The Protected (Fbi Psychics)

The Protected (Fbi Psychics) by Shiloh Walker Read Free Book Online

Book: The Protected (Fbi Psychics) by Shiloh Walker Read Free Book Online
Authors: Shiloh Walker
sort of mind grabbed him, Jones?” Shaking her head, she sighed. “And he’s got no idea how strong he is, how much he’s casting it out there, either. It’s like nobody ever worked with him to tone it down.”
    “Not everybody has somebody around to teach them,” Jones said softly. “You didn’t.”
    “Yeah, but I learned fast how to shut things down.” It was that or just suffer more for it. “What about the guy? The kid calls him his dad, but he’s not.”
    “How can you tell?”
    “I just can.” Some of the others in the unit could read that sort of thing. Read the mind and read the lies. Read the emotions and
feel
the lie. Vaughnne couldn’t. She had to rely on the more mundane abilities, and she’d brushed them up as much as could be expected. When people lied, there were just tiny little cues.
    Vaughnne had learned to look for them.
    The boy, as skilled as he was at it, all but
screamed
“liar” to her. He’d probably convince just about everybody else, including teachers, neighbors, and friends. Probably even a lot of law enforcement, if they had a reason to talk to him. It wasn’t even that stupid shit that people
thought
you might see when talking to a liar. He had no problem meeting her gaze, and there wasn’t any of the constant fidgeting some people thought you’d see when talking to somebody who was hiding the truth. And he
was
a fidgeter. She’d seen that much when they were moving. He had a problem being still, which was normal for a kid. But when she asked him anything remotely personal, he went oddly still.
    And he
lied
 . . . like a dog. With easy, polite smiles and practiced, natural responses, he lied. And he did it all while looking her right in the eye.
    Gus was harder, though. If she didn’t know better, she’d almost believe everything he told her. That bothered her, because she didn’t like it when she couldn’t see through somebody’s story. And it was just a story.
    They weren’t a dad and a son just trying to make it on their own after the mom decided she’d rather go out and party than help raise a kid.
    Not an unusual story. She’d heard it before, had seen it, but that wasn’t the case here.
    “I think you’re probably right, by the way,” Jones said, interrupting her mental train of thought and successfully derailing it. “About the man. I believe he does have a background we’d find interesting . . . and that’s after we get through the false layers that I’m just now uncovering. I can’t confirm until I get better images of him, but I don’t think I’m wrong. Also, I’m just about certain he’s not the dad.”
    Spying a familiar form striding down the sidewalk next door, Vaughnne edged back from the window. “I’m surprised you don’t have everything from their social security numbers to their shoe sizes already.”
    “I was hoping you’d fill me in on the shoe sizes. Because that’s so important to the case,” Jones replied, his voice neutral.
    So very neutral, it took her a second to realize what had just happened. “Oh, shit, Jones. I don’t believe it, but I think you might have just made a joke.”
    “I don’t joke. They removed my sense of humor when I took the job.” She heard him pause, speak to somebody, and then he was back on the phone. “I have to go. I’ll stay in touch, Mac.”
    The line went dead and she went in, cleared it from her list of recent calls before sliding the phone back into her pocket. Standing in the middle of the living room, she continued to stare out the window. She’d bought a wispy set of curtains for a reason. If the blinds weren’t drawn, she could see through them just fine, and since the lights were off, unless somebody was looking right at her, they wouldn’t be able to see her easily. Considering the white-hot brightness of the sun, it would be pretty damn hard to make her out, standing in her darkened living room.
    Gus and the kid were standing in front of the house. To anybody else,

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