Crimes Past(13)

By: Lauren Carr

“Aren’t you supposed to be surveilling your guests at the Inn this weekend?” After throwing the ball, David picked up his laptop from the desk. He pressed the intercom button on his desk. “Hey, Bogie, Mac’s here. Bring the case file so we can go over what we’ve uncovered on the Pratt case?”

Mac returned the chair to its place at the head of the table. “Hector and his team are keeping an eye on our suspects as they check in. Everyone should be assembled by the bachelor party tonight.”

“Well, between Hector and his team, Bogie, me and a few of my guys looking for overtime, plus you, we should be able to keep all of our suspects covered.”

“Don’t forget Doc.” Bogie stepped through the door. He dimmed the lights to make it easier for them to see the smart board. A wicked grin crossed his face. “Doc and I will be working undercover this weekend.”

“Did David approve that?” Mac asked.

“Doc’s paying for it,” Bogie said. “It was her idea. She’s a rich doctor and I’m her toy.”

“He’s become unbearable lately,” David said.

“You didn’t think that until after Dallas left.” Bogie whispered to Mac, “I think David’s last girlfriend took his sense of humor.”

“She did not,” David said in a steady voice while focusing on the case notes on the screen. “You make it sound like she left me.”

“Well, she’s not with you.”

“She’s investigating a story for her next book,” David said. “While she’s gone, I’m focusing on other things besides women.”

“They had a big fight,” Bogie told Mac.

“I kind of sensed that already.”

“It must have been pretty bad because the chief gave up women.”

“For what?” Mac asked.

“For the sake of sanity, if you must know,” David said.

Mac glanced from one of them to the other.

“Don’t look so surprised,” David said. “You’ve suggested that to me how many times. ‘You can’t have a fulfilling relationship with someone else if you don’t have one with yourself.’ Isn’t that what you say?”

Unlike Bogie, Mac didn’t find their conversation quite so humorous. He noticed a big dose of angst in his halfbrother’s striking blue eyes. “When my first wife and I got divorced, our police department shrink advised me to wait at least a year before becoming involved with anyone else to give my heart time to heal properly. He was right.”

Bogie arched an eyebrow in David’s direction. “Chief, have you ever gone a year without a date?”

“Yes.” David focused on his laptop’s keyboard.

“After your first date back when you were twelve,” Bogie said.

“Well, we’re getting close. Dallas left four months ago.”

“When was the last time you heard from her?” Mac asked.

“Over a month ago,” David said with a groan. “She told me it wouldn’t be fair to me to have to wait for her to come back because she didn’t know when that would be. So, I was free to move on with my life. Translation. She’s got someone else.”

Mac noticed Storm lying under the table. She rested her head on David’s foot.

Seeming to read Mac’s mind, David said, “I’ve got permanent, full custody of Storm. She’s all I need.” He let out a low growl. “Stick a fork in me. I’m done.” He turned his attention to his laptop and the smart board. “Now that we’ve discussed my nonexistent sex life, we can move on to business.”

He swung his laptop around and hit a button to light up the smart board on the wall. Two wedding pictures appeared on the screen. One was of the bride—Brie Pratt. The other was of the tuxedoed groom—Trevor Polk.

“Detectives Brie Pratt and Trevor Polk,” David said. “Murdered on their wedding night sixteen years ago.”

“Shot to death at the WillardIntercontinental less than two hours after they’d taken their vows,” Mac said.

David was scanning through a series of crime scene pictures on the smart board. Many were of the champagne bottle and glass next to it, the two flutes on the floor, and stains on the floor marked with evidence markers. “Tell us about the significance of the champagne.”