So remember what I was saying about not going back to the house because I’d end up in jail? I figured I’d cut out the middle man, so Buffy and I walked into the Sheriff’s office where I plopped down on the padded bench while waiting for Mrs. Brooks to finish speaking with Mrs. Eldridge.
“I heard that Annie isn’t only a fugitive, but she burned down Lincoln’s house. Can you imagine? What kind of woman kills her husband and then burns down the sheriff’s house?” Mrs. Brooks asks.
By now Mrs. Eldridge had seen me and rolled her eyes. “I don’t think she did that Lilymay.”
“That girl was always wild, I bet she’s most of the way into Kentucky by now.”
I grinned. I have superpowers now! Me and Buffy could just use our capes to fly a hundred miles.
“I doubt that. It wouldn’t surprise me if she came into the Sheriff’s office of her own free will.”
Mrs. Brooks waved her hand. “Not the likes of her. My sister taught her years ago. Even when she was seven she was mischievous. ”
Mrs. Brooks, deciding perhaps she was not going to persuade Mrs. Eldridge that I was a force of evil, turned around and spared just the barest of glances for me. “Hello,” she said. Then stopped and eyed me as if not really sure it was me.
“Nice to see you again, Mrs. Brooks. And nice to know you think so highly of me,” I said.
She sputtered and then trotted away, no doubt in a hurry to get to her house before I burned it down.
“Why are you here, Child?” Mrs. Eldridge asked.
I shrugged. “Didn’t know where else to go.” Damn, didn’t that sound pathetic?
“Is Linc at his house?”
Mrs. Eldridge shook her head. “I think he’s looking for you. Do you want me to call him?”
I nodded. Once again I felt really bad about Linc’s house. It was not directly my fault, but it was burned down because of me. Generations of memories gone. At least his folks had retired in Gulf Shore, Alabama or thereabouts and rarely returned home.
About fifteen minutes later the door opened. The tension on Linc’s face immediately disappeared when he saw me. I stood up and fought the urge to fling myself in his arms. Buffy, however, had no such compunction and ran to him, pulling her leash out of my hands.
“Damn good to see you,” he said.
“The feeling’s mutual,” I said, grinning at him stupidly. Suddenly I wanted to be an octopus and wrap all of my limbs around him and kiss the ever-loving hell out of him. That’s what I wanted, but what I did was squeeze his bicep and continue to grin. Stupidly.
“It’s none of my business but you two might want to stop making googly eyes at each other and remember you’ve got a killer to catch,” Mrs. Eldridge said.
I think it was the use of the phrase “googly eyes” that did it, but I did launch myself into Linc’s arms and kiss him then. Buffy yelped in excitement. My heart yelped in excitement. I really wished we were in a different place and in a different time because the kiss had to end way too soon… “oooo, I’m on fire…”