On the job
Grinding her teeth, something her dentist advised her to stop, Puddles shot daggers at Chuck, head in his chest sleeping in the passenger seat.
Ten. Ten snores in the past, glancing at the clock, five minutes, each one louder and longer than the last. Her left ear twitched. At this rate, his snores would blow this surveillance. Chuck slid deeper into the seat; another loud, long snore mirroring his descent filled the car and Puddles was positive the coffin love motel they were watching. Grabbing Chuck’s shoulder, Puddles shook him.
“What,” Chuck snapped looking around the car in a panic.
Puddles held a single claw tipped finger up to him, “Sshhhh.”
Thrusting the finger in front of Chuck’s face, “Not another sound.”
Sitting up, straightening his clothes, Chuck looked around for a few minutes before asking, “Anything?”
Puddles rolled her eyes, “No, nothing since he went into Love Buy The Hour. Miss Sad Face’s husband went in with Tart of the Month an hour ago. Whiskers caught all of the action on vid.”
“Where is Whiskers?” Chuck asked, while looking out the window at the front of the motel.
“Watching the side exit. Now keep watch and no more snoring.”
Fifteen minutes of silence.
“How do you do this?” Chuck started, “I’m bored and sleepy,” he finished with a wide mouthed yawn.
Puddles stared at Chuck deciding how to respond, leaning towards flushing her irritation at him out on him when Whiskers’ face appeared on the windshield monitor, “They are leaving. I will follow the husband. You and Chuck follow his partner.”
“Will do,” Puddles responded closing the vid-window.
“There goes Whiskers,” Chuck pointed at Whisker’s hover leaving the parking lot.
Puddles nodded as she positioned the car a few car lengths behind Tart of the Month’s car entering traffic.
“Why are we following her?” Chuck asked as he snapped vid of her car.
“We have her license number and we have her face. Why not use CIS to get all of her data and be done in five minutes?”
“What does her data prove to Miss Sad Face?”
“The client. Miss…” Puddles tried to remember her name for a second as she changed lanes, “whatever her name is.”
“She can know who her husband is sleeping with.”
“Data proves nothing. She will want proof. Vid of her husband and,” gesturing at Tart of the Week’s car, “her is proof she can see.”
“So we follow her where?” Chuck asked.
“Wherever she goes. I’m hoping she is headed home.”
Sitting in the dark, watching the side exit of the Love Buy The Hour coffin motel, Whiskers relished the peace and quiet. No Puddles. No Chuck. No noise of the city. Nothing, but silence. After a week of rushing around the city, interviews with clients, and the frustration of a case ending without resolution was draining.
Following people around Stroud, taking vid and holo of them entering and leaving places revolted Whiskers, normally. Cases like this gave him a dirty feeling, bottom feeding on the misery of others did not sit well with him. However, peace and quiet did and cases like this were all about peace and quiet.
Pairing Chuck with Puddles ensured Whiskers quiet time. Leaning forward, Whiskers swiped across the windshield flipping through case information. Mister Ethan Harowe mid-level wageslave at Wanlot, married six years, no outstanding debts or for that matter, anything else. Wrapping this case up, a matter of a few more hours of following and recording.
Incoming message light flashing caught Whiskers attention, only a few individuals knew the car’s private message address. Two taps on the windshield cleared the casefile, another tap brought up the message. Sender unknown, Whiskers sat back. A quick glance at the clock, enough time to start a trace. A few minutes later, trace started and Mister Howe exited Love Buy The Hour kissing Caroline Tarr deeply before heading to his car. Mister Howe drove past, oblivious to Whiskers. Swiping the windshield established connection with Puddles in their car.
“They are leaving. I will follow the husband. You and Chuck follow his partner,” Whiskers said, starting the car, following Mister Howe.
An hour of late night traffic later, Mister Howe never deviating from the most direct path to his blockhouse apartment, pulling into an adjacent parking spot, Whiskers watched Mister Howe enter the elevator. Sitting back, Whiskers pulled up the vid images from tonight’s work; plenty of clear images of Mister Howe and partner. Checking the trace, a dead end. Curiosity warred with security. Security won, filing the message away, Whiskers headed back to the office.