Page 68 of The District

Christina fell to her knees in front of him. Wrapping her arms around his waist, she rested her head against his thudding heart. “I don’t know, Eric. I wish I could help you, but I just don’t know.”

He pressed his cheek against the top of her head, and stroked her hair. “How could a man do that to his family? I would never... I could never...”

She cupped his chin with one hand and looked deep into his eyes. “I know that.”

He took possession of her lips in a fierce kiss that nearly tumbled them both to the floor. How could he ever give up on this woman? She understood him as no one ever had before. And he understood her.

A pair of heavy footsteps split them apart, and Eric jerked his head up in time to see Marie poke her head around the end of the shelf.

“Are you two almost done? It’s five o’clock, and I draw the line at working overtime—even for a Brody. You can always come back tomorrow, Eric.”

“I think we have what we need, Marie.” He gestured at the papers scattered on the floor. “We’ll clean up.”

“I have a few things to do up front.” She backed out of the aisle as if suddenly becoming aware of Christina’s disheveled appearance on the floor between his knees.

He blew out a breath when he heard her pull shut the cage window, and then he knelt beside Christina to scoop up the papers on the floor. “You have the interviews with the witnesses?”

She waved a sheath of papers at him. “I took them out of the file already.”

“How big is your handbag?”

“Big enough.” She rolled them into a tube and stuffed them into her purse.

He reassembled the case file and dropped it into the box. He tipped the box up onto the shelf and shoved it the rest of the way with his knee.

“Look, I know we didn’t do much to advance our own case today, but I owe it to my brothers and...and my dad to investigate this further.”

“I agree, and I’m glad to help. You always accused me of being obsessed with this case. Now it’s paying off.” She winked at him in that ridiculous way she had of screwing up the entire side of her face.

“Thanks.” He patted her handbag. “Now we can see what lies Liz Fielding told the police.”

She slipped her heels back on and preceded him down the row.

“Wait.” He grabbed her shoulder and ran his hand down the length of her jacket, which ended halfway across her derriere.

She jumped. “I know you’re kinky, but do you really want to finish what we started right here among the dusty boxes of not-quite-cold cases?”

“I was brushing some dirt from your suit jacket.”

“Is that what they’re calling it these days?”

He pinched her waist and propelled her ahead of him. When they got to the front of the cage, he gave Marie a hug. “Thanks a million.”

She made shooing motions with her hands. “You two get on out of here, and I’ll follow you in ten minutes.”

Eric started to smile but noticed the crease between Marie’s eyebrows. “You’re serious.”

“Look what happened to Dr. Patrick the last time I let a Brody in here to look at evidence.”

“What are you implying, Marie?”

“Little old me? Not a thing.” She made a zipping motion across her pursed lips.

When they got into the elevator, Christina raised her brows. “What was all that about?”

“I don’t know. At first with all the business about not signing the evidence roster, I just thought she was protecting me. You know, didn’t want me getting into trouble for nosing around the evidence locker.”

“Maybe she’s just superstitious after what happened to Dr. Patrick.”


They made their way up to the office that they’d claimed as their own. Eric swung his laptop case onto the chair and tapped a key on his keyboard to wake up his computer. Two of his desktop folders were open.


Christina swung her own bag over her shoulder. “What?”

“There are two folders open on my desktop that I did not open.”

“Are you sure?” She stood behind him and peered over his shoulder.

“Right here.” He ran the cursor across the tool tray at the bottom of the screen. “They were opened and then minimized.”

“Are you sure you didn’t do it?”

“I usually close out everything when I’m done working.”

“But you don’t password protect your laptop? Isn’t that standard FBI protocol?”

“Shh.” He held his finger to his lips.

“Anything important in those two folders?”

“Not really. The report I wrote on the case, a few notes. Nothing classified.”