Debra Thomas makes detective after a few short years as a uniformed officer. As she struggles to find level ground in a male dominated department with Eugene Willis, her partner, they are assigned a high profile case. Kari Cole, the wife of Tyler Cole a prominent Fort Worth attorney, has been missing for weeks when her abandon car is found then a body fitting her description is discovered.
Debra’s skill to analyze data to match cues leaves her with a reputation of smart, but lacking the physical strength to handle suspects. Clues lead Debra and Willis through an underworld of drugs and biker bars they discover that Kari with her ex-con biker boy friend, Brad Beckham, has framed Tyler for her murder. The mother of two abandons her children for a new life of freedom after liberating hundreds of thousands from Tyler’s bank account.
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Chapter 1 As the patrol car came to a stop outside a small auto parts store, Officer Debra Thomas felt exhilaration in knowing this was her final arrest as a uniformed officer. She and Officer Reynolds approached the front of the shop with large windows protected by wrought iron. As they drew near the front door they saw a man running toward the back of the store that led to an alley.
“He spotted us! Go that way!” Reynolds yelled and pointed toward the alley. Debra took off running toward the back of the auto parts store. Her heart pounded as the suspect ran down the alley several feet in front of her. “He’s over here!” she yelled.
The unpaved alley was made of sand, gravel and dust causing her to slip and slide as she fell in behind the suspect. He appeared to be about 5’9” tall, but thin. She wondered if she could take him in a fight as she closed within a few feet.
Debra felt some comfort hearing Reynolds coming up behind her as she lunged forward and grabbed the suspect’s shoulders causing them both to fall and slide on the rough alley. After the pair skidded to a stop Debra scrambled to her feet and squared off with the suspect.
His arms were raised ready for a fight. He took a swing at her with his right hand.
She dropped down as the suspect’s fist passed over her head. With all her might Debra countered with a right to his ribs. Unhindered, his left hand connected firmly with her right cheek sending her to the ground. He continued with a kick to her abdomen. Dazed, she rolled onto her back as a blurry vision of Reynolds sent the suspect flying over her.
Reynolds reached them just in time to tackle the suspect ending his assault on Debra.
She lay there briefly, thinking how relieved she was that Reynolds was there. Still a bit dizzy, she sat up in time to see Reynolds slapped the cuffs on him. This wasn’t the first time he had rescued her.
Too proud to admit how badly it hurt, she stood up. “Sure I’m fine.” She knocked dust off her sleeves and slacks hoping to regain her composure as she took several slow deep breaths. Every time she exhaled it seemed as if some of the pain and sickness subsided.
Reynolds had placed his knee in the middle of the suspect’s back.
She leaned down and looked at the suspect. “But you’re not. You’re under arrest for robbery, evading arrest, and assaulting an officer of the law. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you can’t afford an attorney the court will appoint you one. Do you understand your rights?”
The suspect spit back, “What if I say no?”
Reynolds slapped him in the back of the head. “That’s no way to speak to an officer.” “She’s your partner? I thought you dressed your daughter up for father-daughter day at work.”
“Let’s go.” He helped the suspect to his feet then pushed him toward the patrol car. Reynolds looked at Debra. “Well at least you got some excitement on your last day.”
The suspect looked at Debra too. “It should be your last day. You hit like a girl.”
“Shut up!” Reynolds smacked the suspect again. “Mr. Lucky, you have the lady to thank for your arrest. It was an impressive job tracking you down and finding your fence. You should have seen the look on his face when we arrested him yesterday. The two of you will have plenty of time to catch up in prison. If you want I can put in a good word with the judge and maybe get the two of you in the same cell so you can become more intimate friends.”
He’s right, she thought. I hit him as hard as I could, and the only thing that got hurt was my wrist. My light frame, even at 5’7”, couldn’t deliver the impact I needed. I’ve got to start building my muscles.
They reached the car and put the suspect in the back seat. Reynolds walked over to the driver’s side and stopped to watch her.
She could feel his stare and looked up.
“Forget what he said. You’re going to be a great detective. It isn’t how well you can fight. What is important is how you can put the dots together. You’re really good at that.”
His smile calmed her down. “Thanks, but I’m fine, really.” It was hard not to rub her cheek or look in a mirror to see how swollen her face was getting. The pain in her wrist was subsiding. She shook her hand in an attempt to relieve the pain, and then she smiled back and opened the door. It felt good to sit down.
They didn’t speak for a while as the patrol car rolled down the street toward the station.
“Do you know who your new partner will be?” Reynolds asked as her made a right turn.
“No, I should find out tomorrow. I am excited!” She tried to sound like her mood had lightened in her reply.
Reynolds looked at her. “That didn’t sound like you’re excited.”
Debra stared at him for a moment knowing he was right. “I may not sound it but I am.”
“Are you going to celebrate tonight? This will change the direction of your career.” “I’m going to have dinner with Sharon at 8.0s tonight. But, this weekend I will make a night of it. It will give me a few weeks to recover before Halloween.”
Reynolds glanced at her. “Friends with a CSI like Sharon Ivanson will help you as a detective.”
Debra glanced at him briefly. “We’re friends first, but knowing her hasn’t hurt even as a patrol officer. With Halloween coming up, what plans do you and May have?”
“May and I love to dress up and give candy to the little kids in the neighborhood at Halloween.”
“May doesn’t seem the type to dress up. For that matter, neither do you.” Debra turned in her seat to focus on him.
“Hey, I like to dress up, too.” The suspect barked from the back seat.
Debra looked at the suspect. “Oh, shut up. We weren’t talking to you.”
“It is something I don’t talk about at work,” Reynolds stated meekly.
Debra laughed. “I think that is best. What else don’t I know about you?”
“Most partners I’ve had don’t know much about me. It’s my way to keep my two worlds from crashing together. It’s something you may want to consider as well.”
“It may be a bit late for me. I’ve partied with Sharon too many times. We usually go to a house party at Halloween with friends not on the force.”
“Sharon has always been private, so I don’t think she would ever say anything. Oh, and congratulations. It’s been a tough day, and you’re starting your first day as a detective tomorrow. Why don’t you call it a day after we drop our little friend off? I’ll do the paper work.”