Totally, Sweetly, Irrevocably(3)

By: Kira Archer

Mrs. Bogetti pushed the cop’s shoulder. “Well go on, get her off my fire escape. I don’t want no pervert-watchers hanging around my window. She’s a nice girl deep down. She needs help, she just doesn’t want to ask for it.”

The cop looked like he was barely containing his laughter, but he dutifully climbed out the window onto the fire escape and gently hauled Gina to her feet. He peered down at the street.

“You’re stalking the guy with the blonde down there? He doesn’t look like a pervert.”

“Shows how much you know. And I’m not stalking him. Now let go!” she said again.

His partner stood near the window, watching and not even bothering to hide his amusement. The guy was full-on laughing his ass off in Mrs. Bogetti’s living room.

“Ah, thanks for calling us in on this one, Mrs. B. We always get the boring calls. About time we got a fun one.”

Gina tried to glare at Officer Laughs-a-Lot while shoving his gorgeous partner. Without actually shoving him, of course. The last thing she needed was an assault against an officer charge. But damn it, Tony was right below her, and the cop was blowing her shot at catching him.

“Miss, you really need to come back inside now. Give me the binoculars…”

Gina ignored him and looked back across the street to see Tony and his date looking in their direction. She ducked behind the plant, though from Tony’s angle it would be hard to get a good look at their section of the fire escape. Which is why she had chosen this spot.

She tried to ignore Officer Annoying, Sir Chuckles, and Mrs. B yelling, laughing, and/or trying to coax her inside, and peered around the plant. Tony wasn’t trying to break into her truck. He was trying to get a look at the fiasco on the fire escape. And he’d certainly noticed the cop car parked in front of the building. Damn it all to hell. He was going to bolt for sure.

Not even two seconds later, he grabbed his date and took off down the street as fast as her heels would carry her.

“Great!” Gina said, rounding on the cop. “Now he’s taking off. He might have been planning to break into my truck again and you guys had to go and scare him off.”

“Miss, you need to step back inside. You are disturbing the peace—”

“I’m not disturbing anything. You’re the one disturbing me. I’m not doing anything wrong,” she said, folding her arms and glaring up at him. “I’m not trespassing, I’m not hurting anyone, and I’m spying on my own truck. It’s not like I’m being a perv or anything. Somebody has been breaking into my truck and I’m trying to find out who is doing it and the prime suspect just took off down the street, thanks to you!”

“If someone is breaking into your truck, then you should file a report and we’ll—”

“You’ll do nothing! No offense, but cops are completely worthless unless they are harassing people—”

“Seems to me you are the one harassing people, miss. Now if you’d…”

“Stop calling me miss. It’s condescending.”

The cop frowned at her, his jaw popping. “I didn’t intend it to be. But I meant it. You can’t go climbing fire escapes and spying on people. It’s borderline trespassing and depending on how far you encroach on your neighbors and their property, they have cause to file reports against you.”

“How far I encroach? What century were you born in? I’m not encroaching on anyone or anything. If Mrs. Bogetti didn’t insist on sticking her nose into everyone’s business she wouldn’t have even noticed me out here. I wasn’t bothering her or anyone else.”

“That’s not quite the case, since she was obviously bothered enough to call us.”

“Oh whatever. Mrs. B calls you guys if someone sneezes too loud, and you know it.”

He laughed and shook his head. “Be that as it may, she made the complaint, and I’m not leaving you out here.”

Gina’s annoyance ran out of steam as the cop stared down at her. He folded his arms across his chest, and the bulge of his biceps looked like it was testing the cheap fabric of his uniform. That niggling feeling she’d had finally clicked.

“You’re Mr. June. From the policemen’s calendar.” She pointed at the calendar hanging on the wall near the window.

His eyes widened a bit—his expression changing from vague amazement that some woman was berating him (though come on, this was New Jersey, it couldn’t be the first time it had happened) to…was that embarrassment? His lips pulled into a smile that had her belly clenching in all kinds of delicious ways. The kind of smile a man gave a woman after a night of marathon sex. When he knew he’d done something very, very right and was proud of it.

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