The damn woman was a smart, somewhat delusional, shy but cocky female writer with no family but for a couple of odd friends whose past company had given her plenty of reasons to hate cops. Until him. All she wished for was a regular job like ordinary people had so she could turn the reality of everyday life into fiction. The Big guy was a tough, no-nonsense, independent forty-ish chief homicide detective, more bent on getting results than following the law. He had money to spare and nothing to lose. Until her. He did things his way, and did them thoroughly, including her.
The two liked each other. Sparks flew. It could be just your casual love affair … yah right. As if anything with the damn woman was ever that simple.
Now that she was on a leave of absence from her filing clerk job-slash-reckless-writer-just-doing research for a safer corporate office job, he shouldn’t need scotch, cigarettes and jogging to soothe his temper and worries, right? How could the damn woman claim the old men dying on her heels had nothing to do with her? Clearly, he needed a plan to keep her out of harm’s way since she wasn’t taking the threats seriously. Having her moving in with him might have solved his problems had she not thrown him out naked. Just a glitch in the plan.
All she wanted was a regular job and a casual affair, but the Big guy had to ruin everything! Between the infuriating man and the little prick at her new office, she was seriously considering quitting her job and men altogether. Good thing she still had her writing. A few signature sessions never killed anyone, right?
Solving crimes used to be such an unemotional job. All he wanted now was for her to spend her days at the library like every other damn normal writer and her nights at their place. Small time cops, newspapers and a little off-the-record help from the team might get them closer to what they both wanted.
Play dumb. Play nice. Run. Fast. “So. What do you want to talk about?” Big smile on her face.
He kept his head where it was, kept his hands where they were, kept the vein throbbing and didn’t answer. No way he was mad about one lousy gun, was he? She leaned closer and pulled his sunglasses off. His eyes were closed. Not good. He didn’t open them. Not good at all.
“Is this because of the gun?” He didn’t answer. She thought she saw him shake his head once, barely, but couldn’t be sure. So she repeated, “Christopher, is this about the gun or not?” He finally opened his eyes to look at her. “Damn you! You shouldn’t have given it to me if it was registered!”
“It’s not about the gun but f**k, Patricia, what did you do with it?”
“It’s not about the gun?”
“No, it’s not. But now I’m worried. What did you do with it?”
“Nothing. I didn’t do anything with it.” She wanted to be absolutely certain, though. “But it’s not registered, right?” He stared. She could have sworn his mouth twitched, the beginning of a smile. It lasted a millisecond. At the most.
“No, it’s not.”
“Good then. Because. Hum. Ah. I kind of lost it.”
“Lost it?” Raised eyebrow. His voice was soft. Low and soft.
“Lost it. As in, it’s gone. I’ll pay you back.” How much did a gun like that cost anyway?