"Right back at you, Sam. This exclusive dating idea, I think I like it."
I'm glad about that. I can't imagine saying no to Jericho, not with those big blue soulful eyes of his. But I want him to myself. It will tear me in two if he goes back to dating others. I seriously hope that he doesn't ask about it.
It does lead to the difficult question of which to bite first; breakfast or Jer. They are both pretty yummy looking.
Then again, it's a work day. I don't really have proper time to play with Jer. So I guess breakfast wins for the moment. I have to hustle and get myself ready for work.
"You stupid sod. Can't you do anything right? Damn it! Damn it!" It's time to open a window and throw this machine out. Or maybe not even open the window first.
"Sorry, miss, I was talking to this idiot machine."
"If that was talking, I would hate to be around when you start seriously yelling." She scratched her head nervously, looking around the room.
"You'd have known before opening the door if I'd really been angry." She was looking at everything in the room but me. Well, I could wait, it's not like there is that much to look at in here.
"Not much of a place, is it?"
"No, miss. It's a small department in a small town. The magazines are so ancient, the library won't keep them. This computer belongs in a museum, not in an office. And everything else here is about as boring as you can possibly find." I think she might finally be working up to look at me.
"It's a job and it pays the rent. That's what's really important, isn't it?" I paused for a moment. "Speaking of my job, what can I do for you?"
"It's umm," she paused again. She must be incredibly shy, I wonder how long it took for her to even come here. "It's my dog, Raven. I was away for the weekend. Next door always feed Raven in the back yard when I'm gone. When I got home today, I realised that Raven was gone and the people next door aren't positive when they last saw him."
"Ok, I'll need a few more details from you. Just let me get up the form first." I'm now an expert at this Lost and Found form, I just wish a few people would report something found.
"I'll need your name and address please."
"My name is Kalee Koko."
"Could you spell that please? Last name first?"
"That's Kay Oh Kay Oh. First name Kay Ay El Ee Ee. I live at 69 Rachelle Lane." Ok she's not over in the wealthy section of town, just a normal middle class area.
"Ok, you said the dog is Raven, male. Breed?"
I was typing away. I wonder if there are any typing courses around town. It's obvious that I need some work on the skill."You wouldn't happen to have entered him in the pet show that's coming up?"
"Good heavens no. He has papers but we've never trained him for shows. Or even basic obedience classes I fear."
"Ok, that's everything I need for the report. We'll be in touch if we find him."
"I hope it's soon. I'm so worried about him."
It wasn't more than 5 minutes after Miss Koko left that the door opened again. A red letter day, two visitors in a single day.
I stood up, very puzzled by the fact that someone was saluting me. "What the hell is this all about? For goddess's sake, don't salute me."
He looked a bit bemused by my statement. "I was told the senior officer was on duty here today. You always salute the senior officer in my old division."
"The senior officer is here, but he's in the office over there." I waved my hand toward the one door that didn't lead to the toilets. "I'm the new guy, they haven't officially made me a policeman just yet."
"Yep, huge. There's me, Felipe Marshall on patrol duty and Chuck Darnell-Hobble who is the senior officer." I motioned around at the obvious hordes of people. "I'm surprised you haven't been trampled by the crowd yet."
He laughed, "I can see I'll have to be careful. I've transferred here from Bridgeport, I've never seen a station with fewer then 20 officers on duty at a time." He gave me a sharp look. "Did you mention your name yet? You won't be 'New Guy' after today."
"Yes, Sam, I was expecting a new officer, though the exact date wasn't clear."
"No Sam, stay. It's not like there is a crime wave in the office, is there?" I nodded, that was a definite point. There might be all of three phone calls and one office visit per a busy day.
We moved to sit around the tiny coffee table in Chuck's office. After the austere white outer room, this one was almost overwhelmingly colourful.
"Well, sir," Jared started.
"Just call me Chuck. It's not really the kind of town where you find a lot of formalities."
"So you agreed to work here because?"
"It sounds like a lovely town. I'm sure there will be things for the police to do, but nothing like Bridgeport."
"So, spend the rest of the day settling in. Sam can show you the town before work in the morning, and you should come here before you set off for the day. I'll rustle up a police cell phone for you and that should get you started."
"That sounds great."
"Yes Chuck. Jared and I can meet here at 7:30, that will give us a little time to tour town before work officially starts for the day."
"Right, Jared, off you go." Chuck waited until Jared was gone. "Sam, there are a couple of things I wanted to mention to you. The first is that the annual police ball is coming up. You'll find that your pay is 100 simoleons short this week to pay for two tickets. It's a tradition for all the police to come with someone for the evening."
"That's our plan. And I've noticed that you've been submitting lost pet reports?"
Chuck looked me firmly in the eye and said, "Do nothing. Lost pets are not really our problem, we just take the reports to make the owners feel a little better."
"But Chuck, those owners are stressed and they think we will do something about it."
"Not on my watch, we won't. We have enough to do without worrying about a lost cat."
The science lab summoned Jericho and I late in the afternoon. We rushed over to hear the progress report on how the baby was coming along. We were about to get a couple of surprises.
"Well, the lab rang the day after they took our blood. The technician asked if I was ok if they duplicated the experiments to increase the chance of success. I told them if that was more likely to produce a baby, of course it was ok."
"I wish you had mentioned it."
"Then we would have mourned together. Don't keep me in the dark about the important stuff." I looked at the bundle of blue in my arms. "So, what do you name a baby boy 'Strider? "
"Aww, what an adorable little fish he is. A little Goby."
"Goby Seastrider, I think that will do nicely, Jericho. What do you think, Goby?" I snuggled our son who seemed very content.
"Your turn Sam. What should we call our girl?"
I thought for a moment. "Monica. I think she's Monica."
Jericho snuggled our little girl. "Welcome to the family Monica Grant."
The moment those babies got home, I realised that I want to get married. I wonder if I can talk Jericho into it. He's still trying to get used to the whole dating thing, marriage might be asking too much. How long should I wait to ask? Should I ask ever?
(Side note, Jared Van Allen was a vampire over in Cami's story. He also managed to die without staying dead.)
There are times when it still astounds me. Officially, Eddie and Howie have nothing to do with Goby or Monica.
You can skip these in particular. Just the boys pashing it up.