The Lady in Blue Ch. 06byWine_Maker©
Chapter Six: Flying with the Hawk
Hawk's point of view
The lovers looked a bit shocked when they came into the kitchen. Judging from the volume at which Lisa had been proclaiming her pleasure, their embarrassment wasn't because there was an audience; it was because I was part of the audience.
With the shiner she was sporting, I would have scowled harshly at Ted if the trio had not already given me the gossip. That pissed me off. The fact that Lisa kicked him in the nuts made it a lot better.
I had spent a good amount of time getting to know Ted's brother Stan, his sister Sue and Stan's girlfriend Dina. They had all seemed pretty embarrassed about the noises coming from down the hall, even though I gathered they had been joking about it before I showed up. Stan had tried to give me the bum's rush when I arrived, telling me they were not available, but then Lisa started having a really good - and loud - time. That kind of screaming meant one thing: Ted knew what he was doing. Her exclamations made my mouth water. I grinned and told Stan I'd wait. After an uncomfortable minute in the kitchen with Stan, Sue and Dina, I was joking and talking about the absent lovers right along with them.
Now, as Ted and Lisa stared at me, I grinned back at them. "I tried calling ahead to tell you I was almost here, but you were - busy. I hope you don't mind that I waited for you."
They both blushed nicely but pulled themselves together with admirable efficiency. Ted poured Lisa a glass of water and asked, "Quesadillas everyone?"
We all nodded in agreement and Lisa sat down with us at the table while Ted started cooking.
I could have tortured her more but figured that wouldn't earn me any brownie points. "I have some good news and some bad news, Lisa," I said instead. "First the good news; your house is clear. No indication that anyone has been there."
That perked Lisa right up. "That's good! I can go back home then?"
Ted didn't look at all happy about that. Repressing a smile, I shook my head. "I'd like to give it a day or two more, which leads me to the bad news. The DA in Galveston took off on a fishing trip somewhere and I can't get access to squat. If I can pull you away from Ted for a while, I really need to take you down there and go through your files. See if anything looks promising, you know? You up for a road trip?"
Lisa nodded. "Yes, but let me eat something first. I'm famished." At my grin she blushed again. She was really pretty. Hell, she was gorgeous, especially wearing the afterglow of great sex. I found myself wishing it had been me giving her that good time. It had been too long.
A 'ding' from the microwave announced the snack was ready. It smelled pretty good.
"Then eat up. I don't want to see you fall over from hunger," Ted said as he handed out plates with cheesy tortillas stuffed with marinated beef.
While Lisa ate, I filled her in on the details that I had been able to glean thus far. The bomb squad had recovered more fragments of the bomb than I would have thought possible. The full analysis would take some time, but Frank's quick and dirty read was that the bomb was wired to the starter and not remotely detonated. That meant someone planted it while Lisa and Calvin were inside the club.
Lisa took that better than I was afraid she would. A nod and a few tears. "I still can't believe someone wants me dead."
"Perhaps not. Calvin could have been the target. I'll have to look at that possibility, too," I said.
"Why would someone want to kill Calvin?" Lisa asked in a shocked voice.
I shrugged. "I've learned that figuring out the why before the who is a chancy business at best, Sweetie. Let me find out the who and you'll be able to tell me why. Can you access his files?"
Lisa shook her head. "No, I don't have the key to his office. You can get them on Monday when the DA gets back."
Sunday was my normal day off so the impact wouldn't be awful. "It'll work. Anyway, the parts from the bomb look homemade, not C-4 or a more sophisticated type of bomb. They are working on getting me some details to track down but that will likely take till Monday, at the earliest. It looks like a pipe bomb by the gas tank."
This line of conversation was really making her upset so I laid off any more details like that. The anger that replaced it was a lot better in the long run, anyway, I thought.
Stan and Dina excused themselves to 'go lie down for a while' and that made us all grin. Nothing like listening to someone else get laid to work up the old juices. Sue also excused herself to take a walk outside.
"That lobbyist, Price, was out here this morning," Ted said.
I nodded as I finished chewing. "I heard. I'll have his ass for breakfast. He just moved up my suspect ladder and I'll need to have words with him before he posts bail."
Lisa stiffened and I put a hand on her knee. "Don't get too worried. He would be an idiot to come back out here after posting bail. You did file charges, right?"
From their expressions, I could tell they were thinking Price was an idiot. I shook my head and laughed but I kept my hand where it was. It was almost like gentling a skittish horse to your touch. "You two! I know he's stupid, sexist and violent. That won't help him much when I've finished with him. I'll put the fear of me into him." I grinned at her. "I think it might be better if the BSB here is not in the same room, though. I want him nervous, not pissed."
Lisa cocked her head. "BSB?"
"Ball stomping bitch," I said.
Ted laughed and Lisa flushed red. He shook his head, still smiling. "I told the deputies I wanted to file charges and they took my statement but I suppose I should go down there today or tomorrow to make it official."
I nodded. "Good idea. I'll help Lisa file assault charges while we are there."
Lisa finally stood up. "Are you still on that motorcycle?"
At my nod, she started towards the bedrooms. "I'll need to change. Riding in a skirt isn't a good idea."
I looked at Ted and he looked back. We both obviously were getting the same visual. I smiled and he returned it.
"She is wonderful," Ted said at last.
"I agree. It seems like we have the same taste in women, Ted. We'll have to see about double-dating sometime."
That broke the ice and we joked back and forth until Lisa came back out, ready to ride.
Lisa and Ted kissed so deeply that even I was feeling the heat before they separated. The tight pants she wore cupped her ass and made my breath catch in my throat. God, she was hot!
When they separated at last, Lisa followed me out and we were soon on the road heading south. She didn't seem too upset about riding on the back of my Harley, her arms around my waist. I almost wish she hadn't changed out of that nice skirt and into a pair of pants, but pants were more practical, and I could still feel the heat of her against me. The helmet microphones allowed us to speak without shouting. Time to test the waters.
"So, Lisa, have you always liked showing off?"
I felt her tense a little. "What do you mean?"
I laughed. "You know what I mean. You, my dear, are an exhibitionist."
The silence dragged on long enough that I didn't think Lisa was going to answer at all. We were almost to the Harris County lock-up when the answer came. It was soft enough that I almost missed it.
I chuckled. "It's nothing to be ashamed of, Hun. I wondered about it after you gave me that little show Friday, but after this morning, I'm sure. You weren't being too public either time, so don't worry about it."
"There was another time, too," Lisa said hesitantly and with some embarrassment. "Ted and I were in Spring this morning doing some shopping." Her voice started strengthening. "I think a sales clerk watched him play with me."
"And that excites you?"
"I know it's not 'right'. I never thought I could be such a slut." She sounded down on herself and that just would not do.
"Look, sweetie, I'm something of an expert in things sexual, at least before the last girlfriend and I broke up a couple of years ago. What you did does not make you a slut. You've found something that you like. Now you just need to be careful that you don't go too far in public. The thrill of getting seen is not worth being arrested. Pick and choose. As for Ted, he seems nice enough, for a guy, and I can testify that he apparently makes you feel good - really good. Be happy with that as a start." I looked back at her over my shoulder and smiled before returning my attention to traffic.
We pulled into the Harris County Jail's parking lot and the big bike coasted smoothly to a stop among the rice-burning trash in the motorcycle parking area. Securing the helmets, we went inside. I signed in and passed over my weapon. The deputy gave me a glance and Lisa a lingering look. She smiled back.
After about fifteen minutes, we were allowed into the questioning area. I stopped to watch this guy, Price, through the one way glass.
Price sat there, leaned back in the chair with his feet on the table, his hands interlaced behind his head, eyes closed, dressed in county colors. Cocky bastard, acting like it was all some kind of game.
"Lisa, you do the DA thing and watch from here. I'll go in and rattle his cage and see what falls out."
I opened the door quietly and stepped up to the table before it closed or made a noise. Gripping the table, I slid it noisily toward him.
Price's eyes flew open and he flailed wildly, his chair tipping over backwards. The crash of impact was very satisfying.
"Ooooo. Sorry about that, Mister Price. Didn't mean to startle you." I pulled my chair out and sat, watching him burn as he scrambled to his feet.
"This is bullshit! That bastard jumped me and his bitch hurt me bad when I was down! I want out of here and I want them locked up right the fuck now!"
"If you're injured, I'd be happy to take some pictures of the damage for you," I said sweetly. With a microscope, maybe.
Price fidgeted and shook his head. "What are you going to do about those menaces?"
I smiled my detective's smile and ignored everything he just said. "I'm not here about them. My name is Hawkins. I am a homicide detective with Houston PD. I have a few questions for you about an incident last night."
That rocked Price back and he sat down slowly. "I already had some jack-booted thugs grill me at home. Ask them."
I leaned back in my chair. "I'm asking you. Where were you Friday evening?"
Price puffed up like a sucker fish. "Screw you, bitch. I don't have to justify squat for you! I was at home. Alone, just like I told the stormtroopers."
"Don't dick with me, boy wonder," I snarled. "You can cooperate or I can put you under the microscope. Hell, there is no telling what might fall out when I start shaking a tree. Do us both a favor and save the bluster for the judge."
Price had a hint of actual fear in his demeanor. I could smell it like a shark sensing blood in the water. He was hiding something.
"Look, just give me one name. Someone that saw you at home and we're done."
Price shook his head. "Fuck that. We're done. You think I wasn't home? Then you prove it. Until then, I want a lawyer if you have more questions." He sat back smugly, his arms crossed on his chest.
I smiled the crocodile smile for him. "Fine, but you need to know something, Pez Brain. I'm the one that set the uniforms on you, not Stansbury and I'll keep turning up like a bad penny till I get to what really happened." I leaned forward, my eyes flashing. "If you bother them again, I'll lock your ass up so fast you head will spin. Stay away from them. Oh, and keep looking over your shoulder. Soon enough, I'll be there."
Price was starting another bluster when I left the room.
Lisa was on the ball and let me out without delay. After the door was safely closed, she hugged me. "You were terrific!"
Oh, this physical contact was making my legs weak. The smell of apples in her hair was so sexy. I regretted it when she let me go.
"Nah, he didn't confess like on television. I'll have to keep working him. He's got something to hide. Now, let's go file some charges," I said.
I led Lisa back out and she soon had a sworn statement signed and in the hands of the County. Price would make bail but I hoped for at least one night in jail. I picked up my weapon and led her back to my hog.
Shortly, we were in the saddle and flying down the highway. I pondered whether to make a pass at Lisa or not. Men aren't the only ones with little heads that think for them. I decided to be straight up, since she seemed to like that way of dealing with people. A secret for a secret builds trust.
"Lisa, have you ever made love with a woman?"
That spawned another spell of silence where I wondered what she was thinking. "No. Detective Hawkins..."
"Hawk," I interrupted. "I want you to call me Hawk, okay?"
I felt Lisa nod. "Hawk, I'm not attracted to women. I... Let's just drop it, okay?"
Lisa clammed up and was quiet as we drove through Houston. More than half an hour of silence. I sighed. Looked like I screwed the pooch.
Just past Texas City, Lisa started giving directions. She sounded happy with Ted, maybe it was for the best anyways.
The drive into Galveston itself was pleasant and quiet for the next twenty minutes. We parked in front of the DA's office. It was one of those historic buildings that came with a nice plaque to prove it. The brick veneer gave it sturdy and solid appearance. A little reassurance on this island, especially during storms, would be nice. After she got off the bike, I retrieved her purse and we went inside, using her key. The big glass doors led into a surprisingly roomy lobby complete with empty guard post.
"No guards on the weekend?" I asked.
Lisa shook her head as she hit the elevator call button. "It's not open to the public over the weekends. The DA doesn't think we need someone here."
I followed her into the elevator with a certain Aerosmith tune on my mind. I firmly told myself to stop it.
Lisa's office was on the second floor, in a long hall with closed doors, little name plates and a thread-bare government grey carpet. It looked well used. Stacks of file folders and a blizzard of post-it notes covered her desk. There were law books scattered on the small wooden table, with bookmarks thick along the spine. A picture of an older woman in a conservative bathing suit waved from the wall next to Lisa's diplomas and awards. Amidst the chaos that was her desk, a computer peeked out. God only knew where the keyboard was buried.
As Lisa sat down, I looked at the stacks of paper with some dismay. "These are all your files? Holy shit, Lisa, how do you ever find anything? We'll be here all night."
Lisa smiled. "It's an art. I have everything cross-referenced in a database and a pretty good idea of where things are in the piles. The file folders have case numbers and reference numbers that I can find fairly easily." She gestured to one of the chairs beside the table. It had several heavy books piled up on it. "Have a seat and I'll look through the bigger cases. Give me twenty minutes and I'll have a short list of the cases that might be interesting for you to look through."
I moved the books onto the desk and sat down in the old wooden chair. As she typed away at the computer, I spent some time watching her and exploring my feelings. Her profile was proud and competent, here in her lair. I liked that confidence.
I needed to think about what had been said on the ride down here. She had said no but was that really 'no, I'm not interested' or was it 'no, I need to think about this, so give me some space?'
There were several times over the years that I had seduced straight women into my bed and some of them said 'no' but came back later. The only thing to do was give Lisa space, not crowd her, and see if she was tossing a coin in her head.
There was nothing sweeter than introducing a straight woman to the joys that only another woman could provide her. Still, this was different. I had never seduced a woman that was involved with a man at the time. If I convinced Lisa, what about Ted? What if she insisted Ted join us? I had never had sex with a man. I'd never really given it any thought. I knew I was a lesbian and that was just the way it was. After my first girlfriend, I had never looked back.
I was way off on where I needed to focus right now. There was a killer to catch. Like Sergeant Nagel told me in the Academy. "Focus on the innermost question first. Too broad a line of questioning will lead you to answers that don't actually focus on what you want to know. Let the facts lead you on to new questions."
"Excuse me?" Lisa asked.
I blinked and looked up. Lisa was looking at me and I realized I must have spoken aloud. "Sorry, I was just thinking. Go back to what you were doing."
With a distracted nod, Lisa returned to her data search.
My train of thought was derailed again when Lisa slapped a stack of a dozen folders in front of me minutes later.
"There you go, Hawk," Lisa said cheerfully. "The worst of the worst, these people have plenty of reason to hate my guts. Mostly cases that have been wrapped up, though."
I thought about that and nodded. "It's a good place to start. Let's look through these and you can help translate for me."
Lisa rolled her chair over. Those tight jeans did not help my concentration. I supposed asking her to sit on my lap was right out of the question.
After a deep breath, I flipped open the top folder and we started going through them. The list of crimes varied from the usual drug lords to white slave traders bringing in women from the former Soviet block.
We talked about the people involved in each case and after four hours, there was a decent list of possible suspects written down on a yellow legal pad along with detailed notes. Lisa put away the files, shut her computer down. I tore off the pages and stuffed them in my jacket and stood up.
"I need to stop at the ladies' room on the way out. Come on, it's down the hall," Lisa said.
I followed her into the ladies' room and took a quick break myself. When I had washed my hands, I waited for her in the hall. As I leaned against the wall, I heard a muffled voice down the hall. I frowned. We should have been alone. Lisa said she and Calvin were the only folks that worked on Saturday. Curiosity has always been a problem for me, so with soft steps, I walked down the hall and listened at the closed door where the noises were coming from.
There was one voice with pauses. I couldn't tell gender for certain. Someone talking on the phone, maybe? I looked at the name plaque. Calvin Samson. Shit! Someone was in the dead man's office! I put my ear to the door and listened. My 'spidey sense' went off when the talking abruptly stopped.
I pulled my pistol and opened the door, stepping in and starting the sweep for hostiles. The office was dark except for the light coming in through the closed blinds. It took a moment for my eyes to adjust.
A moment can sometimes be too long.
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