Meet Me In St. Louis

“You want to go to St. Louis?” Brass sounded doubtful as he shuffled the papers on his desk.

Grissom stood firm. “I… I don’t have to go. In fact, I’d rather not. If we can find something here that will lead us to Nick, well, I’d like to be here when that happens. But someone should. We need to look deeper into Dean Rogan’s life.”

“Adams and the SLMPD already went through all of that,” Brass assured him. “They did their due diligence. Her file on that guy is a mile high – you should know, you’ve been looking at it all day. Did you get any sleep, Gil?”

Grissom opened his mouth to respond, but Sara beat him to it. “But we have new information, info that Detective Adams and the SLMPD didn’t have before. Our killer’s a woman. That not only changes the profile, it changes everything.”

Brass sighed. “OK, well, Adams is probably sleeping by now, but—”

“Wake her up,” Sara said, as if it were as simple as that.

Brass glared at her. “Do you know what Riley Adams has been doing all day? She’s been out there with our officers questioning potential witnesses, expanding her profile, and on the phone with St. Louis. She came back here covered in sweat with blue slushy in her hair and staining her shirt.” Sara looked about to ask, but Brass cut her off. “I don’t know, she wouldn’t tell me about it. The point is, I’m inclined to let her take her break. Listen – I’m taking this as seriously as you are. You want to send someone to St. Louis? Fine. Adams will meet you there.”

And then, a small voice from behind them all said, “I’ll go.”

Grissom and Sara turned, and Brass looked up to see Greg hovering in the doorway. He fully entered the room, and for a moment no one said anything. Then, Brass nodded.

“Sure, I’ll let St. Louis know you’ll be on your way.”

“Great,” Greg said. “Any of you fine folk wanna give me a ride to the airport?”

Riley stepped out of the bathroom, dabbing her wet hair with the towel and turning on the television. She grabbed her brush off of the desk and sat down on the edge of the hotel bed, brushing out her hair as she channel surfed. She tried to avoid any of the local news channels. She was afraid of the stories they’d be telling. Instead, she settled on a familiar sitcom.

It felt good to unwind after a long day of hard work, which equaled absolutely nothing. No surveillance photos picked up any suspicious characters carrying a body, and no one who was working last night would admit to seeing anything strange. She knew she didn’t have long before she needed to put her nose back to the grindstone. She did thank her lucky stars that she didn’t know Nick Stokes personally, though. She felt that her presence was a necessary one for the Las Vegas team, as she provided an outsider’s perspective, an impartial one that could potentially see things that they would miss. Unfortunately, she didn’t feel like she had been very useful to them today.

When her hair was brushed and she was bored of the sitcom, she switched off the television and fell back onto the bed. Her eyes fell closed, and she felt the rest of her body following them into unconsciousness when she was jarred awake by the loudly ringing phone on her bedside table. Suppressing a groan, she reached for it and held it to her ear.


“Did I wake you?”

She smiled. “Jim Brass. Nope, just watching some TV. What’s up?”

“Greg is on his way to the airport right now,” Brass said. “I was just going to leave you a voicemail giving you the details.”

Riley sat up. “Where’s he going?”

“St. Louis,” Brass said. “You can join him in a few hours.”

“No, forget that,” said Riley as she got to her feet. “I’ll go now.”

“I already talked to SLMPD and they said—”

“They don’t know him,” Riley said, “and he’s not a detective.”


“Weren’t you the one who described my precinct as cliquish?”

Brass paused. “Oh. I see.”

“Yeah,” Riley said as she pulled on her jeans. “Trust me, things will go a lot smoother if I’m there with him. Tell him to get two tickets for the plane. I’ll meet him there.”

When she arrived at the airport, she spotted Greg at the check-in desk and immediately jogged up to him. She got there just as he turned around holding the tickets, and he looked up at her, mildly surprised.

“How’d you get here so fast?”

“My hotel is literally right next to this place.”

But Greg was unconvinced. “Brass said you were asleep. How did you—”

“It’s a nonissue,” Riley said. “Let’s hit the security line.”

Riley hated airports. She didn’t mind airplanes, it was the airports she couldn’t stand. All that standing around, waiting, and not moving anywhere... At least when she was sitting around waiting on a plane, she was going somewhere. As she and Greg waited wordlessly in the security line that refused to budge for an hour, she began to tap her hand against her thigh, growing more agitated by the second.

In contrast, Greg was reserved, almost vacant. Once in a while, he would crane his neck and stare with glassy eyes up at the front of the line, but that was the only sign he gave of his thoughts on the subject. If Riley had known him better, she may have realized how unusual this was. But as she didn’t, she assumed he was just being patient, never knowing that patience was a virtue Greg had never learned. Neither had Riley. Finally, she burst.

“Come on,” she said, seizing Greg by the wrist and ducking under one of the security divides.

“Hey!” a TSA employee shouted as she pushed her way past equally irritated people in the lines. She cut across the snaking queues, ducking under the black seatbelts that delineated them. And all the while, the TSA called out to them until they reached the one checking passports.

“Ma’am, you’re going to have to wait your turn like everyone else,” he told her.

She flashed her badge. “We have urgent business in St. Louis and our plane leaves in thirty minutes.”

The TSA agent sighed. “Do you have your boarding pass?”

Yes, I have my boarding pass,” Riley retorted, then her heart began to beat faster. She dug around in the pockets of her jeans and her jacket but couldn’t seem to locate it. “It’s… um…”

“Here,” she heard Greg say as he handed over the two tickets.


Riley slammed her badge on the podium in front of him. The TSA agent cocked an eyebrow.

Photo ID?”

Riley wrinkled her nose in distaste, then fished out her wallet and showed him her driver’s license. Greg already had his out. The TSA agent flashed a purple light over the IDs. He handed Greg back his and his boarding pass.

“Ma’am, this license is expired.”

“What?” Riley gaped, then snatched up her license. She could hardly argue with him. Apparently, it had expired last month. The TSAs in St. Louis hadn’t mentioned it when she came to Vegas. She sighed. “Does it matter? It’s ID.”

“You should get that renewed,” said the agent.

“For Christ’s sake, a man’s life is in danger, do you want me to tell the media that it was the Vegas TSA who got him killed?”

The agent clicked his tongue as he wrote something on her ticket. “What is it with you PD types? Everything’s always more important than what we do. Well you know what? What we do is important too. Homeland security’s just a few words to you, but it’s what I do every day.”

The look of affronted shock must have betrayed her because before she tell him that a police academy drop out who abuses his power by humiliating every airport patron that he possibly could was the farthest thing from homeland security, Greg squeezed her hand and pushed her towards the metal detectors.

“You’re absolutely right, sir, thank you so much for your patience.”

Riley threw her bag down onto the conveyer belt. “Why did you tell him that? Guy’s nothing but a bitter, washed up—”

“Watch it, Riley,” Greg whispered. “We want to get on the plane, not be held in contempt by security.” He emptied his pockets and walked through the metal detector without a hitch. Riley glared at him before striding through the detectors herself. Though she heard it beep, she ignored it.

“Ma’am, could you please empty your pockets and step through again?”

Grumbling, she walked back through and realized she’d neglected to take off her badge. She slammed it into an empty bin by the metal detector and walked through again. And just as before, somehow, she’d set it off.

“Could you step to the side, ma’am?”

“I’m a cop,” she said, seizing her badge to prove it. “Can I go now?”

“To the side, ma’am.” He watched her with a blank expression. Greg was already shouldering his bag, which had come through the x-ray with no problems. Riley managed an ugly stare.

“You’re not serious. I need to be on that plane to St. Louis tonight, sir.” She spat the polite title with venom.

“You won’t get there any faster by arguing with me,” the TSA agent insisted.

Riley opened her mouth to retort when she noticed a female agent standing next to her with a handheld metal detector. “Oh, for the love of…” She bit her tongue and followed the woman to a mat with two yellow footprints. She followed protocol, spreading her legs as the agent ran the device over her body. She stared at a far corner of the ceiling, bitterly.

“She’s clean,” the female agent announced.

“Told you.” Riley made a point to shoot daggers at the TSA agent by the metal detector as she took back her things at the end of the conveyer belt.

“We could have been at the gate by now,” Greg mumbled as they made their way off to the gate. “Why can’t you just cooperate?”

Riley gaped. “Are you kidding?”

Greg said nothing, he simply walked faster to the gate.

Alexa waited for a second, afraid to move. And then, she spoke. “I know why you’re crying.”

There was a sniff, and then a shuddering intake of breath which he soon sighed out again. “I thought… you were asleep.”

She chose her words carefully. “I think I’ve been asleep for a long time.”

He shifted beside her. She knew that he understood what she meant, but he didn’t say anything.

So she spoke instead. “You probably don’t want to be near me right now.”

Again, there was no answer. He had gone back to his silent treatment. She understood. She slowly sat up and looked down at him. A part of her still saw her father in his face and it made her shiver. “I’m… sorry.”

“Don’t.” It was one word, one simple word, but it was uttered with so much revulsion, she didn’t know if she could stand it.

“I wasn’t always like this…” she said, her fingers snaking into her hair as she closed her eyes. “This… schism. In me. It’s a recent thing. I wasn’t always… you know.” She looked at him, trying to see any sort of response in the dark. But he was still. She continued anyway. “For a really long time, I… I was OK. I wasn’t great, but I was OK. I-I-I take these… pills, you know? For… whatever it is I have, I take pills. I haven’t been taking them. That’s the problem.” She waited for him to ask why. He didn’t. So she didn’t explain. “When I killed Dean… I thought that I was dead for sure. I would go to prison, and they would lock me up. And I thought that I should start taking the pills again. But then… but then… but then, this really sinister… thing came over me. I can’t even describe it. But it was, like, this thought… This big, overbearing thought that wouldn’t go away, and it told me… exactly what to do. And it told me that I needed to find him again… my father. It told me that he was out there, everywhere, hiding from me, and that if I found him, he would fix it, if I found him, I could be safe again…” She sighed and closed her eyes a minute before opening them again and looking down at him. She was overcome with a wave of deep affection for this man she barely knew, whom she sometimes was absolutely convinced was her father, but other times knew, she knew, that he was a man she could never keep. “I know you aren’t him. Sometimes, I do, I mean. Like now. But even… even when I don’t… know, I mean. Even when I don’t know you’re not him, there’s… there’s always something, really, really deep inside me that notices something’s not right. Do you… do you think that means that there’s… hope? For me?” Again, she waited, again, no response. She dared to inch closer to him, and he jolted away from her. “Nick?” she begged.

Using his name seemed to register something in him and he actually turned his head to look at her for the first time. “Alexa…” he began, as if uncertain of what to say. And then, he laughed. It was a curt, mirthless laugh, but it came from the gut. “Oh God, Alexa... You’re asking… me if there’s hope for you when I…” He looked away from her again. “When I don’t even…”

She seemed to know what he was trying to say. She sat back on the bed, hugging her knees to her chest. “You and me, huh, what a pair? Couple of hopeless…” She searched for the word, but she couldn’t find it. Her mind was slipping into other corners of her reality. She looked down and smiled at the man before her. She inched up close to him and placed a loving hand on his chest.

“Look at that, Daddy,” she said. “I can feel your heart beating.”

She heard him stifle a sob, one that she deduced was from the sheer joy of her proximity. And then, he surprised her.

“Yeah,” he said, his voice strained. “Me too.”

It was only a three hour flight, but it felt infinitely longer to Greg. He didn’t order any drinks, and he didn’t talk to the flight attendants, and he didn’t watch the in-flight entertainment. He didn’t even know what it was. He was happy to just stare out the window.

Beside him, Riley was ordering a slew of alcoholic drinks, and probably racking up quite a bill in the meantime. When Greg had commented on her looseness with her cash, she had replied, “I got two words for you: per diem.”

Greg snorted, knowing she would claim these drinks as part of her daily expenditures, and wondered if the SLMPD would foot the bill to fuel what he deduced was the beginning of an alcohol addiction. Still, he let her have her drinks, because she let him have his silence. Or, at least, until her third gin and tonic.

“You always this…” she moved her hand in a circle in the air, “way? Or is something up?”

“I don’t want to talk about it,” he said.

“’Cause, you know…” she began. “Word at yer lab is you used to be this… loud and obnoxious tech who took the somber out of every case.”

“I was never obnoxious…” But even as he said it, he knew it was probably a lie. “Who said that anyway?”

“I forget yer names,” Riley said, dismissively. “You’re all CSIs to me. Uh… the girl. Not the blonde one, the other one.”

Greg sighed and turned to his window again. “Yeah, she would call me obnoxious.” But he smiled as he said it.

“So?” Riley prompted.

Greg glanced her way, but did not turn his head away from the window. “So what?”

“Happened?” Riley finished. “So what happened?”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Greg muttered.

“Mm, yes you do,” she said, pointing a finger at him. “See, at first, I thought you were just being quiet and toned down ‘cause that’s just who you were. But then I remembered what Brown Eyes said about you being obnoxious, and I was thinking, sheesh, if anyone’s been obnoxious on this trip, it’s been me. So what’s your deal, CSI?”

Greg didn’t respond, but he suddenly wished that he wasn’t sitting next to a drunk detective.

Riley sighed and leaned back in her seat. “OK, like, for example. Why are you going to St. Louis?”

“So I can help Nick.”

She made a sound like a game show buzzer. “Wrong. I can see right through that. Jim told me that, uh, that your other friends, they didn’t wanna go because they wanted to do more in Vegas, find him in Vegas, because where is your friend, most likely? In Vegas. The only thing we’re looking for in St. Louis is information that can lead to your friend. Who, by the way, is in Vegas. So why did you want to go to St. Louis? Why not stay with your other CSI chums in Vegas so that you can be there when they rescue him?”

Greg leaned his head back in the seat. “Because Nick’s not in Vegas anymore.”

This clearly threw her. “Of course he’s in Vegas, where else would he be? Unless you know more than you’re telling me.” The tone in her voice was playful, but Greg closed his eyes.

“No,” he said. “Nick’s not in Vegas. His… body is.”

This finally managed to silence Riley. She turned to face forward in her seat. And then, she hiccupped. But she was quiet for another minute. “You think he’s dead.”

“You don’t?”


“Why not?”

She paused. “Greg, our killer. She keeps these men alive for three days.” She looked at her watch. “It’s ten o’clock. Hasn’t even been twenty-four hours.”

Greg shook his head. “He’s dead. He’s dead, I know that he is.”

“Or are you just convincing yourself so that you won’t feel it if it ends up to be true?” Riley said.

Greg buried his face in his hands and exhaled. “I told you, I didn’t want to talk about it.”

Riley put down her glass on her tray table. “Oh my God… you really think he’s dead, don’t you?”

“It’s not because I want him to be,” Greg muttered. “Not like you said, like I’m trying to… prepare myself. It’s because, Riley… Riley, if he isn’t dead, then what is she doing to him? What does she do to them for three days before she kills them?” He shivered. “No. I can’t think about it.”

Riley stopped the flight attendant as he passed. “I need one more gin and tonic.”

“Ma’am, you’ve had three already.”

Riley paused. Greg looked up. “It’s not for me,” she said. “It’s for him.”

Alexa seemed content with his silence. Nick wasn’t sure why, but it made it easier. She didn’t feel compelled to fill it with babbling or more sickeningly sweet coos and kisses. He couldn’t stand her kisses. Every time her lips came near his skin, his entire body tensed. She never seemed to notice, or seemed to misinterpret it as a good sign. It almost made it worse, that she thought he enjoyed it.

He had no idea how long he had been with her. Her disturbing sweetness was strange enough, but he wondered what would happen when she turned on him. Her previous victims told him that it was inevitable, and she had outright told him she’d kill him eventually. Nick wasn’t worried with if so much as when, and if there was any way he could reach her rational side before it happened.

He should have taken his advantage when she tried speaking to him earlier, but there was too much going on in his head at that point in time. He couldn’t look at her. He could barely speak to her. But she had reached out to him. She had tried to explain herself, even relate. What’s worse, Nick felt himself reciprocating. He felt sorry for her. He felt sorry for her. And he didn’t know why.

“Alexa…” he breathed, slowly.

She shifted beside him, placing her hands flat on his chest and her chin on top of them. “Hm?”

“Tell me a story,” he said. “Tell me a story… about us.”

Her eyes grew wider. “About us?”

“That’s right…” He tried to keep his voice from shaking. “Like… our first… time.” It was hard to say. “Tell me about our first time… together. How old were you?”

She smiled. “I was eight,” she said, and Nick almost winced, “and I was nervous. Even though you told me not to be, I was, and you told me I would like it, but…” She held her breath. A single tear slipped out of the corner of her eye. “Daddy, can I tell you something?”

Nick grit his teeth, closed his eyes and nodded. “Of course you can, sweetheart.”

She looked at him with big, doe-like eyes. “Daddy, I… I didn’t. I’m so sorry, Daddy. I said I did. I let you… I mean, I let you teach me. I let you show me, and I tried to be a good little girl, Daddy, but I couldn’t stand it. It hurt, Daddy. It hurt so much, and I wanted it to stop. But I didn’t tell you, because… because I didn’t want you to be mad at me.” She gripped his shirt in her hands and clenched them into fists. “I’m so sorry, Daddy. Do you hate me?”

“No, sweetheart.” And what surprised Nick the most, was that answer took the least amount of effort to say convincingly. “No, I don’t hate you.”

“But I learned, Daddy,” Alexa said, smiling through her tears. “I swear, I did, I learned to like it, like you said I would. It took a while. It did, but I realized, I realized you were my Daddy. You were my Daddy, and you would never do anything to hurt me.”

Bile rose in Nick’s throat and he couldn’t look at her anymore. The fire was burning in his chest again, a loathing so deep and ancient that it could never be buried completely. But it wasn’t directed at her. No, Nick didn’t hate her. He hated the man she thought he was. And then, a thought occurred to him.

“Alexa,” he said slowly. “You never have to apologize to me.” The smile that spread across her features only encouraged him. “It’s my fault. All of it.” And now, he couldn’t hide the tremor in his voice. “Everything I ever did that hurt you… it was wrong. And I’m sorry.”

Little by little, the smile on her face slowly faded. “You mean… you don’t really… love me?”

Nick’s breath caught in his throat. “Alexa, I mean that if I really loved you, I would have never done those things to you.”

Her eyes welled with tears, and Nick felt strangely as if he’d just told her that there was no Santa Claus, which, in a way, he had. “Don’t say that, Daddy…” she whispered.

“Alexa, I’m only saying this now… because…” Why was he saying this now? “Because I care about you. I care about you now more than I ever did before, and do you know why?”

She blinked. Her sad face twisted into one of innocent confusion and she shook her head.

Nick took a deep breath. “Because I don’t want you to hurt anymore. I didn’t care if I hurt you back then.”

“That’s not true!” Alexa protested, climbing on top of him again as she grinned. “It’s not, remember? Remember, you protected me from Mamma?”

Nick frowned. “What did your mother do to you?” he breathed.

Her grin wavered slightly and she let out a curt, “Huh. Right. What she did to me? Plain as the scar on both our faces.”

She did that?” Nick gasped.

Alexa nodded. “To me. To make me less pretty, so you wouldn’t want me. She wanted you all to herself, but you know what you did? Oh, Daddy… oh, beautiful, beautiful Daddy!”

Whatever Nick had done, it had been the wrong choice. She was touching him all over and goosebumps erupted at her touch. His whole body seemed to ripple with tension as grit his teeth and breathed heavily through his nose.

“No, sweetheart,” he managed to say slowly. “Not now.”

“But I want to,” she said, as if that was the only reason to do it.

“Daddy’s tired, Alexa.” He hated saying it that way. But somehow, it made her listen, like none of his other pleas had before. She withdrew her hands and nodded, but she did not get off of him.

“You cut your own face,” Alexa said. “It was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen.”

Nick knew there was no reasoning with her if she truly believed that. Still, he had tapped into something here. Maybe he could take advantage of it.

“Alexa…” he began slowly. “Could you untie Daddy?”

She frowned, then slowly shook her head. “No… No. You’ll just leave me again.”

“But I love you, Alexa,” Nick persisted. “Why would I leave you?”

“You left me before,” she said. “Mamma – Joanna, she made you leave me, she stole you away. What if she takes you again? No, no, no, I’m sorry, Daddy, but you’re safer here.”

Nick was growing impatient as he forced a smile. “Alexa? Darling? Untie Daddy now.”

“It’s not safe,” she said. “Not yet.” And then, a thought occurred to her. “I need to remind you what she did to you…”

“What?” Nick uttered. “What? What did she do to me?”

She rolled off of Nick and swung her legs over the bed. “If I remind you what she did to you, you’ll never let her take you again.” She nodded. “I should have thought of it before.”


“Stay right there,” she said. She opened the closet and pulled out an ironing board, on top of which sat an old, rusting clothing iron. As she plugged it into the wall, Nick’s heart began to palpitate. He remembered Lincoln Meyer, and he remembered James Sherman, and he knew exactly what she planned to do with that iron.

Walking into the St. Louis Precinct was like walking through the looking glass to Greg. Riley, who had sobered up in the final hours of the flight, slipped back into her old role as if she had never left.

“OK, folks, we have a missing LVPD agent in Vegas and our best bet is Dean Rogan, what are my bids?” Riley called out loudly as she strode through the detectives’ desks of the precinct. She stopped at the end of the aisle and spun around, looking expectantly at a couple other detectives.

“Got Gina Garelli on the line,” a sandy-haired man called from one desk. “Says she kept a list of the other guys and girls she knew her boyfriend was schtupping.”

Riley pointed at him. “Yes, Ash, great. Why didn’t she give it to us before?”

“They’re only first names,” Ash replied, “and she says she thought she used the list to roll a ‘cigarette’.” He made a point to put air quotes around the word “cigarette” as he balanced the phone between his ear and his shoulder.

“Take the names,” Riley told him. “Anybody else?”

“What about Rogan’s debts?” asked a Latino detective as he typed into his computer. “You know – the gambling stuff? Maybe he met this girl in Vegas on a binge?”

“Raf, that is what I’m talking about,” Riley said. “Connections. Nice. Check and see if Rogan had any flights to or from Vegas in the past year. Ash!”

Ash held a hand over his phone. “Yeah, boss?”

“Ask Gina if she knows if any of those girls are from the Vegas area.”

Riley continued in this manner, conducting the detectives around her like an orchestra as she continued to brainstorm and shoot out ideas that her team could expound upon. Greg felt like an audience treated to a secret show. Riley, who had been stern and reserved in Vegas, had performed a complete one-eighty, just walking in and taking charge of these other detectives around her, who seemed to know the second that she walked in the door exactly what she was looking for. Greg knew she must have been coordinating with them by phone from Vegas, but never had he seen anyone work so fast. It was like watching a skilled dancer execute her moves perfectly, and Greg was in awe. He had to sit down in a chair.

“Off-putting, isn’t it?” a voice beside him said. Greg looked up to see an olive-skinned woman with black ringlets tumbling down her back. “How comfortable she looks up there? Never truly happy unless she’s chin-deep in a case. That’s our Riley.”

Greg shook his head. “That’s not our Riley,” he said.

She sighed, then gave him a quirky smile. “You must be from Vegas.”

Greg suddenly remembered his manners. He got to his feet and held out a hand. “Greg Sanders. Las Vegas Crime Lab.”

“Crime Lab?” the woman repeated as she took his offered hand. “Did you… know the guy that was taken?”

Greg felt a lump rise in his throat. He swallowed it. “We knew each other,” he confessed.

She nodded, knowingly. “Right. Riley and I? We kinda know each other, too.”

“Noemi!” Riley barked authoritatively. “Get your ass over here! You think you can hide from me?”

Noemi winked at Greg before looking back at Riley and replying, “Not at all, girl. So what’s the deal? Kicked out of Vegas already?”

“Hey Rafael, you wanna trade partners?” Riley asked. “Mine’s a real pain in the—”

“Stop slacking off, Riley, we got a victim to find,” Noemi said as she strolled down the aisle.

Riley’s smile grew sad. “Noems is right. Look, the guys in Vegas have been nothing but awesome to me, giving me full access to their cases.” She caught Greg’s eye at the other end of the aisle. “I wanna pay them back for that hospitality. Everyone, that man over there’s Greg Sanders, from the Vegas Lab.”

Ash wrinkled his nose. “He’s a fungoid?”

Riley slapped him and he expressed his distaste with a curse. “No, he’s not a fungoid, he’s a CSI, chuckles.”

One of the other detectives spoke up, “Wait, but I thought that’s what we called all CS—”

“No, Haverman, shut up,” Riley hissed, looking almost embarrassed. “I want everyone to be nice to Greg while we’re here.”

“What do you mean ‘while we’re here’?” Rafael asked slowly.

“Because we have a flight back to Vegas in six hours,” Riley replied. “Which means we’re wasting time.”

“Why are you going back to Vegas?” Noemi asked.

“Because the case isn’t closed,” Riley told her, as if it were obvious. “I have to go back.”

“Wouldn’t your part be done, though?” Noemi pressed. “You gave them all the info we had, they gave you what they had. You stay here, check out things on this end, and they—”

Riley held up a hand to stop her. “Noemi, can we talk about this later? You said it yourself…” Her eyes lingered on Greg. “We have a victim to save.”

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