Amateur

The Girlfriend Chapter ThreeThe GirlfriendChapter ThreeI ran up the stairs to my flat, taking them two at a time, my face burning. Inside I leant against the wall, furious at myself for the way I had reacted. I needed a drink. Grabbing a beer from the fridge, I sat down and tried to understand what had just happened. Sam’s words kept coming back to me, but why had I reacted so strongly? It didn’t make sense because I wasn’t attracted to him in any way. I decided he was just trying to wind me up.“Fuck you, Sam.” I said out loud.I jumped as my phone buzzed and for a second I thought it was Sam, but it was Sophie texting me.Hi babe, you OK?Yes, fine you?Not really. Mum’s in a bad way and it’s snowing hardShit, that’s badShe’s very low Do you mind if I stay a few days more? No, course not. Take what time you need.You’re a star babe. Work OK?Manic right nowOK, babe be careful out there. Love you Give my love to your Mum. Let me know what’s happening Love you too.I felt miserable and lonely without her. We had married four years ago after being set up by a mutual friend. Sophie later told me that she didn’t fancy me at all after the first date, but she agreed to go on a second date and she must have seen something in me because we were married two years later. We had our ups and downs, of course. A relationship with a police officer isn’t easy to deal with sometimes. The hours are long and unsocial, and Sophie told me she had nightmares about me being hurt on the job.We worked it out most of the time, and we settled into that second stage of our relationship where the sex becomes less frequent, but maybe more intense because of that. I’m not complaining, we were good together, and we spiced it up a few times. Handcuffs can come in useful, and not just on Sophie. We had found out after a year of trying for a baby that I am infertile. No man likes to find out he’s firing blanks, and it hit me hard. We talked about adoption or sperm donation, but neither of us felt that was right for us, and it petered out until we dropped the subject.I slept badly, waking from dreams that left me uneasy and feeling drained. I went into work early, hoping I could bury myself in my case. At first it worked, but my mind kept drifting back to what had happened in Sam’s flat. However hard I tried to focus on my work, his last words kept nagging away at me. It was ridiculous, I had not been attracted to him. Why did he think he could get away with saying things like that?“Joe, a word if you please?” My DCI’s voice broke into my thoughts. “In my office.”I tried to think what this might be about. I knew I had done a good job recently, and there was nothing I could come up with that illegal bahis would warrant what the DCI was fond of calling ‘a word’. It normally ended up with him giving someone a bollocking over something they had, or hadn’t, done. I followed him into his office to find a woman sitting in the only visitors chair. The DCI sat behind his desk which meant I had to stand, She was mid thirties I guessed, smartly dressed and held a file on her lap. Having to stand in front of the DCI made me feel like I was back in the headmaster’s office in school. “Guv, you wanted a word?” I tried to ignore the woman. “Actually, Joe, it’s Miss Reagan here who wants the word.”She looked me up and down before speaking. “You are Detective Constable Joe Storey, is that correct?” OK, so no small talk. At least she didn’t sound like she was from HR.“Yes, That’s right,”“And did you yesterday access the Police National Computer from a terminal in this office?”I felt a big hole opening up in front of me, and I turned to the DCI.“Sir, what’s going on?”“Just answer Miss Reagan’s questions, Joe.”She opened the file on her lap. “Did you at 10:34 yesterday make an enquiry on the PNC about a man called Sam Chandler?”Danger signs were now flashing red in my mind. I knew I had to be careful.“Yes ma’am, I did.”Who the hell is she? I thought.“Why?”“Sam, I mean Mr. Chandler lives in the same block of flats as I do, and he had been burgled recently.”“There’s no record of a crime report for this burglary.” She had done her homework.“Well, no. He didn’t want to report it as he said nothing had been taken.”She didn’t say anything, and I knew she was trying to get me to fill in the silence.“Is that all, ma’am?”“No it fucking isn’t, Detective Constable. Now, once again, why did you make the enquiry if there was no case?”“I wanted to check him out. As I said, we live in the same block of flats and I wanted to know if there was anything I should be concerned about.”“And why did you go to a wine bar with Mr Chandler last evening?”That threw me. “Sir, I have a right to know, am I under surveillance? Who is she, and what’s going on here?”The DCI looked at Reagan who nodded to him.“Actually, you don’t have the right to know anything. Miss Reagan is from one of our Intelligence Agencies and no, you are not under surveillance. Now answer her questions.”So she was a spook, so it must be Sam who was under surveillance. What the hell was going on here?Turning to her, I said, “Yes, I did go to a wine bar with Sam last night. I wanted to see if he was alright after the burglary, he was pretty shook up after the break-in. I’ve known him as a neighbour for a while and it was simply a social meeting.”She looked illegal bahis siteleri as if she didn’t believe a word, but that was her problem, I wasn’t going to say anything more. She paused and looked across at the DCI, who nodded.“Thank you, Detective Constable. I am going to tell you something which cannot be shared with anyone outside this office. Do you understand?”“Yes, ma’am.” What was I getting myself into? I realised this was all to do with Sam, but how?“Mr Chandler is an analyst for one of our sections. We believe he is being targeted by someone who wants to turn him. Mr Chandler has some proclivities which have made him vulnerable to blackmail. You with me so far?”“Proclivities, ma’am?”“Let’s say, he has a penchant for wearing women’s clothing.”I feigned surprise, “Oh, OK. But what has this got to do with me.”“I’m coming to that. We need someone to get close to him. Someone who can keep us informed of who he is meeting and to keep a close eye on him. We think as you are already friends with him, you would be perfect.”What the fuck, I thought. No way was I going to do this.“Ma’am, skip, with respect, I don’t think this is my kind of job.”“That’s very modest of you, and slightly strange, because you were commended for the undercover work on your last case.” She stared at me, as if daring me to disagree.“Isn’t there one of your agents who would be more suited?” I was almost pleading now.“Nobody who has the same head start as you. We would have to start from scratch.”“Why don’t you arrest him, ma’am?”“Because we want to roll up the people who are targeting him as well.”“Does he know he’s under surveillance?”“No, at least we do not believe so.”A thought struck me and it scared me rigid.“Do you have listening devices in his flat?”She gave me an odd look.“No, we want you to plant something. Why do you ask?”“Well, you might have listened in on who he was meeting.”For the second time she looked as if she didn’t believe a word. She closed the file and sat back, crossing her legs, something the DCI took a special interest in judging by the look on his face.“Well, Detective Constable?”I looked at the DCI. “Guv, if I do this what happens to the vacancy for Sergeant?”“Joe, all I can say is if this goes well it will put you at the top of the list.”“And who would I be working for?”Reagan jumped in.”You would be reporting directly to me, on detached duty from your police role.”Why I said it, I don’t know, but I heard myself saying, “Alright, I’ll do it.”Reagan stood up and took a document from the file.”This is the agreement to transfer you to us on detachment. I don’t need to remind you that you have signed the Official Secrets Act so nothing canlı bahis siteleri of this can be shared with anyone. And I mean anyone.”“Yes ma’am.”She smiled, “You can drop the ma’am. It makes me feel old.”“Yes ma’–I mean, what do I call you?”“Echo, it’s my codename for this case. Clear your desk and I will be in touch tomorrow. Remember, you must do whatever you need to to get what we want.”Her words made me shiver as I thought about what she might mean. She tucked the file into a briefcase, nodded to the DCI and left. I turned to him, “What happens next?”“Hand over your case notes to Burnside, clear your desk then go home and wait for her to contact you. I’ll tell the team you’re going undercover on another case. Oh, and be careful with these people.”“The guys trying to turn Chandler?”“No, the people from Intelligence. Just keep your nose clean, Joe, and good luck.”***I sat at my desk, wondering if I had done the right thing. My phone buzzed with a text message.Hi Joe, look I’m sorry for what I said last night. You were only trying to help me. Can we be friends. Sam.”I looked around the office, for a wild moment thinking this was some kind of practical joke. Maybe Reagan and the DCI were in on it. But nobody was even looking in my direction and I calmed down, realising the text was simply a coincidence. What should I say? ‘Yes, we can be friends but I’m going to be spying on you?’Sam, it’s OK, I was a bit out of order too. Friends is fine.Thanks, Joe. Are you home tonight? Maybe, why?If you are, come round to mine and I’ll cook dinner to apologise Nothing fancy, see you at 7?I hesitated, not sure if I should meet him so soon. Why not? The sooner this is over and done with the better.OK, see you then.Still wondering what had I let myself in for, I cleared my desk, handed over my case notes to DC Burnside and said goodbye to the team. Some looked envious of me for landing another undercover job, but I wondered what they would say if they knew what it was.So, at seven o’clock I stood outside the door to Sam’s flat, bottle of middling priced red wine in hand. There was a intercom unit by the door, and I hesitated as my finger hovered over the button. There was still time to call this off, but I took a deep breath and pressed the button.From inside I heard Sam’s voice. “The door’s open, Joe. Just push it and come in.”I opened the door and walked in, closing the door behind me. “In the kitchen, Joe.”I walked towards the voice, opened the door and came face to face with Sam. He was wearing an apron over a black dress, his hair falling down around his shoulders and his face beautifully made up. I stood stock still and my mouth must have fallen open, because Sam giggled, put his finger beneath my chin and closed it, then leant in to give me a kiss on the cheek. I wanted to turn and run, but was rooted to the spot.“Don’t be shocked, you wanted to find out more about me didn’t you?”To be continued

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