Here is the Link to the Prologue, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8 and Chapter 9
Given Jim’s propensity for putting forth information on the case they struck around hoping further information would roll out, but nothing materialized. The next thirty minutes mostly involved him looking up news online and fake news on facebook, and before long they had to head over to the precinct to where Captain Driggs and Lung would be interviewing Daisy.
Two seconds after porting into the precinct they knew they had been in the wrong place for the last half hour. Stilton and Barbara were watching as Lung and Driggs were arguing about how to handle the upcoming interview.
“Why are you defending her? She’s guilty.” Driggs yelled.
“I’m just not sure we really have enough to actually arrest her.”
“Are they talking about my wife?” Caden jumped in.
“Yes,” Hansen said very matter of factly and just as matter of factly added, “Be quiet.”
“She was alone in the house with him. She stood to not only inherit the home but is the executor of the rest of the estate. Not only that she probably found out about the affair. She has means and motive.”
Lung much more calmly brought up. “What about the note? What gun did she use?”
“Easily explained. She used his gun and then replaced the bullet.” Driggs said triumphantly.
“What possible motive would she have for replacing the bullet?”
“So, we didn’t know that she used that gun. Duh.”
“But if she would have left it, then it would look like suicide, Which she would…” Lung caught himself. If Driggs mind was such that he needed to explain this, then he realized there was no point, “you know never mind. The point is I think we need more actual proof before...”
But before he could explain a woman opened the door and said, “Captain Driggs Daisy Mason is here.”
“Show her in.” Driggs said, and as soon as the woman closed the door added, “And Lung you better stay in your place, this is my call.”
Trout was anxious to point out that the Chief had made it clear it was Lung’s call but knew it would do no good. There was a bit of silence as they waited for Daisy. The notable tension in the room was not only between Lung and Driggs; there was also noticeable tension between the Worthlins and Caden. In life they were congenial aquentices at best, their only commonality being their love of Daisy, but now the Worthlins felt odd for two reasons. One, was their daughter was being accused of killing him, they knew she didn’t but didn’t know how he felt about it, and there was the idea of who really had a right to be there, or higher right. He was the husband and therefore claimed first right to be at this difficult junction in her life. And the Worthlins didn’t know if he wanted to be alone with her, or at least as alone as possible.
Stilton recognized this tension but was happy to simply ignore it. Barbara tried to acknowledge it with an awkward conversation. “Hi Caden.” She started.
“Hello Barbara,” Caden replied, clearly preferring Stilton’s method of ignoring one another.
“So, how is being dead?” This may be a worthwhile lesson for you. When you are not sure what to say and are grasping for a question, don’t take this one.
Caden was unsure how to respond. He expected the, ‘How are you...fine’ conversation. But saying, “fine” to how being dead was, didn’t feel appropriate. But in all honesty he felt it wasn’t all that bad. So went with, “It’s okay, as far as being dead goes.”
Everyone was happy when Daisy entered so conversation could end.
Caden stood by her side as she entered and took a seat, surrounded by Detectives, some with hearts, some without. It was one of those with a heart, who happened to be heartless, who opened up first. Avoiding all pleasantries went straight to the point, “Mrs. Mason, sit down. Is it true you met with your lawyer yesterday?”
“Did you discuss your role as executor of the estate?”
Again Daisy’s reply was a quick, “Yes.”
“Did you discuss how you could avoid paying Canine Hope the large sum of money that is set up in your husband’s estate?”
When she knew the police wanted to ask her more questions she hadn’t thought for even a second she'd be under investigation and therefore never considered she’d need an attorney, she now wondered if that was a mistake. “We discussed what they were required to do to show they could receive the money.”
“That wasn’t the question. Did you discuss under what circumstances you would not disperse the money to them?”
“Well, yes, but.”
Driggs cut her off. “If they did not receive the money, who would?”
“I haven’t thought about it?”
“Would it be you?”
“Perhaps?” The room was spinning for her and not her alone. Caden and the Worthlins also didn’t like where this was heading, and began to lean on Hansen.
“Detective Hansen, he clearly has this wrong.” Barbara said.
“Is there any reason you feel Canine Hope shouldn’t receive the money?”
The truth was she only began to look into it because they fired her brother, something she didn’t care to talk about, but her lawyer had said a financial review was something that she not only had a right to do, but was actually her obligation to see through as the executor.
She was thinking through this and realized that it was 100% true and she said, “It’s my duty as the executor to perform a financial review of Canine Hope before they receive the money.” But she couldn’t get out of her head that this was a partial truth and it showed. She was sweating and with a stalled, unclear delivery even Lung was beginning to question if she was being honest.
The tension was rising and Barbara couldn’t help to reflect back to last night when Hanson had played Savior to their son. Clearly his skills were needed again, “Detective Hansen, can’t you do something?”
Hansen kept his focus on Daisy and didn’t respond. Captain Driggs sensed Daisy was falling apart and inwardly felt the adrenaline rise as he felt a confession coming. “Was it true that your Husband was having an affair?”
“I don’t know, that is what the note said, but…”
“How'd that make you feel?”
The death so over shadowed the affair that she had pushed it from her thoughts, even though it refused to go away. She had tried to instantly forgive, but did she? She hadn’t even truly internalized it and how could she forgive him until after that. Until she could forgive, it did bring pain, she tried to bury it but it hurt, and as Driggs said it she felt how fresh the wounds were.
“You were upset?”
“Yes. Of course, I was.”
“Angry.” He said more as a statement than a question.
“No. Upset yes, but not angry.”
“Help her!” Barbara pleaded with Hansen. “You helped Tommy, help her.”
Hansen remained stoic and only now noticed a slight glare in the mirrored glass that was across from him. Spinning quickly he caught a short glance of a person who was standing behind him in the corner of the room. It appeared to be a middle aged woman, but before he could be sure the person ported from the room, as Driggs continued his press, “If you couldn’t have him, no one could.”
“He probably threatened divorce.”
Caden, who was surprisingly reserved looked at Hansen, “You helped my druggy Brother-in-law but won’t protect my wife? Someone has to.” He then jumped up on the table that separated Driggs from Daisy and getting right in the Captains face yelled out, “You’re a moron and if I was alive I’d kill you.”
Hansen put up with the Worthlins. They weren’t his guests. Hansen realized now what a mistake it was to bring Caden, and he was always one to correct his mistakes. He reached out and touched Caden on the arm and disappeared, a second later he reappeared alone. Driggs oblivious to the comings and goings, kept at it.
“So, knowing you couldn’t let him go, you shot him.”
The absurdity of this last statement helped Daisy recompose herself. “That’s insane.” She yelled, beginning to match the Captain’s intensity.
“Do something, make the wind gust again or something.” Stilton joined his wife's pleas.
And Trout too joined in.
“Should we try to stop this?” He asked Hansen.
Hansen glared up at Trout and then returned to his stoic view.
“What did you do? Hold him at gunpoint while he wrote the note?”
“No. I’ve never even shot a gun.”
Everyone in the room except Driggs was uncomfortable, and Trout could sense Lungs discomfort. Lung had been told by the Chief to take charge if needed, and Lung could sense it was needed. Trout had seen Hansen have success with influencing Lung and decided if Hansen wasn’t going to stop them from arresting a clearly innocent person he would, but before he did he saw Hansen stair right at him and say, “Don’t” Trout debated and decided to ignore Hansen.
With everything inside of him he pushed Lung to stand up to Driggs and bring some sanity to the conversation but almost instantly he felt a familiar hand on his shoulder and found himself in the middle of a forest. Hansen was gone. Regret washed over him. Why did he disobey a direct order? He allowed the moment to win over his better sense. Porting was an option but he wasn’t very good at it, and something told him, he’d be in less trouble if he waited for Hansan, so he took a seat on a nearby log and thought.
“What is it Hansen?” Chief gruffly asked as he ported into Hansen’s rather busy office. Hansen sat at the desk but the small table next to the desk held 3 living people who were holding a meeting.
Before Hansesn could reply the Chief added another question, “Why don’t you use a different office when people are here?”
“I like this office.”
“Fine. What is it?”
“I want a different partner, or better yet no partner.”
“He disobeyed a direct order.”
“That’s serious. Did you tell him it was a direct order?”
Hansen hoped the Chief wouldn’t follow up. “But did you tell him?”
“No, but like I said, he knew.”
“The Chief laughed.”
Hansen did not, “I fail to see what’s funny”
“You wouldn’t. I have heard stories about this exact conversation with another detective, what was it 90 years ago.” Hansen turned away. “Didn’t I tell you, Detective Rorden asked to be reassigned because his rookie failed to follow a direct order.”
Certain names instantly get our attention and Detective Rorden definitely fit the bill for Hansen.
“What was it you did? Kept porting back to the scene when you were told to keep a lookout elsewhere. The chief at the time convinced him to not give up on you. And I’m glad he didn’t, he ended up training my best detective.”
Hansen was not one for emotion but he knew that what the Chief said wasn’t easy for him to say out loud. More importantly, the realization that he almost missed a chance to be trained by the greatest man he ever knew, struck close to his solid heart.
“I don’t think he would have moved on without you.” The Chief added. It was meant to be a compliment, but one that came with a mixture of honor and pain. Hansen didn’t like to think about moving on. It cost him not only his mentor but also the only other person he couldn’t think about without deep happiness and sorrow. He couldn’t hold back any longer and a bright glisten of light fell from his eye down his cheek.
“I think you need a partner more than you realize. You better go to whatever remote corner of the earth you left him and get back to work. You have a case to solve.”
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Here is Chapter 11.