March 11, 2013
Fancy suit, fancy shoes. I had my theories about where she was getting money, but I kept my mouth shut. Why start up? What kind of theories, sir? You know. Milo shrugged, gave an innocent look. Teague eyed him skeptically. You've gotta know the wild life. Illegal activities? Whoring, said Teague. She got in trouble for that a few years back. You don't know about it, huh? The investigation has just begun. Well, start by checking your own goddamn records. Lauren got busted for hooking when she was nineteen. Reno, Nevada. Got her ass thrown in jail with no money on her, called me to make her bail no hide or hair of her for years, and she calls me. Then nothing for a couple of years till that Christmas, and all of a sudden she's a big shot and I'm shit. Making no mention of the arrest as one of Gretchen Stengel's girls. The Westside Madam's name had hit the news big time, but none of her call girls had been exposed.
Nor had the clients. Milo scrawled in his pad. So there was another contact before the Christmas visit. I wasn't counting phone calls, said Teague. Any other calls? Nope. Did you send her bail money? No way. I said forget it, you made your doorbell own bed, now sleep in it. She cussed me out and hung up. Teague snorted. She tried to bullshit me, told me the whole thing had been a mistake, she'd been working at one of the casinos, escorting rich guys, nothing illegal, the cops had overreacted. She said she just got caught with no cash on her, all she needed to do was get home to her credit cards, she'd fix it if I'd float her the dough. Credit cards letting me know she was living the high life and here I was stuck, recuperating. You were sick? said Milo. Teague touched the scar clump. I used to have my own electrical business, was doing a job out in Calabasas. Someone fucked up, I ended up duking it out with a mass of rebar. I was in a coma for a week, had dou-ble vision for months.
I still get headaches. Glancing at the beer cans. I sued, tied myself up for years, the lawyers took most of it. Then she tells me she's pregnant. Cocking his head toward the bedroom. I was on painkillers, halfway groggy most of the time, and Lauren calling out of nowhere, whining about the police overreacting. Defiance spiked his voice. Even in death Lauren pushed his buttons. How'd she make her bail? said Milo. How should I know? Teague shook his head, picked something out of his beard. I could've thrown her out the first Christmas, but I wanted to be decent. She might not've considered herself video door camera
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