The Devil’s Disease: TEASER #3

SBDD3

Lena looked back at Durbin.  “Who is that?”

He shook his head, and moved up to stand beside her.  “You’d better let me handle this.”

The woman reached them.  “Would one of you like to tell me just how you got on my crime scene?”

Durbin cleared his throat.  “Apologies, Inspector.  We’re not trying to step on any toes.  My name is Durbin, and I—”

“I know who you are, Durbin.”  The woman planted her hands on her hips.  “What I don’t know is what you’re doing here.”

Durbin glanced at Lena.  “Official business, ma’am.  We just—”

“‘We’.”  The woman’s eyes narrowed a fraction.  “Who’s ‘we’?”

Lena glanced around.  Lynch and MacMillian were nowhere to be seen.

Durbin’s mouth drifted open.  “Ah…”

Lena locked eyes with the woman.  The ache in her forehead intensified.  She ignored it.  “He means me.  Lena Alan.  And you are?”

Beside her, Durbin sucked in a breath.  The woman’s eyebrows shot up.  “Inspector Chelsea Chandler, SFPD Homicide.  And just what is your role here, Ms. Alan?”

Lena had been searching the room.  Her eye landed on a staircase in the far corner.  MacMillian was about halfway up it.  Lynch was already at the top.

“Ms. Alan?”

Lena jerked her gaze back to Inspector Chandler.  “I’m a, ah, consultant.”  She glanced at Durbin.  Comprehension flooded his face.  A muscle began to tic in his jaw.  She cleared her throat.  “A police consultant.”

“Really.”  Chandler looked skeptical.  “What kind of police consultant?”

Lena lifted her chin.  “I’m a psychic.”

Durbin made a sound that was halfway between a wheeze and a groan.  Inspector Chandler’s face went slack.  “I’m sorry.  You’re a what?”

“A psychic.”  Lena shot a quick glance back at the staircase.  Neither MacMillian nor Lynch were anywhere to be seen.  “I communicate with the dead.  Your department has used my services before.  North Beach.  A few weeks ago.”

Inspector Chandler blew out a breath.  “Right.  North Beach.”  She turned to Durbin.  “Okay, I think I know what this is.  You rode shotgun on that Downtown Subway deal, got your ten minutes of fame—”

“That’s not how it happened.”  Durbin’s voice came out a growl.

Chandler didn’t seem fazed.  “Look, I get it.  Maybe domestics and traffic stops get a little dry sometimes.  But a psychic?  You’re out of your jurisdiction here, Inspector.” Her tone sharpened.  “Not to mention your league.”

###

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