Measure of a Mann
Mary was wearing the same black dress that she wore to the last gallery event that Jay had. Truthfully, she didn't have too many dresses because she rarely dressed up. She was thankful for that because she hated to. Marshall was wearing a black tuxedo with a dark, blue shirt and a black tie. Mary thought that he looked nice, although she would never tell him that to his face.
They walked into the gallery around seven-fifteen, to find that there were lots of people already there. Even though Jay was annoying and Mary couldn't stand him, he had a ton of other friends. Marshall even stopped by more often than she did, but she believed that it was more about the art than Jay. Besides, Jay was her witness and responsibility.
Marshall was busy looking at the artwork on the walls until Mary walked over to him carrying two glasses of champagne. Marshall watched Mary as she chugged her champagne down and then slowly began to drink his own.
"Something tells me that either you are anxious for this party to end, or that you are worried that someone is going to shoot Jay again," Marshall stated. "Am I right?"
"You know me too well," Mary answered. "The last time that Jay had one of these things, someone tried to kill him twice. I want to enjoy myself, but let's face it. The man is an idiot. What do all of these people see in him?"
Marshall responded, "It could possibly be that the man is outgoing, friendly, and funny. There are many people in the world that are, you know."
Mary said, "There you go again, being optimistic and annoying. The Marshall that I know so well. Look, I know that you are probably right, but I can't help but be a little paranoid. The man does have an ex-wife and an ex-girlfriend, neither of them has much respect for him anymore."
Marshall replied, "Mare, I think that if either Marci or Kay wanted him dead, they would have tried to kill him back when they first found out that he was cheating on them. Instead, it was his publicist that tried to kill him, remember? Besides, Jay has turned his life around a little. He is still a little eccentric, but he has mellowed out some. It has been over two years since that happened and he has been pretty good. Give him a break and enjoy the party."
Mary said, "You're right. Except, look at what's come to the party, a news crew with cameras. Jay doesn't seem to understand the concept of no pictures in the paper."
The marshals walked over to where the cameras were taking pictures of Jay next to his most popular exhibit. They grabbed the cameras from their hands, took out the film, and kicked the crew out. Mary had the pleasure of scolding Jay and said that if they see one more camera, then the party would be over.
As Marshall looked around at the rest of the crowd while Mary was talking to Jay, he saw someone that looked familiar to him. However, the man was in another room walking through a crowd of people. As an instinct, Marshall reached down to where his gun was on his hip to make sure that it was actually there.
He walked into the same room as the stranger and waited for him to turn around, hoping that he would be able to see his face. Mary saw that Marshall looked alert about something suspicious and began to walk after him.
The stranger finally turned to talk to someone and locked eyes with Marshall. The man noticed Marshall looking at him and worried that he recognized him. The stranger turned to a couple of men who were with him and together, they quickly left the gallery. The stranger was actually no stranger to Marshall, but it was someone who couldn't actually be there. Marshall's face went from being just serious to scared to death and Mary saw it. However, before she could reach him, Marshall ran out of the gallery as well. Mary ran after him and when she exited the building she found Marshall just starring off at nothing.
She walked up to her partner slowly, hoping not to startle him and asked, "Marshall, what's wrong? Who was that guy that you just chased out of there?"
When Marshall didn't respond, Mary grabbed him by the shoulders and put a hand up to his face to get him to actually look at her. They locked eyes for a minute and she saw something there that she had never seen before, tears and real fear.
Marshall faced drug dealers, murderers, and scum from the mob all the time because of their job and never once did he seem to bat an eye. The only time that she knew he had cried was when she was shot. She never saw it, but Stan had told her how he reacted and everything he did for her to make sure that they would catch the guy who did it. She had never loved her partner more.
Marshall finally looked at Mary and said, "I have to go, Mare. I'll see you in the morning."
Mary started after him, but he ran off and she knew she wouldn't be able to catch him. She had no idea where he was going. She doubted he was going home and she didn't plan on going home either. Marshall didn't ask her for help, but she knew that he was going to need it and that is what partners do. She went back inside the gallery and took out her cell phone to call Stan. She informed him that she was going to need him to get a warrant for the video feed from the security cameras inside the gallery.
Mary never did see who it was that freaked Marshall out, but she hoped that the cameras would give her some answers. Stan told her that he would be there as soon as possible. Mary was worried. Heck, she was scared. She wanted answers and had a feeling that things were only going to get worse for her partner. It was a feeling that she hated.
Within ten minutes Stan had arrived from the office, as well as someone Mary didn't expect to see again. Eleanor Prince was back in town. Mary guessed that she and Stan were on a date. Even though Stan never told the marshals that he and Eleanor were dating, they both knew anyway.
"Stan thank God you're here." Mary spoke as they walked in to the gallery. "I think that Marshall's in big trouble. I don't know how or why, but the way he looked before he ran off. Stan, he was terrified. We need to help him. Eleanor, long time no see."
"It's good to see you again too, Mary." she answered. "I just wish that it was under better circumstances. I am so glad that you are all right. I was worried about you when you got shot. I wish that I didn't have to leave before you were recovered, but you know how crazy our jobs can be."
Mary responded, "I have to admit, it's good to see you again too, Eleanor. I hope that you are going to be here for awhile because we could really use your help."
"You've got it, of course," Eleanor said.
Stan asked, "Did you see who Marshall chased after? Did he give you any clues as to who the guy was?"
Mary answered, "I have no idea, but he looked like he saw a ghost. I thought that we could look at the security cameras here to see if we can figure out which guest he was looking at."
Stan looked down at his feet, back up and replied, "I am afraid that Allison wouldn't call in for a warrant. She said that unless a crime was actually committed, there are no grounds for a warrant."
"I can't believe that woman," Mary yelled. "I want to kill her. How are we supposed to find out who this guy is without a warrant? I doubt the owner of the gallery is going to let us just look at the video without one."
"If asking doesn't work, I give you permission to threaten him," Stan said.
"I already tried that," Mary replied. "He didn't take to kindly to my threats. He wanted to kick me out. I told him that my partner was in trouble, but the man has no sympathy at all."
Eleanor spoke up saying, "Maybe I can get him to change his mind. I can be pretty convincing."
Eleanor walked away to talk to the owner, while Mary and Stan waited for her to come back. Mary grew more and more angry the longer she had to wait. She kept trying to call Marshall, but he wasn't answering his phone.
Eleanor came out into the main room in the gallery where they were waiting for her. She told them that the owner finally agreed to show them the security video and the three of them walked into the equipment room.
Each of them were about to get into something bigger than they ever had before and the consequences would be devastating.