The Sentinel Ch. 09byJPMMURPHY©
John sat in his study at his computer and poured himself another drink. Yes, a moment for celebration if there ever was one. He'd very neatly removed Marge from his life and talked to a lawyer that had assured him they could sue the bureau for 'undue stress', leaving him with a nice settlement and early full retirement. On top of that, the insurance company had already been in touch, and a check would be in the mail as soon as their investigation was complete.
Pouring another drink, John leaned back and watched the words of sympathy roll across the chat box. Yes, they were all a bunch of idiots, too, but it was amazing how they 'reached out' to support one of their own. That didn't change the fact they had been getting off on his wife fucking the black stallion every week, but then, who knew?
Devil_dude's user name and password had rendered nothing, except very skimpy information that said he resided in the United States and connected through a 56k dial-up connection during the day.
As he picked up his drink and wandered to the basement door, John thought, this is the way life should be - a quiet house with kids gone, who knew where, and who really cared and early retirement as soon as the lawyer gets done with the bureau and gets my money - well, as soon as the 'investigation' is over. Yes, life will be good he thought once all the pieces fall into place. He had to laugh when he realized he owed everything to Linda and her sticky little fingers. Yep, another slut comes through; don't they always?
Going down the stairs and over to the corner where he'd stashed the evidence of his involvement, he stood and looked, scrutinizing the nail heads and how it all looked. But, he could find no difference between the floor joists at either end of the basement when compared to all the rest.
Back upstairs, he sat in front of the computer again and decided it was time to try and make some real contact - something other than electronic bits and bytes. He knew some people did it - met in chat and got together in person - why shouldn't he?
Focusing a little more on the chat, he looked around to see what was happening - who was hot and who was not. Clicking on a camera or two, he settled in to see just how far the sympathy would get him.
"I'm looking for someone to do a special task, and going through the files, I came across your application." The Captain leaned back in his chair, regarding Sara Waters, before continuing. "You would report to me and only me. You will be assigned one task and only one task - working out of your home with the hours dictated by the task."
Sara sat attentively in front of the Captain's desk beside Ruth Johnson from Human Resources and wondered what the catch was. It all sounded too good to be true.
As if on cue, the Captain continued, "There are two aspects to this job that may not be attractive, and if you are not interested, it will have no bearing whatsoever on your career here at the bureau. Ruth, would you like to explain?"
Ruth paused as she regarded Sara - an attractive, young, black woman that came to the bureau from the sex trade industry; she was one of the aging strippers who had a BA from a local university that Linda had recruited.
Ruth had had trouble understanding why, at 27, Sara had stated 'age' as her reason for leaving the trade. While scanning the investigator's report that had cleared her for employment, Ruth had seen that Sara's earnings from the last two years in the trade had exceeded ten times what she would make at the bureau in a year. But she had proven intelligent, responsible, and enthusiastic about her new life and career, excelling in the standard bureau training in police and investigative techniques.
"Sara, what I'm going to propose cannot leave this room. I need you to understand that and acknowledge it." Ruth waited while Sara shifted slightly in her seat.
"Yes, I understand. What you're going to discuss with me may not be discussed with anyone - well, other than the two of you, I guess."
"That's right. First, do you know about the officer whose wife was murdered last week, supposedly, by the killer your department is investigating?"
"John? Sure, who doesn't?" Sara answered quickly.
"Have you ever met John?" Ruth asked.
"In person? No. I think he walked through the area once, looking for Linda, but I only got a glimpse of him from across the room."
"Good, Sara. Here's what we want you to do," and Ruth proceeded to explain, in great detail, what many in the bureau thought happened to John's wife and how they thought they could best confirm that hypothesis.
Jack had taken Jan back to the computer room along with another chair. She sat there quietly and watched as he logged into several chat rooms, said 'hi', and moved on to the next. It was a Jack she didn't know - sitting in his wheelchair, moving from screen to screen, pausing to reflect, and moving on. He seemed immersed completely, and she suddenly felt alone even though he was less than four feet away.
His notebook would come out and passwords would be applied; then after a few moments inspecting the participants in a room, he would open another one. The silence, combined with his image in a wheelchair using his hands to move about the room, suddenly became overwhelming, and she stood quietly to step out onto the balcony, unnoticed.
"Hey, sorry, I didn't see you leave." Jack's voice was caring and concerned as he looked out from the doorway of the computer room while Jan shivered slightly in the early evening chill.
"It's okay, Jack. It was a little stuffy in there so I came out for some air."
Oblivious to any undercurrent, he continued, "Listen, Jan, I do have a plan. Let's talk about it. Okay?"
Stepping past her, he opened the door to his apartment and led the way to the dining room where he proceeded to build a small fire. He disappeared into the kitchen to return with two wine glasses and a bottle of red wine.
Jack started as he poured wine for both of them. "I talked to Lee. He has some information for me. Said he was finishing one part of it and would send it along later this evening."
"Okay. What's the plan, Jack? Do we really have one?"
"Tell me why you think this woman you saw is 'cyber' Lisa." He settled and listened.
She searched some to find what it was before explaining. "First, the eyes. Eyes are as unique as fingerprints. The hair and cheek bones. Chin. Lips. Yes, I would swear it was her."
"Did she hide from you at all?" he asked.
"Not really. Maybe some, but I looked right at her twice, and she didn't seem nervous or look away"
"That's good. If it really is 'cyber' Lisa, then we have her. It can't be a coincidence that she was in the coffee shop at my office when you appeared. Tonight, why don't you invite her over to your friend's house? Tell her you have to be here for the week, and it will be lonely for Thanksgiving. Even if she won't come, let me give you an address to give her where you will be staying." Pulling a paper and pen out of a drawer, he wrote an address down and laid it on the table in front of Jan.
"That's an executive apartment the company owns; it's for our employees who come into town on business." Walking to the phone, he called Michelle and checked the availability before asking her to block it off for him until the end of the year. No, he didn't care if people were coming in; put them up at the Hyatt.
"We can't bring her here. Too much security," Jack responded to Jan's questioning look.
"What if I tell her, I thought I saw her today?"
"I don't think so. Not yet. Let me check something else." On the phone again, he called Michelle back and asked her to have copies sent to the apartment of all ground floor security cameras for the day, from six am to noon. Returning the cordless phone to its cradle, he continued. "Tonight, I want you to chat with Lisa from my study. Tell her you thought a change of scenery might be nice; say whatever you need to keep her from suspecting. Tomorrow, we're going to install you in the executive suite and tell her Wednesday night you'll be chatting with me in Miami. The suite is wired for LAN connection in every room. I'll be connected in the living room. Let's see what we can get her to do next."
Linda lay naked on the bed in her hotel room, idly channel surfing with her laptop open on the desk where she could see the screen. Not as good a setup as she had at her place, but it would do in a pinch. The difficult part was working with only one computer.
It had been a slow day, but not a complete loss, she thought. What is Jan doing with Jack?
Scanning a piece of paper, she reviewed the information available to the public on Pond Enterprises: second largest privately owned company in the US; sole owner, Jack Pond; founded by his father; current CEO, Juan Francisco Martin, son of a British ex-pat, married to a Mexican, and who continues to own and operate a mining company in the northern part of Mexico.
She had finally given in to necessity and logged into her bureau mail; she found several pending correspondences: some general announcements, bureau policy changes, the death of John's wife, six mails marked urgent from the Captain which she left unopened, and one from Tom. Short and cryptic, it wanted to know where she was and what the hell she was up to.
Leaving all unanswered, she logged into NCIC and did some more digging on Pond Enterprises. Scanning the list of holdings and properties she'd printed in the business center, she looked again at the five addresses in the area. Two of them she'd identified as warehouse space. One was the office space in the building she'd been in that morning. Another one was a short distance away in an older, but nicely restored residential building. The last was listed as a warehouse, currently used for personal storage by the Pond family. It had to be the address of the residential building. That had to be where Jack lived.
Glancing at her computer once again, she could see Jan still hadn't logged on.
Jack had started a fire and reverently removed the picture of him and Lisa from the wall. Bringing a small mahogany tea table from the living room, he had sat Jan's computer in front of the couch that faced the fireplace; her camera was on a tripod beside one of the wingbacks. At the end of the couch in panties and bra, Jan was half-reclined, apparently reading a book.
Jack sat at his desk out of camera range and watched the screen of his own computer where he was desktop sharing and recording Jan's machine again.
"Hi, Babe," popped up on Jan's machine, and Jack saw it on his own.
Reaching for the computer, he could see Jan and watched her set the machine on her thighs, legs crossed at the ankle and start typing.
"Hi, Lisa. How are you?"
"Oh, you know. Not a bad day."
"Where are you?" Lisa asked, having noticed the change of scenery and absence of a bed in the scene.
"I thought we could enjoy a change of scenery. Besides, I have a fireplace in here, and it's really cold outside today. Wanna see?"
"Sure," Lisa responded.
Setting her computer on the tea table, Jan stood, and Jack could see her hips, white panties, and stomach framed in the shot as she stepped to the camera and turned it to point at the fireplace.
"Nice," Lisa wrote.
Pointing the camera down at the hearth in front of the fireplace, Jan stepped back to the couch and threw a pillow on the floor by the tea table. Stepping across the cables, she sat Indian style on the pillow and pulled her laptop to her crossed ankles.
"How 'bout this, Lisa? Can you get into it?"
"Lisa, a question"
"I have to stay here until next week, and I'm staying at the apartment of an old college roommate who's gone for the week. Why don't you come visit me for Thanksgiving? It's really lonely here."
Jack watched Jan and Lisa's chat box for a reply. Finally, he saw Jan typing again.
"Come on, Lisa. We can be alone. I don't care what you look like. What I saw the other day looked very nice. Come take care of me, Lisa. Please?" Jan tried to sound as pleading as possible.
"What about Fred? He's not spending turkey day with you?"
"No. He has family in Miami, but he will be meeting with me Wednesday evening in chat. We have some private time planned. You want to join us?"
Again, no response, and Jack started to wonder what was going on.
"Come on, Lisa, come see me on Thanksgiving." Her pleading pout looked real enough on cam, but Jack could see off cam that it was slightly forced.
"Tell me where you are, Jan. I'll think about it. Is it really cold there? Can I wear a scarf, wrapped around my neck and face?"
"Sure, Lisa. This is New York in November. Cold as hell here. You can bundle up like an Eskimo if you want, and no one will notice."
Jack's heart raced as he watched the chat continue. Jan was giving Lisa the address and pleading a little more, and Lisa promised to think about it.
Then he noticed that Jan had sat her computer on the floor beside her; she slipped her bra off to lay down in front of the fire - a very sensual pose, at the least. So he quietly stood and slipped out of the room, feeling guilty over what he knew Jan was about to do and more to the point - why.
The Sentinel watched, lost in Jan's body as her bra came off and was discarded out of cam view. Having put down the pen after checking the address and confirming it, the Sentinel once more bathed in the sexual tension created on-screen.
Yes, this is the one. I know it. "Yes Jan, you will have a visitor soon. I promise," was whispered to no one in particular as the Sentinel sought release.
John struggled to get the Kleenex up in time. He couldn't believe his luck. Black and beautiful. He could still feel her flesh against his as he'd bent her over the coffee table and driven his point home with a vengeance. Yeah, what better way to set the record straight for all his chat 'buddies'?
And a 'newbie' at that! She had come into the room he was chatting in about two hours ago. New and a little lost, suzi-q-zi had looked around, tried to comment, and get involved, but the room he 'hung out in' was a little rough and full of the old hands that were there for only one thing - Sex. Clicking on her cam, John had loved what he'd seen as she sat in her living room wearing a very small teddy with matching panties. No face in the picture, but who cared.
Clicking the 'Private Conversation' tab, he'd talked to her long enough to explain that this room might be a little too 'fast' for her, but he could help her out if she wanted. All she had to do was make her cam private, give him the password - no one else, and continue to chat here.
She'd been so easy. As soon as he got the password, he'd passed it along to all his 'chat buddies' and told them to 'watch a pro at work you, assholes'.
Sure they were all tuned in, he'd gone to work on suzi-q-zi. Oh yeah, that's what it's all about, he'd reassured her. No, no one can see any of this but us. No, relax; enjoy yourself. It's the safest sex on the planet.
He'd had to put up with her whining about being fired that day from some government job that probably didn't even pay the rent. Then she went on for half an hour about her boyfriend who was running around with some 'white slut' he'd met on camera at this very chat site. John was beginning to wonder if he was going to have to play Ann Landers all evening or if this shit was going to get serious or not.
But then, he'd discovered what she really wanted. She'd been shy at first, but it had all come out. She wanted to piss off the boyfriend; she wanted him to find her here on cam 'doing it' with some white stud.
That's me, you black cow, he thought as he'd explained how it all worked. No, the guys don't get naked on cam much. It's all about the women.
John slumped in his chair and dropped his Kleenex as he watched her suck her fingers clean before typing.
"Wow. That was great. Damn, you're good."
"Was there ever any doubt?" he sent back.
"And what do I do now? How do I meet other people in here?"
"You don't," he sent back immediately. "Just hang around with me, and I'll take care of you. We'll work it out. Trust me."
"You're the best," she'd sent back. "Listen, I have to get to bed, early morning tomorrow but when can I see you again?"
"Don't worry about that, I don't need to work. You'll find me here most the time."
"Wow, you must have a lot of money," she'd sent back.
"Sure, I don't have to work. Not anymore."
"Well, I'll look for you tomorrow. Bye"
"Bye," he sent. He wanted to add, 'You black bitch', but had decided she looked too nice to piss her off this soon. Let me have my fun; then I'll show her what women are really for.
Sara sat quietly at her kitchen table in a terry cloth robe, typing up a 'contact' report for the Captain - nothing graphic, but complete in its explanation of what took place. She also attached a copy of their chat which she'd recorded using a special program the bureau provided; it was the same one she'd used on the 'floor' when she worked with Linda. She sent it off and settled in the living room to watch a little television before going to bed.
What a piece of scum, she thought as she found her program on the cable box and settled in. Just like the assholes she used to deal with when she danced. She knew his type - brain smaller than his penis and a penis smaller than her thumb. He probably couldn't keep it up more than five minutes; well, if he could get it up at all.
Jack had showered and was reading in bed when Jan came in. Ashamed for having left her to deal with 'cyber' Lisa alone, he searched her eyes for some indication of what she felt. Panties and bra in her hand, she dropped them on the floor beside the bed and crawled up to take the book out of his hands.
Straddling his legs on all four, she looked at him a second before saying in an even, steady voice, "You abandoned me, Jack."
"Sorry, Jan. It didn't seem right. I thought you might feel bad." It was lame at best, but it was how he'd felt at the time.
"Jack, I want to help you with Lisa, but on cam masturbation is not my idea of fun. I am more than glad to do it for you. So next time, stay; enjoy. Okay?"
"Sure, Jan, sorry."
With that, her mouth fell on his as one of her hands pulled the cover and sheet down. "Jack, make love to me. Show me you really do understand."