Deacon tickled her more. “Eventually, you have to give up.” He stopped tickling her, kissing her instead, his hands taking an erotic journey over her body. “Or you could just succumb to my manly charms.”
“Succumbing to his charms, is it then? Well, I must admit, you are a wee bit charming.” She made a playful grab for his crotch.
“Only a wee bit? Hmm, haven’t we had this conversation?”
Deacon pressed hard against her, holding her tightly so she could feel his excitement. He kissed her, letting his hands roam around finding interesting things to fondle under her clothing. She looked up dreamily.
“All right, I admit it. You are very, greatly charming.”
Around one o’clock they remembered Reyes was coming by and hopped out of bed. They showered quickly and dressed. Deacon watched Kacy put on her clothing and dry her hair, thinking he had never seen anything so beautiful in his life.
“You’ve an odd look to your face, what are you thinking?”
“The truth, or a cleverly worded evasion.”
“All right,” he held her close to him, nibbling her neck. “I was thinking how incredibly beautiful, sexy and exceedingly wonderful you are. And I was also thinking what a lucky bastard I am for having you in my life, and how much I love you.”
“I love you too, Deacon. More than I ever thought I would ever love again.”
He kissed a single tear off her cheek. “I never was truly happy, until I met you. It’s a new sensation, and I am hopelessly addicted to it.” The doorbell rang and he reluctantly disengaged. “Too bad Reyes is prompt. He’s early.”
“You go open the door and let him in. I have to finish my hair and make up.”
“You look great as you are. Don’t worry about it, just brush your hair, you look fantastic.”
“I’ll just be a minute.”
Pete had never told her that. He had always told her she was beautiful, but only after she took some pains with herself. She had loved him so much in the beginning, but realized in a sudden rush of anguish, that they had been growing apart the last couple of years. More and more often his jobs had taken him on remote locations, where she couldn’t join him.
She had spent nearly six months in New York, working on and off Broadway with various companies, contracting out as she was doing here. At first, she and Pete had taken turns making the long flight between New York and LA. Then it had gotten to be too expensive, too much time, too much trouble.
In a sudden epiphany, she realized that their relationship had practically been over, before Pete had gotten hurt. He had died in her heart a long time ago. She thought she should feel something akin to sorrow or despondency, but she couldn’t. She wanted to see Pete’s face in front of her as she had so often over the last year, and it kept being supplanted by Deacon’s.
She put the final brush stroke to her hair, pinched her cheeks for a little color and went out to welcome Reyes. He was there with woman who looked more like a doctor than a police officer, but Kacy didn’t say so. Deacon made a pot of his very nearly lethal coffee. She poured herself a cup, taking her time in the preparations of her mug. It was a little ceremony to keep her from the feelings of foreboding she sensed from Deacon and Reyes.
The woman was enigmatic, hard to read. She might be a counselor, Kacy suspected. Reyes’ news must be bad, and this woman was there to insure Kacy didn’t do anything crazy.
“Joan McDermitt,” the woman said when she was introduced. She had light blonde hair pulled back severely in a French twist, her pale blue eyes were almost cold and certainly calculating. She was pretty in an austere, ice princess way.
“Ms. Du Champs, Mr. Stewart says he mentioned our earlier conversation.”
“Yes, Deacon told me you’d called, no details, the swine!”
“I asked him not to, ma’am.”
Kacy digested that piece of information, shifting her shoulders uncomfortably. “I see. What’s so terrible that you can’t discuss it with me?”
Exchanging a look, the two police officers glanced at Deacon, who shrugged.
“This is why,” Reyes said quietly as he handed her an envelope.
Kacy’s hand hovered over the contents as she tipped the items onto the coffee table. Each was in its own carefully labeled evidence bag. Selecting the note, she scooted the pictures and the clipping into chronological order. Her face was blank, unreadable, which to Deacon was more frightening than hysterics. She stared at the pictures for several minutes after she read the note. Her face grew pale, but she otherwise did nothing overt. Deacon wondered what was going on in her mind. Her hands shook, the only indication of her emotional state.
“I don’t understand,” she said faintly. “How can all this be related?”
“We were hoping you could tell us. Did you or your husband have any connection with the theater?”
©2021 Dellani Oakes