Deacon frowned, staring at her. “Kacy, whoa.” He put his hands up as if she held him at gunpoint.
Blinking, she realized what she had just said. “Oh, God, Deacon. I’m so sorry. I’m being an idiot again.”
“It’s all right, Kacy. I should just have told you. I didn’t want to alarm you.”
“Tell me what, Deacon?”
“Detective Reyes called about that envelope we found. There were pictures of the theater and a typed note in it. That’s all.”
“What else are you not telling me?”
He looked her in the eye. He was a pretty good actor, he hoped he could pull off the denial. “Nothing, Kacy, I swear.”
“Don’t lie to me, Deacon. I could always tell when Pete was lying.”
“I’m not Pete, and I’m not lying.” His stomach growled. “But I am hungry, let’s go eat.”
They drove in silence to a small restaurant on the beach strand and took a table on the deck, facing the water. It was high tide and the waves broke against the retaining wall below. Deacon lit a cigarette, smoking was allowed on the deck, and watched her profile in silence.
“Do you not trust me?” She didn’t look at him, but stared out at the breakers.
“Sure I do, Kacy.”
“Then why don’t you tell me?” Her head suddenly snapped back, her expression accusatory.
“Nothing to tell. Three pictures, a note. No leads. End of story.”
“Pictures of what?”
“I dunno, the theater covered with paint…”
“What did the note say?”
“Reyes didn’t mention.”
“Deacon!” the tone was unmistakable. Anger and misery welled up inside her as she fought for control. “Do you think I can’t handle the full story? Do you think I’m a baby, or something?”
“No, I don’t.”
“To which question?”
He paused, then spoke one word with finality. “Both.”
“Well thank you very much! I’ll call Reyes myself then, shall I?”
“I doubt he’s going to tell you, or he’d have given the information to me to share.”
Fuming, she reached for her cell phone, dialing rapidly. He didn’t try to stop her, simply sat quietly, smoking. Reyes was out, so Kacy left a message for him and hung up.
“Let’s eat, shall we?” she feigned happiness as their food arrived.
Deacon ate mechanically, in silence. The food was probably delicious, but he hardly tasted it. She was furious with him. How did things always manage to go from fine to horrible in moments? She overreacted to everything. He was unsure how to gauge her reception of the news from Reyes and suspected the policeman was, too. Based on her emotional outbursts prior to now, he had visions of histrionics. He was unsure how to handle that and rather unwilling to find out if he could cope. He preferred not to have his emotional inadequacies handed to him on a silver tea tray.
“Let’s get along to the bank,” her words came out more of a demand than a request.
Deacon paid the bill though she insisted upon leaving the tip. It was rather larger than necessary, but he didn’t argue.
The bank had just opened and was virtually empty, when they went in and spoke to the receptionist. She took their names, writing a brief message about what they wanted. The account officer ushered them into a cramped, austerely decorated office, complete with pictures of her husband and children on the desk. Her name was Sandy, and she was a prettily tanned, relatively intelligent, bleach blonde, a little on the chubby side.
“Now then, will this be a joint account?” Her smile was genuine.
“No,” they answered rather abruptly, in unison.
The smile faded slightly. “Oh, usually couples do that. I apologize.”
Kacy opened her mouth to say something caustic, but Deacon intervened. She was already angry with him, more wouldn’t matter. But there was no need to draw this nice, mild mannered lady into their argument.
“No apology necessary, it’s a logical assumption. We’re not married, and prefer having our funds separate,” Deacon explained.
Sandy’s smile was fixed and slightly inflexible, but she carried out her duties, filling out the paperwork expeditiously. She didn’t even blink when Deacon handed her nearly five thousand dollars in cash.
“The account process takes a few minutes. I’ll take care of your deposits and be right back so you can sign the final copies of everything, and get your signature cards.”
The silence weighed heavily upon Deacon after Sandy left, a trail of her perfume lingering in the air. Kacy tapped her foot in an agitated manner, refusing to look at him. His phone rang and he stepped outside to answer, catching Sandy’s eye as he did so. She nodded, continuing her transactions.
Deacon lit a cigarette, checked the caller ID and answered. It was Reyes. “Yes, Detective, how can I help you?”
“I got a message that Ms. Du Champs called. Did you tell her anything?”
“Only there were pictures and a note. Nothing specific. You got me in a heap of trouble. She got mad when I didn’t tell her everything, and isn’t speaking to me as a result.”
©2021 Dellani Oakes