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Greene County Sheriff’s Captain Dedra Ann Watson pulled her county issued SUV into the entrance of the Ramada hotel and dropped Barbara Patterson off. Patterson was a friend of her wife Mary Jane Abernathy. She was also a freelance writer/reporter that convinced Dede to let her do a story on her. It was after one AM during a busy and tragic night. Dede, Patterson, and MJ were at dinner when Dede was called to a scene earlier in the evening. The victim was a woman who Dede had known. Patterson came along following Dede around.
Dede first encountered Mary Baker, the victim, several years ago when she was still a patrol deputy. Dede tried several times to get the woman off drugs, but Baker failed rehab time after time. Dede felt a kindred spirit with the woman who was a veteran, having served four years in the Army. When Dede moved to Homicide, she encountered Baker a few times as she provided tips on cases. Mary Baker was found dead in the same cheap motel where the Greene County sheriff’s Office routinely investigated other crime. Baker seemed to be the victim of a drug deal, or a trick gone bad. The Medical Examiner would test for the presence of drugs but the three bullet holes told a different story. Dede remembered the feeling when she lifted the tarp and saw the body. She wondered why someone would pump three nine mm slugs into a harmless drug addict. Of course, no one at the motel heard anything or saw anything. But they were lying. Mary’s name was on the register so there wasn’t a lead there.
Dede volunteered to make the death notification as she knew the family. That was going to be a hard visit. Having Mary Jane’s friend along was not going to make it easier.
“Look I will talk to you about this case later, but right now I don’t want to answer a bunch of questions. I am going to meet the family and it is people that I know,” said Dede to Patterson while they were driving in the car.
Patterson was also affected as she observed the squad follow investigative procedures. This was the first time that Patterson encountered a murdered body. The bloody scene in the motel room was one she will remember. She also noted that the members of Dede’s squad did their jobs without emotion, all but Dede. She wanted to follow up and find out why this person’s death affected her friend’s wife.
Dede pulled into the driveway of a small house with a manicured lawn and stopped the car. She told Patterson that she might be awhile but didn’t want her to observe. Dede got out of the car and rang the doorbell. The door opened a crack and then fully when she was recognized. Patterson heard the scream of a mother’s anguish coming from inside the house. Fifteen minutes later Dede came out and got in the car. Patterson knew that Dede was shaken.
“I just told a mother that her twenty-nine-year-old daughter was not coming home again, not sharing dinner, not having Christmas, not providing grandchildren. The only good thing is that Mary Baker didn’t have kids. She was a drug user, but she was a good person, and no one deserves what happened to her,” said Dede when they were on the road.
Dede dropped Patterson outside the hotel and said that she would see her tomorrow. All she wanted to do was go home and hopefully climb into Mary Jane’s arms. MJ would know what to do.
Mary Jane was waiting for her in the kitchen door and enveloped her in a tremendous bear hug. Barbara Patterson called Mary Jane after she was dropped off at the hotel, to give her a heads up. She kissed Dede without saying anything. MJ directed them to the couch and the pair kissed. Dede was comfortable in her wife’s arms. It felt good to be next to the woman she loved.
“Do you want to tell me now or get ready for bed and tell me in the morning?”
“I knew her MJ tried to help her kick the habit. Later she was my ears on the street and I could get good information from her. I might be too close, might need to sit this one out.”
“You can’t and for the reasons you cited, yea you could turn it over to one of your deputies, but you will hover over him or her. You will need to face this and get justice for her family,” said Mary Jane.
“We have no leads, and that dump of a motel’s security cameras weren’t working, so we have nothing,” said Dede in frustration.
Mary Jane kissed her wife again. She wanted to comfort her but didn’t know where to start. She rose and pulled Dede to her feet. Directed her back into their bedroom and began to undress her wife. When Dede was naked, Mary Jane moved her into the shower and waited until she was finished. Dede came out of the shower looking more like a drowned rat than a woman, but MJ had a large towel ready and wrapped Dede in it.
“Hot water seems to help, I guess that is why I enjoy using the hot tub at the cabin,” said Dede when she was dry.
Dede slipped into the bed without bothering with PJ’s. Mary Jane covered her and shut off the light. She moved to the second bedroom and fell on that bed. As much as she wanted to cuddle and hold her wife MJ knew that bahis siteleri Dede needed alone time. Dede would be better in the morning.
The next morning Mary Jane got up, it felt weird sleeping in the spare bedroom. She went into their bedroom to use the bathroom and found that Dede was up already. She heard her talking to someone on the phone. When MJ finished her morning routine, she walked into the kitchen and found Dede still on the phone eating some toast.
“We need to send patrol out to find people who Mary hung out with. I know that she did prostitution to support her drug habit. So, we should be looking for customers also,” said Dede.
Dede nodded several times and told whoever was on the other end that she would be in the office in an hour and a half. She put her phone down and got up and embraced Mary Jane. The pair kissed, and then kissed again
“Why do I love you so much, MJ?”
“My bright personality, I’m good in bed, have a shoulder to cry on, take your pick, my love.”
“I pick all of them, sorry that I was such a fool last night. But I felt horrible. Sleep was the best medicine, but you will not be sleeping alone tonight,” said Dede.
“I won’t make plans as I know that things could change,” said Mary Jane.
“I had plans, take Barbara to dinner with us, take her up to the cabin, let her see us practicing, all that went up the flu when Mary Baker was murdered,” said Dede.
“You could have told Barbara that this is not a good time, so you could concentrate on the investigation,” said Mary Jane.
“There would always be something, so it is better to get it out of the way now. Besides when I told the Sheriff about Barbara, and the story, she indorsed the idea, so I need to follow through,” said Dede.
“Let me know if you need anything,” said Mary Jane.
“A kiss, access to your bank account, a silver tiara?” said Dede.
“I can provide the first item on your list,” said Mary Jane as she kissed Dede.
“I am going to meet Barbara for breakfast and then to the office,” said Dede.
The two women came together, again and their lips met. Mary Jane wanted to take her wife’s clothes off and lick her pussy on the couch, but that would have to wait. They kissed again and Dede moved to her SUV and pulled out of the driveway. Mary Jane had plenty to do as she had several projects on her burners and they all seemed to have the same due date.
Later that morning
Capt. Watson and Barbara Patterson were seated in an I-hop in a quiet corner. Patterson was pumping questions to Dede. The ones that she wanted to ask last night. She was gaining insight into Dede and the victim’s relationship.
“Mary Baker was a drug addict, but she was also a veteran that served her country. I tried several times to get her into rehab, but she couldn’t or wouldn’t finish. When I moved to homicide, I would get tips from her. I often wonder why I didn’t have the same problems that she had. I was lucky I wasn’t stationed in either Afghanistan or Iraq. I was safe in the UK or the USA. I was the person that helped develop the missions for the drone strikes. Now if I look at aerial photos of bombed out villages I would start puking. I was also lucky as I left the service before things went sideways for me. I was tired of the BS and the harassment about my sexual preferences. So, I opted to join the reserve, and finish my degree,” responded Dede
“Have you known other victims?” asked Patterson
In most of our cases we may or may not know the victim. We may know the victim because we encountered him or her because of an arrest, or another interaction with us. But Mary was different and that’s why it affected me like it did.” said Dede.
Patterson started asking about how she would move the investigation forward with so few leads.
“I have patrol looking for Mary’s known associates, the folks she used with, some of the women that she associated with to see if anyone can give us information as to what went on before she died. Then there is Mary herself, the coroner will see if there is semen and other biological evidence and see if we can get a DNA match. If the person isn’t in the database, then we have a profile that we can match to a suspect.”
“What drew you to Homicide?” asked Patterson.
“A billet came open and it was a chance to get promoted. It wasn’t a calling it was just a job and I got good at it. My first Captain retired with some pressure from the Sheriff, and I was offered the job. I wasn’t going to say no. Again, it was a promotion, but it is a lot of work. I hope that it is not taking a toll on my marriage. Mary Jane is a kind, companionate, loving woman and I don’t know how I would survive without her. I don’t know how she puts up with my weird schedule.
“Maybe because she adores you,” said Patterson.
“Well, I love her,” said Dede.
Patterson picked up the check and the two women walked out to Dede’s SUV. Dede commented that the gossips would mention that she was with another woman. They drove to the station canl─▒ bahis siteleri and Dede started to meet with her squad. There were no new leads on the Mary Baker case, and that was worrying Dede. If something didn’t turn up soon solving the case would be harder. Patterson spent the morning speaking with members of the homicide squad about solving murders and working with Dede. She even popped in for a short session with the Sheriff.
Patterson decided to call Mary Jane; “Look I need a rescue before Dede puts me in jail. I know it’s a little late but do you want to go to lunch?”
“So, you pissed off the Greene County Sheriff’s dept in only one visit?” asked Mary Jane
“I’m good at my Job. No, I have pumped everyone with enough questions, and I can see that they are wishing I would go away.”
“Give me about fifteen minutes and I will collect you from the front entrance,” said Mary Jane.
Patterson got in MJ’s SUV when it pulled up to the front entrance. MJ pulled away and took off to find a place to have lunch. Patterson had an ulterior motive; she could probe Mary Jane about Dede and their relationship with out Dede being present. Mary Jane might open up more without her wife around. She didn’t think that there were skeletons in the closet, but she wanted to see what stresses Dede’s job had on the marriage. Patterson also wanted to fill in the gaps in how the two women came together. Mary Jane pulled into the parking lot of a place that she used for meetings. Patterson got to work when they were settled.
“Ok so you two met in a bar in Chicago because you were teaching at a marketing seminar and Dede was in an FBI course. Was that truly the first time that you met no dates before that?
“I dated some other women before I met Dede. But none worked out. I can’t tell you why I was drawn to her. She came into the bar in a gray blouse that showed her figure and I wanted her. I kept buying her drinks so she wouldn’t go up to her room. She told me about her ex-girlfriend, so I knew that she had lesbian tendencies. I didn’t know if she would respond to me. But I was glad that she did. I don’t remember if I kissed her in the bar or not. I slipped her my spare key card and hoped that she would follow me. And the rest as they say is history.”
“So, you’re telling me that even though you lived within miles of each other, that your paths never crossed?” asked Barbara.
“I don’t go seeking interaction with law enforcement so no we didn’t know each other. Now because of her, I visit a gun range almost weekly to practice shooting,” Mary Jane responded.
“Wait a minute you visit a gun range? What is going on, I thought you were an eastern tea drinking lady of leisure?”
“That person that you met several years ago has changed since I moved out here. I’m a hard charging businesswoman. Dede is the tea drinker in the family she picked up that habit when she was stationed in the UK. She had a relationship with a female member of the RAF and picked up drinking tea there. She also used her time in the UK to visit France and pick up an appreciation of wine,” Mary Jane responded.
“Well, you were always hard charging as I remember. Let’s move on to another item. If I was to ask Dedra what is the most surprising and aggravating trait that you possess, how would she respond?”
“That I am impulsive, If I itch, I scratch. let me relate a few stories. I was impulsive when I offered Dede my key card. That was the first time I did anything like that. I scared Dede when I followed the Eagle County Sheriff’s department that were chasing some rustlers that were using my land as a method of escape. I was so pissed at those guys I could have shot them myself. I thought that I would never hear the end of that.
I contacted an attorney because I wanted to sue some clown that was posting hateful signs in our front yard. One time I mentioned to Dede that I was thinking about buying a compact pistol to carry with me. I got a lecture from her about that, she was happy that I had some protection when I was alone, but she was not in favor of me carrying all the time.
Buying the property up north was an impulse. I saw that the property was for sale, and I thought I had a need, and I had the money and bought it. This was before I met Dedra. Then went through three contractors building the cabin. There was the time when a cold front moved through Colorado, and I was up at what people now call the Abernathy Ranch and I suddenly decided that we needed a better source of heat than the fireplace. That led my thinking that we needed a larger cabin. All were spur of the moment decisions. All of which Dedra Ann quietly put a blanket on.
“So, you were the one to suggest getting married?”
“Actually, it was Dede that proposed first. We both hinted but she was the one that purchased the rings and asked the question. I think that if we had waited our relationship might have ended. We talked about it but for different reasons we kept putting it off. Dede was the one that put canl─▒ bahis her foot in my backside to finally do what we both wanted.”
“What qualities does Dedra possess that you admire?”
“Because of her job and her training in the Air Force, she analyses things to the N’th degree, that is how you solve murders. I love her for that, and at times it drives me batty, when I am ready to charge forward, she’s there with a hand on my shoulder.”
“How is your relationship with her crazy schedule, do you find enough together time?” asked Patterson.
“I adore Dedra Ann Watson we come together when ever we can. It is important that we have together time. I will admit that being in the middle of love making when she is called out to a murder scene drives me nuts, and I don’t self-stimulate well, when I’m alone. We seem to work through it,” responded Mary Jane.
A waiter came over to refresh their drinks and dropped the check.
“Ok Dr. Patterson how did I do? Am I sane?”
“You are as sane as any woman I know, given the stresses on your relationship,” Patterson responded.
Mary Jane’s phone began to buzz and beep. She looked at the display and read Dede Watson.
“Ut oh Dede must have spies and knows what we’re talking about,” said Mary Jane before she answered.
“Yes, Captain Watson, what can we do for you,” said Mary Jane.
“I love you too MJ. Can you get Barbara back down here, I got a break in the case, and I thought she might like to observe?” said Dede.
“Sure, we will be there in about fifteen minutes,” said Mary Jane.
“What did you tell her about me, you know I will get it out of you sooner or later,” said Dede.
“It was all complimentary. We can discuss it when you get home tonight, love you,” replied Mary Jane.
Mary Jane put her phone back in her purse and pulled enough cash to cover the bill and tip and rose from the table.
“Command performance Barbara, Dede wants you to observe an interview back at the station,” said Mary Jane.
The two women rose and moved to Mary Jane’s SUV, and they were soon pulling into the sheriff’s office parking lot. The two women got through security and made their way to the Homicide office. Dede was in the interview room and Barbara and Mary Jane watched on the monitor in the meeting room. In the room besides Dede was the subject of the interview.
“She did odd Jobs for me,” said the woman to a question that Dede asked.
“How do you mean odd Jobs?” asked Dede.
“She cleaned my house, picked up things for me, sometimes she would mule for me when I wanted to get high,” said the woman.
“Was that what she was doing the night she was killed?” asked Dede.
“Sort of, I just paid her for cleaning, and she said that she had line on some good stuff and wanted to know if I wanted some. I said sure and gave her an extra fifty to cover the cost. She told me that Harlin was the best source in the area. I don’t have a last name, but I said that I would see her in the morning. I didn’t know, I thought she might be scamming me for the extra fifty bucks. There were times when I gave her extra money for drugs and not got a delivery. If I got a couple of rocks out of the deal that would be good. When she left my place, I saw her get in a white pickup with a guy I don’t think I met before. You meet all kinds of hinky people doing drugs,” said the woman.
There were some other questions about what the guy looked like and what make, and model Pickup Betty climbed into. The woman responded with “I don’t remember.”
Dede circled back asking the questions again probing for more information every time eliciting a few more tidbits that would help put the puzzle together. The woman finally opened up and said that “I sent Betty on the errand to buy baggies of cocaine for a party with business associates and she went with a friend. I couldn’t be seen buying drugs on the street, so I got Betty a known drug addict to do the buying for me,” said the woman.
“Come on you know who the friend is just give me the name?”
“I was hopping not to involve him, I don’t want what happed to Betty to happen to me, that is why I used Betty,” said the woman.
“But you know the name of the man who took her to the motel and more than likely prostituted her?” said Dede.
“It was a guy she knew that gave her rides. She told me that she was meeting Harlin to make the buy. Other than that, I don’t know because I didn’t want to know, I just wanted my powder,” the woman said.
“That’s Patsy Anderson, Mary Jane, she is a member of our sorority,” Barbara Patterson said when she realized that she knew the name of the person Dede was interviewing.
“What was your relationship to the victim?” asked Dede.
The woman finally said what Dede wanted. “We had an interesting relationship she was my lover sometimes in addition to her cleaning my house and performing other services for me.”
“Did you pay her for sex?”
“At first but then the relationship grew, I’m sorry that she is dead,” said Anderson
“Did you sell her services?” asked Dede.
“Not directly but if friends asked, I would give them her name and claim a finder’s fee that she didn’t know about. So, I made money off of her,” said the woman.
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