28 December 2011


Crossing the lobby of 800 Wood Towers, Agatha Pecone sighed as she went through the long list of things she detested in life: cold icy rain, mildew, fantasy fiction, crochet, egg nog, bratty children, politics, spicy foods, new age music, zucchini, and pushy people, just to name a few. While those things had always featured on her list of intolerable things, on this particular morning, Agatha was determined to add used car dealers and self righteous bus drivers to the ever burgeoning list.

Silently, and politely, she reminded herself not to recite out loud as she strode toward the security checkpoint. Nodding as she went past the security officer, she recalled that of all the things she detested, tardiness had to be the absolute worst. Punctuality was a virtue, as far as she was concerned, and one that she always upheld. 

Checking her wristwatch, she sighed again, boarded the waiting elevator and pressed the button for the 22nd floor. Today, however, her halo had slipped. Agatha was exactly 8 minutes behind schedule.

* * *

Alone in a large office before a wall of panoramic windows, Chase placed a pair of binoculars onto a large glass desk and smoothed his jacket over the back of a black leather desk recliner.  Moving to the windows, he turned to study the next building.  He stood still, scanning several floors with the binoculars.  

At the door behind him, a key turned in the lock and the office door swung open.

"Excuse me," Agatha Pecone gasped. "This is Mr. Sloan's office. How did you get in here?"

"Uh," Chase dismissed her without turning around, "Am kinda busy right now." A slow smile unfurled across his face, as he watched a woman in the next building raise her skirt to adjust her stocking. "Can we chit-chat later?"

"You'll have to leave."   

Chase didn't flinch.

"Now," Agatha insisted, silently admonishing herself for being late.

Chase readjusted the binoculars focus and cast a glance over his shoulder, "Uh, sure, this'll only take a minute."

Frowning at her transgression and his impertinence, Agatha moved toward the large glass desk. "I'm calling security," she announced.

Chase lowered the pair of binoculars. "I wouldn't do that if I were you," he said, still staring out the window.

Unsure if she would be able to make the call before he could stop her, Agatha's hand hovered, frozen above the receiver.

"It's okay," Chase said, finally turning around to face her. "Relax," he beamed at her as he shrugged, "I have an appointment."

"But," Agatha retrieved her hand slowly, "There are no appointments today."

"You don't say," he chuckled, raising the binoculars and turning back to the window. "Must be my lucky day."

Agatha reached again for the telephone, this time removing the receiver from its cradle and pressing the number 5 on the keypad.

Chase turned to face her again. "Please," he sighed, his gazed locked on hers, "Don't do that."

Without breaking her stare, Agatha pressed the number 5 on the keypad again.

"Lady! " Chase lunged forward and snatched the receiver from Agatha's hand. "Didn't you hear what I just said?" He grabbed her by the arm, "Look, lady, I admire your spirit, really I do, but if you make a fuss you'll force me to rethink that opinion."

She stared at him defiantly, praying that her voice would not convey her fear. "What do you want?"

"Right now?" He shoved Agatha into a chair. "For you to sit down and shut up."

* * *

Agatha jumped as the door behind her swung open and Detective Bryan Stone strode into the quiet room. He set a cup of coffee on the table before her and sat down.  

"So, Ms.," Bryan took a deep breath, "Pecone, what you're telling me is, a male, that you can't describe, broke into Mr. Sloan's office, politely duct taped you to ..."

"I can describe him. He was young and Caucasian," Agatha smoothed her hair. "And I didn't say he used duct tape," she straightened her blouse. "I said he used silk ties that he took from Mr. Sloan's closet in the bathroom."

"Okay. So he, silk tied you to the commode," Bryan cleared his throat, "Washed his hands, and then left you alone in the private restroom?"

The woman nodded.

Bryan looked down at the table and rubbed his brow.

"Ms. Pecone, did he say anything when he tied you up?"

"He said that I wasn't as young as I used to be and that I should get my hearing checked."

"He used those exact words?"

Agatha nodded.

"And this polite young man," he met her indignant stare, "Did he take anything from you or from the office?"


"Did he try to touch you, or harm you," Bryan cleared his throat, "sexually, in any way?"


"Had you ever seen him before?"


"Did he threaten you with any kind of weapon?"

"He used binoculars."

"Binoculars?" Bryan tried not to smile. "He threatened you with a pair of binoculars?"

"Well, not exactly."  Ms. Pecone shifted in her seat.  "He used them to look at the building next door."

"Which building?"

"Elm Towers, of course." Agatha readjusted the shoulder strap on her purse.

"I see."  Bryan studied her for a moment. "Ms. Pecone," he reached into his shirt pocket and pulled out a business card, "I'll see what I can do." Smiling warmly, he stood and ushered Agatha to the open door. "If you remember anything else," he held out the card, "Please feel free to give me a call."  Bryan watched her sashay down the hall and board the elevator.

"Hey, was that uh, Charlie's uh, missus?"

"Uh-huh," Bryan acknowledged the heavy breather, laden with cheap cologne, that had chosen to stand beside him. "She hasn't been quite the same since he bought it,"  Bryan sighed. "That's her third perp this week." 

© Ehmee Smith, 2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from the site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ehmee Smith, with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


  1. Quite an interesting excerpt left me wanting to read more. Keep on writing.

  2. Jacquline Jackson IIDec 29, 2011, 6:46:00 AM

    That was very good when are we going to see the rest!!!

    I liked it keep posting more please.