Wake Up Maggie(9)

By: Beth Yarnall


I cut my gaze to the wall where Super Agent sat on the other side, stewing like an overfilled crockpot. “’Cause I’m not. Thanks again, Jonas. Bye.”

I disconnected the call and sat down amongst my shoes, waiting for Jonas to text me “the deets”. A couple of days ago Super Agent had put me in front of a sketch artist to get an idea of what Trinh the Trollop and her tattoo looked like. When he wasn’t looking I snapped a pic of both sketches to do some sleuthing of my own. Why not? No one in this mess had more at stake than me.

A bing later I had the name and phone number of the shop that had possibly inked Tramparella’s tattoo. Now all I had to do was figure out how to dial overseas.

Suddenly the bedroom door burst open. “What in the hell do—” Whoa. Super Agent sounded scary when he was pissed. I wouldn’t want to be on the wrong end of that. “Maggie! Where are you?” Oopsie. Too late.

I slid the closet door open. He didn’t sound half as scary as he looked. His chest was all puffed up, and his shoulders looked a mile wide. Now I knew why he wore such horribly baggy suits. It was like he’d grown two sizes, his anger filling in the gaps between the sags.

It took him a moment to find me amongst the dresses and skirts. “Why are you in there?”

I held up my phone.

He offered me a hand up. I took it, fighting my way out of the closet one-handed. By the time I escaped, he was shaking his head and battling a smile. “You are the oddest woman I’ve ever met.”

“I’ll take that as a compliment.”

“Don’t.” Uh-oh. Angry Agent was back. “I didn’t see any harm in you sending that picture because I didn’t think anything would come of it. But now… Stay out of this investigation. You have no idea who you’re dealing with here.”

I did a double take. What now? “You’re listening in on my phone calls and reading my texts?”

“We thought it best in case Trin—”

I pointed my phone at him. “Say her name and you’ll be gargling your balls for weeks. And who in the name of all that is private is ‘we’?”

“You’re not going to go out with that Jonas guy, are you?”

“What? That’s the take-away from this clusterfuck?”

“He’s been convicted of aggravated assault. You shouldn’t even have him as a friend, let alone go out with him.”

“You’re investigating my friends too?” My voice went supersonic, setting off car alarms and howling dogs.

“Well, yeah. It’s my job.”

“Your… You know what? You’re fired!”

“You can’t fire me.”

“No?”

“No.”

“I can kick your ass out of my house.”

“Don’t be ridiculous, Maggie.”

“Miss Castro to you.”

“We’re back to that?”

I shot my arm out and nearly flung my phone. “Get out.”

“Fine. I’ll be next door if you need me.”

What the…? I propped my hands on my hips. “What do you mean, next door?”

“We rented the apartment next door.”

“We again.”

“I don’t work alone. We set up a temporary command center.”

Well, that explained Mr. Hands-to-himself I’d been living with. The walls in these old apartments were as thin as my patience with him at the moment.

“How many people do you work with?”

“Two or three, depending on what’s happening.”

“And they’re doing what?”

“We’ve got eyes on every corner of this building. As well as tracking the latest info as it comes in.”

“Inside my apartment too?”

“No. That’s why I’m here.”

I nodded.

He eyed me as if I were a coiled rattler. “What’s going on inside your head?”

“Oohhh,” I moaned loud enough to be heard through the wall, then whispered, “Nothing.”

“Maggie…”

“Oohhh, yeessss!”

“Stop it.”

“Don’t stop!”

“You’re pushing your luck.”

“Oohhh, yeessss. Harder!”

He covered my mouth with his, and suddenly I was back to the wall, his knee wedged between my legs. I gripped his shoulders and met him kiss for kiss. I didn’t remember wanting anyone or anything as badly as I wanted him. He broke the kiss long enough to pull my shirt over my head, then took a half step back and sucked in a breath. Exactly the reaction I’d hoped for when I’d put the purple lace bra on that morning on the off chance he’d finally break his vow of chastity.