Faithless…new writing, unedited, incomplete…

Lilly and I escorted Jane Franks and Destiny to a holding cell, which would serve as their new home for the next 24-hours. Both women seemed relieved to be behind bars.
A young, black officer stood behind the counter and gazed curiously at Destiny. She met his gaze but said nothing to him. On our way out, the young officer met us at the door.
“Detectives, why is Destiny in holding?”
“Why do you want to know?”
“Because she’s my sister, Detective Thompson. Destiny’s never been in trouble before. I didn’t even know she was home…”
“What’s your name officer?”
“Samuels. Timothy Michael Samuels.”
“Did you have a falling out, Samuels?”
“I, um,” Samuels took a deep breath and let it out slowly, “she went off to college, and we never heard a peep from her. Now, she’s back.”
“Maybe, you two should patch things up.”
“Maybe. I should at least know what’s brought her back to Fredericksburg.”
Lilly took Officer Samuels free hand and squeezed it and gave him a warm smile.
“She’s your family, Samuels. Family is important.”
“Yes ma’am.”
I cleared my throat, nodded at Samuels, and started for the door. Lilly said goodbye and followed after me. When she caught up to me, she looked over and said, “sad, isn’t it?”
“What’s sad?”
“How families drift apart.”
“I wouldn’t know.”
“Sure, you would, Thermopolis. You haven’t been out to see Esther or Paddy since before the riots. When is the last time you went by Mad Michael’s grave?”
“I’ve been busy.”
“Un-huh. Now, you’re being short with me, because you know I’m right.”
I frowned at Lilly, and she returned my frown with one of her own. God, I thought to myself, I hate it when she gets like this.
“No, I haven’t.”
“Haven’t what, Konan?”
“Got short with you, nor have I gone to visit my father’s grave.”
“Why not?”
“Because there is nothing to say, Lilly. What’s done is done.”
“You’re afraid, Konan.”
“Of what?”
“I don’t know, Konan. You tell me.”
“Let’s go see Esther and Paddy. I’m hungry. Lunch is on me.”
“We can go somewhere else, Lilly.”
“No. I want Paddy to cook me a steak.”
I followed Lilly out, but unlike my partner, I wasn’t worried about drifting away from my family. When it came to family, I was okay with staying a long distance from them.
No one stood outside of O’Shea’s when we pulled up. Lilly and I walked up the stairs to the restaurant, and Lilly pulled the door open and stepped inside. Paddy looked up from the bar and gave her a warm smile.
He walked over and gave her a hug, and said, “How ya doin’, darling.”
“Good, Paddy. How are you doing?”
“Doing fine, darling. Follow me.”
We followed him to a table in the back of the restaurant, far away from prying eyes. My Aunt Esther watched us approach. Her cold, lifeless eyes seemed to bore into me. She lit her cigarette and sucked smoke into her lungs via the black cigarette holder.
“What do you need help with now, Konan?”
“Nothing,” I muttered.
“Then, why are you here?”
“I’m sorry,” I said, as I turned to leave.
Paddy snickered and said, “You hear that, Esther? He’s sorry. We haven’t heard not hide-nor-hair from him in months, but he’s sorry.”
I turned to Paddy, ready to knuckle up with my uncle-Esther too if she wanted some-but Lilly stepped between us.
“Easy, Paddy. Konan, sit down. We’re here to eat lunch and catch up with you two. Things have been hectic for a while now.”
“I always liked you, Lilly.”
“And I like you too, Esther.”
“What can I get you, darling?”
“A steak and fries, if you don’t mind Paddy.”
“Don’t mind at all, darling.”
“I’ll have…”
“You’ll have whatever I bloody well bring you,” Paddy snapped, as he walked back towards the kitchen.
It’s true what they say, you know. You can’t go home again.

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