(Released January 10, 2013)
Interview with Lt. Brock "Chance" Alexander, NOPDI watched the reporter walk toward my office with her voice recorder already in hand. She seemed hesitant, at first. Like she was afraid to step over the threshold. I wondered what thoughts ran through her mind as she lingered in the doorway. Was that fear on her face? Then, I realized I probably looked like death warmed over. It had been a long night. And—the day promised to be just as long because the department authorized this interview for community PR reasons. "Come on in and have a seat," I said. Her eyes kept wandering to the knot on my jaw as she walked over. I touched it. It was still as painful as hell; probably still purple, too.
She dragged in and sat down, but right on the edge of her seat.
"I only have a few minutes to spare," I announced. I had to perform for the brass. They didn't say for how long. I propped my elbows on my desk, hands clasped and immediately regretted the move. I looked at them. My knuckles were scraped raw and meat-red. Small price to pay, I thought, to bring down a suspect. "First question."
She turned on her recorder, placed it on the desk right in front of my face and proceeded with the interview.
"What made you go into law enforcement, Lt. Alexander?"
I didn't have to think about that answer.
"I had no choice in the matter. A family crisis pushed me pretty close to crossing over to the wrong side of the law at an early age. I found myself facing the prospect of a lengthy stay in juvenile detention or a chance at rehabilitation with the caring family of a police officer. He took me under his wing, treating me like one of his own. I learned a lot from him, including his healthy respect for the law.""How does your wife feel about your profession?"
"My profession is my wife," I answered, realizing that was a sad statement to make.
"When was the last time you felt satisfaction on the job?"
"That's an easy question. I feel good every time a crime victim breathes a sigh of relief at the capture of a culprit."
"Why did you smile when you said that?"
That smile must have slipped out. I'll have to be cautious about that because thinking of Angel always makes me smile. "I didn't smile."
"But, you did, Lieutenant. Was it related to the incident that happened last night?"
Last night...I didn't want to think about last night anymore. To think about it was to admit that my professional life interfered with my personal life. To think about it was to admit that I had to be restrained by my fellow officers, or I would have beaten a man to a pulp. To think about it was to admit that I nearly lost Angela to a stray bullet...last night. I stood up from my desk, reached over to stop the recorder and went to the open doorway. "I believe that's all the time I have for questions. Duty calls."
She actually seemed relieved that the interview ended as quickly as it did. She gathered her things and strolled past me with a quiet "thank you". I shut my door, reclaimed my seat and Angel popped into my mind. Once again, I smiled.
Teacher Angela Munso has lost control—of her spiraling life. She can control the fallout of recent news from whose loins she sprang as easily as she can her heart’s pitter-patter. To have feelings for a man who is everything she now wants to hate? That’s the last straw!
Lt. Brock "Chance" Alexander’s arrogance baits Angela. And—he knows it. It’s never so obvious to him as when she lobs that insulting phrase at the side of his head. She pushes all of his hot buttons. But, there’s one he dares her to touch—the one that pushes him out of her life.
“Chance, you’re on someone’s APB list! I wouldn’t mind being on that list from the looks of her.” A wave of laughter rolled through the downstairs and up the staircase.
“So everyone keeps calling to tell me.”
Lt. Chance Alexander made his appearance on the second floor stopping dead in his tracks at the sight before him. He was a man of the world. A connoisseur of beauty. Her effervescence sparkled brilliantly in the drab windowless department, the aura spreading his way like slow, sweet molasses. Although presented with her back, for she was in deep conversation with an officer, there wasn’t a doubt she had more lures than the outdoor sportsmen’s shop he sometimes frequented as was obvious when she swayed to a one hipped stance—a good assist when hooking her man.
His growing enchantment had him take in everything about her such as she dressed to kill and effectively succeeded. Overhead lighting bounced off the reddish highlights in her upswept brunette head that balanced on a slender, graceful neck. Her proud carriage accentuated perfect posture, a flattering waistline contouring to rounded hips and the prettiest legs that ever graced a pair of designer footwear. She stood flanked by a leather bound instrument case, a reptile-skin attaché and a staple for this time of year, an umbrella.
Chance’s presence caught the officer’s eyes and he held an index finger to his lips before giving her the keep-it-going sign. He wanted to get a feel for the real person without his presence being an influencing factor.
“Angela Munso: Professional Violist. Music Instructor. Academy School of the Arts.” She read the credentials aloud. “Miss Munso, if there’s a problem, I’m confident I can help.”
She didn’t look like any school marm he ever had growing up and certainly more stunning than any teacher he was acquainted with in today’s school system.
Angela took a deep breath, tired of repeating herself, but, mostly fatigued by the discomfort in her body and said, “Forgive me if I seem stubbornly adamant about this, Officer,” she perused the ID badge, “Smith. Again, it’s personal. No offense intended.”
Watching the background, the officer assured, “None taken.”
“Will you deliver my business card?” A hand clamped down on her shoulder, the injured one and she reacted sharply.
He knew as soon as he did it it was the wrong thing to do for she recoiled and turned all at one time, facing him with Hollywood duckers atop her head. Striking lioness eyes spewed acid between luxurious black lashes. Not the reception he normally received from women.
“I apologize if I’ve overstepped my bounds. I hear you’ve been looking for me.” It was really more of a question than a statement.
The giant with thunder for a voice—the one before her—in her face—gnashing on a yellow toothpick, looked the part of a rakish motorcycle rider rather than an officer of the law. Her stare fused on his beard—short, cropped like a two day’s growth and trimmed to perfection—that blended its way up to the wavy black hair falling carelessly on either side of his prominent forehead, and hung long enough in back to just breathe on the top of his shirt collar—if he wore a shirt with a collar—that is, and locked on the knuckles stroking the whiskers on his chin. What stapled her feet to the flooring were his hypnotic penetrating eyes—a meadowland green squinting at her from under equally dark brows—deep-set and starkly contrasting his God-given bronzed skin. He and his tattooed chiseled biceps towered over her, casting off such male magnetism she found it hard to ignore the way the t-shirt and jeans fit his body. His overbearing persona sucked the oxygen from the room, relegating all present to insignificant masses of matter, utterly of no importance.
He invaded her space but she refused to back down. Her look said as much. “Are you Brock Alexander?”
“Who wants to know?” he queried, looking down his nose as he swung to dispose of the slither of wood in the nearest wastebasket.
“I’m Angela Munso. Your aunt’s neighbor, if you’re he.”
He frowned, his brows furrowing warily and cocked sideways. “Aunt Belle?”
“Bella Thatcher,” she supplied. “The flower lady? Is she your aunt?” He smiled, she believed at her description, the treat lighting up the room like sunshine.
“Yes, she is,” he confirmed.
“What kind of relative are you? She’s an elderly lady.” Angela belittling him, moved closer to stand toe to toe with the Goliath, “who needs you to check on her periodically. You’re a negligent nephew!”
Her get-in-his-face style of conversing turned him off. Before he realized what he did, both of her elbows were entrenched in his huge hands and he bodily toted her generous frame to his private office off to one side of the squad room, to the absolute amazement of the entire audience—and kicked the door shut. “You, lady, are out of control,” he hurled while unceremoniously landing her on her feet.
Shivering in anger, a rosy hue built under her velvety toffee skin alerting him to her ill temper.
“You, Brock…Chance or whatever you’re called—” she said, jumping him with both stilettos gouging at his pride, baited his retaliation before she finished her sentence.
“Don’t let the name fool you, Miss Munso.” His dark head leaned towards her a notch. “They don’t call me Chance around here for meekness sake,” he said, the words lathered in derision.
“—are borderline psycho!” She completed her thought giving no regard to his nose in her face. “How dare you—”
I'm a cruise-loving, people-watching, picture-snapping baby boomer with time on her hands. So, I write sweet and spicy relationship-based mainstream contemporary romantic love stories.