The next morning, Denton arrived at the precinct with a coffee for Mark, and a dropped off a box of donuts at Reilly and Flint's desk. He fully expected them to bitch at the gesture, but he couldn't care.
At his desk, he set about finishing his paperwork, and was done by the time Alice got in. She hadn't even taken off her jacket that they were called out. A body in the Bricks.
That was quickly wrapped up, an argument that had escalated. the girl that had done it was hiding a block away, and caught by a uniformed officer. She confessed to it.
That paperwork was done, and things got quiet. Which let Denton think about the Lewiston murders again. He didn't have any of the files, so he couldn't do an actual investigation, but he could still do some research.
He searched through the online papers for any mention of Alistair. There were a lot of them. Lewiston was active in most of the Denver charities and because of the wealth he had, the news loved to follow him. Denton was surprised at how little dirt there was. No mention of infidelities while his wife was alive, no suspicion he was involved with organized crime, or was a closeted gay dealing in child porn. okay, that last one was too farfetched even for him.
Although he had to be gay. That room in the basement hadn't been there so others could enjoy it. That made him look deeper for any reporter who might have hinted at that. nothing. That raised a flag for Denton. and with the news stories on him being far too clean, he decided Alistair was paying off the papers to spin the stories favorably. That didn't really help him with the murder though.
He stopped, and went back a picture, no, not that one, another, and another. This one. Something about it prickled at him. It was a gala honoring the Citizen Heroes, a foundation Alistair had setup to encourage everyday people to help each other out.
The photograph was centered on him, holding a champagne flute, and talking with an otter, dressed like she made more money that the whole department. He studied her, no she wasn't what had caught his subconscious' attention. Maybe he'd imagined it?
He was about to dismiss this when he noticed the cougar, two tables behind Alistair, talking with a Siamese. He was wearing a tux, instead of a suit, but that was him, the fed. He was certain of it. He checked the date of the article, two weeks ago. Someone at the hotel might remember him.
He grabbed his jacket and prepared an excuse, when all hell broke loose. A shootout on the south side, everyone was needed there.
It took the rest of the day to deal with it, and then was the paperwork. The captain hadn't let them go until their part of it was done. The mayor had seen it on TV, and it had happened in his old neighborhood. The captain wanted to make sure no mistake would let one of those shooters walk.
It was nine pm when Denton finally stepped out of the precinct. he'd have to check on the hotel tomorrow, he thought as he pulled out his phone. He had a dozen texts. he read them, and went back to the offer from a guy he hadn't seen in a few month, and replied to it.
'Just leaving work. if you're at my place by the time I get there, I'll fuck you till you can't walk anymore.'
That should ensure he'd hurry.
The dalmatian was waiting by the time Denton arrived.
He was able to walk, when he left the next morning, but he walked funny.
* * * * *
Denton couldn't make it to the hotel until late morning. There he asked the staff and manager, showing the picture from the new article, but no one remembered the cougar.
The rest of the day had him and Alice deal with a car, stolen by someone who thought she was a stunt-woman, and almost ended up killing herself. A drunk, intent of telling the city council they couldn't take away his right to smoke in bars. Someone who tried to commit suicide by shooting himself, only to miss and injure his younger brother.
He called William once he was done, and they had dinner at his place. The wolf was a great cook, and enjoyed some play in the kitchen, and the dining room, as well as the living room, and obviously, the bedroom.
The next morning Denton was just putting his coffee down on his desk that the captain opened his door. "Brislow, a word?"
Denton went in the office, closed the door and sat.
"What case is the Malborough Hotel part of?"
"Yesterday morning, you went there and questioned the staff. What case if that part of?"
Denton took a moment before replying. "The Lewiston Murders."
"That's no longer your case."
"You can't expect me to just drop it."
"I believe I ordered you to drop it. do you need me to put it in writing?"
"Sir, that FBI agent who took the files, he was at the gala with Alistair. don't you think that's odd?"
Sherman studied him for a moment. "How do you know what he looks like?"
"Surveillance camera at the desk. I had Ryan pull up a picture of them."
Sherman sighed. "Drop this, Denton. I'm sure there's a perfectly good reason why a FBI agent was at the gala. and even if there isn't. Even if he was there because the two of them are in bed together, this is no longer your case. Those people you questions? one of them complained to the mayor, which means he complained to me. We have enough cases without going to look for more. Don't make me suspend you to make the point, understood?"
Denton stared at the captain for a moment. This was a bit extreme. "Yes sir."
He went back to his desk, and reluctantly deleted the picture of Alistair he'd accumulated. He couldn't get himself to delete the notes he'd made, so he just saved that in an out of the way folder.
Fortunately, immediately after that, the city kept him busy. Two robberies, a gang shoot out, and a murder. Throughout that, he couldn't shake the feelign someone was watching him.
He managed to get out just after dinner time, and this being Friday, he drove to his favorite bar/pub, Omaley's Rump. The parking was packed, as was the inside. He'd never seen the place this busy. He ordered himself a burger, with all the trimming and a beer. He stayed at the bar for the ten minutes it took for his order to arrive, looking around for a free spot.
The plastic basket in a hand and beer in the other he walked around, until he found a table with an available chair. A buff collie was seated on the other side.
"S'cuse me," Denton said. "You mind if I sit here?"
The collie looked up from the book he was reading. He checked out the room, then looked Denton over. "Go ahead." He pulled his basket with a half-eaten fish burger closer to himself, to make space for Denton's meal.
"Thanks." He put his beer and basket down and offered his hand. "Denton."
The collie shook it. "Stefan."
Denton tilted his head for a moment, as he puzzled over the way the collie had pronounced the name. "Stephane? Are you French?"
Stefan shook his head. "German ancestry. Stefan Brukammer."
"Denton Brislow. full blooded American. What brings you here? I don't recall seeing you before, and trust me, I'd have remembered you." He asked, adding the pickle slice to his burger and then bitting into it.
"A friend of mine mentioned this was a nice, quiet place. I was hoping for some peace so I could read." he tapped the book, which was face down on the table.
Denton swallowed. "Well, he didn't lie. I've never seen this place this busy."
Stefan nodded. "Why do you say you would have remembered seeing me before?"
"You're kidding, right?"
The collie shook his head.
"Okay, this isn't a slight against collies, but every one of them I've met, until you, always had that effeminate slant to their features. I'm not saying they're fems, just that there's always at least a hint of women in the way they look. except for you. You're the most masculine collie I've ever met."
Stephan smiled. "Thank you. And I have to say that you are the most average cheetah I've seen."
Denton laughed. "Thanks."
"I don't meant to say you aren't pleasing on the eye, you certainly are"
Denton nodded. "Don't worry, I'm not offended. I know that my most attractive attribute isn't one you get to see at first glance." He was about to take another bite, but stopped. "Well, not in this kind of place anyway."
Stefan leaned back, studying him. "Really? now, I have to say I'm a little curious to find out in what kind of environment I'd get to see it."
Denton took his time before swallowing. "Well, it can't really be seen," he grinned, "but it can be experienced."
"Can it, now?" The collie leaned on his elbows. "Tell me, Denton, do you really get many guys with that implication?"
He ate a few fries. "I'd say my success rate with it is fifty/fifty. But those who come home with me, never leave disappointed."
"I must say that I am very tempted."
"Just tempted? I'd really hoped to have convinced you with it. What can I do to tip the scales?"
The collie smiled. "You can kiss me."
Denton's ears perked up.
"Not what you were expecting, I take it."
Denton didn't answer. He wiped his hands, stood, and slipped between the tables to get close to the collie. He bent down and kissed Stefan. he didn't go for anything fancy, or sloppy. he just gave him a solid French kiss.
When they separated, they kept looking in each other's eyes.
"I do believe my appetite has suddenly shifted," Stefan said. "You implied something about taking me home, I believe."
Denton didn't even look at his half eaten food as he led the collie out. they each had their cars, so Stefan followed him.
* * * * *
In the bedroom, they were on the bed, the collie with his legs in the air, before the clothes had touched the floor. After that, it was Denton on his back, Stefan seated on his groin, riding him.
During the break after that, Stefan tried to turn Denton on his stomach.
"Sorry," Denton protested. "I don't bottom."
"Really? why is that?" Stefan ran a finger through the cheetah's chestfur.
"Just don't enjoy it."
"I see." he leaned in to nibble Denton's neck. "Would you be amiable to sixty-nining?"
"I certainly am." He flipped and showed the collie he wasn't lying.
Denton wasn't the oral fiend he'd been when he was younger, when he'd discovered guys, and sucked anyone willing. But he still enjoying it occasionally.
He was rewarded with Stefan's orgasm. It still tasted as good as he'd remembered. within a minute after that, it was his turn to feed the collie. The snuggled for a few minutes after that, then went back to sex.
It was very late, or very early, depending on your point of view, when they finally slept. They woke close to ten, and it was past noon before Stefan left.
Denton had been impressed by the man. Most guys he had sex with needed a major break after being fucked three times, but the collie had kept up with him without complaints, and seemed to enjoy it each time.
He certainly came often enough, Denton realized after he'd left. Maybe he was like him? Maybe he'd call him at some point and ask.