“Nick!” I shrieked, while throwing myself over the cluttered center console of his department issue Crown Victoria in search of the control that opened the driver’s side window. “Over there!”
Giving me his version of Maggie’s puzzled look, Nick scrunched his brow, tilted his head to one side and shrugged his shoulders. “What?”
I pecked furiously at the air with my finger in a madman’s attempt to direct his gaze toward the old Ford F150 that was currently backing out, slowly enough to not garner any unwanted attention, but too quickly for me to get the license number.
“What? The lady with the fan?” Nick queried, visibly confused.
“No!” I screamed in panic, as the window finally receded into the door. “The F150! Get the license number!”
“Why?” was barely out of his mouth when Maggie, lunging toward the open window, leapt through the bucket seats, exploding an old cup of coffee left seated in a cup-holder in the process.
“Just get it!” I howled, amidst a spray of fetid coffee and curdled milk, Maggie’s continued mayhem punctuating the urgency of my request.
Tugging hard at Maggie’s lead, I succeeded in getting her off the driver’s seat and into my lap long enough for Nick to get back in the car. By the time we got her into the back seat, the entire cab was a flurry of liberated dog hair..
“Did you get it?” I huffed, as I attempted to pull a few stray strands from my tongue, but succeeded only in introducing several more
“Yeah. But, what the hell’s goin’ on here?”
“That truck. That guy. His boots. They’re water stained. Don’t you see?” I yelped frantically, as Maggie ran back and forth along the bench seat in the back, yowling in shared frustration- and the battered old Ford made a right out of the parking lot and disappeared into traffic.
“He’s getting away!” I moaned miserably, my heart sinking in defeat.
“He’s not getting away. I have his license number, and we are not alone out here. I’m a cop remember? We have the entire police force at our disposal- If we need them.” Nick assured me as he pulled the radio handset from the dash and called in the license number. “Now tell me, coherently please, what is going on?”
I reminded Nick, that before the two uniforms descended on the crime scene, formerly known as Mabel’s apartment, I had seen the distinct impression of what could only have been rugged soled work boots in the soaked hall carpet outside the bathroom where Mabel’s lifeless body was perched naked upon the commode. I went on to explain that the guy driving the truck had not only been wearing boots consistent with the impressions, but they bore dark water stains that rose up over the stitching and splashed onto the toes, the kind of stains that could easily have been incurred by walking through the standing water in Mabel’s hall carpet.
Although Nick listened intently, I could tell by the placating look on his face he was not as sure as Maggie and I were, that the driver of the truck was our perp.
We sat in relative silence, as the settling dog hair adhered to the spray of cold coffee still dripping from the car’s headliner, and Maggie- nose pressed to the glass, kept vigil at the window, waiting for the truck to reappear.
A calm, monotone voice from the radio broke the silence.
“Mathers? That plate number? GHL 785? Comes back as belonging to a 2003 Lincoln Town Car owned by none other than Jennifer Longstreet, aka Miss Jenny. You know her. Whore house over on 82nd. Plate not reported stolen. No clue as to your male driver.”
“Augh!” Nick groaned as he scribbled the ownership information under the license number he had scrawled on a blank page of his notepad. “There has to be a better way!”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” I asked, as Nick dropped his head into his hands and rubbed his thumbs into his temples.
“It’s just that- well, this Miss Jenny character. She’s a real lu-lu. And all I can say is if she’s involved, this case is gonna get a lot weirder than it already is.”
This is yet another chapter in Maggie’s on-going adventures. The story can be read in it’s entirety by following the Maggie’s Story category header. Today’s episode includes the three phrases provided by the OLWG prompt #125. The phrases were:
- Miss Jenny
- there has to be a better way
- the lady with the fan