Page 50 of Black Lies

“Who the f**k are you?” he snarls.

The man smiles, a patient gesture. “Let’s get your name first. Then I’ll tell you mine.”

“Lee.”

“Lee what?”

Lee frowns, not sure what he is getting at. “Lee Let-Me-The-Fuck-Up-Before-I-Kick-Your-Fucking-Ass.”

Baldy has the guts to laugh. “Oh, that Lee. Nice to meet you. I’m Dr. Finzlesk.”

“Am I under arrest?” Wouldn’t be the first time he’s woken up in a jail cell. Though most jail cells don’t have hardwood floors, twelve-foot ceilings, and framed art.

“No. I’d just like to ask you some questions.”

“How’d I get here?”

“Is that a question you often ask yourself?”

He stares at him. “Answer the f**king question.”

“You grew violent; you were sedated. We restrained you so that you wouldn’t hurt anyone else.”

“I hurt someone?”

“Not too badly.” The man smiles at a time when a smile seems off. Looking through his answer, Lee tries to figure it out. His head hurts. He closes his eyes.

“Whose house is this?”

“A woman named Jillian Sharp. Do you recognize that name?”

“No.” Sharp. “Is she related to Brant Sharp?”

“Yes.”

Yes. So helpful. Baldy’s bedside manner sucks. So he had hurt someone in the house of someone related to Brant Sharp. Maybe he’d finally snapped. Tracked down that rich f**k and kicked his ass. Fought for the woman he doesn’t really deserve the likes of.

“What’s the last thing you remember?”

Screw this ass**le. Who ties someone down, wants to examine their head, and won’t provide any information of their own? He stares at the ceiling.

“Lee? What’s the last thing you remember?”

“Fuck you. Give me my phone call.”

It is the last thing he says. Hours come and go, Baldy sticks by his bedside, and Lee keeps his mouth closed. Ignores every question that comes. At some point, the windows dark, the hour unknown, the man stands with a sigh. Setting down the blank notepad, he opens his bag, removes an item, and approaches the bed.

Lee jerks at the hot prick of metal, turning a furious face to the doctor, his arms jerking, muscles pulling at the unforgiving restraints. “What was that, you f**k—”

BLACK.

Chapter 59

It has been two days. Brant won’t answer his cell, neither will Lee. Funny how, even now, I still think of them as separate individuals. I drove to Jillian’s yesterday. Stood on her front step and stared into her eyes. Her pupils red, her face as strained as my own. We both love him; I understand that. Understand that she has dealt with this for decades longer than me. I understand that she is upset with me for breaking the balance, for shoving the truth into his face despite the consequences. I may be responsible for losing him. I may have tipped the scale and caused his psyche to crash. Fall to a depth that it is unable to rise from. I could have, in my moment of confession, lost the man I love.

It is an unthinkable thought, but one I must consider.

She didn’t know where he was either. He hasn’t called her, hasn’t responded to her texts. She didn’t say it, but I could feel the blame. This was what she warned me of, and her face clearly stated her opinion of me. For the first time, I feel I deserved her scorn.

We agreed not to call the police. To wait and hope for him to surface. She is monitoring his credit cards and bank accounts. Sooner or later, he should use one.

I returned home afterwards. Paced every floor of our home and prayed into the wee hours of morning.

At 4 AM, I wake with an idea. Toss and turn over it before my brain functions enough to iron out a plan. I consider and discard Don, then call Marcus. “Where are you?”

“In bed. It’s the middle of the night.”

“I’m coming to you. Text me your address.”

“Is this about Molly?”

I hang up the phone without answering, shove my feet into Uggs and grab my keys. Take the elevator down and step into the garage. My phone dings with Marcus’s address at the same time that the garage bay doors open.

Marcus had gotten rid of Molly. Hopefully he would help me find Brant.

Marcus answers the door in nothing but pajama bottoms, the view of chiseled abs doing absolutely nothing for me. I move into his house, bee-lining for the kitchen and slap a piece of paper on the counter.

“This is what I need.” I explain the plan, then push my cell toward him. “Call them.”

He looks at me with speculation. “A phone call? That’s it? For a thousand bucks?”

I shrug. “It’s five am. I figure I’m paying graveyard rates. Sell it.”

He lets out a rumble of a sigh, pulls the paper closer, and dials the number.

“Put it on speaker,” I whisper.

He obliges, giving me a look that many would classify as disrespectful.

“Eurowatch Assistance, how may I help you?”

Marcus glances at me. “This is Brant Sharp. I need help in locating my car.”

“Certainly, Mr. Sharp. I will need to ask you a series of security questions to first verify your identity.”

“Go ahead,” Marcus says with a wary glance in my direction. I nod at him.

“What is the VIN number of the car you would like to track?”

“J2R43L2KS14JD799F” he recites, reading the line of numbers off the paper.

“Excellent. Please hold while I pull up your profile.” There is a series of keystrokes before the interrogation continues. I cross my fingers and hope that I have enough information. I had cleared the safe of as many files of importance as I could grab, getting the file on the car as well as the personal file that holds copies of all of his identification documents. I can’t imagine that Aston Martin knows much more than what was presented at the time of purchase.

“Mr. Sharp, may I have your address please?”

“23 Ocean’s Bluff Drive.”

“And your driver’s license number?”

There are three more questions that Marcus passes with flying colors, us both breathing easier when the representative moves on.

“Please hold while we locate the vehicle. Would you like us to also notify local police?”

“No,” Marcus said with an easy laugh. “My nephew was due home two hours ago. Borrowed it for a date. We’re thinking he’s sleeping off a party somewhere. I’ll just breathe easier knowing where it’s at.”

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