BIRD-DOGGED - STEPHEN D. ROGERS
As I stood staring out the kitchen window, Cindy came from behind to wrap her arms around me. "And how is the world treating Fran Rivers Investigations?"
"Badly." I reached up with both hands, pressing her arms against my breasts. "A client bird-dogged me."
"What's that mean?" Cindy nestled in between my right ear and my neck.
"She used me to locate someone."
"Well you're only the best private eye on the planet."
"She said they were old friends. That after years of not thinking about her, my client now couldn't get her out of her mind."
"Was that not true?"
"No, it was true. And with the information I provided, my client followed the woman to a municipal parking lot, ran her down, and left her for dead, which she was." I sighed. "The witnesses contradicted each other, but I'm certain the driver was my client."
Cindy nuzzled along the back of my neck to my left ear. "You couldn't have known she'd do that."
"But I did. Which didn't stop me from completing the job I love. My client hired me to find that woman, and find that woman I did."
"It's not your fault."
"I handed my client the report, I cashed the check, and then, when the news confirmed what I already knew, I called the police. Hold me."
Cindy squeezed. "I am holding you."
"No, like this." I turned, buried myself against her, and shut out the world, almost as if the problem were there.