A novel by Karen Lockhart
Copyright© 2016 Karen Lockhart
We decided to get two antipasto salads and share them between the four of us; a good idea since Ellen and I wouldn't eat that much, leaving almost a full appetizer for the boys. (Ever notice men like to be called 'boys', and women hate being called 'girls'?)
Pete and Kevin ordered draft beers, while Ellen and I had a nice white wine, wow, stereotypical, huh?
When the waitress came back, I ordered ravioli with a vodka sauce, Ellen and Kevin decided on Scallops Rockefeller, and Pete ordered a boring ziti and meatballs.
We made small talk during dinner, and basically got to know each other better.
Pete was fascinating, telling stories that sounded like scripts from NCIS, or CSI Miami. Somehow, he kept them proper to discuss while having dinner.
Of course, the mystery we were the most interested in struck closest to home, the disappearance of one Vincent Morales.
Opinions being like noses, everyone has one, ideas flew back and forth. It took me a little while to notice, but the only one not speculating was Pete, instead, he listened intently to our thoughts.
I finally called him out on this, Pete laughed good naturedly, “You are all smart people who also knew Morales. As an investigator, I would be asking questions like these, and making copious notes. Honestly, I think old Vinny's still out there someplace. No one else agrees with me, but my little voice keeps telling me he's alive.”
With that, I leaned forward and started to speak. Pete looked at me and said, “I don't think he is going to a Dunkin Donuts on the Lynnway though, sorry Ginny.”
Ellen smirked at me, “See, I told you you were seeing things kiddo.”
Kevin and Pete decided to split the check. Isn't it great to be a woman! Free dinner, well, we pay by dancing then later doing something we wanted to do anyway!
We made our way to the club side and found a table. No sooner than we sat down but a cocktail waitress took our order.
I ordered a Cosmopolitan, Ellen grinned at me shook her head, and ordered a Beefeater Martini. The boys ordered draft beer again, this time though, it was draft Younglings.
I only just recently heard of that beer from another rider at the barn. Her boyfriend talked her into giving it a try. Youngling is the oldest American brewed beer that no-one ever heard of.
As soon as our drinks arrived, we got up and danced.
The band leader must of seen us coming, because they immediately played a couple of slow ones.
This gave me the opportunity to put my arms around Kevin's neck, and tuck into his body. I looked over at Ellen and Pete, she was doing the same.
I was really happy for her. In the ten months I had known her, she had never even mentioned men. For a while I actually thought she preferred girls. In the beginning, I thought this was okay, because I kind of preferred girls myself.
After a couple of hours and another round of drinks, the consensus was to head home and have dessert and coffee. This time I had baked a strawberry and rhubarb pie. I thought for a change, I'd start baking cakes.
It was an uneventful ride home; Ellen and I were sleepy, but woke up as we turned onto our street.
Over coffee and pie, the subject of Vinny Morales came up. It was good that Tina had returned to her apartment across the street, otherwise the conversation would have been different.
We agreed Vinny was too smart to go out in a Northeaster in a twenty-eight foot boat. But where did two men disappear to?
Ellen asked Pete if he thought the Mob was looking for him too.
Pete nodded, “Yeah Vinny knows too much. With the Drug Task Force making arrests across New England, they're worried he'll make a deal and disappear until the Feds want him at their trials.
After he said that, I started thinking. “Doesn't his disappearance smell like Witness Protection run by the US Marshals?”
Pete stared at me, his mouth slightly open, “Dammit! Dammit! The Feds, of course! Any time you want a real job Ginny, drop by the office. We'll issue you a Sig handgun of your own, and put you to work thinking for the rest of us.”
If a human can preen, that's what I did.
Ellen looked at me and said “What a combination we make, 'Dirty Harriet' and 'Sherlock' Hanson.
After we stopped laughing, Ellen asked Pete if we had to worry about him, if indeed Vinny was in the Wit Sac program.
“I doubt it,” he said. “No way he'd show his nose around any of you girls.”
This time I let him get away with 'girls', knowing he wasn't being demeaning.
“As a matter of fact, he's probably in Iowa or something like that. First thing in the morning though, I'm going to have Sergeant Shriver cast a wide net through-out New England. You never know, the Feds may want to keep him close to the Federal Courthouse in South Boston.”
“If you find him, won't you get in trouble with the Marshals?” I asked.
“Oh heck, I'm always in the Feds' doghouse; it's part of the job. Look what happened with Whitey Bulger. Every time we got close, the Federal Bozo's tipped him off. As a matter of fact, we made arrests at Logan Airport only to be told to let them go!”
We kissed the guys goodnight and prepared for bed.
In the 'old' days, my prep was brushing my teeth. Now it was folding my clothes neatly, and removing my make-up before tooth brushing. After finding a warm extra long Tee shirt I was ready to welcome the Sandman.
Sunday dawned gloomy and damp, a perfect day to spend in front of the fireplace with a book.
I pulled up the latest J.A. Jance mystery on my Kindle Fire. Buying Kindle books from Amazon for three dollars was great. I used to buy penny books, but the shipping was $3.99; this made the book's cost four dollars.
With Kindle, I could also read the books on my laptop. My library also included several by Tanya Allen that I bought through that Big Closet site. I guess when you do that BC gets some money on each book purchased. This makes Erin purr a little.
At three in the afternoon, Ellen turned on the Celtics' basketball game. I listened to the announcers in the background while I read. J.A. Jance writes about a woman County Sheriff in Bisbee Arizona, She also writes about a male detective based on the West Coast.
Who says a woman can't write about a man from his point of view, and still be a loving wife and mother? I would suppose it's harder the other way around, but it shouldn't be.
Can you imagine W.E.B. Griffin or Tom Clancy with a distaff heroine?
Just think, in 'The Hunt for Red October', can you imagine a young woman dealing with Sean Connery? Or in W.E.B. Griffin's series 'The Lieutenants', the head of an armored task force in the Korean War, a woman tank commander? Wouldn't work.
After a few perilous days, Sheriff Joanna Brady wins out and still has her family's love. Time to start Tanya Allen's “The Marine, Book 1”
Don't you love it when a six foot three inch, 230 pound man feels he's really a woman. Imagine him in 4” heels!
But Tanya manages to make a great story by sending him through time, as a sort of time cop. But no more, I don't want to ruin a good yarn by telling the story.
Over the dinner table, Ellen brought up Vinny again. She's obviously worried for me and Tina.
She said on Tuesday morning, we'd head for the gun shop and my new pocket pistol!
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