33 ~ Ryan

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Ryan clenched his fists as he listened to the radio feed from Felix's transmitter. What had Carlos meant when he said get this shit over with? Dammit. Ryan should never have let her go through with the mission. Despite their close proximity to the airport, he felt completely helpless, and this Carlos asshole really needed a good pummeling. Fulton browsed his Facebook feed, glancing at Ryan whenever Carlos made a lewd comment to Felix. Ryan wanted to punch Fulton as much as he wanted to pummel Carlos.

"You really need to get over this girl, Clark," Fulton said as he tossed his phone on the dashboard. "Just be satisfied with the nice piece of ass she gave you and move on. Isn't that your style anyway?"

"Shove it, Fulton. You wouldn't know a nice piece of ass if it wiggled in your face."

"Believe me, I've had my share of juicy ass, but they didn't belong to the kind of women I wanted to keep around. If you want a long term relationship, like the one my wife and I have, you need to look for more important traits, like a docile personality and decent cooking skills."

Fulton chuckled and his belly grazed the steering wheel as it bounced. Ryan had no trouble believing his wife could cook. The man was probably one hamburger away from a heart attack. 

"You know nothing about Felix, so why don't you drop the subject."

"I'm just saying, you don't want to fall for a girl who might be dead by morning."

Ryan grimaced, his blood pressure rising well past the safe limit. "It's a damn good thing you didn't become a doctor. You have a shitty bedside manner."

Ryan's phone rang, and he glanced at the caller's name as he put it to his ear. "I thought you'd be in bed, Harris."

"You and Fulton at the Summerville center?" Harris said, ignoring Ryan's jab.

"Yeah."

"Put me on speaker phone. I want both of you to hear this."

Ryan pressed the speakerphone icon on his phone and set it on the console. "Go ahead, Harris."

"Okay. And just a heads up, Clark, you're not going to like what I have to tell you."

Ryan rolled his eyes. Harris was the most cynical agent he'd ever met, and he knew damn well Harris didn't care if Ryan liked what he had to tell him or not.

"We ran Felix's prints after we collected them today, and we found them in our database. They match the prints found on the purse and shoes of the victim you identified at the morgue. Jenny Mason."

"What? Are you sure?"

"Of course, I'm sure. We also confirmed that Felix's boyfriend, Andrew Massimino, was the owner of the semen found on the victim's body. I'm guessing his are the other prints we've been unable to identify. It looks like your former neighbor has been feeding you a line."

Ryan's brain quickly offered up several reasons why Felix couldn't have been responsible for murder. She was a shy math nerd who would never hurt a fly. Then his suspicious cop brain reminded him how much she had changed since he'd last seen her – the tattoos, the Harley, her involvement with criminals. Of course, biker chicks sporting a ton of ink didn't make them automatic suspects to murder, and Ryan refused to profile her.

"I can tell by your stunned silence that you didn't expect your innocent neighbor to be implicated in a murder," Harris said. "But there's more. Her prints have been matched with another homicide victim. One Joshua Alexander. Recovered last April at Wolf Point. Also linked to Donovan."

Ryan had to work hard to keep his head. He was a federal agent first and foremost, and he couldn't let his feelings cloud the facts. Still, he felt compelled to defend Felix. "I don't think it's fair to assume her guilt so quickly. I've known Felix since she was a kid. We went to school together. She was extremely shy. I don't think she spoke ten words to me the whole time we lived next door to each other. I have a hard time believing she perpetrated murder knowingly."

Fulton snorted out a laugh. "Do you have a theory why her prints happened to be on or around two homicide victims if she wasn't knowingly involved? Did she murder them in her sleep?"

Ryan glanced at the radio. It had been several minutes since Felix's last transmission. He hoped that meant she was waiting for the plane to take off. "Her prints could have been planted," he said almost absently.

"I think you've deluded yourself into thinking this woman is a victim because you've become emotionally attached to her," Fulton continued. "There's no room for emotions when it comes to the law."

"Can I call your wife and get confirmation on that?" Ryan locked Fulton in a glare so fierce, it was a wonder the jerkoff's head didn't burst into flames.

"Christ, you two. Do I have to remind you that you're on duty?" Harris growled into the phone. "Let me know as soon as you get a location on Donovan. Until then, keep your testosterone levels in check."

Harris hung up and Ryan folded his arms across his chest, staring through the windshield as he ignored his testosterone and the jerkoff sitting next to him. He refused to believe Felix had willfully committed murder. Something wasn't stirring the coffee, and he planned to get to the bottom of it before Felix became the next victim.


PLAYLIST SONG: Get Back In The Car by Chroma Key

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