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"Heavenly father has shown me through you that I am the one true prophet."
I stood outside the precinct and watched our 'prophet' hard at work. Every day it was a different message: ambition, pride, family, forgiveness. Yesterday he preached "life is constantly wilting."
"He still going?"
Evie stepped out of the precinct with a donut in each hand. I took one for myself, the sprinkles. "Mhm. You know, I remember his father. He stood in the exact same spot twenty years ago. Must be a family tradition."
"He preached hellfire and damnation," Evie laughed. "Always charming."
"He got a lot of people to go to church."
"Because you're a rebel and a heathen."
She sat on the steps of the precinct. Mollie, the precinct comfort dog, plopped her head on Evie's thigh and looked up at her with the most pathetic look I've ever seen on any dog's face. Mollie has begged plenty of times before with me and Bear and Hart and we always gave her something, but Evie had a soft heart and adored dogs, so she always quickly folded.
Evie tore off a bottom piece of her donut and gave it to Mollie. "Yeah, you're a rebel."
"Shut up." But she smiled at me and kissed Mollie's big floppy ears. Her gaze shifted slightly to my right and I turned my head and out of the corner of my eye I saw a familiar, and unwelcome, figure approach. I sighed and shifted where I stood.
"Ladies," Vaughn greeted, as I tore off a piece of my sprinkle donut and popped it into my mouth. He crouched down and scratched Mollie behind the ears. "I hear Jackson's parole hearing is next month," he said.
I scoffed. One of the few things I liked about Vaughn is that he cut through the bullshit and got to the point. "No comment."
He stood up and brushed the fur from his pantsuit. He chuckled. "I'm not looking for a comment. I am curious, however, what you'll do if he is released. I don't suppose anyone has thought of that?"
I looked up at him. "What are you talking about?"
"Mm, well, he's had years to think about what you did to him, how you betrayed him. There's no greater betrayal than from the ones we love. I imagine he must be full of anger and resentment toward the person who betrayed him so wrongly."
"You don't know him the way I do."
He made a slight, quick downward bending forward of his head. "If you insist." He glanced between Evie and I and bid us farewell.
I glanced at Evie. She stared after Vaughn. "What is it?" I wondered.
"Hmm? Oh, it's just— I'd definitely fuck him, you know. He's a good-looking guy."
"Oh, God, Evie." I reached my foot out and kicked her in the shin.
She laughed. "Do you believe him?" She was serious now. "What he was saying about Jack?"
I sighed. "No. I've never known him to be that way." That's his father's way. Not Jackson.
Evie nodded, but didn't look convinced. "I should get back before Wes rips me a new asshole." Evie sighed and stood up. "I'm supposed to relieve him for a bit today." She tossed the last bit of donut to Mollie.
I grinned. "Yeah, I don't want to have to arrest one of my best friends."
"One of your best friends?" she repeated. She wrapped her arms around me and I groaned. "I'm your bestie, bestie," and she assaulted me with cheek kisses.
"Okay, okay, get out of here before I arrest you for assaulting an officer and Wes has to rip us both new assholes." But I kissed her back, anyway, with a small smile.
The Full Moon was Wes's pride and joy, though Wes has never divulged to anyone how he came to own it. It's always been a popular dining establishment of the town and has a number of live performances every week, from poetry (created by the former sheriff) to country and folk bands. Admittedly, I'm not a fan of country music.
"How's my best friend doing tonight?" I asked. It was a slow and quiet night. That was one thing I liked about the Full Moon, even when there was a band playing or a lot of people talking and laughing, you could still hear yourself think and talk with your group of friends.
"Oh, it's a beautiful night, as always." Wes smiled and slid a beer across the counter.
"Great." I grabbed the beer. "But I was talking about Evie."
"Oh!" He laughed. "Damn, that's cold."
I winked at him and went to join Avery, Bear and Hart at a table in the corner. We were off duty and finally had the chance to relax a bit.
I grazed my fingertips across Avery's shoulders as I crossed to his other side. "What about the peanut butter trick?" Hart wondered as I took a seat.
"What's going on?" I asked.
"We're pranking the Rookie," Bear explained. I nodded. "Oh, call to the morgue?"
I shook my head. "We did that to Hart."
"Yeah, fuck you, by the way." Hart narrowed his eyes at the two of us. Everyone on the floor had heard him screaming.