A hard knock on the front door threw Sebastian into a barking frenzy. The police had arrived. No time for her to change clothes. No time for Will either, which gave her a small bit of satisfaction. Yep, the city’s finest would naturally assume they’d been doing the mattress dance as opposed to their real activity, planning to withstand a siege from a lunatic ex-boyfriend.
The responding officer treated them both with calculated courtesy, but his irritation still showed he considered the visit a waste. Could be he wanted to solve a real crime considering his youth. Didn’t have the years behind him that made a quiet night desirable.
Somehow, despite the ratty bathrobe and nothing on underneath, Will projected an air of professionalism. He kept steady eye contact with the man as he explained the situation with three mentions of my friend, the chief. The young officer didn’t start writing things down until he said he was a lawyer. Odd, that would impress him more.
They both looked at her. Oh, it was her turn. Great, she wasn’t sure what to say. When in doubt, act. She stood and went to the kitchen to retrieve the doll. A discarded paper napkin kept her fingerprints off it as she carried it. Both hers and Will’s were already on it, but no reason for more. Instead of handing it to him, she placed it on the nearby end table.
“The doll is a threat, as you can see, but even more frightening is that the dress is made from one of my favorite tops. He came into the house and stole it from my closet. Even now, there could be bugs or cameras in the house.” Her eyes went to the corners of the room near the ceiling looking for tiny cameras.
The officer pushed the doll around with his pen. “This isn’t one of those voodoo doll things, is it?”
Black magic, voodoo, did she need one more thing?
Will’s hand wrapped around hers giving it a firm squeeze. He answered for her. “Oh, no, no voodoo. Terroristic threatening, yes. Breaking and entering, yes.”
“Okay.” Clicking his pen, the officer acted more animated as he wrote down a few notes. He asked without glancing up. “When did the break in occur and did you notify the police?”
“I’m not sure.” This is why she didn’t bother calling the police. It made her sound stupid. Another finger squeeze reminded her that Will believed her story. “Didn’t know he’d been in my house until the doll came tonight. I’d missed the top for a couple of weeks. Assumed it was in the laundry or at the bottom of a closet.”
The police officer looked up, pinning her with a dubious stare. “No sign of a break-in? Wouldn’t the dog set up an alarm? Did he have a key?”
“No, he didn’t have a key. Not sure it would matter since he’s a private investigator used to brag about his skills breaking into places to investigate. Called his library card his flexible key.”
The officer murmured a comment under his breath. “Hate PI’s”
“As for the dog, he’s not exactly guard dog material. He barks at everything, including falling leaves. The neighbors tune him out, no doubt. He can also be had for the price of a dog treat.”
Will leaned forward blocking the officer’s view of her. “Don’t forget the vandalized car.”
He made a few more notes. “What’s the name of your ex, who you believe did these things?”
Tonya’s lips twisted to the side, considering the man’s tone. Doubtful, that’s what it was. “I don’t think he did it. I know it. He sends me threatening emails at work and texts.”
“I’ll need a copy of those emails.”
Of course, he would. “I erased them. They were on my work email.” The man stared uncomprehendingly.
“Actually, nothing is ever gone on a computer. You could get an IT guy to find them.”
A moan escaped her lips as she imagined asking Richard to look up the messages. All she had to do was explain it was a police matter. Maybe he might locate them before she got her layoff notice. Will let go of her arm and wrapped his arm around her shoulders.
“That’s okay,” he reassured her. “Do you have any the texts on your phone?”
Her initial impulse was to state she’d erased those too, but she hadn’t. Last night, had been a busy night with dinner at Marc and Lynne’s and meeting Will. “I do have some. Along with the number he used too.”
“Good deal,” the officer commented, smiling a little.
Tonya went off in search of her phone, considering how much happier the officer was once he thought there might be a real case. She shook her head as her hand closed around her cell.
After a call back to the station for the procedure, the officer bagged her phone and took it with him with promises she could pick it up on the following day. The two of them stood at the door, rather like a unit, or a couple and bid the police officer goodbye.
Will yawned as she closed the door. The earlier adrenaline drained away leaving exhaustion behind. “I’ll go get your clothes. They should be dry now.”
Intent on draping his pants over a hanger with the crease in place, she didn’t hear his approach. His hand reaching for the hanger startled her, making her yelp. Not like weird things hadn’t been happening around her.
He hooked the hanger on the laundry room doorknob, joining his clean dress shirt. He pulled his boxer briefs out of the laundry basket. ‘This is all I’ll need for tonight.”