Konan and Lilly went to lunch at a rundown pub on the other side of Fredericksburg. Shadows hung heavy in the corners which made it the perfect place to talk of haunting memories. The pub was known as O’Shea’s.
Paddy O’Shea met the detectives at the door. He put his hand on Konan’s chest and stopped him.
“What brings you rabble rousers around here,” he asked. Konan looked at Paddy’s hand and back at the man.
“You like that hand,” Konan asked. The man smirked.
“Yeah, I’m kinda attached to it.” Lilly giggled. Paddy looked at her and grinned.
“You didn’t say she was so pretty,” Paddy said. Konan blushed, Lilly just raised her eyebrows. Paddy extended his hand to Lilly.
“I’m Paddy O’Shea. Welcome to my pub.”
“Nice to meet you, Paddy. I’m sure you know this already, but I’m Lilly Thompson.”
“Oh yeah, I heard all about you. This dumbfounded heathen is my brother’s illegitimate son. Still, I’ve become attached to the ole lug.”
“Lug? I’m no lug,” Konan said. “You’re the former prizefighter. If there’s a lug here, it’s the guy that decided getting punched in the head was a great career.”
“Don’t forget the body, kid. Great to see you, Konan.” The two men hugged, and Paddy pretended to hit Konan in the jaw, Konan pretended to fall back into the ropes. Lilly laughed at the two men.
Paddy led them to the back room and sat them in the corner booth. Konan sat so he could face the door. Lilly sat facing him. Paddy brought water to the table.
“Whatcha want to eat, darling?” Lilly shrugged and said, “I don’t know. What’s good?”
“Everything. I’ll just bring you what luggo here is going to get.”
“What is he getting?”
“Steak and fries. Or hash. Something.”
With that said, Paddy disappeared into the kitchen. Konan took a sip of his water and cleared his throat.
“Ok, so about Blankenship…”
“Hold on,” Lilly said. “I have never seen you so relaxed before. Paddy is your uncle?”
“Are you really an illegitimate child?”
“I just met Paddy. Who is your dad?”
“You know ‘Mad’ Michael O’Shea?” Lilly’s eyes grew large, and she nodded her head.
“He’s, my father.”
“The largest crime boss in our part of the world is your dad.”
“Holy crap. Isn’t he serving fifty years for having the Whitestone Family rubbed out?”
“Yeah. So, do you want to know about Blankenship?”
“I told you Blankenship…”
“Wait a sec,” Lilly said. “How did your dad take you being a cop?”
“He didn’t. Mad Michael was far too busy to be a doting father. My mom thought it would be cool to be a ‘mafia wife.’ She thought wrong. We lived on the wrong side of the tracks. Michael swung by when he felt lonely. That’s it.”
“Sorry. Continue with Blankenship.” Paddy brought two heading plates of steak and fries to the table. A waitress brought a pitcher of water.
“Steak and fries for my favorite people. You told her, didn’t you?”
“She asked,” Konan said. Paddy winked at Lilly.
“We ain’t all bad darling. Only the good parts are bad. The rest of the time, we are normal people. Just trying to make it.”
“I understand,” Lilly said. She cut into the steak and put it in her mouth. Paddy watched. Konan bowed his head and whispered a few words. When he looked up, he noticed Lilly’s face was flushed.
“Something wrong with the steak,” Paddy asked. Lilly shook her head no.
“The steak is wonderful, Paddy. I realized too late that Konan was praying over his food.”
“Oh yeah, he’s a good Christian boy. Goes to church and everything.”
Paddy excused himself. Lilly and Konan ate in silence for a bit. Lilly licked her lips and patted her belly.
“That’s some serious grub, Konan. And good too.”
“Yeah, Paddy can burn some mean grub.”
“You were going to tell me about Blankenship.”
“We served together. He was mean as a rattlesnake in August. That was on his good day. Blankenship was known to shoot first. A friend of mine sent an email to me. Blankenship is a political tool used to silence opposition. I think he worked for Khalid. Maybe Khalid’s wife.”
“What did his file say?”
“He’s still listed as active duty.”
“You’re telling me that Blankenship is killing people with the authority of the government?”
“Yeah, that’s what I thought too.”
“How does that fit into the murder of Khalid’s wife?”
“I’m not sure yet, but would it be too much to think that maybe it was personal?”
“Blankenship and Khalid? I don’t know. Why would Blankenship strike at Khalid? Maybe one of his peers wanted him out of the way?”
“Maybe. The way she was killed though, it wasn’t professional. It seemed personal. As if the killer wanted her to feel the pain.”
“You think that the relationship was between Khalid’s wife and Blankenship.”
“Yeah. I think it might have been.”