After they cleaned up the Mcdonalds mess internal affairs began a second investigation. The civilian review board wanted to know if I really had to kill the first one, or could I have waited and let it end peacefully.
While they tried to answer questions that had no answers, I worked on my bike. There was nothing to do on the ebike. It's lack of maintenance requirements was one of the reasons that it was the transportation of a great many people. The old gasoline bike was a different story all together. It vibrated so badly that it needed constant attention. Every three or four rides, I tightened the bolts and checked for loose spokes.
While I was working on the bike Annie came from the house to the garage. "Edgar are we working today?"
"No we are on administrative leave. Why?"
"I just feel like we should be doing something. I don't like this inactivity."
"What you are feeling, we call boredom."
"Then let's do something," she suggested.
"Do you have something in mind?" I asked.
"No, anything at all is fine, I just need some activity."
"Alright I'm through here anyway, lets go for a ride." Annie rode the slower but safer Ebike, while I rode the loud smelly gasoline bike. I guided us toward the lake. It was my favorite short ride.
After the twenty minute ride we parked the bikes under the bike shelter and walked by the lake. "Edgar," the voice came from the patio behind the park's office. I looked up to see my ranger friend.
"Well hello," I replied.
"I need a favor," she said walking toward us.
"What kind of favor?" Annie asked shortly.
"I found a bag in one of the boats last night. I'm not sure if I need to call the station or keep it in lost and found here."
"If in doubt, call a car to come by," I suggested. "So what's in the bag?"
"A pistol.," she replied.
"If you found a pistol you need to have someone check it out. Most likely it is nothing someone probably carried it in case of snakes. Do you have a record of who used the boat?"
"It's not a rat gun Edgar, it a big ole .45 caliber. Only thing it is good for is shooting people."
"That's not true but it might be overkill for a copperhead."
"Not to mention most people can't hit anything small with a handgun."
"So who used the boat?" Annie asked.
"It was a nice old man about sixty or so. He comes out now and then to fish. I really do hate to get him in trouble. Couldn't you just handle it off the record? You know make sure he wasn't doing anything illegal then just give it back and tell him not to bring it again."
"I don't know right now we are not the chief's favorite cops. Not to mention IAD is on the case. This could get me fired."
"Okay, I understand." The disappointment was on her face.
"Edgar, I am bored, why don't we do this thing?" Annie apparently wanted to do it for some reason.
"Compromise, I'll go talk to the man but you keep the gun. If there is nothing to it, I'll send him out to pick it up."
"That sounds fair."
Annie and I rode the bikes to the address which the ranger provided. There was an old E'car in the drive. I had to be one of the first ones. Those first few models were complete junk and heavy as hell. They hadn't started using the plastic shell when it was made. Even with the conversion to the new battery system they were nothing but trouble..
We parked our bikes in the drive then walked to the door. I could hear the music coming from some listening device. The device had to be at close to max volume. That didn't seem just right to me. I didn't usually find old people listening to modern music at all. Especially not at ear drum piercing levels. That was more a kid thing, than an adult one.
My knock was answered by a teenaged girl. Well I was pretty sure it was a girl, but you can't always tell any more. "Yeah?" she asked as a greeting.
I flashed her my small off duty badge and said, "I need to speak with Tom Murphy."
"That's my gran and he is in bed." I didn't like the fact that her eyes didn't seem to focus. The were dancing from one place to another.
"I'm officer Freeman and this is my partner Annie, we really need to speak with him now."
"Like I said, he is sleeping."
"Young lady is there some reason that you can't produce your grandfather?"
"No of course not," she said with her eyes still dancing around.
I pushed past her, "Then where is he?" The music was so loud inside the small room that I knew I was going to get a headache quickly. "Turn of that damn music off." She flipped off the music as she left the room. Before I could suggest that Annie follow her the back door slammed. I motioned Annie to follow her out the door, while I went out the front.
"The teenager ran around the house and headed for the drive. She had a good head start on Annie and she made the car well before either of us could stop her. She threw the Flash in gear and then backed right into my bikes. Her instinct to stop was strong enough to let us get to her before she drove over them completely.
Annie pulled her from the car while I caught up to them. I was afraid to assess the damage to my bikes. I wanted to murder the teenager before I even checked them out.
Annie held her while I searched the house. I found the old man in his bed. He was asleep alright, but it was that long sleep. There was a note on the table by the bed.
"I refuse to let them take me a piece at a time. I am choosing my own time and place to die. It's the last thing I have control over." Tom Murphy... Beside the note there was an empty prescription bottle.
It looked as though Tom meant to do it in the park the night before but couldn't for some reason. He had better luck at home that same night.
The story on the girl was that she planned to keep drawing her grandfathers retirement checks. She ran because she thought she had committed some crime by not reporting his death sooner. She had been steeling herself to bury him when we arrived.
As for my bikes, The cops sent out a car with a bike rack on it. We unloaded them at the house,. Immediately Annie said, "I guess you will be riding with me for a while."
"Now that is enough to really make me show fear," I said it to the officer who had driven us home.