The Long Way Home
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by ZA Maxfield
Description: When young boys go missing, psychic Kevin Quinn is called in to help the police department. Quinn's partner is Connor Dougal, a newer detective on the force, and a skeptic when it comes to psychic abilities. That is until strange things happen to Kevin when he touches objects belonging to the missing kids. Even more disturbing is the way Kevin can participate in Conner's dreams. Conner's past is more tied to the current case than anyone realizes and it's only by lancing the pain of the past there is a hope for the future.
eBook Publisher: Aspen Mountain Press, 2008 2008
eBookwise Release Date: January 2009
312 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [424 KB]
Reading time: 259-363 min.
Connor Dougal waited patiently for the flight from Cheyenne to land. Apparently, there was a delay during a stopover in Denver, so his charge would be a little late. So far he was running two hours behind.
Despite the massive crowds at the airport, despite the intermittent rain, despite the fact that he'd spent fifteen dollars to buy a book he neither needed nor wanted just to have something to read, Connor maintained a dignified and determined amiability. It was just that pleasant personality, he would bet, that landed him this sucky assignment. Sure, he'd raided strip clubs, run down gang-bangers, and been puked on by scared kids and drunk drivers. He'd even put on the Officer McGruff dog suit and talked to elementary school kids about crime. But today, hallelujah, having just gotten his detective shield, he got the suckiest assignment of them all.
Today, he would begin chauffeuring a psychic.
As the passengers from Frontier flight 5018 from Cheyenne to Santa Ana arrived to meander around the luggage carousel, Connor began to study them to see which one was his nut job. He'd seen photos but they were grainy newspaper pictures and Kevin Quinn had always worn a baseball hat and sunglasses. Like he was hiding something...
Among the people getting off there were three men fitting his description. They were blond, about six feet two inches tall, probably weighed under 200. If Quinn had muscles it could be more than that. In the pictures he seemed to be on the thin side with hair slightly longer than average. His eyes were reported by Lubbock to be blue, the same color as Lubbock's wife. Dougal knew Lubbock's wife well and her eyes were an unmistakable Irish violet blue.
Quinn was twenty-nine years old, still young. As far as Dougal could tell he had done exactly nothing in law enforcement recently except for that crazy tabloid disaster in Denver. After that, he was completely off the radar. Why Lubbock insisted on calling him at this point, Dougal didn't know.
Dougal knew when he finally spotted Quinn, not by his looks per se, but his bearing. He had heard from Lubbock that Quinn had been in a terrible car wreck that blinded him in one eye and left him a little awkward.
"Quinn?" he asked the man, reaching to take his carry-on. "I'm Dougal."
"Thanks, Dougal, I got it," said Quinn, slinging the bag over his shoulder and wheeling his pilot case.
Dougal looked at Quinn, who had a laptop case slung over his shoulder in addition to the two bags. "Have you been catching up on the case?"
"Yeah," said Quinn. "Grim."
"I was kind of expecting you to know who I am," said Dougal. Some psychic, he'd practically had to hold up a sign with the guy's name on it.
"This is an airport. There are other plain-clothed cops here." Quinn looked around.
"Don't I get a demonstration?"
Quinn's eyes narrowed as they looked him over. "Sure, let's see, you're a skeptic, you wear nerdy clothes, probably drive a boring car, and read novels by ... Ana Wexler." Quinn read the name off the book Dougal carried under his arm. "How am I doing so far?"
Dougal smiled with an equanimity he no longer felt. "What can you tell me about what you don't see?"
Quinn walked past him with a kind of disinterested contempt. "I can tell you that whatever I can't see interests me not at all," he said, effectively ending the conversation.
Dougal led him to his Chevrolet Malibu, which he opened remotely, allowing Quinn to put his gear in the back seat. He waited patiently for Quinn to settle into the front seat and fasten his seat belt.
"I guess you know where to go, cause I don't," Quinn said as Dougal pulled out of the parking garage into the gridlocked stop and go traffic leading out of the airport.
"Yes, I do." Dougal, wished to heaven he'd never wanted to be a police officer in the first place. "Lubbock told me the Prime Directive is to keep you unofficial, and therefore, no money was requisitioned for a hotel room. He decided you're to stay at my place for the time being. I have a two bedroom and I live alone." He cringed, waiting for a tirade that never came.
"Did you say Prime Directive? Are you a Trekkie, Dougal?" Quinn seemed amused. "My new roommate's a Trekkie. We'll have to have some kind of signal if you bring home any beautiful alien girls, like a towel on the door or something." Dougal looked at the man sitting next to him. Towel on the door. Hadn't he done just that in college? That was a little unnerving.
"That's a parlor trick, Trekkie, pay it no mind. We all put something on the door, you seem like a towel man. I went to a private Catholic boy's school back east, and we used our ties."
Dougal stomped hard on the brakes at a yellow light. He hadn't been paying too much attention, and now, he'd just caught up. This man was trying to unnerve him, and was doing a pretty good job of it.
"What do I do when I want to bring a boy home?" Quinn was daring him to lose control again.
Great. Some sort of test. "Make sure he's legal and glove up, I guess," replied Dougal with more confidence than he actually felt. "It's not in the statutes anymore, I don't think."
"Well thank you," Quinn said lazily. "We'll get along just fine."
Dougal doubted it, really; he doubted it very much.