"Must be something there," the singer added.

"Took the words right out of my mouth."

"Any idea who's been shooting at you?"

"No. Frank's trying to help me out with that on top of this. He'll try even harder if I ask him to, but I don't want it to hinder our case."

"It obviously has something to do with this case," Tammy said.

"Don't think I don't know it, sweetheart."

She gave a playful smile. "I'm not trying to kill you."

"I wonder," he said, cutting his eyes at her.

"If I had wanted to I could do it much easier than shooting from a hotel balcony or from a crappy looking blue Chevy on the interstate."

"You've given this some thought."

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She smiled and put her straw back between her lips. The perfume that had driven him wild for the last few days was still wafting in the air between them. He had never had a problem reading people, but she was a mystery to him. On the emotional rebound, she was dangerous to get close to. But he was more than willing to assume the risk. On the other hand, maybe there was no risk at all. In her mind things might be very simple. He had had enough of trying to figure things out for one day. To shake his mind back to their stalled conversation, he said, "What now?"

"I'll ask a few questions of my new manager," she told him.

"Do you know what to ask?"

She shrugged.

"I have no idea either," the private eye admitted. "Maybe try to find out what he gains in this region with Michael Gallager out of the picture."

She leaned back in the wooden chair and crossed her legs, her teal blouse made her eye color radiate.

John started talking before she could cut him off. "Just pick at him with little unsuspecting questions and we'll put it all together later."

"How should I ask about the Corvette brakes?"

"Don't think that would be good. Just casually bring up the subject of the car crash. Maybe he'll volunteer something useful we can build on."

"I'll call him first thing tomorrow," she promised.

"Maybe something concrete will come about and we can wrap this up."

She nodded and held John's stare.

"What about your personal stake in all this?"

Just then some of the lights went off. John had not been keeping track of time while they talked. It was getting late and Brad was shutting down the bar. A lot of people had already disappeared.