Dead Heat: Stormbringer Ch. 06byvelvetpie©
Instead of meeting at the precinct, Taima and Pilar met Chief Jenkins at the funeral home and immediately, Pilar had her hands full of an apoplectic Myron, running around like a headless chicken, his be-ringed fingers clamped to the sides of his head as he wailed.
“Pilar, thank God you’re here! They’re been here since six a.m. and they nearly ruined Mrs. Mascotte’s first viewing!”
“Calm down, My. I’m sure that everything’s all right.”
“It’s most assuredly not all right! This could ruin our business!”
Chief Jenkins came up behind them, clapping a hand on Taima’s shoulder. “Glad you got here.”
“What do we have?”
“Nothing?” Pilar piped up, her arm around her distressed brother. “No clues?”
“Not one. Looks like whomever stole the body did so by using a key. There were no signs of a break-in. The only thing we’ve found is that one of your hearses is missing.”
“Which one, sir?”
Pilar watched as Jenkins leafed through his notes. “The midnight blue one.”
Myron Petersen’s eyes rolled back and he crumbled to a heap on the floor, everyone looking on in horror.
“It was his favorite.” Pilar supplied.
Jenkins helped her place Myron on a cot in the back office, then sent the rest of the officers and crew away. “We put out a BOLO for the hearse and I don’t think we’ll have to wait very long before someone spots it. It’s not going to ‘blend in’ anywhere.”
Pilar nodded. “Thanks, Chief Jenkins.”
“No problem, but now we have to move on to the other more serious problem. First, Benny Rhodes is taken from Sheltering Elms and now, Mrs. Gonzales from your funeral parlor. Whomever is abducting these bodies … has access to either your business, the cemetery prep room or both.”
“That’s so sick! How could someone defile a body like that?”
“Because they don’t think of it as a body.” Pilar said, placing a cold cloth on Myron’s forehead. The man stirred, moaning lightly. “They don’t have the same reverence that you and I do. To them, it’s just a cold lump of flesh. To me, it’s a shell, true, but that shell was someone’s mother or father or sister or brother. There was love and care there.” She caught Taima’s eyes and gave a weak laugh. “Sorry, I got a little carried away. It’s just that I care for these people every day.”
Taima smiled, touching Pilar’s hand. Myron moaned again and the two laughed, sobering quickly when his eyes opened. “My car. My beautiful car.”
“It’ll be all right, My. They’ll find the Batmobile.” Taima snickered, drawing an agonized look from Myron.
“What about Julianne Bennett?” Taima turned to Jenkins. “Any info on her?”
“Not a thing. The only thing I’ve been able to find out is that she was ugly. Messed up teeth, zits, the works. None of the guys really talked to her because of that.”
“Oh and I found out something interesting about the gardener, Whitley.”
While Taima filled Jenkins in on the financials, Pilar helped Myron sit up. “You all right, My?”
Myron shook his head. “Why would someone want to do this to us?”
“I don’t know, My, but I know that Chief Jenkins and Taima will find out.”
“You like her, don’t you?” Pilar colored, looking away with a shy smile. “I thought so. She seems nice.”
“She’s very nice. She’s the one, My.”
Myron’s eyes grew large. “Really?” He glanced toward the officer, then back to his sister. “That’s great!” His shoulders sagged. “Are you going to leave?”
“No, My. I won’t be going anywhere. We’ll probably get a place together but we won’t be going anywhere.”
“Excuse me, Miss Petersen, Mr. Petersen, we’re going to leave now. Taima will be your contact and she’ll be keeping up with things, especially your hearse, Mr. Petersen.” At the mention of his beloved vehicle, Myron moaned, cradling his head in his hands. Jenkins shook hands with both and Pilar escorted them to the door. “I’ll see you at the precinct.”
“Okay, Malo.” Taima turned to Pilar, touching her arm. “Last night was wonderful.”
“For me, too.” Pilar leaned in for a kiss, feeling the touch of Taima’s tongue vibrate through her like a strummed string. Pilar was so appreciative of Taima’s tender nature. She knew she was so lucky to have found someone like her. “Will I see you tonight?”
“It may be late. Depends on what’s going on.”
“That’s okay. You have your key, right?” Taima pulled her key ring from her pocket, showing Pilar the key. “Just let yourself in. I’ll leave dinner in the oven for you.”
“You don’t have to do that, Pilar.”
“I know, but I want to.” Pilar blushed, looking down at their joined hands. “It’ll be fun to pretend that I’m your wife.”
Her simple, shy words struck a chord so deep in Taima’s soul that she was momentarily speechless. “Oh, Pilar.” Her whisper shook with the depths of her emotion and she pulled Pilar into another warm kiss. “There’s no need to pretend.”
A few more kisses and Taima left, heading for the precinct and snapping into cop mode. Several things were bothering her. Julianne Bennett, missing cemetery employee. Millionaire Albert Whitley. A missing body. The arrival of crystal meth in her town. The stormbringer. How did they fit together?
She spent most of the morning re-interviewing employees of the Sheltering Arms cemetery. Mahalo was correct; they couldn’t give any description other than she was of average height, had strawberry-blond hair, rotten teeth and a problem with zits. One of them showed her the employee locker room and she examined number 7, a battered locker bearing a grimy piece of masking tape with the name J. Bennett scrawled on it.
The locker held precious few items. A hair brush, two work coats, a pair of mud-encrusted tennis shoes and an employee handbook. No pictures, no personal items whatsoever. That struck Taima as strange. So did the hair brush. Why would someone so seemingly unconcerned with her looks have a hair brush at work? Taima grabbed a paper towel from the side counter and carefully wrapped the brush. Dr. Chuck could take a quick look at this. It just seemed so strange.
Lunch was a veggie wrap and a Pepsi Vanilla to go and she headed back out to the Rhodes house, finding the loyal gardener pruning a large hydrangea bush near the side. He stood slowly, watching her approach, his expression flinty.
“Mr. Whitley, I’m Officer Greenleaf. Do you remember me?”
“I want to ask you a few questions, if you don’t mind.”
“Actually, I do mind, officer, but I will do my best to oblige you.”
Taima cleared her throat. “Thank you. I was just wondering if you remembered anything else about the night Mrs. Rhodes murdered her husband.”
His face turned even more steely if that was possible. “Miss Harmony did not murder Mr. Nathan.”
Taima surveyed his face. “She didn’t?”
“Of course not. Miss Harmony could never do anything like that.”
“Miss Harmony does not believe in violence.”
“Maybe there was a reason that she felt she had to take Mr. Rhodes’ life.”
“Miss Harmony would not do that.”
Whitley turned away from her and continued his work, forcing Taima to follow him. “One more question, Mr. Whitley. I’ve had a chance to look at your financials. Where did you get a million dollars from?”
Whitley’s glare was filled with hate. “That’s none of your business, officer.”
“Actually, it is my business, Mr. Whitley. It might explain some things.”
“The murder, for instance.”
Whitley took several moments to gather his fraying control before speaking. “Goodbye, Officer Greenleaf.”
Taima paused a moment, before flipping her notebook closed. “Thank you, Mr. Whitley. You’ll be here if we have any more questions?”
Whitley had turned his back on her, wielding the shears with the anger he felt. Taima left quietly.
Ray Elliott pulled his patrol car into the driveway and checked the clock. Exactly two p.m. If he stayed an hour, he could say that he was at lunch. But he knew that he probably wouldn’t stay that long. He left his baton, badge and gun in the car and paused to glance at the wrapped package in the front seat. The Chief had given him a hair brush to take over to Dr. Mulligan’s for a quick exam and he was pissed off that Taima couldn’t have done it. Stupid bitch! He knew that Mahalo was giving him a menial task, while he allowed Taima to conduct victim interviews. He’d have to do something about her soon.
He knocked lightly on the door of room 227 and quickly stepped in when it opened.
“Hi, baby.” He’d been seeing her for three weeks now and still didn’t know her name. He didn’t really care. All he cared about was that she was a hot fuck. He grabbed her naked form and thrust his tongue down her throat. “Ready to fuck?”
She never spoke. She feverishly unbuttoned his shirt and pants, freeing his six inch cock and went down on it, deep throating it in one movement. Ray groaned. She pulled back and sucked him in again, lightly fingering his nuts, then pulling hard on them. He trembled in pain and sighed in pleasure.
“Oh, yeah. Suck my fucking dick, bitch!” Ray grabbed the back of her head, flexing his hips as he steadily fucked her mouth. She held onto his hips, her mouth open wide, waiting for his cum, but he pulled out. He wanted to do something different. He wanted to fuck her in the ass today. He turned her lovely body around and ran a finger down her ass cleft, searching for her opening. She squirmed, trying to turn back around, but he pressed her against the sink counter, forcing her to see him take her.
In one swift thrust, he was inside her and he smiled at her scream of pain. He loved the sound of women in pain. Maybe he would fuck that lesbian bitch like this. That would sure shut her up. Maybe she’d transfer out after that. He stroked the girl’s clasping asshole with slow strokes, making sure to pull out entirely and make her wail in pain again and again as the head breached her sphincter muscle.
“Like that, bitch? Like my cock in your ass?” She whimpered. “Well, I do!” He grabbed her hips and began to piston in and out of her tender hole, his teeth gritted as he worked himself toward the edge. “Ah, yeah.” He felt his balls tightening. “Ah, yeah, bitch. I’m gonna cum in your ass. You’re gonna be shitting my jizz.” She whimpered again, limply holding onto the counter. “Fuck, here it comes!”
He shot into her bowels, grunting with each blast. The girl shuddered, feeling his warmth suffuse her ass but she had not cum and she had not enjoyed the encounter. Ray didn’t care. He’d gotten a good nut. Now, he could go on to the ME’s office and get back to the precinct without drawing any attention. And he could probably get his wife to suck his dick again when he got home. I got it made.
Ray pulled his softening cock out of her asshole and smiled at the thin streaks of blood that pinstriped his cum-coated prick. “I’m gonna take a shower, baby. Want to scrub my back?” She nodded and he turned the hot water on, tempering it with cold and stepped into the tub, grabbing the soap and scrubbing with glee. Maybe, if he could get her into the tub, he could get her to revive his dick and he could fuck her again. A double play. HELL YEAH!
“Hey, baby! I’m ready!”
The shower curtain moved aside and a 175 grain hollow point bullet entered his brain.
The body of Raymond Edward Elliott was found by the night manager an hour later. No one could explain why he was at the hotel and when the manager pulled the registration card, he realized that the name was false. Susan B. Anthony. He gave Mahalo and Taima a description of the woman. Strawberry-blond hair and bad teeth. Julianne Bennett. She had done a thorough cleaning job of the room. No fingerprints, other than Elliott’s were found.
A check of Elliott’s car found the hair brush missing but luckily, the paper towels were still there and a few strands of hair were attached. His service revolver was also missing.
By the time Taima arrived at Pilar’s house, it was well after midnight. She pulled into the driveway, hefting her work bag and used her key. Pilar was wrapped in a blanket, sleeping on the couch, the television blaring ‘Magnum, P.I.’ She sat up, when she heard the door close.
Taima knelt by the couch and kissed her, touching her cheek. “What are you still doing up?”
“I was waiting for you.”
“Pilar … “
“I know. I don’t have to do it but I wanted to be awake when you came home, in case you needed to talk.”
“We’ll talk in the morning. Right now, I’d like nothing more than to take a shower, have something to eat and crawl into bed with you.”
“Okay.” Pilar gave her a kiss and jumped to her feet. “I’ll warm your dinner.”
Taima headed for the stairs, then paused and went back to Pilar’s side. “One of our officers, Ray Elliott, was murdered today.”
“Oh, Taima. Are you all right?”
Taima nodded. “I didn’t want to tell you.”
“I didn’t want you to worry.”
“I will always worry about you, Taima. I love you.” Pilar gave her a warm kiss. “And I’m glad you told me. That’s what I’m here for.”
Taima gave her another kiss and jogged up the stairs. She hoped that Pilar hadn’t noticed the worry on her face.
Taima was worried that she would be next.