The characters of this fiction are the sole property of A.C. Henley. There is drama, violence, sex between women, and bad language. If any of these things upset you, move along. If you have good or bad things to say feel free to email me at
email@example.com. Many thanks to Pam and ‘kisses' to Sherry.
Just a little story about a PI. She has no special physical skills or supernatural skills. She finds plenty of trouble but in the end everything turns out just ducky.
Etta James singing A Sunday Kind of Love drifted from the speakers of the white '77 Chevelle as it sat parked along a busy Los Angeles thoroughfare. No one even gave the car or the driver a second glance as they went about their business. It was considered rude to intrude on the privacy of others in LA, and that included making direct eye contact with someone on the street. The trained eye of the driver, however did not subscribe to such a belief and took note of three drug dealers, seven prostitutes, two pimps, and four panhandlers, along with the midday bustle of hundreds of workers going about their afternoon rituals. All were just background noise. The watcher wasn't interested in anything except for the sweaty bald man that leaned against a taco stand on the corner. Gray eyes kept track of his every move from behind dark Wayfarer sunglasses. Where he looked, whom he spoke with, how much food he ordered, how he paid for his meal, the puzzle pieces fell into place in the drivers mind as she watched.
Her tanned hand ran over short, spiked, black hair. A glimmer of silver from slim fingers twinkled in the afternoon sun as the hand came back to rest on the large steering wheel. The other hand gently kept time with the bluesy music against a muscled thigh that was encased in faded ripped denim.
The man looked about nervously, even looking directly at the driver of the car, who just stared passively back at him not caring if he knew he was being followed or not. He jerked his eyes away from the white car, trying desperately to mask the fear that welled up from that brief look. He gathered his bagged food and headed down the crowded walk hoping to fade into the lunchtime mass of humanity.
She watched her prey as he wove in and out of the pedestrians. Giving the man just long enough to believe he had eluded the watcher, the big V8 engine came to life and the white car pulled into traffic.
The man huffed his way warily around a corner and leaned against the warm masonry of a long ago abandoned building. He watched as the car passed him and continued down the congested street. It passed through the next light and seemed to continue on. He sighed in relief, and then felt foolish for his behavior, thinking his paranoia was at an all time high and that he needed to just relax. He stood from his leaning position and continued down the side street unaware of the other set of eyes that now tracked him.
Quang Ngo was a slight man. He was commonly non-descript and could blend in well with the crowded Los Angeles sidewalks. When his victims had been asked to give a description of him the best they could come up with would be Asian, with black hair. His mother was American, his father second generation Vietnamese in this country. He took after his father in stature and coloring; his mother had gifted him with, or was it cursed him with, green eyes that he hid behind mirrored sunglasses, or dark brown contacts. He could pass for anything from Korean to Chinese if need be, and spoke six different oriental dialects to cover all his bases. He had actually only been caught once in his sordid criminal life. That one time brought him to understand how he was affecting society with his behavior, and bringing shame to his family. It also was the reason why he was walking thirty feet behind the man he had been detailed to follow. It was called a ‘favor', but it was actually penance — penance he accepted with great humility. And after all it was kind of fun, Quang had found he was good at following people, finding out their little secrets, and reporting back the minute details to his benefactor. He was always paid for his time, although he often wondered about that. Why should he be paid for anything he did for the one person that quite frankly saved his life, and possibly his soul?
The little man continued on his way for several more blocks, until he came to a redbrick, four stories, and hotel. The building told its age by its wood-paned windows and iron fire escape that zigzagged it's way down the front of the building. An ornate concrete molding ran the course of the roof; Quang thought the little creatures at the corners looked to be fabled gargoyles.
He crossed the street and was able to read the faded sign hanging over the double glass doors that were encased in iron bars. He leaned against the large glass window of a liquor store and lit a cigarette. He then produced a cell phone from his pocket. A short conversation later the phone found its way back into its pocket. Quang now waited. He knew it wouldn't be long, and actually only got two drags off his cigarette before the big white car came to a stop in front of him.
The car's occupant emerged and walked to stand beside him. Slender fingers liberated the burning cigarette from his mouth and helped it find its way under a black boot. He looked indignant as he lowered his mirrored glasses to glare at the woman beside him.
"A filthy habit," the woman said with a shake of her head, "I thought you were gonna quit?"
Quinlan McKee was not a tall woman, nor was she overly burly. She was even a tad shorter than Quang's modest 5'6''. But she had an atmosphere about her that demanded respect. And Quang did respect her, but that didn't prevent him form reaching out and tapping the square patch on her shoulder, exposed by the black tank top she wore neatly tucked into her jeans. "I'm just waiting to see how you do with this. I'm not spending no sixty bucks for a band aid that doesn't work; shit McKee that's twice a carton of cigs!"
Black sunglasses were pushed up to rest in the thick black spikes of hair. "You are a coward Mr. Ngo." Gray eyes pierced green. Quinlan liked the kid. He turned out to be the best backup out of all the people she had to choose from. He had come a long way in the four years they had been associates. She knew without a doubt she could trust the man with her very life if need be.
"Nope… I'm cautious." Quang retorted solidly. "And you owe me a cigarette."
McKee smiled, flashing straight white teeth. "I'll see what I can dig out of my couch when I get home." She looked over at the hotel, "think he's had time to settle in?"
Quang pursed his lips in thought and finally answered, "Sure sure, by the time we find out what room he's in he should be settling down to chow."
McKee nodded. The two pushed off the window and crossed the street, dodging the indifferent traffic. Quang stayed a few feet behind the woman as they entered the building. He knew his job at this point was to watch her back as she worked. This freed her up to do what she needed without distraction. His eyes traveled to the .45 pistol tucked in the back of her jeans. He had never seen her shoot the weapon, but had been on the end of that very gun one time. He shivered at the memory.
The door opened with a clank, then settled closed with an agonizing squeak. McKee stepped up to the counter that was lit by a bare bulb that swung in the wind caused by the inadequate fan that wobbled and moaned persistently from the middle of the ceiling in the dingy lobby. She wondered to herself why these places always smelled like urine and stale beer. It was all so cliché. A skinny man with a patchy beard sat behind the counter, his attention focused on Judge Judy. The pale glow of the TV gave his skin a sick blue hue that just seemed to fit the whole setting.
She tapped the counter with her blunt nails gaining the man's attention. He seemed reluctant to leave his chair, but eventually stood and shuffled his slipper-clad feet to stand before her. She spoke evenly, "I want the room number of the man who came through that door just a few moments ago." She pointed to the entrance to clarify her request.
The man scratched his beard. The woman wasn't a cop that was for sure. She didn't have that cop veneer. He took a quick look at the man behind her. Round mirrored glasses reflected his face back at him. Neither one's a cop, maybe mob? He thought as he considered the request. A strong hand gave a swift jerk that brought him closer to steely gray eyes.
"Two ways old man: easy or hard. I don't care which at this point."
Now his attention was focused only on the gun that was pressed between his eyes. He should have known something was up with that guy. It was always that way with the ones who paid their rent up three months in advanced. "44, top floor, second door on the right." He spoke rushed in an endeavor to have the item removed from his flesh.
McKee smiled sweetly, "Well that was easy." She chided as she put the gun back in its place. She took one look at Quang who simply nodded and moved to take her place at the counter. He would watch the clerk to be sure he didn't tip off the man upstairs. He lowered his glasses on his nose to let his unnatural green eyes rest on the scruffy clerk.
With her back covered in the lobby, McKee opted for the narrow staircase. The small elevator looked a little dubious. She arrived at the fourth floor with a sigh; her legs burned a bit with the climb, and she admonished herself for not doing her daily run and exercise. She made a mental note to rectify the matter soon. Room 44 was right where the clerk had said it would be.
The brown door looked like it needed a new coat of paint, and one of the fours hung askew to its partner. McKee pressed an ear to the door, listening for activity on the other side. All she heard was the muffled sound of either a TV or a radio. She gently tried the knob to see if it would turn. There were times she got lucky with this maneuver, but today wasn't one of those times. A small leather case emerged from her front jeans pocket, she knelt and the small metal picks found their way to the lock. The smallest of clicks announced her success, and she eased the door open just a crack.
The bed blocked her view, but she could see the man she had been following for three days sitting at a small table in front of a window. He was happily eating on a large burrito, the sauce ran down his chin, and he seemed to moan, enjoying his meal, oblivious to being watched. The man moaned again, longer this time, and a slight movement from below the table caught McKee's eye.
A small blonde head bobbed up and down at the man's crotch. The implication of this action was immediately clear to McKee as she stood from her crouched position and silently entered the room.
Donald Peterson was enjoying his lunchtime ritual. He closed his eyes as the boy between his legs serviced him as he had been taught. The sudden departure of the table in front of him and the warm wet mouth on him, brought his eyes open. A powerful hand clasped his throat, causing his mouth to gasp for air and expel the partially chewed food. The cool metal of a gun muzzle soon replaced it.
"One move you sick pervert and the tax payers of Los Angles get to save the money it will take to keep you in prison for the rest of your sorry life." The words were firm and unwavering. Quin pushed the gun further into the man's mouth and removed her hand from his sweaty neck, wiping her hand on the man's shirt. She looked about her quickly trying to locate the small boy she had pulled off the man. She found him huddled next to the bed beside another boy with dark hair and sunken brown eyes and a collar and chain fixed about his neck. Her rage rose quickly, and she was quite unable to prevent her fist from striking the man in front of her squarely in the face. A gush of blood from his nose covered her hand holding the pistol. She withdrew the gun as he whimpered in pain and cursed at her.
She picked up a dirty towel from the table and wiped her gun and hand clean of blood. She spotted the phone cord running from the wall a few steps away. It took little time to tie the man's hands behind his back, securing him to the chair. She paced a few minutes, trying to calm down enough to do what she needed to do, but her eyes found the two boys again and she was compelled to take a bit of revenge.
She didn't want to kill the man, just make him hurt. Her training was extensive in the martial arts, and she knew how to inflict pain without causing death. By the time she was finished he was still conscious, but a lot worse for the wear. McKee shook her right hand; the last punch to the man's jaw was hard and she thought that perhaps she had broken the throbbing appendage.
"You won't get away with this. I have rights!" The man spat through his now bloody mouth. Several teeth had found their way to the floor during his beating. "Cops just can't come into a person's home and beat em' up!"
McKee sneered at the man, "I'm not a cop." She approached the boys slowing her movements as they shrank from her. Their condition was intolerable; bruises and burns littered their small naked bodies. Ribs stood out, skin stretched over muscle less arms and legs. She examined the chain that held one of the boys. It was welded to the metal collar that encircled his neck. She reached out to turn the collar, hoping it had a release, but the boy scurried away, up onto the bed, as far as the chain would permit. It was then that McKee noticed that the boy was castrated. Her eyes closed momentarily then popped open. She was on the man once again. This time he may not survive what she was in mind to do to him.
Her swollen right hand retrieved her gun and pressed it against the still exposed genitals of the man, blood trickled from cuts on her knuckles, though she wasn't feeling any pain at the moment. The man's eyes went wide, and he pleaded with the woman. Before his first sentence ended, the sickening pop of a bullet passing through one of his testicles rendered him speechless. He then bucked in the chair as a feral smile crossed the woman's face. She adjusted the gun and calmly squeezed the trigger again, sending the man's other testicle into oblivion.
Quang's head jerked up at the faint popping sounds. He took off up the stairs calling 911 as he made his way up. Adrenalin propelled him into the room. He wasn't prepared for what he saw. A pool of blood was growing under the fat man in the chair. McKee sat on the unmade bed holding two boys, rocking them gently, and speaking softly to them. A faint siren could be heard in the distance. He knew he needed to get his friend out of there. He picked up the gun that lay on the floor between the bed and the unmoving man, and tucked it into his waistband. He took McKee's arm and gently moved her away from the boys who immediately huddled back together.
"Come on Quin. We need to get out of here; cops are on the way." The sirens grew louder and came to a blaring stop. "Fuck! Move it McKee!" He said a bit more forcefully. It seemed to do the trick as the small woman snapped out of her daze and moved through the door with a last quick look behind her.
They couldn't go down so they went up to the roof. The next building was a short leap away. Once on that roof they made their way back down to the street. They crossed at the light and ambled back to the car. Soon one police car turned into several and two ambulances joined the scene.
Quang knocked a cigarette out of a crumpled pack. He tried lighting it several times, his shaking hands betraying his inner panic at the situation. A small steady hand took the lighter and ignited the end of his cigarette.
McKee then dug another cigarette from Quang's pack, easily lighting it, and taking a deep drag into her lungs. "I'm sorry." She said softly as she exhaled, "I kind of lost it in there."
"What happened? Who were those kids?" Quang asked as his shaking hand ran across his black straight hair.
"I… I'll tell you later." McKee said as she took her gun from the Asian man's waistband, and tucked it into the back of her own. She went to her car only to return shrugging into a light denim jacket to ward off the cooling fall air. She flexed her hand repeatedly as she rejoined the Asian man.
Quang knew when not to push the woman. The tone of her voice told him she wasn't going to discuss it any further.
"Go home Mr. Ngo. I'll call you tomorrow." McKee said, the young man sighed and started to walk away. "Quang!" She called out and waited until he turned his attention back to her, "Thanks."
He smiled at her and nodded his head. He gave a brief wave and made his way back down the street.
McKee focused her attention on the scene across the street. She knew she'd gone too far, but found she had little regret. Some people weren't worth saving she thought. A stretcher came from the double doors of the hotel. Its contents clearly that of the man she had shot. The way the attendants rushed it to the ambulance indicated that he was still alive. That made a small smile appear on her face, she hoped the bastard lived a long life with out his balls.
Two female uniformed officers appeared next, each holding a small bundled child. They were escorted to the second ambulance that headed off in the opposite direction as the first. As it moved it revealed a tall, shapely, blonde woman who stared directly at Quinlan.
The small brunette finished the cigarette, sending the butt into the gutter with a flick of her fingers. She studied the blonde who hadn't looked away yet. She wore black tailored slacks and a white cotton shirt that was pressed and open at the neck, just hinting at cleavage. A gold badge was clipped to her waist in front off to one side. A revolver rested in a holster at her other side. Low black heels propelled the woman forward after a few more moments. McKee felt a twinge of arousal as the blonde strode toward her. It was a feeling she had not had in years. A deep breath and a small shake of her head cleared her thoughts as the woman stopped just three feet from her.
"Excuse me," the blonde spoke, her voice low and controlled, "May I see some identification?"
McKee shrugged and produced her small battered wallet. She pulled her drivers license from its place and handed it to the woman, trying to contain the full body flush that she could feel creeping across her skin.
"Ms. McKee?" She received a nod. "I'm detective Walsh. You seem to match the description of someone who was involved in the matter across the street. Do you have any idea why the manager of the hotel would implicate you?"
McKee smiled, "Because he's still bitter about me interrupting his midday TV watching?"
Vivian Walsh grinned, "Perhaps. It also could have been the gun in his face."
"Possibly." McKee agreed.
"Would you happen to have said weapon on you still?" Walsh asked handing the license back over her shoulder to a stocky man with silver hair and a thick mustache.
McKee reached behind her and produced the gun. She held it by the barrel as she presented it to the Detective.
Walsh took the gun and brought it to her nose. "Have you recently discharged this weapon Ms. McKee?"
"Yes," came the simple reply.
Tom Ross recognized the woman from fifty feet away. He hadn't laid eyes on her in nearly three years. He glanced at the Illinois license. At least that was one rumor that seemed true as to the where about of the elusive private investigator. He watched Quinlan McKee as she interacted with his partner. It seemed as though they were evenly matched to him. He opened his notebook and wrote a small note to himself. There would be a lot of people interested in the brunette's return.
"Can you describe the situation and circumstance for the reason you discharged your weapon?" Walsh asked as she removed the magazine of the gun and cleared its chamber.
"I happened to walk in on a man who was receiving head from a small boy. I noticed another small boy chained to the bed. Both children were naked and obviously abused. One of the boys had been castrated. I took my weapon and blew the bastards balls off." McKee said calmly.
The older man behind Walsh snickered.
The detective looked at the small woman before her. She was all of maybe 115 lbs, 5'5'', well-defined muscles, and a definite sublime quality about her. "Do you have a permit for this weapon Ms. McKee?"
The brunette produced the proper paper work allowing her to carry a concealed weapon.
Walsh turned to her partner, pulling him a few feet away "Well Tom, we can arrest her and explain how she found not just one missing boy but two, and subdued the kidnapper. Or we let her go and call it swift justice." She said examining the papers once again.
"I would have blown the guys head off Viv." He looked around his partners shoulder at the brunette. "And for her not to have shows considerable restraint. She's a good guy Walsh, she found the boy, and we got our perp." He said handing the license back to his partner. "I'll vouch for her if need be."
Vivian nodded, "Go on back Tom. I'll catch up with you." She then turned to the brunette. "Ms. McKee, would you mind telling me who hired you? And why you didn't call the authorities once you confirmed the missing child, that all of Los Angeles has been looking for, for the past six weeks I might add, was alive and in the custody of the perpetrator?"
The brunette had made brief eye contact with the man she had hated for years. It had only been recently that she had been able to come to terms over the incident that had torn her world apart. She nodded at the man as he gave her a brief smile before walking away. She turned her attention back to the blonde detective.
"Jonathan Peer hired me to find his son. As for the other, well I lost my temper. It's hard to sit idly by while a little boy is being sexually abused in front of your eyes. Other wise I would have dropped the pervert off at the station my self."
The detective nodded, Vivian looked closely at the smaller woman in front of her. Her driver license indicated her age to be thirty-two, but she looked like she was in her mid twenties at best. Her short black hair was in tiny spikes all over her head, a pair of dark sunglasses nested there. Pierced ears with small diamond earrings in each lobe, gray eyes that were open and clear, even in the glare of the afternoon sun, a small silver hoop was threaded thru the left eyebrow. If it weren't for the sun shining off it Vivian would have missed it all together. Muscular arms, a thin waist that tapered to curvy hips, and well defined thighs.
The faded jeans that covered those thighs had a rip across the top of one leg where the leg met the hip. A bit of tan flesh and black lace panties peaked out of the frayed rip. Without much thought Vivian raised her eyes to the brunette's chest wondering if there was a matching bra under the form fitting tank top. She unconsciously blushed as she recognized that there was no bra at all present, and that either from her gawking, or the cool wind that blew down the street, the nipples on two small, firm, breasts became hard.
Quinlan cocked her head to the side as the tall blonde blushed. She wasn't able to control how her body had reacted to the outright perusal the detective gave her. At least she wasn't the only one suffering. She cleared her throat gaining the woman's attention and her vibrant blue eyes with her own gray. "I can arrange for a private viewing if you like detective." McKee smirked as the blonde's mouth dropped open, lips moved but no words came forth. "I mean it's obvious you're interested." She said with a deep purr.
Vivian blinked several times as her brain processed the words spoken to her. "I was… was… just…" She shook her head and thrust the brunette's ID and permit toward her, followed by McKee's gun. "You're free to go Ms. McKee."
Quinlan accepted the items and tucked them away in their proper places, aware that the blonde's eyes still watched her. She produced a small black business card and took three steps forward into the private space of the detective. "Perhaps you'll change your mind. All my numbers are on there; call anytime." She tucked the card into the blonde's ample cleavage and walked silently to her car, wondering when the hell her libido had taken over her usually unsocial nature.
Vivian spun around and called out to the departing woman, "Not in this lifetime McKee!"
Quin simply raised a dark eyebrow at the detective before sliding into the car. She watched in her rear view mirror as she pulled away. The blonde pulled the black card from her shirt and tucked it into her pants pocket. McKee smiled to herself as she found the freeway on ramp and headed home.
Tom Ross turned in his seat to look at his partner as she sank behind the wheel. It wasn't often he saw the woman flustered. "I have her phone number if you're interested."
"What?" Vivian asked as she hooked her seatbelt and started the car.
"The PI, I know her phone number, or maybe you'd like me to call and give her yours?"
The blonde looked at her partner, "Are you insane? That woman should be in jail; she's hardly better than the scum we just arrested. I don't even know what I'm going to tell the lieutenant my reasoning on that is and you think I'd be interested in a date with her?" She huffed as she weaved the car between two police cruisers. "She's so not my type anyway…"
Tom grinned, "Uh huh." He opens his notebook and started organizing his information for the report he'd soon be writing.
"What would you know about it? You haven't been on a date in twenty years." Vivian continued.
"I already have my dream girl Walsh. I don't need a date. You on the other hand might want a career change," he kept his eyes down writing in his notebook, "Perhaps a convent."
The blonde scowled out the window. "I'm going to ignore that Ross."
Light laughter came from the passenger seat.
Vivian couldn't help the smile that crept onto her lips. This is how it had been between them since day one. Tom Ross was a capable detective. He had a wife and five kids with number six on the way. He was constantly bragging about his family, and had dragged Vivian to dinner that first night to his house.
Vivian, who had been on her own since she was eleven, was overwhelmed by the welcome she had received. She had gained a family in the blink of an eye. She had felt so comfortable that when Ruth, Tom's wife, had asked her if she had a boyfriend that she simply stated that she currently didn't have a girlfriend, but was always on the look out. The woman hardly missed a beat before a vow was given by the small redheaded woman that she would help with the endeavor.
That was it. Her partner quickly became her best friend, and his wife the sister and mother she never had. Tom had taken to teasing her relentlessly, and she gave as good as she got. Together they made a great team.
"I sure would like to know how she came up with that guy." Tom mused looking out the front window of the car, his eyebrows knitted in thought.
Vivian had been thinking the same thing. Now that would be a good reason to call the brunette. A legitimate reason, she thought as she weaved through rush hour traffic towards the station.
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