10:09 AM; CLINSTONE POLICE DEPARTMENT, DETECTIVE SERGEANT JENSEN AUSTEN-TAYLOR’S DESK
Jensen lifted his head to look at Ryan. “So?” he echoed.
Ryan cleared his throat. “The little blonde’s your husband?”
“The ‘little blonde’ has a name.” Jensen leaned back in his chair. “But, yes, Bo’s my husband.”
“Have you ever considered that you like him because he could pass for a woman if he tried hard enough?”
“He’s got really soft features.” Ryan shook his head. “Not the hardness of a man… you know?”
“I don’t mean this to be a dick, Jass, but Bo is Jamal Pitman’s right-hand man. He’s more of a man than you’ll ever be,” Jensen said.
“I’m just trying to wrap my mind around all of… all of this.”
“Jass, man, that is where your problem is coming from,” Jensen whispered. “You’re trying to put yourself in my bedroom again. We talked about that. It makes your understanding of the situation decrease. It doesn’t make it better,” he said.
“I’m trying to make this work,” Ryan said.
“I already told you how to make it work,” Jensen said. “Stop trying to figure out how it works. Just be a human being and move on with it. Don’t focus on the one thing about me you can’t stand.”
“I was raised… to hate people like you,” Ryan said quietly.
“My boss in L.A.? Pitman? He was born in the fifties. He went to church every Sunday, and he still believes in God. He’s read the Bible cover to cover God only knows how many times in his life. You know what he did when he found out? Congratulated us. He was happy. He officiated our wedding. He’s the acting grandfather of our kids. He’s family, even though I’m gay,” Jensen said. “That’s called being progressive. And if you can’t do it, fine. Find a new job or see if LT will assign you a new partner. But if you can be progressive? I’m one of the most loyal son of a bitches you’ll ever meet.”
Jensen cleared his throat, pushing himself to his feet. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to walk away from this conversation before I say or do something I’ll regret,” he said. He walked away from his desk and headed down to the lab. “Eli.”
Bo lifted his head. “Hmm?”
“Are you busy?”
“No. Stuck at a dead end. Her phone’s basically useless to us,” Bo said.
“Mm. Early lunch?”
Bo looked down at his watch. “Sorry, love. I’m not hungry yet. You can go, though.”
Jensen shook his head. “We aren’t… We wouldn’t actually be going out for lunch.”
Bo tilted his head to the side. “Maybe it’s because I’m tired, but I’m afraid I’m not following.”
“Eight months, Eli. I’m angry at a jackass upstairs, and we haven’t had sex in eight months. I need a release.”
Bo stared at his husband for a moment before nodding slightly. “Sure. Early lunch,” he said quietly, sliding Hanna Davidson’s phone back into the evidence back. He set it in the box on the table and stood up, pulling off his gloves. “You can tell Jake to replace him,” he said as he crossed the room, tossing the gloves into the garbage by the door.
“Not yet. Couple more days,” Jensen said, flipping off the light. He grabbed Bo’s hand as they walked down the hall. “He said I only liked you because you have soft features.”
“Like a woman.”
Bo snorted. “It’s called ‘boyish’ for a reason. I could pass for the college student as long as I’ve slept well the night prior.”
“I know,” Jensen said quietly. As they headed up the stairs, he squeezed Bo’s hand. “I wanted to hit him, Eli. I… I wanted to fucking deck him.”
“I’m glad you didn’t. Calling Jamal to get you out of an assault charge would result in a lot of… unfortunate events.”
“I know. He’d kill Ryan,” Jensen said. “That’s the only reason I didn’t hit him. I didn’t want his blood on my hands,” he said.
“Good choice.” Bo offered a smile. “It’ll be okay, Jens. And if it’s not, we’ll get you a new partner.”
“I know.” Jensen closed his eyes briefly, smiling as Bo pressed a kiss to the back of his hand. “I love you. You know that, don’t you?”
“Mm… I’m reminded quite often,” Bo said. He laughed as Jensen pulled his hand free, smacking it against the blonde’s backside instead. “I love you, too, Jens.”
11:07 AM; CLINSTONE, ROCK AVENUE
Jensen let out a heavy sigh, tugging on either side of Bo’s flannel shirt. “So… what have you found out on the case?” he asked, buttoning up his husband’s shirt.
“Not much. I mean, she liked to ride a bike everywhere. That’s why she didn’t have a driver’s license. She wasn’t big on selfies, so we don’t have any big idea on who the guy could possibly be. I was hoping she had taken one with him that he wasn’t aware of or something,” the blonde said.
“She liked to keep her life private,” Jensen said.
“Seems that way, yes,” Bo agreed. He cleared his throat, pressing a hand to Jensen’s chest. “And there wasn’t a Joel in her contact list. So she either didn’t get his number, or he deleted it after he killed her,” he said. “Which seems improbable. I pulled two unsmudged fingerprints off of her phone, and they were both hers.”
“Then why’d he wipe the screen?”
“Honestly, she probably did it. If she was that keen on making sure no one got into her private life, I imagine she wasn’t incredibly trusting. When you’re around someone else that you don’t want to guess your password, you always wipe the screen on your pants or your shirt after you lock the screen again,” Bo said. “I’ve seen it a lot in people who connect dots or draw designs on their screen to unlock it, but I suppose there’s nothing from stopping a person from doing it when they have a number passcode.”
“Why go home with a guy, then?” Jensen asked.
“I don’t know,” Bo said, offering a shrug. He smoothed out either side of Jensen’s tie as the younger man dropped his hands to his hips. “If you were single and untrusting, why would you go home with a guy?” he asked as he tied Jensen’s tie.
“Shoot, umm…” Jensen’s brow furrowed as he tilted his head back against the passenger seat. “I guess if I was going to be alone for the first Valentine’s Day in a long time, I’d probably go out in search of someone,” he said.
Bo’s hands froze. “She could’ve been dumped,” he whispered.
“Her mom didn’t say anything about a boyfriend,” Jensen said.
“Hanna was very private,” Bo said slowly. “Maybe she never told her mother. Maybe she was nervous of how she’d react to the news, so she just didn’t tell her.”
“Looks like you need to go through her phone again,” Jensen said.
“Oh, you’re a genius,” Bo breathed. Hands on either side of the younger man’s face, Bo leaned down and kissed him. “Would you like to hang out with me in the lab when we get back?”
“Of course, babe,” Jensen murmured. Bo smiled before moving to sit on the center console. Jensen climbed over Bo, dropping into the driver’s seat. “What do you think would cause her to hide a relationship from her own mother?”
“We don’t know how supportive or unsupportive she was of Hanna,” Bo said as he slid back into the passenger seat. He locked his seat belt into place, clearing his throat. “We just know that she told us she loved her daughter.”
“Right,” Jensen said quietly, turning the key in the ignition. He glanced over at Bo before pulling his own seat belt across his body. “Her mother did mention that they didn’t speak often. Once or twice every few months, and that was only because she’d text Hanna to check on her.”
“Huh.” Bo reached out and turned up the radio, tuning in just in time for the beginning of a Tom Petty song. “Hanna was either incredibly independant, or she and her mother had a falling out. Did you ask her mother about that one of the times I was out of the room?”
“No, just how often they spoke,” Jensen said, shifting into gear and driving down the gravel road. He reached over, laying a hand on Bo’s thigh. “Should I call her again?”
Bo shook his head. “Not yet. Let’s see what we can turn out back at the station first, okay?”
“Sounds good, Eli.” Jensen cleared his throat. “What if she didn’t have a boyfriend? Or, at least, what if she had one that we can’t find?”
“Then I suppose we’re right back to square one again.”
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