Jessie melted into his embrace. It felt so good, so right. She had her dad back.
Lee stood up beside Jessie and her dad. “I understand why you might want to quit the agency, Jessica. But I hope you don’t.”
She grabbed his hand. “I’d like to take some time off since my investigation is complete.”
“That’s great. What’s the verdict?” Lee asked.
“The mine isn’t at fault. It all rests on a saboteur named Paul King, who works for the mine.”
“Disgruntled employee?” Her boss frowned.
“Not sure, but the local law enforcement are on it.”
Her dad looked very concerned. “Who’s to say he won’t come gunning for you again, Jessica?”
“I talked with the sheriff and they know Mr. King has fled town. Wilde is the safest place for me now. Besides, I have some things I need to work out here.”
“Take all the time you need,” Lee offered. “If you decide to come back, your job will be waiting.”
“Whether I come back or not, I want to get to know you better.”
Her new dad wiped the tears from his eyes. “Ouch. I shouldn’t have rubbed my eyes. Your dad delivers a pretty good punch, though mine is better.”
“Just like law school.” Her dad smiled. “You haven’t changed.”
“That’s true, buddy. Jessica, I want to learn more about you, too. Why don’t we sit and order some of those delicious King Cakes?”
Jessica grinned. “I’d love to.”
After they were halfway through their meal, her dad asked, “Are you sure you know what you’re doing with these Wilde brothers?”
“No. But I want to see what happens.”
“Can’t say I understand anything about such things, but I trust you, sweetheart. You’ve always had good instincts. You just need to trust them yourself.”
Lee nodded. “She’s something. You should be really proud of how she turned out.”
“I am, Lee. I’m really proud.”
Her new dad smiled. “All I want is for you to be happy, Jessica.”
Her dad grabbed her hand and squeezed. “Me, too.”
* * * *
The blood pooled at the head his dead wife. Paul held a knife in his hand. The next victim on the target list was the special investigator from MSHA—Jessica Greene.
Sir ordered Jessie, “Strip, sub.”
She stood next to the open shower at The Masters’ Chambers. Jackson, Phoenix, and Dallas stood to her left. They were beaming with pride. Her nerves were jumpy, but she was doing it. Q and Davis were there, too. A gay couple stood to the right and watched, also.
Jessie folded her clothes in a neat pile. Immediately she was trembling from a touch of jitters and a large dose of excitement.
“Step into the shower, sub.”
“Yes, Sir.” She obeyed.