Monday, October 19, 2009

Girl Sleuth-Chapter 40

(To read from the beginning go Here.)

Anne tipped back in her chair. The voice quieted even more, she couldn’t make out what was said. She turned her head toward the darkened office. Strained to hear. Further. Just a little further.

“They’re gone!”

Anne windmilled wildly her hand striking and then catching hold of the edge of the desk. Panting a little, she returned the chair legs to the ground where they belonged.

Erik appeared from around a row of tall filing cabinets. His scowl was fierce enough to turn someone into stone. Dear heavens, she hoped he never had cause to look at her like that.

“What?” She asked.

“Carol’s papers are gone. I put them in the office safe this afternoon, but they’re gone.”

“What does that mean?”

“I’ll tell you what it means. It means that there’s a dirty rat in this office. Someone’s in cahoots with Armstrong, maybe even pulling his strings.” He sank into his desk chair, hands rubbing at his face as if he could scrub away the suspicion from his mind.

Anne grabbed his hand and looked directly into his eyes. She lowered her voice. “Where are the other men with Armstrong?”

“The floor below this one. We have a small holding cell there, at least until the FBI comes for him.”

Casually as she could, Anne stood. She didn’t let go of his hand, tightening her grip until his brows furrowed. “Why don’t you show me where the powder room is so that I can return your equipment.”

They turned toward the main door.

“What’s going on?” he hissed from one side of his mouth.

“There’s someone in that office behind us. I heard him talking on the phone.” She pulled him faster as they approached the door, a determined little tugboat towing a battle cruiser.

Suddenly his hand was gone, and she staggered forward alone, his voice propelling her now. “Go on and get out of here. Get downstairs and send some of the fellows up to me.”

She glanced over her shoulder to see him reaching to grip the gun in his shoulder holster.

“Ah, ah, ah. Let’s not jump the proverbial gun, shall we Special Agent Carter.”

Erik’s shoulders relaxed and his hand fell away from his weapon. “Hey, Boss. You had me going there for a minute. You don’t happen to have the documents I stowed earlier today do you.”

Erik waved Anne forward with an it’s-all-right gesture, but she remained rooted to where she was. Something wasn’t right. That was the same voice she’d heard in the darkened office. And why wasn’t the man showing himself? Or maybe it was just the crazy conglomeration of filing and shelves and desks that hid him, not some sinister intent.

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