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Critical Error 20

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“He’s issued physical threats but there isn’t much to go on.  Our hands are tied.”

“Give me a minute while I call the detachment and find out who’s working on the case.  I know a few people up there.   They might be able to give us some inside info.”

Paul leaned on the desk listening to the one sided conversation and then asked, “And?”

“Although they’re looking into the situation, they haven’t been able to obtain any hard evidence on the perp yet but according to Joe Morton, it’s credible.  The threats and calls had his hair standing on end, so it’s definitely serious.  I’ve asked them to forward any pertinent information to us as she’s here with her family, precautionary at this point, but warranted I believe.”

Paul stood absorbing what he’d heard.

“Are you planning on taking your vacation anytime soon?”

“As of this moment!” he assured him.

“Keep in touch, will you?”

“I intend to.  If you hear anything else, let me know?”

“Once a cop, always a cop?”

“Something like that.”

Paul rejoined Eilea and they left.  “My place is about a half an hour from here.  Ready?”

“As I’ll ever be.”

Paul led the caravan across town and out to the highway.  Andrew stayed with his mother, “Mom, do you like this guy?”

“I’m intrigued.”

“Oh.”

“Why?”

“Nothin’.”

“I just don’t like him.”

“Even if I were to get serious about someone, Andrew, I would always love you.  That will never change.”

“Yeah.”

“Do you believe me?”

“Yeah.”

“Good, because it’s absolutely true.”  They drove in silence.  Eilea watched the rear-view mirror and smiled noticing how cautiously Brandon was driving.  There was none of the carefree abandon she’d noticed earlier.  They seemed quite subdued for teenagers.

Twenty-five minutes later, Paul’s left turn signal light came on.  Eilea followed suit.  A block and a half later, his left turn signal came on again and she realized they were at his home.  And what a home!  It was a beautiful ranch!

Paul followed the half circle drive, stopping in front of the house.  Eilea pulled her vehicle up to one of the two doors in the garage,  killed the engine waiting until the van was parked beside her.

“You never said you had a ranch,” she called across while alighting from the vehicle.

“It’s home.”

The kids got out of their vehicle and gaped.  “Wow, look at this, mom, horses!”

“Aren’t they beautiful?”

“I would love to go riding.”

“An invitation would be nice, wouldn’t it?”

“Yeah, it really would.”

“Come in.”  Paul invited, unlocking the door and inviting everyone in.  One by one they entered until they all stood in a huge entrance hall.  Emerald green tiles surrounded taupe tiles, creating a diamond pattern that edged the room.

“Follow me, and I’ll show you where the kitchen is.”  The teens followed silently at first.


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