C A I N
“Don’t doubt me.”
“Excuse me for being human,” Harry huffs, his eyes rolling at my crumpled clothes. “You can’t go into the office like that.”
“Yeah? Watch me,” I grin, and Harry laughs.
“You look like you spent the night in a skip.”
I don’t care what I look like. Last night a nurse took pity on me and allowed me to stay with Max.
Harry had picked me up before the doctors did their rounds, and here we were.
“Fine. Take me home first and I’ll change,” I tell him, shaking my head.
“You’ve got ten minutes, tops,” Harry calls after me as I jog towards my house. The stench of hospital clings to my skin, and I scrub it off under a hot shower. I feel elated to have Max back, but I’m annoyed I have to go into work to focus on the original case rather than the one I was desperate to solve.
I tug on a pair of dark jeans and a shirt, rolling up the sleeves before slicking my hair back with some wax. I spritz some cologne, nodding at my reflection with satisfaction.
Harry pretends to be asleep when I get back to the car, before doing a double take.
“Ah, you’re back.”
“So guess who is in custody?”
I frown, twisting my torso to face him.
“Yan?” I ask hopefully.
“No,” Harry throws his hands up with exasperation. “Not yet.”
“He fucking will be,” I mutter, as Harry shakes his head. He pulls away, and I sit and stew about Yan. “He’s hardly a criminal mastermind.”
“Andy is out,” Harry points out, and I snort in response.
“Yeah, on bail. A kidnapped girl is still saying it was him, more or less, and another we found in his house.”
“Arge Santo is in custody,” Harry continues, ignoring my Andy comment. “He was part of a drugs bust last night, and I’ve got a feeling he’s our guy.”
“Trafficking guy?” I ask with interest, my eyes still scanning the streets for Yan. I wouldn’t stop until I found him.
I’m alerted to a text message from Charlotte.
Charlotte: I’ve sent Max your number, she has a new phone. I’ve attached hers at the end of this message. Make sure you get the bastard who did this, Cain. C x
“Who’s that?” Harry yawns, slowing the car in line with the traffic.
“Your wife,” I smirk as he clips the back of my head.
“That will be the last time you ever use your thumbs, mate,” Harry warns cheerfully.
“She’s got Max a phone,” I mumble, programming the number into my phone. Harry nods, sending me a side look.
“Have you told her yet?”
I barely look up, typing a text out to Max.
“I said, have you told her yet?” Harry repeats, edging the car forward.
“What are you rattling on about, old man?” I exhale, turning my attention to my partner.
“Have you told Max you love her?” Harry smiles, glancing at me with one hand on the steering wheel.
A strange laugh escapes my lips then, and I shake my head.
“None of your business.”
Words like that weren’t to be thrown around lightly, and I would know when to say them to Max.
When we finally reach the custody station, there’s a buzz about cases of money that were seized in the raid. Harry nods at me as I pull a trainee detective to the side, her eyes wide with anticipation.
“What’s your name, sweets?” I murmur, and she flushes scarlet.
“Maisie,” she replies, and I nod.
“Do me a favour, Maisie. You know that money that was brought in last night? Could you run a check on the bills for me?” I look her in the eyes as I smile hopefully, and she nods.
“Yes, Detective Harvey. Shall I call you if there’s a match?”
I send her a copy of the bills from my personal email, and she promises me she will let me know if there are any matches. Harry and I did this anytime there was any money seized off the streets, just in case.
“I want to run some surveillance on this Hayley Dupont,” I say to Harry, who is hunched over a computer with intense concentration on his face.
Harry steeples his fingers as he groans.
“If she sees you, the shit hits the fan. Just so you know.”
“She won’t,” I shrug, as he tosses his keys to me.
“Make sure she doesn’t.”
Forty minutes later I’m sitting outside a beauty salon, reading a newspaper. It’s a reasonably mild day, and I’m enjoying pretending to be enjoying the sun. Hayley was a creature of habit, it appeared. Her Facebook was public and filled with her little check ins. It seemed she came here every six weeks exactly, probably to get her roots done or some shit.
I don’t so much as look into the salon, but my ass almost turns square waiting for her to surface. When she leaves, her hair is shorter and darker than the photo I’d shown Andy. She was a pretty thing, all hoop earrings and low-slung jeans. I walked after her, stopping to check my phone like I was waiting for someone.
The thing with surveillance was, sometimes you can get lucky. Other times, you’re following the same person for months, hoping to get even a tidbit of information. Hayley stopped off to pick up some food from a bakery, coming out with a box she held carefully.
I pause, watching as she waits on the pavement, her eyes searching up and down the road impatiently.
She seemed oblivious to the appreciative looks she was receiving, her eyes repeatedly scanning the road. What was preoccupying her so much?
Today was a lucky day.
A white Land Rover glides around the corner, the driver screeching to a stop in front of Hayley. I zoom in with my camera, videoing her getting in the car. My heart was hammering in my chest, my teeth biting into my lip so hard I tasted blood.
The only blood I wanted to taste belonged to the driver who I now had on video with Hayley Dupont.
Who may just have a motive.