Vancouver, British Columbia
I had, as usual, picked a bad day to quit smoking. It seemed like every time I tried, some new crisis always reared its ugly head, driving me back to tobacco. Today’s crisis was a meeting with the adoption lady to discuss my fitness to be a single mother. Hence the desire to present myself as something resembling a functioning adult, which was easier said than done. To top it off, the barista couldn’t even be bothered to spell my name right.
“Good morning, Jasmine,” smirked Alte as I set my iced coffee down on my desk and shrugged off my light windbreaker.
“Isn’t Jessica already the most bland name possible?” I asked. “How do you fuck that up?”
“That’s the problem, it’s too bland,” she chuckled. “When I tell people that my name is Detective Alte Grey, they remember my name.”
“Geez, thanks partner,” I joked.
“Don’t mention it,” she grinned. “How’s smoking going?”
“Smoking is going great,” I said. “Now, ask me how quitting is going.”
“How’s quitting going?” she replied.
“Terrible,” I smirked. “Just picked up another pack on my way in.”
“That’s a good bit,” she laughed.
“So what did you get up to last night?” I asked.
“Same old: beer, nachos, the game,” she said. “You?”
“If I tell you, do you promise to keep it just between us?” I asked.
“Are you trying to implicate me in something?” she joked, her eyes narrowing a hair.
“If I implicated you in something, would you keep it to yourself?” I asked.
“I don’t know, Detective Green,” she said, getting up and closing the door. “That depends on what you got up to last night.”
“I think I found a lead in the Baer case,” I said, producing the same photograph that I had shown to the fortune teller late last night.
“How do you figure that?” asked Alte, taking the photo and examining it under her desk lamp.
“I’m going to tell you, but you’re not going to like it,” I said.”Maybe you should take a seat.”