm, likely from a Zen club in Chinatown.

On their way to Zen club, Mal and Natara debate whether profiling or instinct is the better tactic, leading Special Agent Williams to profile Mal. She correctly estimates that based on his name, he is a descendant of Malachi Fallon, first Chief of Police of San Francisco; he is naturally mistrustful of women; he was rebellious as a child, resulting in his lack of respect in authority. Mal proceeds to “profile” her, accurately guessing that because she was working on the Maskmaker case, rather than the Flores Cartel case the FBI was working on, this was likely her punishment. The FBI branch in their area is working a big case on the Flores Cartel, which means she's likely being punished. Why she was is left unknown.

Arriving at the club, they learn from the club owner Milo that Sophie was last seen talking to the bartender, Jared, who immediately runs away when he is requested. Mal and Natara catch him, and find a bag of white pills in his pocket, allowing them to bring him into custody. Jared, however, declined to comment without his lawyer.

While interrogating him, Jared confesses that he knew Sophie when he learned she was murdered. Contrary to what Detective Fallon and Special Agent Williams thought, Jared and Sophie had only engaged in a sexual affair. The night of her death, she approached him for drugs, but he refused to provide her any, having thought she was already abusing something. She then left. Subsequently, Milo confirms Jared’s alibi, explaining that he was working at her time of death.

That night, Mal returns to his, emptied-out apartment, littered in packed boxes. His ex-wife, Sandra, messaged that she would be coming to get the last of her belongings next week.

Characters

  • Jared

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