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Belle Simpson’s husband left her with barely a word of explanation. Determined to get him back, she enters the mysterious world of gang violence and grand larceny, following the trail to his heart. George McDougle, a private investigator, keeps her in his sights on the pretense of helping her, but is he really? A beautiful waitress, street thugs, and a gold bracelet all come together to spin this colorful story of love.
From Chapter 6:
George parked as far away from the South Side loading dock as possible while
still affording himself a view. Shutting off the car lights, he hoped no
one had noticed him. Grabbing binoculars from the seat beside him, he scanned
the area. Not a soul in sight!
Glittering lights reflected off the tranquil river, as the Pittsburgh city
skyline loomed, majestic and powerful on the other side of the Monongahela.
The scene filled him with a detached, lonely feeling. The stakeout could
go to all hours. Reaching under the seat, he pulled out a red thermos and
poured himself a steaming cup of coffee. He may as well be comfortable. A
notebook and camera rested on the car seat beside him. He scrunched down
to stay out of sight.
A difficult way to make a living, all night stakeouts and such, but he loved
it. He started out years ago helping an older guy when only 18 years old
himself, and now at 28 he'd put 10 long years into the business.
From the beginning the danger involved with this case had got his adrenaline
rushing. Belle added another tempting dimension to it, too.
George sighed. Was it the excitement of danger or the excitement of love,
messing with his mind? Either way, the situation couldn't be a good thing.
Even now, when he needed to be alert and watching the warehouse, his mind
wandered instead to her soft brown eyes and the halo of blond hair around
His client got a tip this warehouse was marked for a hit. He'd heard of a
host of other robberies in the last six months. Moving vans pulled up to
the loading docks late at night and hauled off merchandise, accomplished
with uncanny speed and precision. A sophisticated network, most likely.
They killed one man already. Dangerous business. For that reason, his employer
ordered extra caution. Because of that danger, George implored Belle to stay
away from the coffee shop, a known hangout for underworld types.
George reached under his jacket to check for the reassuring bulk of his gun.
A car door slammed, and George looked up in surprise. A block away, a shiny
black car with a man standing next to it had appeared. The fellow looked
familiar--Joey, the burly guy from the coffee shop.
The man stood, gazing at the warehouse while pulling up his coat collar in
the chilly wind. Finally, he got back into his car.
"Well, well, well," George murmured. "I expected to see you as a player in
this caper, not a spectator. So what are you up to anyway? Well, welcome
aboard, Joey! It's gonna be a long night."
Nothing happened all night; the stakeout was useless.
At dawn, as the sun rose casting its soft, warm glow, the sound of the other
car engine woke George. The black Ford pulled away in a cloud of gray exhaust.
The question remained. Why did Joey do surveillance here? Nothing made sense.
George switched on the car radio as he reached under the seat for his thermos.
The news crackled on the radio. Something about a warehouse robbery. The
other side of town, last night. The robbers got away.
Read a Sample Chapter of another Pittsburgh Story - "Tea and Chocolates"