Friday September 25th, 4:48 P.M. Brooklyn, New York
Dan sounded surprised when she called. He didn’t want to talk on the phone and asked her to meet him at his old precinct. When she asked why there, his reply was vague. He simply said he had people there he trusted.
She turned off Union onto Montrose, found a spot, and parked. As she was getting out, Dan walked up, pulled the door open, and surprised her.
“I saw you pull up. We can’t really talk here. I just wanted to be in familiar surroundings. There’s a little diner back up Union, at the corner of Metropolitan, on the left. I’ll meet you there.” He smiled, closed her door and walked back around the front of the building.
Kelli sat there for a few minutes, feeling confused. Why not just meet at the diner in the first place? She started the car, backed out and made the turn onto Union. Metropolitan was a good eight blocks, and it seemed to her that she was hitting every red light along the way.
As she approached Metropolitan, she saw the diner on the left. It was a bright reflective building, with gleaming blue trim. She waited for traffic, crossed and parked. She stepped out onto the curb and waited. She didn’t have to wait long.
She watched as Dan parked and got out. He was holding an oversized pocket folder close as he walked up to her.
“What’s in the folder?” She felt obligated to ask, even though she already had an idea.
“This is the sum of my work on Operation Remolino, or Maelstrom in English. If the DEA finds out that I have all this, my ass is as good a cooked.” He tilted his head to one side, his eyes narrowing.
“Don’t look at me like that. I won’t say a word. Shit, they’d have my ass too. So, what have you got?”
“Let’s get off the street. I know the guy who owns this place. He’ll let us use his office in the back, fewer prying eyes.”
Kelli followed Dan inside and toward the back of the diner. He waved at a large, balding man in a white apron. The man motioned them into the kitchen, and led them to an office at the back. He pushed the office door open and stepped aside, allowing Kelli and Dan to pass.
Once inside, Dan thanked the man, closed the door and walked around to the other side of a small metal desk. He plopped down in the office chair and tossed the folder on the desk.
“So why do you want this info? You aren’t planning to do anything stupid, are you?” he said, eyeing her intently.
“It all depends on your definition of stupid,” she countered.
He looked at her and sighed. “Okay, I’ll give you what I’ve got, on one condition.”
Kelli crossed her arms and tilted her head. “And what would that be?”
Dan cleared his throat. “If you’re planning on going after this guy, I want in on it. I spent the better part of a year on that task force, watching them drag their asses. Shit, they could have taken the whole operation down six months ago.”
“What the fuck were they waiting on? Shit, if they had done that, my partner would still be alive. Why’d they wait?”
“Farnsworth didn’t think they had enough to get the whole cartel. Shit, I told him I got convictions on less when I was on the streets. The son of a bitch wanted to make sure he had a rock solid case. Hell, he was ready to sit on this for another year.”