The next morning Ranger kissed me awake at seven o’clock. “We are meeting at eight with the team, Babe, so you need to get up and moving.” I think I growled at him as I rolled over and burrowed more deeply in the covers. “Babe”, he said with an exasperated laugh. He pulled back the covers. I opened my eyes in a slitty glare. “I have coffee.”
“Bless you.” I sat up and groggily tried to open my eyes all the way. My brain was telling my eyes to open, but my body was not cooperating. Ranger tucked my hair out of my face and pressed the coffee cup into my hands. I sat there for a minute, just breathing in, letting the smell of the coffee start waking me up. After a minute, I took a sip and, letting the coffee kick start my day, opened my eyes fully. “Mmm”, I said, savouring the flavour of the coffee.
“Better?” asked Ranger, a smile on his face.
“Much, thank you.” I drank half of my coffee down, then got out of bed. Ranger caught me and pulled me onto his lap.
“I like you when you are all snuggly like this”, he said, nuzzling my neck.
“When I haven’t brushed my teeth or used mouthwash? You are insane.”
Ranger laughed. “I am nuzzling your neck, remember?”
I mock hit him on the arm. “Let me up. I need to go to the bathroom.”
Ranger gave me a kiss. “You taste like coffee.”
“I still have to go to the bathroom and, unless you want a wet lap, I would advise you to let me go.” Laughing, Ranger let me go. I escaped to the bathroom to brush my teeth. “Do I have time for a shower?” I called out from the bathroom.
“A quick one. Ella is going to be up with breakfast in fifteen minutes.”
I popped in the shower and shampooed, conditioned, washed and shaved in under twelve minutes. I was flying. I got out of the shower smelling of Ranger’s signature Bulgari Green scent and my shampoo and conditioner, and slathered on Bulgari Green body lotion. I combed the tangles out of my wet hair and moisturized my face, finishing just as Ella came into the apartment and left our breakfast for us.
I came out of the bathroom, borrowed Ranger’s housecoat, and walked through to the breakfast bar as Ranger was dishing out bowls of fruit and plates of scrambled eggs, ham and toast. He poured the two of us a fresh cup of coffee, doctoring mine with cream, as I got out cutlery, a jug of juice, and two glasses. Ranger and I sat down and started to eat.
“Do you have any special instructions that I need to give the staff for today?”
“Not that I can think of.”
“How do you envision a capture going down?”
“I envision that I will show up, bottle of Jack in hand, and meet up with the Rangeman crew. I have a signatory sheet for the felon to sign, and I am going to ask for photo ID at the same time. Then, when the felon reaches for the bottle, I envision one of the Rangeman staffers snapping on cuffs. I have bought nine bottles of Jack, as I don’t think it is fair to catch them and not give them the bottle. I think that could result in anger and violent behaviour. I will then let the Rangeman staff lead the felon away while I shut down the house and take care of anything that I need to take care of. When I am leaving for the next house, I will call the Rangeman team assigned to the next house and let them know that I am coming and will meet them there.”
“Is there anything you need from us to get the job done?”
“I will need a copy of Tank’s schedule as to who I will be meeting at each location, as well as a list of contact numbers for each of the Rangeman teams. I already have the bottles of Jack in the car as well as the signatory paperwork on a clipboard.”
“I have called in the entire capture team for the briefing this morning. They will be in the boardroom at eight. We can go over everything with them, then let the staff doing the afternoon captures go off shift.”
“Also, just an idea, I was thinking of billing Rangeman for the hours that I have worked on each of the captures as well as setting up the day today, then giving the entire capture fee to you. It will be a significant piece of cash since there are so many people to capture. I think it is only fair to Rangeman to do it that way.”
“No, we are not going to bill it like that. Rangeman’s standard sixty/forty split is acceptable, with forty for you and sixty for us.”
“This is requiring more time and more people than a standard sixty/forty split. I will accept eighty/twenty if you insist on doing it that way.”
“How about we compromise at sixty-five/thirty-five?”
“That’s not a compromise. Seventy/thirty and that is as low as I am willing to go.”
“Deal. I am not happy with it, but that is a deal. Remember, you have put a lot of time and energy into this capture. I would hate to see you not rewarded for it.”
I shook my head. “You’re too good to me.”
“I can be even better tonight. Will you stay over?”
“I’m not sure. I may be pretty tired”, I said with a smile.
“I am good with sleeping as well.” And that was the thing with Ranger compared to Morelli and The Dick. They were never satisfied with just sleeping, and I knew that Ranger meant it.