August 1 2016

From Riley Adams Doubles Down

“I’m pretty sure this place is empty but I’m going to look around just in case. You watch the door in case anyone decides to come back.” Riley drew her revolver and pulled her flashlight out of her blazer pocket.

“Got it,” Betty said.

Riley pushed the door open and stepped inside. The warehouse was dark, with only dim shafts of light coming through the dirty windows. She made her way inside and down a hallway until she came to a big open room. She could make out a few empty tables and staircase that lead up to an office but not much else. This is where Novak must have been running his operation, Riley thought. Before someone tipped him off, that is.

She was about to take a step towards the stairs, thinking maybe she could find something in the office when she heard footsteps on the other side of the room. She turned towards the sound but could only make out a vague figure in the shadows. The figure stopped and called out, “Put your weapon down! I’m a federal agent!”

Riley ignored the command. “A federal agent? What are the feds doing-“ She cut herself off when the figure steeped into the dim light. It turned out to be a woman in suit. She was short with dark hair pulled back into a ponytail. She had taken up the FBI patented gun-and-flashlight stance, the very same stance Riley was employing. She stared at the other woman for a moment and then lowered her revolver, not because the federal agent had told her to…but because she recognized her.

“Cervantez?” Riley asked.

A look of surprise passed over the other woman’s face. She took a step closer, gun still raised, and squinted at Riley. Finally, she lowered her gun. “Adams?”

They hurried to the center of the room and when they met, they both wore big smiles. “It is you!” they exclaimed at the same time.

The shorter woman pulled Riley in for a hug. Riley hugged her back until she heard Betty’s voice to her left. “Riley? Is everything okay? I heard…are you hugging someone?!”

Riley let go of her new companion, both of them laughing, and found Betty standing there, flashlight in hand with a shocked look on her face. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen you hug anyone.”

“Betty, this is an old friend of mine, Mattie Cervantez. We went to the FBI Academy together. Mattie, this is my intern, Betty Harker,” Riley explained.

Betty shook Mattie’s offered hand but still looked confused. Riley gave Mattie a friendly punch in the shoulder. “I never thought you’d turn up in my town. What are you doing here?”

“Looking for a mob boss who’s been running a string of underground gambling operations,” Mattie said, holstering her gun.

“Let me guess, a big ugly dude by the name of Reynard Novak?” Riley asked.

“Yeah. How’d you know?”

“I’ve been looking for him to. I had a source tell me that this was the location of his latest set up but it looks like he’s hightailed it already.”

Mattie looked around. “Guess we were late to the party.” She turned back to Riley. “I heard you left the Bureau a few years ago, Adams. Who are you working for now? CIA? Homeland? ATF?”

Riley shook her head. “Nah, I’m more freelance now. I’m a paranormal investigator.”

Mattie raised her eyebrows. “That’s a job?”

Riley laughed. “In H City, it’s about three full-time jobs.”

“So why are you after Novak? You bust mob bosses in your spare time?”

“Only when they happen to be vampires.”

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