Tag Archives: Out of Sight Into Mind

Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter twenty

“Hey, Martinez,” I said, leaning on the doorframe once he buzzed me up.  His eyes popped out of his head when he saw what I was wearing.

“I can’t believe you didn’t get accosted on the street looking as hot as that.”

“I can take care of myself,” I shrugged, checking him out.  He looked damn good in a blue shirt and black slacks.  We matched!  “You gonna let me in, or shall we have the date out here in the hall?”

“Come on in.  Your mother is a great cook, by the way.”  Martinez stood back and let me enter.  I cased out the joint as I took off my shoes.  He was wearing his, but he didn’t seem to care that I took mine off.  If he strongly objected, I would wear them, of course, but I really couldn’t get comfortable in a house if I had to wear shoes.

“Nice décor,” I said, glancing at his walls which seemed to be filled with abstract paintings.  I didn’t recognize any of them, but they gave the apartment a warm feeling.

“Reminds me of home,” Martinez said with a smile.  “They’re my mother’s work.”  I gave them a second glance, appreciating them more now that I knew they were personally connected with Martinez.  “Come to the dining room; it’s almost ready.”

I followed him to the dining room where the food was already on the table.  Everything smelled wonderful, and I wondered how he found time to cook with the case being as convoluted as it was.  I supposed, though, that it was just an average day in the life of a homicide detective.  I wondered how he was able to stay sane when he had to face so many atrocities on a daily basis.  Speaking of Daily, I wondered if she’d gotten over my stealing her man yet.  Somehow, I doubted that she and I would ever be bosom buddies, but it’d be nice if we didn’t have to go to war every time we met, either.

“This is great,” I said, inhaling the food.  I had eaten a light lunch in anticipation of the spicy goodness I’d be feasting on for dinner.  “This bread is out of this world.”

“Fry bread, from my Indian side.  Pure fat, of course, but it tastes so good.”  Martinez ripped off a hunk and scooped up some beans with it.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter nineteen, part two

“You better be decent.”  I rapped lightly on the door before pushing my way in.  Even though I had my game face on, I couldn’t help grimacing when I saw Matt who was battered and bruised.  Not to mentioned bandaged and bored.  I could tell he was bored by the way he was flipping through the television channels, much to the chagrin of his roommate who appeared to be trying to rest.

“Hey, it’s my best girl,” Matt said, setting down the remote.  I noticed his roommate, a young guy in his early twenties, perked up as well at my appearance.  “Did you get Danny?”

“Yeah, we got him,” I said, sitting in the chair by Matt’s bed.  I patted his hand, afraid to touch him for fear of breaking something.  “He stayed the night with me, and he’s with my parents right now.”

“I told my parents about him,” Matt said, grimacing as he spoke.  His mother was deeply religious, so I could only guess what she’d said to that bit of information.  “They want to see him.”

“Sure, if it’s ok with you,” I said cautiously.  “Do you think it’s a good idea?”

“Yeah.  After my mother calmed down, she was dying to see him.  I think she thinks this might be the only chance she’ll have to have a grandchild.”  Matt smiled, but it held little mirth.  “So, fill me in.  Did we get the bad guys?  Is Kayla back?”

“We got Digger and Brenda.  We don’t have Kayla yet, but the cops are working on it.”  I didn’t tell him that they were at a dead end because I didn’t want to cause him any grief.  “What did the doctors say?”

Turned out that because Matt was in such great shape, most of the wounds were superficial.  Only the one across his abdomen had done serious damage.  Oh, there was another semi-serious one on his left bicep, but it wasn’t as bad as the one on his stomach.  The doctors wanted to keep him for a few more days, but they were optimistic that he’d regain full mobility if he followed his physical therapy plan to the letter.  Knowing Matt, he’d do as much and more than they planned.  They would have to stop him from doing twice as much as they wanted because he’d be determined to get out of the hospital as soon as possible.

“Don’t you ever do that to me again,” I said, punching him lightly in the arm.  “Do you know—I thought…”  I let my voice trail off because there wasn’t any reason to say what I’d thought now that Matt was going to be ok.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter nineteen, part one

Something was shaking me.  It wasn’t a pleasant feeling, so I tried to brush it off.  I swatted and I grumbled, but the shaking wouldn’t go away.  After abandoning my sweet dreams of me and Martinez tangoing in our swimsuits on the beaches of Jamaica, I reluctantly opened my eyes to find Danny staring down at me.  For a minute, I thought I’d waken up from a dream into another dream—I’d done that before—but then I quickly remembered the events of the night before.  I struggled to sit up, glad that I had remembered to wear shorts and a t-shirt to bed.  Wouldn’t want to be charged with child abuse or endangerment or something like that.

“What is it, sweetie?”  I asked Danny, glancing at my beside clock at the same time.  It was nearly one, which meant I got close to seven hours of sleep.  Not bad.

“I’m hungry, Auntie.  And I want my mommy.”  Danny was holding Percy in one hand and sucking the thumb of his other.  “I also have to go potty.”  I leapt out of bed and dragged him to the bathroom where he did his thing.  I silently thanked Kayla for potty-training Danny so early as it made things much easier.

“Let’s see what I can make you,” I said, grabbing Danny by the hand and taking him to the kitchen.

“I want my mommy,” he repeated in a louder voice.  “When are you going to find her?”

“It’s not that easy, Danny,” I said, rummaging through the fridge.  I tried to remember how long the eggs had been there, but I couldn’t.  That meant no eggs as  I wasn’t taking a chance of giving salmonella to Danny.  Pancakes.  I could make pancakes.  “Do you like pancakes, honey?”  I asked, reaching for a box.  Danny nodded yes, but he refused to be distracted.

“You found me.  Why can’t you find my mommy?”  Before I could answer, my cell phone rang.  I gave Danny an apologetic glance, but I raced to find it. Who knew what important information it could be?  It was my mother.

“I’m back.  That poor, poor boy,” Mom said, clucking her tongue against her teeth.  “And poor Julia so worn out.  I made her promise she would take a whole day to show Banana the sights.  How are you, dear?”  The answer to my prayers!

“Mom, are you busy today?”  Before she could ask why, I filled her in on the situation—leaving out my little escapade at the club last night, of course.  She was properly appalled and agreed to watch over Danny while I visited Matt and talked to Martinez.  She told me to come right over, that she would defrost a few of her frozen goodies which she saved for an emergency such as this.  Knowing her, it would be a seven-course meal, but I had no objections.  I couldn’t remember the last time I’d eaten a real meal, and my mom was a better cook than I could ever hope to be.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter eighteen, part two

“Can I go to bed now?”  Danny asked, stifling a yawn.

“First you have to talk to the detectives,” I said, taking his hand in mine.  “Then you can go to bed.  Ok?”

“Can I have a snack before I sleep?”  I hesitated because I knew it wasn’t good to eat before sleeping.  However, who knew how long it’d been since he’d been fed?

“Sure, baby.”  I took Danny out to the living room, but neither Martinez nor Daily were there.  I had a hunch they were looking around for clues to Kayla’s kidnapping.  “Detective Martinez?”  I called out.  “Detective Daily?  We’re ready for you.”  A minute later, the two of them came hurrying into the living room.

“Danny, we’re going to have to ask you some hard questions about what happened,” Martinez said, motioning for Danny to sit on the couch.  Danny pulled me down with him, which didn’t please Daily.

“So you can help find my mommy?”  Danny asked, clutching my hand.  Daily shot me an annoyed look, but I met her eyes defiantly.  I wasn’t going to sugarcoat the truth to a boy who’d gone through so much.  Sure, I hadn’t told him everything, but he had a right to know the basics.

“Perhaps Ms. Hsu can wait in the kitchen,” Daily said through gritted teeth.  So much for our budding friendship.

“I want Auntie with me!”  Danny said, his voice shrill.

“I’ll tell you what,” I said, trying to calm the rising storm.  “Why don’t I go into the kitchen and make tea and find some food?  You can have ten minutes alone with Danny, but then I come back.  What do you say?”  The question was ostensibly directed at Daily, but it was more for Danny than the cops.

“Can I have some cookies?”  Danny asked in a small voice, squeezing my hand hard.

“Sure.  Milk and cookies,” I said, hoping there was unspoiled milk in the fridge.

“I’ll take coffee,” Martinez said, pulling out his notebook.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter eighteen, part one

“Shit,” Martinez said, glancing at the screen.  “It’s Rogers.  I bet he broke one of them.  Come on.”  He waved to Daily who looked pissed.  I was torn between going and staying with Matt.  Martinez must have sensed my ambivalence because he told me Matt was going to be in surgery for awhile, and we would be back before he woke up.  That decided it for me, and the three of us were off.

I didn’t say anything as Martinez and Daily talked about the case on the way to wherever we were going.  Martinez had called Rogers the second we stepped out of the hospital and procured an address before hanging up.  Daily and Martinez were talking in a language of their own, and I didn’t even try to keep up.  Instead, I closed my eyes to take a well-deserved nap.  I was deprived of the pleasure, however, because every time I closed my eyes, I started remembering Digger touching me.  Despite my best efforts to keep quiet, I whimpered as I felt the weight of him against me.

“Scarlett?  Are you ok?”  Martinez broke off his conversation with Daily to ask me.

“I’m fine, Martinez,” I said, my voice patently false.  I didn’t want to lie to him, but I didn’t want to talk about it in front of Daily, either.  As he was driving, there wasn’t much Martinez could do but accept my falsehood.

I focused on Danny, trying to reach him to reassure him that help was on the way.  When I contacted him, I wanted to reach through the ethers and grab him.  He was huddled in the corner of his closet, making whimpering sounds.  He had his hand in his pocket, holding his piggy like a good little boy as he banged at the closet door.  It was obvious that he had been in there for awhile because of the dark stain spreading under his pants.  He had been crying, presumably for a long time.  I gathered my concentration and tried to touch his mind.  It must have worked because he sat up in a hurry.

“Auntie?  Is that you?”  His eyes widened in hope, making me glad that I was on my way to finding him.  “Are you coming for me?”  How many times had he asked a variant on that question only to be disappointed?  How glad I was that I could answer in the affirmative this time.

“Yes, baby.  I’m coming for you.  There will be two police officers with me, “Detective Martinez and Detective Daily.  We should be there very soon.  Hold on, ok, Danny?”

“You’re really coming for me?”  A light shone out of Danny’s eyes.  He looked ten times happier than just seconds before. Continue Reading

Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter seventeen, part three

“Matt, are you ok?  What happened?”  I clutched at Matt’s hand, the one which wasn’t hooked up to a million wires.

“I’m fine,” Matt said, his words slurred.  “Bitch hit me with something, then Digger came to finish the job.  Told me he had you.  I was scared.”  I was touched that he’d thought of me during his ordeal.  I knew we were linked on a deeper level.

“Scarlett, he has to go the hospital.  I’ll fill you in on the way,” Martinez said, patting me on the back.  Even though I didn’t want to let Matt go, I knew it was for his own good.  At least Martinez realized that I had to be with Matt in his time of need.

“I want to ride in the ambulance,” I said, my voice firm.  To his credit, Martinez merely nodded.  A thought struck me.  “Is he going to need surgery?”  Stupid question, really, with all that blood, but I had to ask.  Martinez nodded again.

“Daily, we’re going to the hospital,” Martinez shouted out to Daily who nodded without making a smart comment.  Maybe she and I could be friends some day, but I wasn’t holding my breath.

The EMT told me Matt had a concussion and needed to stay awake.  That was all fine and dandy except that Matt wanted nothing more than to sleep.  He also wanted to know if the cops had gotten Danny back and who was watching him.  It struck me that Brenda and Digger must have left Danny by himself for long stretches of time, and that pissed me off even more.  I wished I’d been able to kick Jamie where he most deserved it, and I wished I could have slapped the shit out of Brenda.  How could they do that to a poor, defenseless boy who’d never done anything to them?  I also wanted to kick Kayla for her part in all this, but that would mean finding her first.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter seventeen, part two

“This way.”  He pushed me through a door, then we were turning this way and that.  Soon, we reached a door that was marked, ‘Jamie’s Office.”  He pushed open the door and shoved me inside.  Once we were past the door, he pulled the gun out of his pocket and showed it to me.  “Now, Miss Scarlett.  It would be a shame to have to shoot you and mess up that lovely suit of yours.  However, I can’t let you run free, either.”  Before I knew what he was doing, he spun me around so I was facing away from him.  He yanked my arms together behind me so hard, I cried out.  “Shut the fuck up.”  He was binding something around my hands.  If I’d had to guess, I’d say it was a tie.  Maybe stockings, though it didn’t feel filmy.  “This should keep you for the time being.”  He turned me back around, his eyes dark.  Staring at me, he abruptly crushed his lips to mine.  I struggled to get away, but he held my face tightly with one hand as he pushed his tongue into my mouth.  He grabbed my ass with his other hand which also held the gun.  I thought about kneeing him, but he was too close.

“You taste as good as you look.”  Jamie broke off the kiss and looked me up and down.  “Let’s see how much better you look.”  He pulled my jacket down as best he could with my arms bound behind me so that I was only wearing my camisole on top.  “Very nice.”  His pants were tenting, but I couldn’t believe he’d take time to cop a feel when he was obviously under so much pressure.  He shoved a handkerchief into my mouth and bound it with duct tape before I could protest.  “That’ll keep you.”  He squeezed my breasts from under my camisole before pushing me to the floor.  It hurt like hell because I couldn’t use my hands to break my fall.  I landed on my side, winded by the jolt.  “I’ll be back, Miss Scarlett.  Make yourself nice and ready for me.”  With a laugh, he left me there.  He also left my purse dangling from my arm.  My purse which contained my cell phone.  Fat lot of good that did me when I was trussed up like a turkey.

Even though I tried not to think about it, I could feel his hands and mouth on me.  My body burned with the shame, and I recoiled at the remembrance of his tongue in my mouth.  It had been unusually thick and felt out of place as it probed the inner cavity of my mouth.  I wanted to rinse my mouth and take a hot shower for as long as I could stand it, but I had to focus on getting the fuck out of here.  I had no idea what Jamie was doing, but I hoped it didn’t involve Matt.  I knew my best hope was to get my hands loose in order to reach my phone, so I worked on that no matter how desperately I wanted to free my mouth first.  I felt as if I couldn’t breathe which was ridiculous because Digger had left my nose alone.  It was psychological, but no less terrifying.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter seventeen, part one

“Ok, now spill.”  Matt ordered as soon as we were back in our apartment.  My mom and Banana were on their way to New York.  Matt and I had stayed with my dad for a bit because he’d felt a little lonely.  Now, we were in our living room, talking about the case.

“There’s not much to tell,” I said, shrugging my shoulders.  “I told Martinez what I saw, and that was it.”

“That wasn’t it,” Matt said shrewdly.  “I hope you were protected at least.”

“Matt!”  I glared at him, mostly because he’d come too close to the truth.  “We didn’t have sex.  Not in my old room.  You should know me better than that.”

“You and I’ve had sex there,” Matt noted, a devilish gleam in his eyes.  I fought to control my embarrassment, but I blushed, anyway.  It had been on Chinese New Year’s Eve a few years ago.  My parents had had a big bash, and Matt and I had had way too much to drink.  One thing led to another, and we were having sex before either of us really knew what was going on.  We didn’t use protection, either, which was the height of stupidity.  Fortunately, I didn’t get pregnant, and we were more careful in the future.

“That’s besides the point,” I said, furious at myself for letting him get to me.

“Yeah, it is,” Matt said, dropping the jocular tone.  “The point is that we know for sure who has Danny, so we have to do something about it.”

“That’s the cops’ job, Matt,” I protested, though I knew it wouldn’t do any good.

“What are they doing about it?”

“I don’t know—it’s not like Martinez would tell me.”

“Then it’s up to us.”  Matt stood up, a determined look on his face.  “Scar, I’m going to the club tonight whether you come with me or not.  What’s it going to be?”  There was no answer to that other than, ‘of course I’m going with you.’

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter sixteen, part two

“Ok, Scarlett.  I have one question for you—what exactly is your relationship with Mr. Reynolds?”  His question caught me off-guard.

“What?  Matt?  He’s one of my best friends.  I told you that.”  I evaded the question behind the question because I wanted Martinez to ask outright if there was something he wanted to know.  “Are you asking me professionally or personally?”

“Both,” Martinez said, his voice serious.

“Um, well, he’s one of my best friends,” I repeated uncomfortably.  I didn’t know where he was going with this line of questioning, but it couldn’t be anywhere I wanted to go.

“Please don’t take offense, but would you lie for him?”  Martinez was giving me his full attention, which made me feel even more uncomfortable.

“Lie for him?”  I tried to figure out if that was personal or professional.  I decided it didn’t matter because I didn’t lie.  At least, not about important things.  “No, I wouldn’t.”

“Are you attracted to him?”  The minute the question left Martinez’s mouth, he looked as if he’d like to snatch them back again.

“Now, I know that’s personal because I can’t see how it would have any bearing on the case.”  I infused my voice with as much indignation as I could muster, but I knew he had a right to ask.  Shit, I would be all over him if the situation was reversed, but I didn’t like the fact that he hadn’t waited until our date to ask me.  This was an investigation for God’s sake.

“You’re right.  It’s personal, and it’s been eating at me for the last few days.”  Martinez looked me in the eyes, his gaze not wavering.  I had to give him props for being forthright about it; I just wasn’t sure I was ready to answer.  To equivocate, however, would be doing him a disservice since he had a right to know.  As I had vowed that I wouldn’t keep anything from him in terms of the investigation, I now vowed that I would be honest with him about my personal life as well.

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Out of Sight, Into Mind; chapter sixteen, part one

“Wanna tell me what’s wrong?”  Matt whispered into my ear.  I shivered at his proximity, then scolded myself silently.  This was Matt, not some rock star or something.  There was no reason to get all gooey in the knees.  I wondered at my reaction to him.  Was I freaking out about Martinez?  Was that why I was focusing on Matt?  Was it some kind of weird transference thing?  “Scar!  Come back to earth.”

“Sorry, Matt,” I said, flashing a smile at him.  “There’s nothing wrong.  Really.”  Matt didn’t believe me, but he didn’t push me about it, either.  I was grateful as I didn’t have the wherewithal to make something up.  At least, I thought he wasn’t going to push me about it.  I was wrong, however, as he was just marshalling his forces.

“It’s us, isn’t it?”  By now, we had stopped in the front hall and had lost sight of Banana and my mother.  “You’re confused.”

“No, nothing of the sort.”  I still had the fake smile pasted on my face, and I wondered when I had started lying to Matt.  He was one of my best friend and had been for ten years.  Why couldn’t things be the way they always were?  “I’m just tired from all the excitement.  You know.  Banana woke me up early this morning and—”  I stopped because I didn’t want to lie.  “Matt, yes, it is us, but I really don’t think I can talk about it now.  Give me some time, ok?”  This time, the smile refused to come, but the tears returned.  Matt wiped one from my cheek which caused me to totally break down.

“There you are!”  My mother said, bustling into the hallway.  “Banana was wondering—”  She stopped short when she saw I was crying.  “Scarlett!  What’s wrong?”  She hurried to my side, peering up into my eyes.  “Did that detective do something to hurt you?  I knew you should have stuck with Matt.”

That made me cry all the harder, and I raced up the stairs to my old room and flung myself on my old bed.  My mother kept all our rooms as they were when we were home.  Not out of love for us or anything like that, but because it was cheaper than redesigning them.  I cried in earnest, unsure of why exactly I was crying.  All I knew was that it hurt when I thought of giving up Matt, but it hurt more when I imagined ending things with Martinez.  How ironic that I was a woman who couldn’t hold on to one man in my life, and now I had two.  I didn’t have more time to think as the door flew open and Matt came into the room.  I was thankful it wasn’t my mother, but I wasn’t sure I could handle Matt, either.

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