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   Chapter 3 NO.3

The Truth Behind It All By madairifa Characters: 10703

Updated: 2018-01-12 11:59


April 7, "So? What did he say?" Adam asked once they exited the facility. They walked side by side towards the American car they had rented the same day.

"The usual. He only knows Velez from a project ten years ago, he's had no further contact with him."

"Did you show him the photo where he is having lunch with Velez?"

"Of course I did. He kept denying the whole thing. Let me tell you, I know we just got here but I am already tired of Americans, they are nothing but liars." Brian walked towards the right side of the car then bangs at the window. "Stupid American cars, why is the passenger seat on the driver's side?" he complained.

"Give me the keys. I'll drive." They both got in the car and Adam started it. "Where are we going now?"

Brian pulls out a folded piece of paper from his pocket and reads through it, "To a pub called Jefferson's, at. . . "

"Sunrise Blvd and Cherry Street. I know where it is, " Adam interrupted.

"You do?"

"He is our connection. Jefferson was a detective in the police department at London twenty years ago. Father born in Manchester, mother was born here, in Arizona. He spent most of his life in Manchester with his father. After working for the force, he decided to come see his mother but his mother had died month's earlier. As a result, he inherited a scrapbooking business which he later changed into a pub, now called Jefferson's."

"So, you know him?"

"No, never seen him in my life. He currently has two rooms that he rents out. We will be staying there; he will provide us with everyday necessities and equipment for the case." Adam pulled over in front of a building with a wooden sign in the front written in Celtic font, Jefferson's.

"How do you know all this?"

"It was in the packet James gave us this morning. Didn't you read it?" Adam stepped out of the car.

"I did, and there was nothing about Jefferson's past." Brian hurried next to him as Adam opened the door.

"Oh that. I researched it on my own."

When they entered, the pub was empty. Round tables were scattered around with four chairs around them. The bar was at the front; behind it, were all the alcoholic beverages it offered. A TV was at the corner turned to a basketball game. A man in his fifties was staring at the screen laughing at whatever the commentators were saying. Adam cleared his throat grabbing the man's attention.

"Oh, hey guys!" he stood, "I was expecting you earlier." He shakes Adam's hand then Brian's. "I am Jorge Jefferson, nice to meet you." Adam could hear the American accent taking over the British.

He was a big man, maybe two hundred pounds. He wore Hawaiian shirts. He was balding so he shaved his head instead. He had a pleasant smile and a strong shake. He had a band on his left hand and for the look of it, he had about twenty years of marriage. He had a grandchild of about six years old, for the macaroni necklace he had around his neck, it was pink, so Adam decided it was a girl.

Jefferson made his way to the back. "I closed the place early today just in case you wanted to settle in today. You are going to have to share a bathroom, sorry about that."

As they followed Jefferson, Adam noticed family portraits along the walls. His wedding, his children, his parents, everyone was on there. He came to a halt as he saw someone familiar. It was an old photo, the women had big hair and some heavy make-up. One of those women held a young girl's hand, the girl had a white dress, and she was smiling. He recognized those eyes and that smile.

"Jorge?" A woman's voice interrupted his thoughts. He turns and sees the girl, who was then a grown woman. "Oh, hi. I see you found Arizona's famous bar." Ana Marie walked towards him. Coincidence? He doubted it was.

"Ana!" Jefferson said happily as he came in from the back door. "Mr. Hayes, this is my favorite niece, Ana Marie."

"Yeah. We just met, " Ana Marie smiled. Adam didn't reply. Ana Marie Cain was not in Jefferson's history. "Well, here you go." She hands Jefferson a blue lunchbox. "My mother's enchiladas, she said not to eat too much of it."

Jefferson chuckled as he grabbed it. "Sure, thanks honey." He hugged her and she started towards the exit.

She came to a stop and turned to look at him. "Nice seeing you again, Adam, " she said and exited the pub.

"She's your niece?" Adam asked after a moment of deep concentration, nothing but the photo gave anything of that away.

"Actually, that is one of the reasons I was waiting for you both." That caught Adam's attention. They followed him towards the back, into one of the rooms. Jefferson sat on a chair positioned on the corner of the room.

"Well?" Brian urged as Jefferson took out a handkerchief and wipes his forehead which was perspiring excessively, Adam held his breath, whatever he had to say was going to be big.

"Ana Marie is Velez's daughter."

"Velez has no children, " Brian retorted which made Jefferson sweat even more. "He does. He met a woman named. . . "

"Mary Anne Cain."

"You knew this Adam?" Brian asked in disbelief.

Adam stood and started inspecting the room. "She was mentioned briefly in his biography. She was a stewardess in California, that is where they met, having a short lived romance."

"The romance lasted three years, on and off. Ana Marie was

born the last year and that is when Mary Anne decided to break it all off with Velez, for the good of Ana Marie."

Adam noticed the small stove, similar to the one in his flat back in London. He turned a knob testing if it worked. "Does she know her father?"

"She didn't meet him until a few years ago. Velez came to Arizona for her." He wiped his head again, and accompanied it with a sigh.

Adam went towards the bed and sat on it bouncing two times, the bed wasn't so bad. "Tell us what you are so worried about?"

"I just don't want her involved in all this. She has no idea about her father's. . . you know, business."

"Aright, but with one condition. . ." Brian turned to look at Adam in disbelief, he also knew he was lying. "You have to tell us what she is to you."

Jefferson smiled for the first time. "Her mother and I know each other ever since I can remember, I know Ana Marie since she was little, she's like a child to me."

Adam nodded satisfied with the reply. Ana Marie was a Velez; he had to become closer to her, because something told him she wasn't as oblivious as Jefferson tried to make her seem.

* * *

July 23, Adam takes a deep breath and leans back. He is the first on the private jet, as usual. He stares out the window and taps his fingers on the arm rest. He reads through the case.

"Jose Antonio Velez: Born in 1963. He was born in Caracas, Venezuela. Son of popular entrepreneurs. In 1976, they moved to Phoenix, Arizona where his parents opened numerous restaurants. By 1983, Jose left his home, arriving at London, Great Britain where he pursued his plans of becoming a Scientist. In 1989, Velez developed a dangerous drug that if introduced in any way to the body, the body suffers temporary paralysis until it reaches the brain, suffering an altogether shut down of the body functions. The drug, now known as Paragalis, was found in minimum amount in purified water at the outskirts of London, causing up to fifty deaths. Now believed that he has fled to his hometown in Arizona, United States."

Adam throws the packet to the ground, someone needs to update this.

"Are you that angry?" Brian bends and picks the packet and hands it back to him.

He was wearing a white button up shirt; he never wears white, Adam notices. His shoes were impeccably clean, unlike him, and his hair was nicely combed back. He sees his left hand, ring still there, so having another woman was in question. Was Brian having a mistress? And was she going to travel with them? For the look of Brian's fa?ade, she was a serious mistress. "How are you doing Brian?"

Brian sits at the seat across him. "I'm fine, why do you ask?"

"Just curious, you look great."

Brian smiles and adjusts in his seat. "Thanks."

Ah, a sign of confidence. Someone fancies him and he likes it. He has no lover, he was just getting his ritual ego boost with the flight attendant of this plane. Adam should have known this.

"Pathetic, " he thinks out loud.

"Pardon me?"

"How's your wife Brian?"

Brian adjusts himself uncomfortably, Adam smelled guilt. "She is fine. You know, all the same."

"She is a good woman. You are lucky to have her, or that she even preferred you." Adam squints a little at his own words, he was regretting them the moment they were coming out of his mouth.

"Wow, " Brian says in surprise. "You are that bad?"

Adam doesn't reply, Brian could read him like an open book, no matter how hard Adam tried to close that book. He looks out the window, James is barely getting out of his car, and as usual he is late.

"Listen, I am sorry that you are going back, but you know me, I am not good with. . . "

"Americans?" Adam offers.

"Patience. But if you don't think you are capable of separating what happened five years ago to what is going to happen now, then you better get off the plane now."

"I am quite capable, thank you, " Adam responds without looking at him. James is talking on his phone, something came up. He waves his hand in the air and rubs his forehead. He takes two steps to the right, then to the left. He was clearly frustrated.

"Are you sure? Because—"

"I am quite capable, thank you."

"Really?"

Adam was just about tired of his smothering, and he could see that Brian noticed it.

"Good morning lads, " James says as he pushes his baggage above him. "Arizona, here we come."

Adam waits for James to say anything that had to do with the call, but he just sits down and starts rubbing his hands together in deep thought. Adam gives him time.

"I have something to tell you." Both Adam and Brian listen attentively. "Our 'host', was sent to the hospital last night, he got into this car accident. Anyway, we will be staying at Jefferson's pub. He will make room for a third."

At the sound of this, Adam felt sick. He leans forward and starts taking deep breaths, Brian looks at him in concern.

"Now, Adam, I now it will be hard for you, and if you prefer, you can stay at a hotel—"

"No, " interrupts Adam. "I can handle it."

"Alright, but let me warn you, Ana— she will be there often."

"Don't worry chief, I won't let myself be seen, " he says and closes his eyes as he feels the plane lift off.

"Are you sure?" Brian says.

Adam doesn't open his eyes. "Yes, I won't put this case at risk again."

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