Allegiance In Death
Eve was feeling generous so instead of parking her departmental issue hunk of junk in the driveway to annoy her husband’s majordomo, as was typical behavior for her she put it in the huge underground garage where it belonged. It looked like a cart horse among thoroughbreds but what the heck it was her hunk of junk.
Lieutenant Eve Dallas of the NYPSD walked out in the crisp fall afternoon all but prancing. The sky was a clear staggering blue, as blue as her husband Roarke’s eyes, and the air was perfumed from the elaborate gardens that surrounded the house where she lived with him was as heady as wine.
Some days it was great to be alive. She had a job she loved, the sexiest, richest husband in the known universe who loved her as much as she loved him. She’d cleared off her desk and had three count them three whole days of personal time to go to his oceanfront house in Mexico, lie in the sun, make love to Roarke and not worry about mucking about in blood, murder and death.
She sprinted up the steps and through the door to the castle that was Roarke’s home and now hers. Not even old prune face also known as Summerset, meeting her in the entryway with his habitual scowl of disapproval could spoil her mood today. She decided to be polite and civil. It took effort on her part but she was feeling good enough to make the attempt.
“Good afternoon, Summerset. Roarke home yet.” She tried out a smile on him.
Summerset didn’t answer for a long thoughtful moment. He could handle a rude sniping Eve; a polite happy one threw him off balance.
“He left a message that he’d be home in time to dress for the reception at the art gallery.”
He felt a hint of pity for her when her smile faded and a look of dismay crossed her face. She’d forgotten again, even though Roarke had keyed it into her pocket link weeks ago.
“Shit,” she muttered. “I was so close to a clean getaway.”
“The dress you you’re to wear is pressed and hanging at the front of your closet, Lieutenant.” Summerset said trying to keep the amusement out of his voice.
“You don’t suppose I could come down with something fatal in the next couple of hours do you?”
“I doubt it.”
“Okay.” She huffed out a cleansing breath. Guess I’ll take a swim and then shower.” She started up the stairs toward her and Roarke’s bedroom and then stopped and turned around. “This reception things important to Roarke I guess?”
“Yes. It’s for Dochas. I believe he and Dr. Dimatto have gone to considerable effort to get wealthy patrons to attend tonight’s function.”
Dochas, a Gallic word that meant hope, was the abuse shelter Roarke had built, largely financed and continued to support in part as a tribute to Eve and the misery and violence she’d experienced as a child at her father’s hands. The fact that his own childhood had also been painful and bleak was part of the life bond between them. Two lost souls who’d saved first themselves then redeemed each other.
“I’d best look the part then.”
When Roarke arrived home an hour later he was pleased to find her already showered and dressed and surprised to find her cursing as she tried to use a gadget Trina insisted lengthened and darkened her eyelashes. Since Trina insisted and Trina was one of the very few people on the face of the earth that demoralized Eve she used the instrument of torture and cursed.
Eve rounded on Roarke.
“Can you see a bit of difference in my eyelashes?” It sounded more like an assault than a question.
There was he knew no answer to that question that would either satisfy her or keep him from landing hip deep in trouble.
“You look beautiful, Darling Eve,” he temporized his answer smoothly. That was true even if it was unresponsive.
His wife with her whiskey brown eyes, short choppy mink brown hair and that long lean body, presently encased in a slim column of blue silk, was indeed beautiful. He could spend decades appreciating just the wrapping but when you considered it housed a heart as big as Texas and a mind like a steel trap lovely didn’t began to cover her beauty.
“Yeah right.” She doctored her other eye up and discarded the instrument before turning to face her husband.
Hers, all hers. Every mouth-watering inch of him. Tall, muscular, rather than muscle bound. Black hair longer than hers, the face of a fallen angel or a risen devil and those blue eyes tipped the scale towards devil. He was handsome, slick and sleek as a panther.
“God, I love you.”
The words as well as the emotion would rear up at the oddest moments and almost choke her with its intensity.
He walked over to her and kissed her gently, touched by the unsolicited avowal of love. Eve so rarely said the words though he never doubted her love.
“We’re still going to the reception,’ he teased. “Everyone will be there. Peabody, McNabb, Feeney, even Jack and Anne Whitney. You’ll have plenty of cops to talk shop with. Besides you like Louise and Charles. Dr Mira and Dennis.”
Dr Louise Dimatto and her friend/companion Charles Monroe who was another slick character. Though whereas Roarke made his fortune wheeling and dealing in finance Charles made his living as a LC, a male licensed companion. This fact at times appalled Eve and at others embarrassed her. She did like them both though and if Louise was okay with his career choices what business was it of hers.
You had to balance out that Commander Jack Whitney’s wife Ann was another woman she feared. The older woman always made Eve feel awkward and clumsy with her always-perfect cloths and make-up.
Commander Whitney when she’d delivered her verbal report on the Larabee homicide today seemed distracted, listening with only half an ear. Something was wrong there but she wasn’t sure what or if it was any of her business either. It was difficult to separate the two areas of her life anymore. Often functions she’d tagged as Roarke’s deals turned out to have as many cops on hand as the rich, famous, and powerful. And of course Roarke more and more tended to stick his noise and his felonious fingers into her cases. If a computer could be seduced into doing something Roarke would figure out a way to seduce it. That charm of his worked equally well on women. There wasn’t a woman 8 to 180 Roarke couldn’t get to fall at his feet in 10 seconds flat. Had in fact been very adept at it before they’d met, loved, married. She marveled as she watched him undress and go into the bathroom to shower that Dublin’s bad boy was now her very married husband.
Allegiance In Death by webster