B.D. Cooper Mystries in: The Chameleon

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Chapter 2

The crescent moon had made its way clear from the evening storm when Cooper finally made her way home. The cab pulled up to 1917 Lincoln Parkway in the early morning light. Her mind not on the dirty cops like it should’ve been… instead it was full a devilishly handsome man those dimpled grin filled her mind with devilish thoughts.

She played the cabbie and shut the door behind her and took her first real breath since she left the Milk Maid. But she couldn’t help but wonder if it was from the lack of information that was bothering her, or was it the man who sat in the comer of a dive with a very expensive tux on?

With a tired sigh she made her way up the brick path to the family home. This was the one place that was her sanctuary from the cruelness of the world and all the dirty deeds that she witnessed on a daily basis. But most of all, it was the only place where she could feel safe from all the she had endured from her past.

Reaching into her satchel for the keys, she saw that no lights glowed threw the window and grinned. Everyone was asleep, and that had Cooper’s intoxicated head quite content at the moment as the throbbing in her head was now going into a pounding headache.

The key was just about to go into the lock when the door swung open. A young woman with bright blue eyes, flaming red hair with a freckled face was bouncing on her toes. “So, anything new going on out there?” Asked Cooper’s partner in spying, and adoptive daughter Adele.

Cooper peeled off her gloves, pushed by the seventeen year old exuberance at such a late hour. “Adele it’s to late to get into the specifics...” She answered heading into the kitchen to get something for her upset stomach.

“Oh come on B.D. Tell me everything.” Adele beseeched following closely behind.

“You should be in bed young lady. How many times have I gone over this with you about waiting up for me?” She sighed.

“Ah, come on, I just wanted to see if anything worth investigation turned up. You have to admit, it’s been dreadfully duel over the last couple months.” Came Adel’s complaints as she pouted and fell into one of the kitchen chairs.

Her eyes glanced over at her adoptive daughter and tried to hide her grin. There was nothing more satisfying then a young woman with spark for life! But Cooper cleared her throat putting on the more motherly look upon her face as she turned around. “Nothing more then usual.” She offered.

That’s when Adele’s eyes really took her in, then pale bare arms crossed as her pout became more pronounced. “Hey, have you been drinking?”

“Only a bit tonight.” She lied.

“But you said you weren’t going to be drinking anymore. Especially after your nightmare a couple months ago. And let’s not forget you falling down drunk before, and Ms. P having to go and pick up.” Adele reminded her.

“Yes, yes dear, I remember. But I lost myself in my part tonight. I promise it won’t happen again.” She placated, and prayed that Adel’s voice would not go up another octave higher when she spoke.

“Hmmm, I wonder…” Adele grumbled with a raised brow.

It was time to distract this seventeen year old little mother hen. “Something did happen tonight. Maxie tried to pick up on some big time multi millionaire and got turned down. But before that happened Rudy walked over to put a stop to it and you know what?”

“No what...” Adele asked completely enthralled.

“He backed away.”

“No he did not?”

“Yes he did. Took Maxie by the arm and turn tail and left. It was quite an interesting sight to see.” She chuckled.

“Rudy is the big guy, right?”

“Yes, a very big man indeed.” She nodded.

“So you think that Rudy’s her new fella? But wait, if that’s true why would she be hitting on some random guy?” Adele asked.

“That’s a good question, one I asked Rudy in fact.” She stated.

“When did you talk to Rudy?”

“Anyways, from what I saw this fella that Maxie was trying to hit on wasn’t interested. The whole thing was odd. From Maxie leaving the show to hit on this man, to Rudy going over to fight him, to him stepping back. But there was one thing that I noticed...”

“Which was?” Adele pushed.

“Her being rejected, it put her on edge.” She murmured.

Adel sat back, a hand going over her mouth while her other hand took hold of her elbow. “Hmm, that is pretty strange. So who was this dish that she was trying to snatch?”

“Some big shot named Emmitt Rosemond. So I thought she might’ve been upset because she missed her chance to catch her very own sugar daddy.” She sighed.

“Emmitt Rosemond. Really? I’ve seen his photo in the society pages. He’s quite the ladies’ man B.D. But why are earth would he be at the Milk Maid when he could easily throw himself a ring dinger of a party at his home. One that the coppers wouldn’t be called into raid?”

“Well that seems to be quite the question my dear. But to what he was doing there, or why he was slumming in some dive that mobsters gather at… that’s quit a mystery isn’t it?” She chuckled.

“I should say so. You know I read that he was going out with some famous movie star. Then you see him at some speak easy working the women. Sounds pretty sketchy if you ask me…” Adel said as she squinted her eyes and her hand went under her chin.

“He wasn’t working the women Adele. He was turning them down.” She stated.

“If you say so...” Adele smiled.

“He’s dating a movie star?”

“Well that was awhile ago. I’m sure that’s over by now. You know how fella’s like him would be with the woman.” Her daughter shrugged.

“Yes, I was given that explanation tonight as well.”

“I’m surprised you haven’t heard of him before.”

“Well, I had heard the name, but have never seen him. But I was told that he was as rich as the Rockefellers and a powerful as the mob. And tonight there were two big mobsters at the Milk Maid and not one single dirty cop. Makes one wonder if this mister millionaire had his hands into something.” She wondered.

“I heard the same things to.” Adele nodded.

“Fantastic, one more thing for me to try to get information on. I swear, if I can’t get some of these dirty cops out of the chiefs department, I’m going to get canned.” She sighed.

“Charlie isn’t going to fire you. You can’t help if theses cops are staying low right now. Besides, he’s also looking for the new bootleggers as well. I would think these places have them flowing in every night for you?”

“Not as much as you’d think. I’m afraid I’m going to have to get chummy with someone on the inside if I want to get better information. But, Emmitt Rosamond, I was informed that he has quite some pull in the seedy under world. He might just be the new bootlegger that the chief had been looking for.” She admitted going to the cupboard.

“Wow, you think he might be a bootlegger as well?”

“Well honestly I think a common place bootlegger is a little to uneventful for a man who can do just about anything he pleases. But maybe getting a little piece of the liquor industry…” She implied.

That had Adel lean forward with a smile. “Really? That means the coppers are going to have more on their hands then they’ll know what to do with.” She surmised, but then glanced over at Coopers with even a bigger smile. “So... what are your thoughts on Emmitt Rosemond?”

The bicarbonate and was placed in a glass, and it foamed and bubbled she took her first sip of the concoction before she bothered to answer. “Nothing, well nothing much yet. He’s a man that might lead me to some dirty cops that I’ve been trying to get my hands on. Who know he might be someone who knows about the flapper seral killer, if I’m lucky.”

“Really, that’s all?” Adele chuckled.

“Yes really. There’s nothing else to be said about it, and get that look off your face young lady. My goal is to get all cops who think there above the law that they don’t have to play by the same rules as everyone else. My life is already full between you and my job. The last thing I need it to get my head full of any man that could set my world topsy-turvy, again. But I will need to find out what precisely what this Emmitt Rosemond up to.” She stated drinking the foul tasting concoction of bicarbonate and water.

As she turned to say good night to her daughter, a large smile appeared on that freckled face “Well was he at least good looking? I mean, he always looked really handsome in the papers, even if he is old…” Adele hinted.

“Oh, drat you… Old? He was nothing of the sort.”

“Don’t you think it would be so much more fun to investigate when the fella who is the cat’s meow?” Adele giggled.

“Good Lord Adele. I wasn’t paying attention to his looks. I was paying attention to his actions tonight.” She lied, somewhat. “He’s a man who has connections… let’s see what those connections are or might lead us before we jump head first into what he looks like.” She grumbled with a roll of her eyes.

Adel was laughing as she got up from her seat to kiss her on the cheek and practically skipped off into the hallway. “Oh he must be a looker if you want even tell me about him. I would say it’s about time someone caught your fancy B.D!”

“He might be the serial killer for all I know...” She hollered, then thought better of it as her hand went to her throbbing head.

“I highly doubt a man like that is a seral killer.” Adele laughed going up the stairs. “Oh, I have class tomorrow. Then I’m heading to the library afterwards to study.”

“Yes that’s fine…”

“And…”

“And what?” She asked.

“Well I wanted to invite someone over for dinner this next week. I mean, I really want you to meet him so may I?” Adele asked twisted her hands on the railings.

“Him?” She asked and Adel nodded. “Oh lord, yes that’s fine. I would love to meet your gentlemen caller…”

“You’re so uptight sometimes. He’s my boyfriend.” Adele laughed.

“That’s Fine. But remember I’ll be heading off to the Milk Maids to see if anymore gangsters show up, waiting to find some dirty cops.”

“Or maybe you’ll run into Emmitt Rosemond again.” Adele chirp.

“Good night Adele!” Cooper groaned, completely exasperated and ready for bed.

“Yes, yes, and good night.” she heard her call back as she shut her bedroom door.

“Good Lord, children.” Was all she could whispered with a shake. She headed up the stairs when Adele’s door swung open and she stepped out.

“There’s t be no drinking tomorrow, I mean it B.D.!” Adele warned.

“Yes, yes, I promise.” She sighed.

“But you’ve promised before. No drinking!” Adele scolded.

“Alright mother dear... no drinking.”

“Alright then, good night.”

“Yes, good night dear.” Copper sighed as she closed her door. The last thing she remembered as she fell into her bed, cloths and all.

The next morning Cooper’s head pounded as hard as the person knocking at her bedroom door. She hoped in not answering, they’d soon go away and let her sleep off this hangover. But when another nock came she answered...“Yes, yes, I’m up, I’m up…” She moaned as she turned over.

Her eyes cracked open at the sound of the door being opened and Ms. Peabody came walking in with a large tray in hand. She put the try down at the foot of the bed then walked over to the large windows without a single word.

“No, no please. Ms. P…” She croaked, but it was too late. The heavy drapes were pulled back as the bright sunshine came streaming in as she fought with the blankets to cover her head.

Cooper peaked over the cover to see the old woman’s sour face glaring down upon her. “Bernadine, I heard from the child you were out drinking last night. You’re drinking as begun to consume you young lady…” She hissed as she the tray went to the dresser top and the curtain sprang open another drape on the opposite of the room.

“Good lord, have mercy on me you old taskmaster. My head is throbbing!” She groaned placing her pillow over her head. “And Shut those drapes, or my head will explode.”

The next thing she knew the protective pillow was pulled from her grasp and the blankest pulled back. “I see you’ve slept in your cloth again. That is a distasteful habit for a woman such as yourself.” Ms. Peabody started.

“Does that really even matter for me anymore? There’s no one here to see me.” She frowned slowly setting up in bed.

“Bernadine, I understand what you’re saying but you’re still a woman of means, you need to act like one. So, now you need to eat and bathed before you head down to the police station.” Ms. P said getting the tray.

“Did Chief Fitzmons send a missive this morning?” She asked picking up her sprits.

“Sit back and eat, then you can read…” Ms. P sighed.

Cooper sat back as the tray went to her lap. She picked up the dainty cup of coffee and the little piece of paper and began to read…

Ms. Cooper:

Need to speak with you this morning.

Please come to the station for an update.

Chief Fitzmons

“Well that sounds promising.” She smiled as she glanced up at her old nanny. But Ms. Peabody didn’t seem all too thrilled over the information. Instead she at the end of the bed hands in her lap and the sour face. “What?”

“Have you thought about not doing this kind of work anymore? It is very unbecoming of a woman Bernadine to do the things you do.”

“I love my job.” She huffed.

“All I mean to say is that you’re a beautiful woman. Maybe its time to find a man and settle back down? I do believe that would help your heart heal, and dry out your liver.” Ms. P pointed out.

“Good lord you’re critical this morning…”

“It’s almost afternoon…”

“Noon, really?” She asked and received a stiff nod from the woman in front of her. “Oh the chief is going to be quite unhappy with me. Anyways I’m not just some informant I’m an undercover informant. That my dear woman is so much more.” She wink hopping out of bed.

“Fiddle sticks! What you need is to settle down, not go wondering about…”

“My dear Ms. P. You’ve managed to get me up, and now I would like to get myself ready to leave within the hour.”

“It will take longer than an hour to get yourself ready…”

“Tut tut. I have a new disguise that I’ve been dying to try.” She chuckled.

“Bernadine…” The old woman moaned getting up from the bed with an disapproving shake of the head.

“As for your other worries I told Adele there’d be no more drinking, so there won’t be, I promise. I won’t put you through such things again, I swear. As for having another man to contend with… I don’t want or need one. I think I’d rather enjoys all my nights on my own instead of being a man’s play toy.” She argued.

“Such foulness…” Ms. P rolled her eyes.

“I’ve earned the right to be my own woman, and that's what I intend to be.” She declared going into the restroom and shutting the door behind her.

“Alright Bernadine. There’s no need to throw a fit like a child. I was just offering some motherly advice young lady. I’ll send a message to the chief letting him know you'll be on your way." Ms. P sighed.

Cooper threw open the door. “Hold on! Don’t send anything to the chief. I want to see if I can surprise him with a new disguise.” She winked and then shut the door.

“Lord help me…” mumbled the woman as she turned to leave.

“Ms. Peabody.” Cooper called out.

“Yes…”

“Thank you for the advice.” She called out.

“You're welcome. Now go get ready before the day has slipped past you... silly girl.” Ms. P smiled leaving the room and wondering what Cooper would come out disguised as.

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