Sookie and Tim are there when Janet wakes. They’ve brought Colonel Coffey with them. Tissue Warning
Coffey slipped in quietly. He was dressed in civilian clothing and looked far older than the last time she’d seen him.
“How are you feeling?” He asked, approaching the bed with caution.
“Better than I should, I expect.”
“I came as soon as I found out,” he said, taking her hand. “I’ve got men out helping the police. We’ll catch him.”
“Why?” she asked, her eyes tearing.
“I owe you that much,” he said. “You deserve closure, and I can help with that.”
For once, she didn’t feel anger toward Coffey. She squeezed his hand. “Thank you. You don’t look well, Colonel.”
He smiled, laughing slightly. “What I always liked about you, Janet, you don’t ever sugar coat a damn thing. I’ve come into your life, like hell in a hurricane, and you’ve always told me exactly what you think. I’m sorry that I always had to be the one to hurt you. I’m actually a pretty nice guy, when you get to know me.”
“Well, have a seat and talk to me.”
“We’ll come back,” Sookie said, kissing her.
Tim kissed her too, and they left.
“That’s another fine young man there. Wish I had me a hundred just like him.” Coffey watched them depart.
“He’s a wonderful man. He’s taken good care of us.”
“Your son’s a hell of a kid too. Don’t suppose I could coerce him into the service?”
“You try, and you’ll wish you hadn’t.” She wasn’t laughing when she said that.
“Sookie told me what he did last night. His father would be proud.”
“I don’t remember much of last night. Tex was waving a gun at my boys. I saw Tim and Sookie and the rest is a blank.”
“I’ll let Danny tell you. He can answer all your questions. He’s talking to my men, coordinating the search. He knows some of Macy’s hangouts. Apparently, he’s kept an eye on him all this time.”
“On Tex? Whatever for?”
“He took Diego’s directive to heart. He told him to look after his mama, he’s been doing that.”
Janet blinked back tears. “I was dreaming about that when you came to see me…. How are Len and Tab?”
“Doing well. They sent their greetings. They’re due in about three.”
“Them too? I don’t know how to thank you, Lane. I’ve been so horrid….”
“I did what I had to, you did, too. I never wanted to take him from you.”
“You’re a good man, despite that one character flaw,” she said with a grin.
“I’m a very bad man, but a very good friend,” he replied. “Diego inspired the kind of loyalty I’ve never seen in another human being.”
“Why does it still hurt so bad to think of him? Why do I still feel that horrible, gaping maw where my heart belongs?”
He took her hands, raising them to his lips. “Because when someone that special leaves, the hole is bigger,” he said. “Now, I need to let you get some rest, or your doctor’s going to skewer me.”
“You’ll let me know about Tex?”
“I’ll keep you posted. It’s a big city, lots of wide open space around it, but I’ve got my best people on this.”
He saluted her as he left.
©2020 Dellani Oakes