"It's not him, it's a cop. I know this is gonna sound crazy, Lieu, but there's a lot of things pointing to Reddick..."
Skinner nods, puts the pieces back together: Holder and Reddick, the complaint, the attack. Bullet's funeral. The erratic teamwork of Linden and Holder, who spent the day tearing at a prison's walls.
"He was the one that took Bullet's final phone call. He tried to dump the Ashley Kwon case on Jablonski, a total incompetent. Reddick knew the first victim. He lived next door to her. He never told us anything about this. He loses Angie Gower at the hospital before the sketch artist gets there. Angie was killed yesterday. And now Adrian's gone? He is tying up loose ends."
They're tying up themselves. He feels confident, swats the flies away, breathes in the pieces.
"Look, I know this is really bad timing," she says, trying to be supportive, to be rational. "It's bad for the department and for you..."
But she doesn't need to get in front of this one, or to sell it. It's everything he can use. He orders them to find Adrian while he tracks down Reddick. As Lieutenant, he needs to be the contact for it; no matter how many ways Stephen wants to be there: Reddick's got a side piece he can go to, he's a friend, he helped him this morning, they were partners. Everything to force Skinner's hand, make him pull rank. These are all reasons to stay away, he says. Even more reason to step off.
"We keep this quiet, between the three of us. And before we ruin a cop's life and reputation, we want to make sure. Because so far we don't have squat."
And to Sarah's guilt and shame and fear -- only Adrian, of all of them, could still be safe -- he can only offer his love. To see her hurting like this, raging against a cage without knowing where the bars are, just kills him. But it'll be over soon.
"Adrian just knocked on the door and asked if he could come in. That was unusual. I mean, he's shy, but... He and Henry had had a couple of play dates, but they didn't hit it off. Maybe he was scared, I think. He said someone was following him. I just thought because of what happened to his dad, he was upset. Maybe he didn't want to go home to an empty house. I didn't see anyone following him..."
She took him home, dropped him off on the way to Henry's karate and her doctor's appointment. It's not enough for Sarah Linden, that she did this; her tone implies the woman offered him up to the beast herself.