Dirty Harry 11 - Death in the Air

Dirty Harry 11 - Death in the Air by Dane Hartman Read Free Book Online Page B

Book: Dirty Harry 11 - Death in the Air by Dane Hartman Read Free Book Online
Authors: Dane Hartman
jacket from the hat rack in your office. What the well-dressed police punching bag is wearing today.”
    Harry smiled while slipping into the clothing. “Okay, so where does this Patterson woman live?” he asked lightly.
    DiGeorgio grimaced. “I was afraid you’d remember that,” he admitted. “Don’t you think it would be a real good idea to leave this one alone, Harry?”
    “You saw how she reacted when I mentioned the subways, Frank,” Callahan retorted. “And you, yourself, mentioned the similarity between the way she and Martha Murray looked.”
    “Yeah,” DiGeorgio countered, “but the first girl was not a good-looking blond—she was an ordinary-looking, black-haired girl. And her having bad memories about the subway is no big deal. She fell onto the tracks, remember? That would put anybody off BART travel.”
    Harry still wasn’t convinced, but he couldn’t quite tell his partner why. He didn’t think he could explain the connection between the girl blowing on her fingertips in the hospital room and the chill he had felt in the Fulton Station—at least not in a way that wouldn’t make him seem overworked.
    “Her address, Frank,” he said simply.
    Callahan couldn’t bring himself to do it. No matter how hard he tried, he just couldn’t bring himself to go to Patterson’s address directly from police headquarters. He could feel his brain turning to mush. There was just no benefit in going over there if he was unable to put a coherent sentence together.
    Realizing that, Harry’s first stop was his third-floor apartment on Russian Hill, where he fell into his unmade bed without undressing. He fell asleep immediately, and woke up a little more than six hours later, his cut arm aching and his empty stomach growling with a vengeance.
    His second stop was Jaffe’s Kwik Lunch, his favorite hot-dog hangout, which stayed open for the dinner as well as the midnight-snack crowd. The place hadn’t changed very much since the time Harry had had his lunch interrupted by a bunch of bank robbers down the street during the Scorpio Sniper investigation. He had broken up the heist with six shots of his .44, then he had gone back to finish his frankfurter.
    The only major change had come in the form of three video game machines stuck in the back corner, where a regular crowd of acne-ridden adolescents with excellent hand-eye coordination congregated. They never seemed to go to school or stay home.
    “Economics,” Jaffe had explained. “They play a game, they buy a hot dog. They buy a hot dog, they play a game. To tell you the truth, I make more on the machines than I do on the wieners.”
    “So why don’t you turn the whole place into a pinball parlor?” Harry had irritably suggested.
    “Because of you, Harry darling,” Jaffe had whispered. “Only because of you. Now will that be a lunch Callahan special or a dinner Callahan special?”
    A lunch special was one dog, while a dinner special was two. This night, Harry ordered a dinner, complete with fries, coleslaw, and a large milk. He watched the kids racking up millions of points on “Qix,” “Ms. Pac-Man,” and “Centipede” while he waited. While he ate, he blessed Jaffe for keeping the volume turned down on the sound effects, at least.
    It was late in the evening by the time Harry got to Patterson’s address, but he was feeling fairly human by that time. It was a nice four-story apartment building near Grand View Park, just across the way from the Shriner’s hospital. Entering the well-lit but narrow foyer, he checked the buzzers until he saw the tag saying “4-B: D. Patterson.” He pressed the button, hoping that she was home—for more than interrogatory reasons. He liked the way she looked. And there would be nothing he would like better than to find she had had nothing to do with the Murray killing.
    The speaker crackled, and he heard her distorted voice asking, “Who is it?”
    “Inspector Callahan,” he replied. “The policeman you

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