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Shades of Gray

By Robin Douglass All Rights Reserved ©

Mystery

Blurb

Every cop has a case that they can’t let go; one that keeps them awake at night, taunting and mocking them until the cop either sinks into bitter regret or solves the case. Every man has a love that he can’t hold on to; a wild thing that won’t be caged or tamed that will either consume or define him. For Commander Michael Bimonte and his partner, the key to solving the case he can’t let go is the one thing neither man could hold onto.

ONE

“Hey Donnie,” whispered Marcus. “Are you sorry you came now?”

It had taken Marcus a good half an hour to convince his best friend that hiking three miles to their favorite fishing spot was a much better idea than going to school. Donnie had tried to argue that this close to the end of the school year, neither one could afford to ditch school. It didn’t matter that May had finally allowed spring to come to the Adirondacks and the trout were just as eager to enjoy the warming temperatures as the boys. Both were on the verge of flunking classes that would send them to summer school and Donnie knew that his father would kill him if they were caught skipping school again. Donnie had tried in vain to plead his case, even while he and Marcus snuck back to his house and stole his fishing gear from the back porch. Donnie had been running down all the horrible things his father was going to do to him if they got caught for pretty much all of the way to their very super secret fishing hole when they realized that someone else appeared to have beaten them there.

“Just great,” Donnie complained. “Come all this way just to have some stupid tourists go and mess up our spot.”

“Shut up,” hissed Marcus. “Maybe it’s just the forest rangers or guys from the DEC stocking the river. It’s no big deal. We’ll just wait until they leave.” As soon as Marcus offered this information he regretted it. Donnie’s face immediately morphed into a panicked grimace and he looked like he was going to pass out.

“Great! Just perfect!! Then I wouldn’t have to wait till we get home for my Dad to kill me. He could just do it here and leave my body for the bears.”

“Stay here, you big blat ass and I’ll see who it is.” Marcus dropped his fishing tackle by the trunk of a big white pine tree and scurried toward to the edge of the clearing.

Donnie slumped down against the tree as images of his Dad, in his precisely pressed forest ranger’s uniform glaring as he and Marcus snuck into the clearing, the ensuing ass chewing they would certainly get and his subsequent murder ran through his head. Donnie pushed the heels of his palms into his eye sockets, trying to push the image of his Dad standing in front of him snapping his belt as he was grounding him for life with out hope of parole, EVER, when Marcus tackled him from the side, effectively face planted him the soggy wet needles and pine cones, slamming his face in the tree roots.

“Jesus,” complained Donnie as he righted himself and began picking forest debris from his clothes and hair. “What’s the matter with you?”

“This trip just went from good to fan-tab-ulous Dude! Wait till you get an eyeful of this.” Marcus looked like he just might explode as he said, “Dude! It’s better than skin-a- max.”

The boys quietly sprinted to a slightly elevated crop of boulders that overlooked their favorite fishing hole so they could watch what was happening by the bank of the river. Hidden from view by a stand of young Aspen trees, the boys flopped down on their bellies to enjoy the show. Spread out on a little grassy patch of ground, half way between the woods and the edge of the river was an assortment of camping and fishing gear scattered haphazardly in the clearing and it seemed as if an attempt to cover it in clothing was underway. The boys were wide eyed with delight as an assortment of male and female garments flew through the air from a near by blanket and landed helter skelter on the gear. Then amid the fluttering clothes and laughter, a man and woman rolled over on the blanket into view. The man appeared to be in his early forties; his body was quite fit for his age, toned and slightly tanned, but it was the woman who commanded both the man’s and the boys’ attention. She appeared to be in her mid-thirties, tanned, fit, with ample breasts and completely naked.

“Well?” Marcus drove his elbow hard in to the side Donnie’s ribs. What do you think of those?”

The man had pulled the woman onto his lap and while his face obscured the woman’s face from the boys’ view, it was her well-developed breasts that held all three males’ attention. The man ran his hands up the sides of the woman and pulled her into a passionate kiss. Then he eased his mouth along the sides of her jaw, gliding his lips along her neck, along her collarbone slowly until he had buried his face between the woman’s breasts. The woman moaned softly and arched her back as the man leaned deeper into her cleavage, pulling her closer to his body. The woman slid her hands up the man’s back, tangling them briefly in his hair as she raised them to her own hair. She reached behind the back of her head, released the hair tie and freed a mane of auburn curls which she shook over man’s buried face, as she leaned into his embrace, covering his head.

“Wooo ooh,” giggled Marcus. “Is he gonna get it now!”

“Holy Shit,” gasped Donnie. Look!”

In response to her lover’s caresses, in one fluid motion, the woman rocked back on her heels, and a second time threaded her hands into her hair. As she moved forward, one hand on the man’s shoulder effectively pushed the man on to his back. The boys were too far away to hear the click of the blade of a stiletto that shot from the palm of her hand. They only caught the momentary flash of the sun’s rays shining off the blade before she slid it under the man’s chin and quickly drew it across his throat.


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