If you haven’t read previous chapters, I have a category listing on the side with the title 2015 April A-Z challenge. You can find all the chapters there. Thanks for reading!
Lost in Limbo
I pull into the Hilton parking lot. I grab Tee and put him in his satchel. All I have on my mind right now is a long hot shower, gallons of water and something to eat. Not necessarily in that order. If I could do all three at the same time, it would be perfect.
My mind is focused on getting to my room. I walk into the hotel and towards the elevators. Mr. Haughty is in position behind the front counter. I must have looked like the guest from hell as his mouth drops open in surprise. Don’t think much surprises that man. I continue walking and ignore him. The look on my face must have instilled caution, as his mouth closed without him saying anything.
The elevator stops on my floor and I walk towards my room. Billy is just closing a door further down from me and turns in my direction. He stops and stares.
“Dee? What the hell happened to you?”
I give the young man credit. He doesn’t ask a lot of stupid questions. I stop by my door and use the key card. I hear the click and see the little green light come on. As I open my door I get an idea.
“Billy? Can you come to my room in about half an hour? I need a favor.”
“Sure I can. You all right?”
I feel the sting of my blistered hands on the doorknob. “Can you get hold of a medical kit? Some bandages, stuff like that?”
“Yeah, I know where I can get one. Looks like you might be needing it too.”
“Give me about half an hour to get cleaned up.”
“You’re going to tell me how you got in this shape, right?” Billy has an expectant look on his face. His eyes are wide with curiosity, but he stifles it for now. Good man.
“I’ll tell you.”
“I’ll be back in half an hour with the kit even if you wouldn’t tell me. But I’m dying to know.” He winks at me and walks away.
I push the door to my room open and walk inside. I can almost feel the hot water on me already.
I put Tee down on the floor and start shedding my clothes, or what is left of them. Poor Tee is as filthy as I am. I’m tired, so I decide to wash both of us at the same time. Nothing like showering with your dog. Normally I wouldn’t do it, but this is not a normal situation.
Afterward, Tee and I are clean and dry. I put some clean clothes on and wait for Billy. My hands hurt like hell. I get on the room phone and order some food and some extra bottles of water. I will never take water for granted again.
One of the first things I did when I got in the room was put my cell on the charger. I had a phone call to make. By the time I had a shower and brushed the dirt out of my teeth the phone had enough charge to call who I needed to call. I looked at the time and figured I had a few minutes before Billy or the food showed up.
I hit a number on my phone and hear it ring on the other end. I wait for a familiar voice. “Dee, what a pleasant surprise.”
“Hey, Fedora. Do you know the Wenner Estate outside of Ashville?”
Fedora aka William Holden, a rich man, high-tech geek and most times a royal pain in the ass. I did a case for him a few months back. In fact, his grandmother used to own Tee, till I rescued him from his dognappers. A long story for another time. I nicknamed him Fedora because of his penchant for wearing the hats.
Fedora and I kept a kind of friendship after the case. He wants to date me, I keep turning him down. He keeps asking. It’s a game we both play.
“Never one for just calling to say hi are you Watson?”
“Sorry, was a long night last night. So, do you know it?”
“You sound tired, Dee. Everything alright? And yes, I know about the Wenner Estate. Heard it was bought for back taxes a while back.”
“It was. My friend Angela and her business partner Tony Bandoni bought it. Was going to turn it into an exclusive hotel, spa, and nightclub.”
“Bandoni? Heard he killed himself not too long ago. I met the man a few times at some functions. Funny as hell and a good guy from what I could tell.”
“It might not have been suicide. In fact, I’m pretty sure it wasn’t, Fedora.”
There was a short pause. “You investigating that Dee?”
“Yeah, Angela hired me. Now she’s been taken by the same guys I’m pretty sure killed Bandoni. They are after the Wenner deed.”
“Someone believes that old tale about gold bouillon being hidden there? Is that where you are? In Ashville?”
“Yeah. I wanted to know who else was interested in the place. Have you heard of anyone that might be rich enough and willing to kill to get what they want?”
“There were several people interested in it. Myself included for a short time. I can get you a list of names. Where are you staying?”
“Angela put me up at the Hilton. I would appreciate the list and your personal take on the people.”
“I’ll be there by early evening, Watson.”
“Hey! No! Don’t come, Fedora! I just need the names.” All I heard in answer was the click of the phone as he ended the call.
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