Jennifer Jones was feeling particularly satisfied with herself because she had finally made up her mind to do something about a problem that had been nagging at her.
Whilst there was no actual proof that her husband was having an affair, and the few times she had tried to follow him, he had managed to finally elude her, making him look guilty.
And, she had seen him at the office with that over-familiar office manager, Miriam Whats-her-name, but then, she was like that with her husband Al’s brother, Joseph, who was a womanizer.
She had tried other Private Detective’s but they had reported back that he was not having an affair, but she didn’t believe them. It wouldn’t surprise her if he had paid them off. So, what she needed was a fresh face.
A morning’s investigation had led her to Harry Walthenson. She had visited the office, spoken to Ellen, his personal assistant, or whatever she was, and after a quick look at the office, came away knowing she had found the right person.
Speaking briefly on the phone to him confirmed her assumptions, she would not have to try too hard to impress upon him the urgency of her requirements, and he was eager, perhaps overeager, to please. He was so nervous he had forgotten to ask for a description. Good thing then she knew who she was looking for.
She looked at her watch. Yes, she thought, perfect timing. Plenty of people and confusion, just what was needed for her first meeting.
Harry realized quickly he would not be able to find his own mother in this crowd. How was he to recognize the woman he was supposed to meet when all he had to identify her was her voice?
He stood near the requested exit, trying to look like he wasn’t loitering, a security guard giving him a second glance, just in case he was up to no good. Post 9/11 New York, the police were still checking everyone ‘just in case there is trouble’.
He moved to the other side of the entrance and tried to look like someone looking for a friend.
A tap on the shoulder.
He jumped, not knowing what to expect. It was not the diligent security guard, but the owner of the husky voice.
“Are you Harry Walthenson, Private Detective?”
His reply, not quite able to sound as professional as he wanted to, was, “Yes, I am.”
“Let’s go for a walk.”
He tried to walk with her but ended up following one step behind. The perfume trail was unmistakable. A hint of musk. The hair, fake blonde, perhaps a wig. Her age; old enough to know better, but young enough not to care.
What was that saying, he thought.
Yes, he was about to leap from the frying pan into the fire.
© Charles Heath 2016-2018