Frank and Shay have a chat as they walk around the lake. Shay assures Frank that he and Marka are being watched. Shay also tells Frank not to worry, they don’t have surveillance cameras in the bedroom. Frank doesn’t find that funny.
Shay leaped from his seat, advancing on Frank like a rabid dog. Thick finger poked in Frank’s face, narrowly missing his nose.
“Don’t you dare even think that. I may not know much, but I know you. I know how you work. There is no way this was your mistake.”
“Let Marka hypnotize you. That will prove it.”
Groaning, Frank turned away. “I can’t,” he whispered.
“Your life could depend on the answer to this, Frank.”
“My sanity does, Arnold. My honor, who I am. . . .”
“Do me a favor. Don’t say no until you talk to Marka. In fact, you should have a session with her. I don’t mean with they hypnosis. But talk to her, as a professional, not your lover. Tell her your fears.”
Frank shook his head, hands deep in his pockets. “Not exactly the kind of conversation I want to have with my girlfriend this early in our relationship. Way to make me into a pussy.”
“Aw, hell, kid. You’re already a pussy.”
Frank chuckled, socking Shay in the shoulder hard enough to make the older man take a step back. “I may be a pussy, but you’re a tool.”
“You’ll think about it?”
“So, tell me what you hoped to find in your search.” Shay pointed to the laptop Frank carried in a bag slung over his shoulder.
“I dunno. Something that makes sense. A DNA match for the piss in my office? Something. . . .”
“I thought the police didn’t find a match.”
“They don’t have the same access.”
“What are you thinking?”
“No idea, Arnold. But that felt personal, like they were looking for something and couldn’t find it. They were literally pissed at me.”
The two of them started up the path toward the cafeteria, dodging more goose poop. Frank went over Marka’s theory that the incidents weren’t related. He found it hard to believe they weren’t connected, but Shay wasn’t so sure.
“The only common element here is you, Frank. But there’s no way that girl was part of any of this. And the guy who broke into your house wasn’t the one who pissed in your office. Neither did the girl, for that matter. She trashed your car, but Clark’s surveillance is pretty clear.”
“What about the security tapes from the facility?”
“Clark’s patched into the security. We’ve got techs going over the footage now, but so far, no joy.”
“You’re patched in here?” He groaned. “Just how far are you patched?”
Shay laughed. “Don’t worry. We won’t be leaking a sex tape to You Tube.”
“Don’t even think that’s funny. And making that remark around Marka, not a good idea.”
“We’ve got footage of everything outside, on the grounds and in the corridors and common areas of the facility. We don’t have surveillance in the rooms—not even yours and Marka’s.”
“Thank God. I hate to think what you’d see. . . .”
“From what I gather, some pretty hot sex.” He nudged Frank with his elbow.
Frank laughed, nudging him back. “Marka’d kill you if she even suspected you’d seen her naked.”
“She’s a crack shot, she tell you that?”
“Has her concealed permit. She used to go into some pretty scary neighborhoods before moving here. She traveled all over Florida after she got out of school. Even lived in Miami for awhile.”
“I see why she’d have a concealed license. Not sure I’d like wandering around south Florida unarmed.”
Shay chuckled. “You wouldn’t need a weapon to be a bad ass.”
“Thanks, Arnold.” He laughed almost lightheartedly. “She’s full of surprises.”
“I find it amusing that I know more about her CV than you do.”
Frank smirked. “Then get me the files, Colonel.”
“Oh, hell no. If she knew I’d shown you that, she’d kill me.”
“Frank!” Marka’s voice echoed off the brick walls.
He trotted up the path to greet her. Shay walked up the hill more slowly, waiting for them to kiss.
“Colonel,” Marka acknowledged him somewhat coolly.
“Doctor. Frank, I need to get going.” He handed over a plastic card that looked like a plastic gift card. “In case you need it. Additional insurance.” He tapped the end of his nose, closing one eye. “Frank, remember what we talked about.”
“Yeah. I’ll keep it in mind.”
Marka and Frank watched Shay wander up the hill to the parking lot and beyond to the blue house squatting on the corner of the property. He let himself in. They said nothing to one another until the door was closed behind him.
“Your session go well?”
“Yes, it was a lot of fun.” She talked about it for a couple of minutes as they stood on the sidewalk.
© Dellani Oakes