A Cat Among the Stool-pigeons. Interlude. (between episodes 5 and 6)
Note: Dafydd is the Welsh equivalent of “David” and is pronounced “Davith”
I took it easy on the drive back to the twin cities, unlike the mad dash the other way. I had a fast car and liked opening it up but I was still on the backlash from going hyper in the warehouse. My reactions were dulled and I wasn't going to undo the work of rescuing my passenger by getting us both killed on the highway.
"Owen. Dafydd Owen."
"You obviously know I'm a cop. You understand that while I appreciate the outcome I might find some of your actions back there a little... ummm.. 'questionable'?"
"I'll raise your concerns with the DA when I see him at the golf club. Sure, you could get me investigated, you could even build enough of a case to take to the DA but you know as well as I do that even if he was dumb enough to indict me, stepping in to prevent the rape and murder of an undercover cop would give me such a good image in front of the jury that I'd walk. Why go to all the hassle?"
"I have to report something though, the Rochester cops are going to want to know what happened."
"Yep. I leave how you word it up to you, and I'll have one of my friends in metro homicide give 'em a call. You know how it works."
"Yeah, and by way of returning favors I'll just forget I saw a suppressed handgun because I'm sure you know those are illegal in this state."
"Not with a special federal license for a military security contractor they aren't, but since I wasn't working such a contract this evening I do appreciate the omission. There might have been more of them and I might have had to take down a few without the others knowing I was there."
"What other toys does that special license let you play with?"
"Pretty much anything short of explosive ordnance. So no grenades or mines, no demolition charges or primacord unless they are specifically issued to me by a military or law enforcement unit for the purpose of a particular contract. While I'm pretty good with an MP5 or a sniper rifle, if those are coming into play I prefer to hire specialists because they go far beyond 'pretty good' but I have been in a couple of situations personally where a handgun wouldn't have cut it."
"Doesn't sound like a typical PI - which I presume you are from your license plate."
"Not typical, but yes. Not a typical lawyer either. Sarah, I'll work for anyone who needs my services, in either capacity or both. Nobody who truly needs me gets charged more than they can afford to pay, however folks that are wasting my time might get scared off by the sticker shock. They cover the losses on the other ones."
"You're not telling me this just in idle conversation.
"No, I'm not. I'm telling you this because I hope you'll work with me. I've got a client who I'm pretty sure is a king-spook, who got me roped in to protect his family when his daughter got herself knocked up by a gang drug dealer. I want those two kids out of this fix, and I think you can help."
"Is this a hiring pitch?"
"No, sweetheart. It isn't. It's simply asking you to be a friend."
"Friends, I can live with."
I hit a speed-dial on the cars bluetooth. It rang twice. "Olson."
"Owen. Your lady is safe, Swede. Three others went down in the process, one messy. How are you doing on plugging the leak?"
"We hit a problem. Can you keep her out of sight for a week or so?"
"So long as she doesn't mind that, sure. I think I need a break at the cabin."
"Roger that, Admiral."
Time for the next speed-dial. Liz answered the office phone.
"Mr Owen, are you ok?"
"Yes. If our guests haven't vanished yet, I want you to take them to my cabin. We'll join you there shortly."
"They are still here. If you don't hear from us, assume we'll be on the road in 10 minutes."
I rummaged in the center console for a notepad and pen, then tossed them to my passenger.
"Here. Make a list of everything you would need for two weeks in the north woods. The cabin has grid electricity and a generator, it has its own well. I'll have everything you list delivered tomorrow. Seems we're not as clear as I would like."
"Your friend sounded concerned."
"Yeah. I've learned to trust his instincts the same way he has learned to trust mine."
I was mostly recovered from the episode in the warehouse. I put my foot down. I was aiming to be beyond Duluth in less than three hours...
to be continued....