Chapter 43- Breaking and Entering

The following week, Brandi and Dad stood in the shadows, waiting for the next number to leave her brownstone. Brandi zipped up her jacket and rubbed her arms briskly. "Cold, Sweetheart?" Dad asked, wrapping his arm around her shoulders.

"A little bit, Dad. The weather's starting to turn cold," Brandi said, shifting slightly so she could rest her head against his shoulder as he stroked her hair gently.

"As soon as Miss Morgan leaves we'll break into her apartment," Dad said.

"Zoe Morgan. I don't know if this is a good idea, guys," Brandi mulled, running her fingers over the seam in the shoulder of her father's suitcoat.

"What do you know about Miss Morgan, Brandilyn?" Dad asked.

"Zoe is well-known among police officers and detectives like Mom. She's a fixer. If she needs to find hard evidence when the law can't, or it's against the law because of the tactics she uses, she will for a price," Brandi said as Dad's phone rang.

"Callahan Car Service," Dad said.

"Zoe Morgan. You changed my driver," Zoe said, her voice sounding annoyed.

"Sorry for the inconvenience, Ms. Morgan, but Bill's come down with laryngitis. Caught it from his son," Dad said.

Even in the shadows, Brandi could see Zoe was thinking it over. "Which son?" Zoe asked.

"Andy, the younger one. We've sent our best driver in his place," Dad said. Zoe turned to look at Reese who had arrived and Brandi could see him in the light of the streetlamps.

"I'll be the judge of that. No small talk, no questions. You stay in the car and you keep your eyes on the road. We settle up at the end of the night," Zoe said, hanging up the phone, tearing what looked like money, and getting into the car.

"Well, so far, so good. She bought it," Brandi said as she and Dad stepped out of the shadows as Reese and Zoe drove away.

"It wasn't easy. C'mon. We need to search her apartment," Dad said, pulling out a door pick from his trench coat pocket. Brandi then took it out of his hand.

"I'll pick it, Dad. Hmmm. I'm having a little trouble picking this lock. Dad, Uncle John. It's not as easy as it looks on TV," Brandi said, jiggling the doorknob as she stuck the pick into the lock. The door then swung open after a small click.

"Never mind. We're in," Dad said as Brandi straightened and they walked into the dark house.

"All right. What are we looking for?" Brandi asked as Dad looked around.

"No photos of family or friends. Some jazz records," Dad said, shining his flashlight on Miles Davis and a Thelonius Monk record.

"She dropped out of law school, no current employer. But she buys a $2 million dollar apartment for cash three years ago? What's she gotten herself mixed up in?" Brandi asked, turning on a desk light.

"That's why we look, Brandi," Dad said.

"But, Dad, where does she keep the things she cares about? Mom kept my father's things in the attic. I found them one day," Brandi said as she opened a shallow drawer with pencils, paper clips, and rubber bands.

"I haven't the slightest idea. Where do you, Mr. Reese?" Dad asked, limping around the kitchen.

"I don't have anything I care about," Reese said.

"That's silly. Everyone has someone or something, Uncle John," Brandi said. "She just paid for something, a lot of money, cash," Reese said, evading the topic.

"Do you know what it is?" Dad asked.

"No. Do you and Brandi wanna know where people hide things, Finch? Underneath," Reese said as Dad opened the refrigerator.

"Underneath. Either he means under her couch, the floorboards, or the nearest graveyard," Brandi said, running to Zoe's living room, her father behind her. Dad shone a flashlight, revealing a gun.

"Uh-oh," Dad said as Brandi pulled the gun out.

"Finch, the item she bought was a gun," Reese said a few minutes later.

"But, Uncle John, she's already got a gun in her living room. Why does she need another?" Brandi asked, examining the gun.

"Only one reason you buy a gun off the street so it's untraceable. Possibly her number came up because she plans to kill someone," Reese said, sounding annoyed.

"Or someone plans to kill her," Brandi said, putting the gun down. The rest of the investigation didn't reveal anything and Brandi and Dad got out with a few minutes to spare.

"I hope you and Brandi are out of there, Finch," Reese said after seeing Zoe home and she went in.

"Do you know what she does yet? Brandi's already told me," Dad said, walking up to Reese.

"She does favors for a price. She's a fixer," Reese corroborated Brandi's story.

"Assuming that she's the victim, any idea who'd want to take her out?" Dad asked.

"Who wouldn't?"" Reese asked admiringly.

"Oh, give me a break, please," Brandi said, rolling her eyes.