Perry woke the following morning to find Della gone, with only a note from her saying she was safe and that she loved him. He immediately called the manager who told him that the lady had left just after midnight with the police lieutenant.
His next call was to Tragg.
"Where is she?! What the hell were you thinking taking her out of here?! You need to bring her back right now! Now, do you understand me Tragg, now!"
The line remained silent. "Tragg?"
Then the gruff voice answered. "Are you done?"
Perry ran his hand through his hair. "What's going on Arthur? Where is she?"
In his office, Tragg smiled to himself. The man was definitely in love. "Perry listen to me. Della is perfectly safe. She called me and asked me to come."
"She what?" Perry sat heavily on the couch. "Why?"
Now Tragg's voice held a hint of anger. "Because she's afraid for you. She knew if Snyder came for her, you'd put yourself in the line of fire. Seems like the lady loves you too."
Perry was silent for a moment, trying to understand Della. "Okay, Arthur, just where is she?"
Tragg's chuckle sounded through the line. "The safest place she could be. In jail."
Della was in a cell in the unused part of the jail, and she wasn't locked in. Tragg had a very comfortable folding bed bought in for her. He had even brought her a quilt his wife made so she wouldn't be cold. After making sure she was comfortable, he had patted her hand and said he would see her in the morning to escort her to court.
Della thought that other than the fact it was jail, she might be in one of the hotels they sent their clients to. She had finally managed to fall asleep, hoping that Perry would understand why she had left.
In the morning, the matron brought her a breakfast of eggs, toast, juice and coffee. She was surprised to find she was hungry and cleaned the plate.
When she was done, she was shown a nice bathroom with a shower. The matron had even had her suit taken to a local cleaners to be pressed.
Once Della was ready, she returned to the cell to find Lieutenant Tragg waiting for her.
"Hello Lieutenant. I want…"
"Della!" Perry came rushing through the door. He practically ran to her, wrapping his arms around her, burying his face in her hair.
"Perry, I'm okay. I'm okay." She put her hand to his cheek. "Perry, look at me, please."
He raised his head and Della could see his eyes were a deep indigo and slightly misty.
"Della, why did you leave? I had you well protected. I told you I…"
Della smiled at him. 'Perry, I know you could protect me, but you wouldn't protect yourself. I didn't want you giving up your life for me."
Perry just shook his head. "My silly girl."
Tragg stepped up, clearing his throat. "Perry, we need to get Della to court."
Perry nodded, still keeping his eyes on Della, and his arm around her waist. "Okay. Sure. Let's go Della."
Perry again sat directly behind Della. Paul was still trying to track down anything on Snyder.
Bill Vincent, gave Della a rather snide look as he called Edwin Cavanagh to the stand. Perry leaned forward and gently squeezed Della's shoulder, a gesture that was not lost on either Vincent or Cavanagh.
"Mr. Cavanagh, first let me say, I'm sorry for your loss. I know this must be difficult for you."
"It will be better when that woman is convicted of the murder." The venom in his voice shocked Della.
Connie didn't even stand. "Objection!"
The judge looked to Cavanagh. "Sustained. Mr. Cavanagh you will wait until you are asked a question and refrain from personal comments."
Cavanagh didn't bother to respond. Vincent stepped in to reply.
"We beg the court's pardon your honor. Mr. Cavanagh is understandably upset."
Perry wanted to climb over the rail and slug the man…both of them.
"Mr. Cavanagh, could you tell us what you know about your daughter's last day."
"Laura told me she was going to see Perry Mason on a personal matter. She said she was afraid of someone. I can only assume it was…"
Connie was on her feet. "Objection! Your honor…"
"Sustained. Mr. Cavanagh, you will not be warned again or I'll hold you in contempt."
Perry thought at least Judge Anderson was on top of things.
Vincent needed to get control. "Mr. Cavanagh, your daughter was once engaged to Mr. Mason, is that right?"
"She would have been, if not for interference by other people."
Vincent knew this was getting him nowhere. He could only hope his next witness would give him what he needed. "No further questions."
Connie stood and walked over to stand in front of the witness stand. She just looked at Cavanagh for a moment. Perry actually saw the man squirm in his seat.
"Mr. Cavanagh, did your daughter know Duke Snyder?
"Not that I know of." His sneer was back.
"Did she know Dino Santini?" Perry saw the slight flinch. He hoped Connie saw it too.
"Let me rephrase that. Do you know Dino Santini?"
Vincent was on his feet. "Objection! Relevancy!"
"No further questions."
As Connie returned to her seat, she winked at Perry.
"Prosecution calls Glen Robertson to the stand."