Chapter 1: How and Watson Two
The morning after.
My hands shook badly. Probably a lot of that was because I hadn’t slept the night before. Killing that dickhead should not have bothered me at all. He needed killing, that was all there was to it. Plus he pointed a gun at Marion, and there was no question he intended to shoot. Everybody said that the shooting board would clear me. I wasn’t at all sure that I could clear me.
I was forced by regulations to take at least two days off. It was some lame department policy no one understood. I had no idea what I was supposed to do during those forty eight hours to clear my mind. I tried to think of it as a bonus for killing the dirtbag.
All of a sudden I broke down in tears. Those fucking hormones, I said aloud. I looked at the drawer where my Glock 22 was locked. The service weapon was the only gun I owned, and I kept it under double lock and key. I hated the idea of biting down on the slide and saying good bye, but the thought did occur to me now and then. It was the reason for the second lock.
I knew those feeling had begun with the hormone treatments. Though they never entirely left me, things like last night’s shooting made them ten times worse. I also knew that it would fade a little in a few days, but that knowledge didn’t really help in the moment.
“Best thing for depression is a sugar bomb,” Watson declared at my front door shortly after the sun rose. He pushed past me, then placed a plastic bag on the dining table.
“What is that?” I asked skeptically.
“It’s a half dozen Eclairs from Mama’s Sweet Shop of course,” he said. “And a quart of that fruity coffee you like from McDonalds.”
“You went to all this trouble for me,” I said with tears in my eyes.
“Hell no, I’m on the clock and need some hair of the dog.” he said pouring Jim Bean in his coffee. “The Eclairs were a gift, as was the coffee. Who else do I know who would eat and drink this fruity shit.”
I hugged a very embarrassed Marion Watson. I had to fight him to do it, but it was worth it.
“Don’t you have any family?” Watson asked.
“One sister, but she is pissed. After my sabbatical I look better than she does.” I explained with a laugh.
“Well fuck em all,” Watson said taking an Eclair in hand.
“I though you brought those for me?” I asked.
“Only if you eat them quickly,” he said.
I had to smile. I just couldn’t help myself. “You are fucking hopeless,” I said taking the Eclair and the coffee he offered.
He poured a half shot in my coffee before he sat down to talk. He said all the right things. One of which included his version of the shooting. He swore his version would definitely clear me. The report went to a mostly black, liberal citizens review board. I had nothing to worry about according to Watson. The only thing they hated worse than cops were white tattooed bikers. Watson knew that his speech would make me feel better. The fact that he did it in his own special style made it work. I actually did feel better when he left.
“Now top that sugar bomb off with a two mile run through your neighborhood,” he said as he headed for the outside stairway.
I closed the door behind him and then decided he had a point. I changed into my running outfit of shorts and a tee shirt. I looked at myself in the mirror and decided that my year of transitioning had been a good choice. I had forsaken the Job, for a job as a security officer in a closed industrial complex. During that time I went from a man in good shape to a female in great shape.
It was more an emotional transition than a medical one. I had opted to keep my exterior body parts as god had imparted them on me. The changes were mostly chemical. I had not expected to look anywhere near as good as I did. I was still considering breast implants, but I hadn’t decided on the expensive procedure yet. I also didn’t really want to have to wear a bra when I ran. I would have to do that, if I had implants. Maybe I would do it since I usually wore a bra anyway. It was not for pain, it was for the cosmetic shaping of my breast tissue. I looked better with a little shaping, I had decided.
I left the house in my running outfit and with my little purse attached to a belt around my waist. The run immediately made me feel better. Since I didn’t see or hear any motorcycles, I began to relax and enjoy the sweating. After a run through the neighborhood I stopped beside the steps leading up to my second floor apartment. I awaited while my breathing returned to normal.
“Help me please,” I heard a shrill female calling. I located the apartment on the first floor. It was a few doors down the the walkway. I looked through the cracked door before I committed to anything. A woman was laying on the sofa. She was also obviously very pregnant, and her water had broken.
“Do you need help?” I asked though the door.
“Yes, I need a ride to the hospital,” she said.
“Do you need an ambulance?” I asked.
“Not if you will drive me,” she said.
“Then lets go,” I said without any more thought.
“I have a bag by the door,” she said obviously in some pain as I helped her to stand for the walk to the door.
“Do I need to call someone?” I asked.
“No the father is in Iraq,” she said before she screamed softly. I don’t know how else to describe the noise she made.
“Is there anyone here?” I asked after we were on the way to the local hospital.
“No, I called the doctor when the contractions started. God I’m so glad you happened by,” she said.
“Believe it or not, so am I,” I said. I realized that I was extremely please to have the distraction. I pulled up to the emergency room door, then helped the aide load her into a wheel chair. I got her to the desk and checked in before I went outside to move my car.
I sat in the waiting room in a fucking running suit with absolutely no money and nothing to drink. I did have my badge and an ID card in the little purse around my waist. In that canvas purse there was also a three inch folding blade, and a debit card. None of which were of any use in the hospital.
I found that the patient’s name was Mary Ann Martin. Mary Ann even looked a little like the farm girl named Mary Ann on those old TV reruns from when I was a preteen. She was a clean cut, corn fed, mid twenties mom to be, I decided.
I kept checking back with the desk, so that they would know Mary Ann wasn’t alone. I needed to know when the baby came, so I could be sure she was okay. Her well being seemed connected to my own mental health. At least in the short term it would have a serious effect one way or another.
“Detective Howe,” the middle-aged chubby nurse called. I stood immediately.
“Here,” I said.
“Miss Martin gave birth a few minutes ago to a seven pound baby girl. She is doing fine. You can go back to see her for a few minutes, if you want?”
“Of course I want,” I replied all smiles. Mary Ann was beautiful and the baby was unbelievable. She was all wrinkled and red but still beautiful. Laying there in that hospital bed Mary Ann and her baby looked like the Madonna and Child in a church scene. I took a dozen pictures with her cell phone, then sent them to myself.
“Mary Ann look what the fuck you have done,” I said in wonder as I showed her the images.
“Watch your mouth lady. There is a child present,” Mary Ann said and broke into laughter. “She is gorgeous isn’t she?”
“Totally,” I said mocking her youthful exuberance.
“I have to get out of this running suit and into a shower,” I said after holding her baby twenty minutes. “Can I bring you anything, or do anything while I’m out?”
“Could you send Darius an email?” she asked.
“Sure give me his address,” I suggested. I quickly left her for the drive home. When I arrived home I sent him an email with the facts and nothing more. I was very uncomfortable being in contact with her husband, if he really was her husband. I sent the email before I showered.
After the shower I wanted to rush to the hospital, but I forced myself to take an hour to relax. I couldn’t concentrate on the TV or the computer, so I got back into my car for the drive to the hospital.
When I arrived in Mary Ann’s room there was a man in scrubs standing over her. He took a look at me, then turned back to Mary Ann. Not a people person for sure I thought.
“What’s up guys,” I asked.
“They won’t let me go home because I don’t have anyone to take care of me,” Mary Ann said almost in tears.
“So how much care does she need?” I asked.
“Someone to fix her soup, help with the baby, and rush her to the hospital if something goes wrong,” the dead pan doctor said.
“I can handle that. How long will she need someone?” I asked.
“Well we will keep her tonight and release her in the morning. You would need to be with her at least two day full time. For a while after that you need to check in on her a couple of times a day. You know to bring her whatever she needs.” he advised me. “Oh if she starts to hemorrhage get her back here.”
“I can do that,” I suggested.
“Are you sure?” Mary Ann asked.
“Trust me. I have this covered,” I said. I sat with her and held the baby a couple of hours. During that time she asked my name and I answered.
“Detective Howe, why are you being so good to me?” Mary Anne asked.
“I’m not, I’m being selfish. Trust me you will understand one day,” I explained.