Chapter Eight - Meeting Dad
Sorry for the delay – I’ve been really busy. Enjoy the chapter! DISCLAIMER
I own nothing from either the Angel
or 21 Jump Street
universe. Chapter Eight
Kate took the news particularly well, considering that Booker had set his investigation back more or less to square one. Still, he was surprised when she called him the next day and asked if they could meet for coffee.
Kate was sitting at a table on the outside patio when he arrived. She didn’t see him at first and he hesitated a moment before disturbing her. “Hey,” he said softly.
She looked up at him and smiled. “Dennis, hi.”
He stood beside the table for a minute. Finally, she gestured to the seat beside her. “You want to sit down?”
Kate stared at her iced coffee, idly swirling the straw around as Booker tapped the tabletop. “Dennis, why are we like this?” Kate asked a moment later. “Why the awkwardness?”
“What awkwardness?” Booker asked sarcastically.
She sighed angrily. “Fine.” She stood up. “Just call me when you fix the investigation you botched so magnificently.”
“Absolutely,” Booker growled at the table.
She hung around for another minute like she was waiting for him to say something else, then finally turned on her heel and stalked off. Booker did not look at her as she left, but once he was certain she was out of sight, he sagged back in his seat. Why had he gone and done that? What possessed him to be such a jerk when faced with even the slightest bit of fear?
Oh yes, he was afraid. He was afraid of how vulnerable he felt around Kate. He was afraid of letting her know how he felt. He was afraid that if he failed to find Angel’s secret, she would hate him. That was not something he wanted to face.
Angrily he stood up and, grabbing the keys to his bike, took off after her. Hopefully he could catch her before she left. If not, well then he would just have to show up at her apartment again. It had worked well enough the first time.
It did not come to that. Kate was sitting in the driver’s seat of her car when he came along beside it. She looked up and smirked. “I was right.”
He frowned. “What are you talking about?”
“I didn’t really think you’d let me storm off like that.”
Booker cursed himself when he felt his face get hot. “Yeah, well, I didn’t want to totally screw things up. I’ve done that enough.”
She sighed. “Dennis, you didn’t totally screw things up. The case maybe but only temporarily. I mean, you just have to go at it a different way. Angel has people who work for him. Try talking to one of them.”
Booker chuckled. “One of them already knows me. She doesn’t like me much.”
“Well try the other one. The British one.”
Nodding, Booker smiled slightly. “So maybe I didn’t screw it up.”
She gave him a look. “Not entirely.”
He laughed. “So I’m forgiving for being a jerk?”
She put the car in drive. “That’s going a little far.” But then she gave him a smile. “I’ll talk to you soon, okay?”
Stepping back from the car, he nodded. “Okay.”
As Kate drove away, Booker leaned tiredly against his motorcycle. The situation was not getting any easier. In fact, every day that went by that he let her down by making no progress on the case made him feel worse. The idea of her disappointment in him was too much to take.
He loathed himself for feeling so conflicted. Back in his Internal Affairs days, there were no times like these. He had no feelings either way about the people he investigated and exposed. It didn’t matter if he ruined a career or a reputation, even his own.
It wasn’t like he was stupid. He knew how much IAD was hated within the rest of the Metropolitan Police Department. As he began to get really good at his job, the hatred was targeted at him specifically. Avoid Dennis Booker at all costs, they said. Don’t let him dig up anything on you or your career will be over.
It never used to hurt knowing that others hated him. But when he alienated the Jump Street officers, he actually cared that he was the odd man out. He had watched Penhall and Hanson and Ioki and Hoffs work together like a single unit. The four of them were closer than siblings. He had always been on the outside. Then when he had sacrificed himself to clear Hanson’s name, there had been a foolish hope that it would win him a place in their circle. But of course, he hadn’t been around long enough for that to happen.
His apartment seemed like a depressing place, but he really had nowhere else to go. He parked his motorcycle in the parking garage as usual and headed up the elevator to the second floor of the building.
The sound of his name caught him off guard. He narrowed his eyes at the older man standing outside of his door. “Who wants to know?”
“I’ve come to talk to you about Kate.”
Booker sighed and frowned. “How do all of you people know where I live?”
“Oh I know a lot more than that,” the man said. “Dennis Booker, once a respected member of Internal Affairs for the Metropolitan Police Department. Internal Affairs turned into a short assignment at the famous Jump Street Chapel. Then you lost your badge for breaking nearly every regulation in the book in your bid to spring your old partner from jail. Your old partner who you actually put in jail if I’m not mistaken.”
Booker was disturbed by the amount of information this man had on him. “You’re a pretty good detective,” he said.
The man shrugged. “When you’re a retired police officer, people do you favors.”
Great, now he had the police following him? “And what’s all that information to you.”
“Just checking up on the man who’s dating my daughter.”
Booker approached him slowly. “You’re Kate’s father?” he asked.
Mr. Lockley nodded. “And she’s my little girl, so you had better treat her right.”
“What makes you think I wouldn’t?”
Lockley gave him a hard glare. “IAD. Dishonorable demotion avoided only by your own resignation. Now you’re working as a private investigator. Not the best record, Mr. Booker. Not someone I want to give my daughter a bad name.”
Temper flaring, Booker replied, “She came to me. I’m doing a job for her.”
“Oh I know,” Lockley said. “And when that job is over, you’ll be out of her life. Got it?”
“Are you threatening me?”
Shaking his head, Lockley replied, “No. Not threatening. Just sharing a little advice.”
Booker pushed past him and put his key in the lock. “I don’t need your advice.”
“I suggest you take it.”
Booker did not stick around to hear anything else Lockley had to say. He slammed the door in the man’s face and collapsed on his couch. He seemed to be doing that a lot lately.