Even the Score(103)By: Beth Ehemann
“That wasn’t a question.”
Larson sighed, resting his forearms on the edge of the table as he stared at Andy. “Mr. Shaw, while I completely sympathize with your situation and what this appears to be turning out to be, I have protocol to follow, and having you in the room would jeopardize everything. I’m assuming you want any charges we’re able to bring against her to stick, right?”
Andy’s jaw clenched as he leaned back in his chair, crossing his arms in front of him. He didn’t say a word, but he didn’t have to. The anger radiated off of him.
“I will make you one concession, though,” Detective Larson continued. “I’ll let you watch our conversation from a one-way mirror.”
Andy rolled his tongue in between his top teeth and lip, mulling over the detective’s offer. “Fine. I appreciate that.”
“Well, you’re going to be doing me a favor, too. You know her better than anyone, so if she says something that’s untrue or that I need to know more about, I’m going to need your input.”
Suddenly I felt like a spectator to my own life, like I was watching a crazy episode of Law & Order that just kept getting weirder and weirder. I wanted to change the channel desperately but there was no remote in sight. The thought of being in the room with Andy as he watched his ex-wife, Logan and Becca’s mother, be questioned by the police about her involvement in my attacks was beyond overwhelming.
“All right.” Detective Larson stood. “You guys can leave or hang tight here, it’s entirely up to you. No guarantees we’ll be able to get her in here today, if at all. The minute I make contact with her, I’ll call you.”
Andy nodded and extended his hand to Larson, who shook it back with a tight smile. “If she doesn’t come in, we’ll just have to do it the hard way, but most people are curious, so when I ask them to come in, they do. We’ll be in touch.”
We made our way down the hall and through the police station quietly. There was a weird tension between Andy and me that made me uncomfortable and scared at the same time. As soon as we stepped outside, he took a deep breath and exhaled loudly.
He shoved his hands in his pockets as we walked to the parking lot. “Dani, I don’t even know how to say this or where to begin.”
Oh God. I’m under your wing. Don’t do this. Please, no no no.
“But I’m so, so sorry about this. I feel helpless, like it’s all my fault.”
I stopped walking and followed him with my eyes as he took a few more steps. When he realized I’d stopped and spun to face me, I frowned at him. “Your fault?” I exclaimed. “How is this your fault?”
“I’m the one that gives her alimony. It’s my money she used to pay that asshole to do this to you.” His eyes dropped to the ground, and he shook his head.
I took a couple of steps forward and rested my hand on his chest. “Andy, is that really what you think?”
He nodded subtly, and for the first time I could see the toll all this was taking on him. Dark circles hung under his normally sparkling blue eyes, his whole body was tense, and I hadn’t seen one of his big, famous Andy grins in a while.
“How were you supposed to know? Seriously. Think about that. When you two divorced years ago, how were you to have any idea that one day, way in the future, she was going to use some of her alimony to do bad things to your girlfriend?”
His eyes lifted to mine but he didn’t say anything.
“Sounds ridiculous when I say it like that, doesn’t it?”
He cleared his throat, and his cheeks reddened. “Kinda. But I just feel so—”
“Stop it,” I interrupted, shaking my head. “This is not your fault. It never was, and it never will be, so just agree never to discuss it again, okay?”
A small chuckle left his mouth as he stepped forward and wrapped me up in his arms.
“And never scare me like that again!” I mumbled into his jacket, giving his ribs a jab with my good hand.
He flinched backward and covered his ribs defensively. “Scare you?”
“Yeah!” I frowned as I landed another punch on his arm. “I thought you were breaking up with me!”
“You never start a sentence I don’t know how to say this! Women hear that sentence and immediately think you’re breaking up with us. I almost pushed you out into traffic!”
He was doubled over, holding his stomach because he was laughing so hard. “I’m sorry. I swear I didn’t mean to.”
“Jerk!” I smacked him again playfully.
“Wait, wait.” He stood up and tried to stop laughing as he pulled his ringing phone from his pocket. He arched a brow when he looked at the screen and turned it on. “Shaw.”