“Whew it’s hot! It has to be the hottest summer on record!” Steve replies.

“Nope the summer when we worked on this case was the hottest on record.” Neal replies as he tosses the file at Steve.

“Oh yeah boy now that was a killer summer.”

“To say the least.” Neal replies.

“Neal have you ever wondered….”

“Uh oh.” Neal replies.

“Uh oh what?”

“Every time you ask me that you always come up with a weird question.” Neal replies.

“Oh no I don’t I ask you that question because I want to know what’s on your mind!”

“Oh! I’m sorry Steve what was the question?”

“Have you ever wondered about the phrase ’to say the least’?”

“Well.” Neal looks over at Steve. “I’m not sure what do you mean?”

“I mean when someone says to say the least what does that mean exactly?”

“It means to say as little as possible about something.” Neal replies.

“Well if that’s the case why say anything at all?”

“Well maybe you want to say something but you don’t know what to say so you just say the littlest possible.” Neal replies.

“You really said a mouthful. Neal?” Steve replies.

Neal doesn’t say a thing.


Neal still doesn’t say anything.

“NEAL!!!!” Steve says very loudly.

“What? Why are you yelling?”

“Because you didn’t answer me that’s why I’m yelling.” Steve replies.

“I didn’t have anything to say.”

“You could have just said to say the least.” Steve replies.

“Now you really said a mouthful!!” Neal replies as he laughs.

“To say the least!!”

“We should really talk about the next case….”

“Balderdash!!!” Steve says loudly.


“To say the least!!!” Steve replies as he laughs.



“Stop it!!”

“Okay.” Steve says.

“We’re going to talk about the vigilante case….”

“And that was a real killer summer!” Steve replies.

“To say the least!!” Neal replies.

“Okay folks this is how it started….” Steve replies as he shakes his head.







“Steve!” Neal yells at Steve as he pours himself a cup of coffee.

“What? I’m right here you don’t have to yell you know.” Steve replies as he walks over to his desk where Neal was standing.

“I know you wrote the time down for that training class I have to attend but I’ll be darn if I can find it on this calendar! What are all of these names?”

Steve points to the corner of the calendar where the date and time are written down. “It is right here and why don’t you get your own calendar?” Steve asks as Neal looks at Steve’s chicken scrawl.

“Because they only gave us one you know that and you lost the coin toss so you….” Neal says as he points at Steve. “….Have to keep it on your desk. So tell me about the names.”

Steve scratches his head. “Well its how I keep track of you know….appointments.”

“Appointments?” Neal replies.

“Yeah appointments.”

“Steve everyday is booked….solid.”

“Yeah I know….”

“And I count at least 15 names.” Neal points out.

“There are twenty actually so Neal what’s your point?”

“The point is Steve they are all women’s names.”

“So?” Steve replies as he shrugs.

“You write your dates down on our work calendar?” Neal asks.

“Duh! Of course I do I mean how else do I keep track of them? This is a highly sophisticated system I have here.” Steve replies as he gestures.

Neal crosses his arms over his chest. “How so?”

“I’ll explain it to you Neal but you have to keep up okay?”

“Okay.” Neal replies.

“Okay, all the girls names that start with the letter ‘M’ go under Monday and all the girls names that start with ‘T’ go under Tuesday and so forth and so on.”

“What about Saturday and Sunday?” Neal asks.

“Neal! The girls names that start with Sa go under Saturday and the names that start with Su go under Sunday of course!”

“Oh of course okay what happens if their names don’t start with any of these letters of the days of the week? What do you do then?” Neal asks.

“Simple I use their last names!” Steve replies happily as he rocks back and forth.

“Okay what if their last names don’t start with any letters of the days of the week, what then?”

“What?” Steve asks.

“I said if their last names don’t start with any letters of the days of the week, what then?” Neal asks again.

“I….count the letters in their names and put them under the appropriate date!” Steve says quickly.

“You just made that up didn’t you?”

“No, no of course not! I told you that this is a very sophisticated system I have here, every possible angle is covered!”

“Okay what if their names are longer than the dates?” Neal asks.

“What?” Steve asks.

Neal takes a deep breath. “I said what if their names are longer than the dates?”

“Longer than the dates? Neal that would be an awfully long name don’t you think, I mean some months have 31 days you know.”

“Yes I know but it isn’t unheard of you know, I once dated a girl whose first name and last name had just about every letter in the alphabet in it.”

“You just made that up.”

“Oh no I didn’t so what do you do in that case.” Neal asks.

“I….well that hasn’t happened yet.”

“Steve didn’t you just tell me that you have every possible angle covered?”

“Yes I did but I have never come across that before and I still think you made it up!”

“No I didn’t….” Neal replies.

“Yes you did….” Steve counters.


“Excuse me which one of you is Detective Schon?”

They both turn to see a delivery guy holding a lot of dry cleaned clothes on hangers which he was straining under the weight of. Neal grabs them and he lays them across his desk.

“I’m Detective Schon.” Neal replies after he takes care of his clothes.

“I have more down in the truck.” The delivery man replies.

“There’s more in the truck?!” Steve replies as he looks at the clothes on the desk.

Neal takes a deep breath. “Cool how much do I owe you?” Neal asks as he takes his wallet out of his pocket.


“$37.50?!” Steve exclaims loudly.

“Here you go man and here’s your tip.” Neal replies as he hands him a five dollar bill.

“Thanks man I’ll go and get the rest of them.”

“Steve help me take these to the locker room.” Neal replies.

“Neal $37.50 for dry cleaning? Good god man that looks like everything you own! Don’t you own a washing machine?”

“You know I do.” Neal grabs a few hangers to hand to Steve.

Steve puts his hand on his hip then he holds up one hand. “Wait a minute….”

Neal lays the clothes back down. “What?”

“Then why don’t you wash these instead of dry cleaning I mean thirty-seven bucks is a lot to spend to have clean clothes don’t you think?”

“For your information I have the washing machine to wash Joey’s clothes when he comes to visit and to wash sheets and towels etc and also for your information good clothes have to be taken care of properly and dry cleaning is the best way to do that, but you wouldn’t know anything about that. So here grab a few of these….” Neal grabs the hangers again and he lifts.

“Wait what does that mean?”

Neal puts the clothes down again. “It means look at you and look at me. I dress to impress….”

Steve laughs. “To impress who exactly?”

“To impress whom you mean.” Neal corrects him.

“Yah that is what I just said to impress who?” Steve replies as he waves his arms around. “The criminals?”

Neal rubs his forehead. “Lookit, you and I both know that we have heavy, daily contact with the good people of Oceanview and my clothes say that I am professional, trustworthy and I care about my personal appearance.”

“Do you know what I think your clothes say about you?” Steve asks.

“No what?”

“That you’re stuck up, egotistical and anal retentive.”

Neal’s eyes widen. “Oh no you just didn’t call me anal retentive what cha been doing Steve reading Reader’s Digest Word Power again?”

“Yes on both counts!”

“Well Stevie boy do you know what I think your clothes say about you?” Neal asks.

“No….what?” Steve asks suspiciously.

“That you’re sloppy, unkempt and unprofessional!”

“Ewwww you didn’t just call me unprofessional! I am very professional and the good people of Oceanview find me more approachable because I am cool and comfy and I can relate to them mono on mono if you know what I mean!”

“Steve you dress like a fifteen year old boy!!” Neal points out.

Steve looks down at himself. “So! At least I can turn my head to look at a beautiful girl and not have to worry about cutting my throat because my shirt collar is tripled starched!!! Neal do you even own a pair of jeans?”

“Yes Steve I do own a pair of jeans I wear them to work on the car or when I am puttering around the house you know that!”

“Then why haven’t I seen them?” Steve asks.

“I don’t know why you haven’t seen them Steve….” Neal replies exasperated.

“You know Neal I bet you don’t even have a pair of jeans and if you do they are probably so pressed and starched that when you walk they could catch on fire!!!”

“Wanna bet?” Neal replies.

Steve smiles. “Yeah, yeah I do actually I bet you couldn’t wear my clothes without it driving you crazy, for let’s say a week!”

“Ha! That will be a piece of cake and I bet you Steve that you couldn’t go without a woman for let’s say….a month!!”

“A piece of cake man a piece of cake!!! Okay you agree to wear my clothes for a solid month, right?” Steve asks.

“Right and you agree to not date, sleep with, flirt with or bat those long eyelashes at a woman for a whole month and that includes the women here, right?”

“Right! So what do we bet? Money? What?” Steve asks.

“Well I don’t know….” Neal taps his finger against his lips as he thinks then he spies the bulletin board and he snaps his fingers. “I got it!”


“At the end of next month Francine is quitting to get married.” Neal replies.


“So when she quits they are going to have an opening in her department so which ever one of us loses the bet will have to do her job for a month! We’re get the Captain in on it too.”

“Neal are you daft Francine is a meter maid!!!”

“Yes I know….”

“Neal does her uniform have pants?” Steve asks.

Neal shakes his head. “I don’t think so, so what’s a matter Steve are you….chicken? Wanna back out now buddy boy, old friend, and old pal of mine?”

“No I never said that and I am not a chicken!!! You better shave your legs Neal because pantyhose looks disgusting when you have hairy legs man!”

“So it’s a bet?” Neal asks.

“It’s a bet!!” Steve replies as they shake on it. “So when do we start?”

“Right now.” Neal replies.


“Yeah now I mean there is no better time than the present don’t you think? I mean you have some extra clothes in your locker right?”

“Well yeah but we can’t start today, tomorrow would be much better.” Steve replies.

“Why?” Neal asks suspiciously.

“Well….because tomorrow is the first!! Yeah tomorrow is the first that’s why.”

“Steve let me see that Calendar.”

Steve grabs it off of his desk and he holds it to his chest. “No I swear tomorrow is the first.”



“Let me see that calendar.” Neal replies.


Neal takes off around the desk after Steve who also takes off but Steve doesn’t get far because he trips over the trash can and he sprawls on the floor as the calendar slides out of his reach across the floor but that doesn’t stop him from trying to reach it but Neal is quicker as he puts his foot on Steve’s hand.

“Owwww hey watch the digits man that’s my gun hand!!!”

“Let’s see what we have here.” Neal replies as he picks up the calendar.


“What, oh sorry.” Neal says as he slowly moves his foot off of Steve’s hand.

“Today is Thursday so that means it’s….” Neal looks down at Steve who by now was sitting up rubbing his hand. “….Tiffany, isn’t she the….” Neal replies.

“Contortionist.” They both say at the same time.

Steve nods. “Yep so that is why we should, no we need to start tomorrow! If I have to go a month without any female companionship I can use this opportunity to go out with a bang, so to speak, and what better way to do that than with a contortionist? Now I ask you what would you do.” Steve asks seriously. 

“We can start tomorrow.” Neal replies as he helps Steve to his feet.

“Thank you.”

“Steve you are such a hedonist.”

“Ah Neal no I’m not I just like to have fun.”

Neal laughs. “Let’s go and see what’s keeping the delivery guy with the rest of my clothes.”

“Alright partner.”




“Knock, knock man.” Neal yells as he unlocks Steve’s front door with his key.

“Yeah man upstairs in the bathroom!”

Neal goes inside and he climbs the stairs and when he gets to the door of the bathroom he stops and he looks in. “Wow man I thought you were kidding about soaking in the bathtub when I called you.”

“Oh no man.”

Neal goes into the bathroom and he sticks his hand in the water. “Damn Steve you should be hard boiled by now!”

“As far as I am concerned it isn’t hot enough!!” Steve replies. “Can you get some aspirin out of the medicine cabinet, please?”


Neal gets Steve the aspirin and a glass of water. “Thanks.”

“So….Tiffany didn’t disappoint I take it.”

Steve nods as he swallows the aspirin and takes a sip of water then he hands the glass back to Neal. “Oh no Tiffany was great and when she found out I couldn’t see her next Thursday because of the bet she gave me a going away present….”   Steve replies as he rubs his neck.

“And that is why you’re soaking in a hot tub?”

“Oh yeah man Tiff might be a contortionist but I’m not!! Every muscle in my body hurts! I packed some of my clothes in a suitcase for you and I put out an outfit for you, it’s on the bed. Ow damn it!!”   

“You put out an outfit for me?”

“Yeah man it’s my favorite pair of jeans and my favorite t-shirt so don’t muck them up okay?”

“Got it.” Neal replies as he leaves the bathroom.

A few minutes later Neal returns wearing a pair of paint stained jeans, a faded red t-shirt that is now closer to a shade of pink and tennis shoes.

“Hey man look at you but you’re forgetting the suspenders.”

“I’m not wearing the suspenders Steve.” Neal replies as he crosses his arms over his chest.

“You have to its part of the outfit and you agreed to….if you don’t Joe Namath wont be the only one wearing pantyhose!!”

“Oh alright.” Neal replies as he leaves.

A few minutes’ later Neal returns wearing the suspenders.

“Perfect! Owwww!” Steve replies.

“Did the shirt have to be pink Steve?”

“Yes it is very comfy and soft, don’t you think so?” Steve asks.

“I suppose, you go ahead and soak a little longer I’ll make us some coffee and breakfast and I’ll call the Captain to let him know we running a little late.”

“Don’t forget to call dispatch and thanks Neal.”

“No problem.”




“Come on Neal push!!” Steve yells out of the window.

“I am pushing!!!”

Steve says as he steers the car. “Come on Neal just a little more, we’re almost there!!”

“Steve it’s a 102 out here and I’ll pushing your rust bucket car!!!! We’re supposed to be on patrol!!”

“I know Neal! Just a few more feet!! Give it one more good push!!”

Neal somehow finds the strength and he gives it one more good hard push and it rolls up in the driveway in front of the house then Steve steps on the brake then he puts it into park.

“Good job Neal!!!” Steve says happily as he joins Neal at the back of the car.

“Good job nothing! I’m burning up and I’m dying of thirst and maybe for once I am glad that you have crappy old blue jeans.” Neal replies as he wipes his hands on the jeans. “At least I don’t have to worry about ruining my good pants and when are you going to stop trying out these cars from Willie? This one is dead!! What is this weird car thing you have going on with Willie anyway, is this how you spend your time since you can’t have women?” 

“It isn’t a weird car thing! Willie has a car lot….”

“Steve this is the Willie we arrested right?”

“Yeah but that was awhile ago and Willie has gone straight he is a used car salesman now.”

“You know Steve to some people that is still considered a crime.” Neal replies.

“Oh balderdash!” Steve exclaims.

“Bal….balderdash? You’ve been reading the Reader’s Digest that’s in the bathroom again haven’t you?”     

“Yes word power is a very important thing Neal, it never hurts to try and improve yourself.”

“Like Legit Willie with his used car lot?” Neal asks.

“Exactly! I’m telling you Neal that Willie has reformed.”

“Where does Willie get his cars from?” Neal asks as he crosses his arms over his chest.

“From the usual sources you know from people who trade in their old cars and get new ones.”

“So what is the story with this one?” Neal replies as he gestures behind him.

“Willie told me that a grandmother who lived in a nursing home only drove this car to Church on Sundays.”

Neal scratches his head. “Steve a grandmother who lived in a nursing home and who only drove it to Church on Sundays?”

“That is what I just said.”

“Steve it’s a Camaro!!”

“So she was a very cool grandmother!! Willie is letting me drive some cars before I buy them….”

“Well please don’t buy this one!!!” Neal replies.

“Neal there is nothing wrong with this car, the paint job is good, the interior is smoking and it has a lot of get and go when we were chasing the bad guy….”

“Yeah it had a lot of get up and go until the transmission seized up and then we lost the bad guy….two miles back that way!!!!” Neal replies as he points.

“Ah Neal.”

“Come on Steve let’s call Ocean Dispatch and have them send a tow truck.”

 After Neal uses the radio in the Camaro and he calls dispatch for a tow truck he joins Steve underneath a shade tree in the front yard.

“You know we should tell the people in this house that we are going to be here awhile.” Neal replies.

“I would have thought by now they would be out here. Maybe they aren’t home.”

“Let’s go and ring the bell anyway and besides I could use some ice water.”

“And some air conditioning.” Steve replies.

They walk towards the house and they climb the stairs to the front porch and that is when they notice the abundance of newspapers and the mail that is spilling out from the mailbox.

“Wow maybe they are on vacation and they forgot to cancel the mail and newspapers.” Steve replies as he picks up a newspaper.

“Maybe.” Neal replies as he rings the bell and they listen as it echoes thru the empty house. “Steve do you smell that?”

Steve moves closer to the door. “Yeah it’s death.” Steve replies as he takes his gun from his holster.

Neal does the same as he tries the door knob and finds that it is locked. “Oceanview Police! If anyone is in there open the door!!”

After waiting a few minutes and no one comes to the door Neal looks at Steve. “On the count of three partner?”

“Yeah let’s do it.”

They take a few steps back from the front door. “1….2….3!!!” Neal exclaims.

On the count of three they both raise a foot and make contact with the door and with their combined weight the door gave way easily and once it was open the smell that was in the house rushed outside. Steve and Neal took up position on either side of the open door.

“Oh god what a stench! See anything?” Steve asks as he reaches for the tail of his t-shirt to cover his nose.

“Nada.” Neal replies as he coughs. “Oceanview Police!!! I see the living room and the entrance to the kitchen and a hallway, cover me Steve.”

“You got it.”

Steve falls in behind Neal as Neal slowly makes his way into the living room and by now their eyes were watering from the smell of death.

“Oceanview Police anybody home?” Neal asks as he looks around the living room and Steve is right behind him walking backwards with his gun drawn to make sure no one sneaks up on them. “Steve I think I found the source of the smell.”

“What is it?” Steve asks as he continues to hold his t-shirt up to his nose.

“I think at one time it was the homeowner.”

Steve turns to see what used to be a person slumped over the dining room table and what with temperatures in triple digits for the past few days it was hard to tell if it been a male or female.

“The top of their head is gone.” Neal replies as he holds a handkerchief over his nose as he looks closely at the body. “And we have a gun here on the table and what looks like gun cleaning items.”

“Oh don’t tell me they were cleaning their gun and it wasn’t empty?”

Neal shrugs. “Wouldn’t be the first time, okay I’ll go and call Sam.”

“I’ll check out the rest of the house.”




“Here Steve have a glass of ice water.” Neal replies.

“Wow thanks where did you get this?” Steve asks as he takes the glass.

“From the lady next door she even offered the use of her air-conditioned house to us.”

“She did well that was nice of her.” Steve takes a long drink of the ice water. “Oh man that really hit the spot. What did Sam say?”

“That the guy is dead.” Neal replies as he takes a drink from his own glass of water.

“You should be a comedian.”

Neal smiles. “Well as it looks now it was an accident but because of the level of decomposition it will take Sam awhile to find out otherwise.

According to the date on the newspaper and the mail he’s been dead a few days, did you find anything?”

“Yeah his wallet and his name is Brian McDermott….”

Neal takes the driver’s license and he looks at it. “Brian McDermott? That name sounds familiar. Did you find anything else?”

“Well the house was neat and tidy and his bedroom had a lot of girlie magazines in it. Hustler, Playboy he really liked his pornography. Did the good neighbor say anything?”

“Just that he was quiet, a loner, kept to himself. They mostly said hi and bye to each other but that was it. Are you finished in the house or do you need to go back in?” Neal asks.

“Nope I think I’m finished in there.”

“Great let’s secure the place I want to get back to the Precinct but first we have to give back the glasses.” Neal replies.




“Feel better?” Neal asks.

“I don’t care how many showers you take you can never get the smell of death off of you. What do you have there?” Steve asks as he dries his hair with a towel.

“Brian McDermott’s file.” Neal replies.

“Oh he’s been arrested before?”

“Oh yeah about six years ago now and guess who arrested him?” Neal asks.


“Bingo!” Neal replies.

“What was he arrested for?” Steve asks.

“He raped an 8 year old girl.”

“Jesus Neal if I live to be a 100 I will never understand the things that a human being can do to another, especially a little girl. Why hurt a little girl?”

Neal shakes his head. “I don’t know but this case bothered me I couldn’t sleep at night I kept seeing that little girl’s face, she was devastated, her whole family was devastated especially her father.”

“I don’t blame him. How long did he get?”

“Six years he was just recently paroled.” Neal replies.    

“Six years is that it?” Steve asks shocked.

Neal nods. “Yeah unfortunately. I talked to his paroled officer and he has been out about four months now. He made every meeting and he even had a job loading trucks down at the docks, that house was his mother’s; she left it to him when she died.”

“Did you tell his parole officer about the gun?” Steve asks.

“Yeah and he wasn’t happy because that was a violation of his parole and he was also surprised.”

“Surprised why?” Steve asks.

“Because Brian didn’t like guns, wouldn’t touch them.”

“Well something changed because he had one.” Steve replies.

Neal hands Steve the file. “Now it’s my turn in the shower and Willie called for you.”

“Willie really? I guess he wants to know about the car.” Steve replies. “Enjoy the shower I better go and call him.”




Neal watches Steve as he makes another lap around the track then when he finally comes to a stop Neal tosses him a towel.

“So this is where you’ve been keeping yourself.” Neal replies.

Steve wipes his face with the towel. “I have to do something to get rid of this pent up sexual energy and running is the only way to do it, actually it’s not the only way.” Steve laughs. “But it’s the one I can do in public!!”

Neal laughs. “Well while you were releasing some pent-up sexual energy Sam sent us his report on Brian McDermott.”

“Oh what did he find out?”

“That it wasn’t a handgun cleaning accident.” Neal replies as he hands Steve the file.

“Really? So if it wasn’t an accident and this says that it wasn’t a suicide so it had to be….”

“Murder.” They both say at the same time.

“And Ballistic agrees with that finding….” Neal replies.

“According to Ballistic that gun we found on the table wasn’t even dirty, it was loaded but it had never been fired.”

“The gun was Brian McDermott’s but the cleaning supplies were planted and according to the crime lab boys they had never been opened.

Whoever murdered him set it up to look like an accident and I also got a phone call from the next door neighbor who gave us the ice water.”

“Oh do tell what did she have to say?”

“Well at the time she didn’t think much of it but now she thought it might be helpful, she does remember seeing a guy come over to Brian’s house during the passed month or so. She doesn’t know who he is but she did write down his license plate number.”

Steve raises his eyebrows. “Thank god for nosey neighbors I always say.”

“The car came back registered to a Greg R. Stanhope and we have his work and home address.”

“Cool man which one do we try first?” Steve asks.

“Let’s swing by his house and if he isn’t there we’re go by his job…” Neal looks at his notes. “H&H Welding.”

“Alright man give me five minutes….”

“It just takes you five minutes Steve?” Neal asks as he laughs.

Steve tosses the towel back at him. “On second thought you better make it an hour!” Steve replies back over his shoulder as he walks away laughing.    




“Greg, Greg Stanhope?” Neal replies as he approaches the guy who’s welding.

The man stops welding and he raises his visor on his welding helmet. “What?”

“Turn it off.” Steve replies.

The man turns the welding torch off then he takes off his helmet.

“Are you Greg Stanhope?” Neal asks again.

“Maybe who’s asking?”

“Oceanview P.D. Homicide Detectives Perry and Schon that’s who.” Steve replies as they hold up their badges for him to see.

“Yeah I’m Greg Stanhope did you say homicide?”

“Yeah man we’re investigating the death of Brian McDermott.” Neal replies.

“You knew him right?” Steve asks as he gets his notepad ready.

“Ah no not really man.” Greg replies.

Steve and Neal look at one another. “Well we had a neighbor tells us that you were over there a lot. That isn’t true?” Neal asks.

“Oh no man that’s true I was over there but I was over there to measure the windows.”

“Measure the windows?” Steve asks.

“Yeah man he wanted burglar bars for his house I mean that is what we do, welding I mean.” Greg replies.

“Oh I see did he tell you why he wanted the bars?” Neal asks.

Greg shrugs. “Why does anyone want burglar bars man?”

Steve scratches his head. “Did he say anything about anybody being after him?”

“Or maybe he was afraid of somebody in the neighborhood?” Neal asks.

“No man all he said was that it had been his mom’s house and nowadays you can’t count on the cops to protect you.”

Neal and Steve look at him.

“Sorry man that is what he said. I mean I went over there and did my thing and yeah we did have a few beers together.” Greg replies.

“I suppose you didn’t know anything about Brian having been in prison?” Neal asks.

Greg shakes his head. “Look guys I wasn’t his best friend so I didn’t know a lot about him.”

“Hey Greg….”

They all turn to see another employee coming towards them but he stops suddenly when he sees Steve and Neal.

“Oh hey man I didn’t know that you were busy.”

“It’s cool these guys are cops.”

“Cops?” He replies.  

“Detective Perry….”

“And Schon Homicide….” They reply as they show their badges.

“What’s your name?” Steve asks as he holds his pencil over the notepad.

“Why?” He asks.

“Because you know our names and it’s only polite you know.” Steve replies.

“Yeah man didn’t your mother ever teach you any manners?” Neal asks.

“Ted….Ted Grimes.” Ted replies then he looks at Greg. “I….I just wanted to check on that order.”

“Another hour I’m almost finished but I got interrupted.” Gregg says as he looks at Steve and Neal.

“Ted do you know Brian McDermott?” Steve asks.

“Never heard of him.” Ted replies.

Neal hands Greg one of his cards. “Okay man we get the hint but if you think of anything else give us a call okay?”

“Sure man.”

“Later.” Steve replies as they walk off.

Greg and Ted watch as they walk off then when Steve and Neal get around the corner out of sight Greg rips the business card in half.

“They know man.” Ted replies.

“Cool it man they know absolutely nothing. Go on let’s get back to work.”




“Hey Neal where are you?” Steve yells from inside the house.

“Out in the garage.”

“I turned around and you were gone watcha doing out here?” Steve asks as he comes down the stairs into the garage.

“I remember when I was a kid that my Uncle hid his stash of girlie magazines out in the garage so my Aunt couldn’t find them; because if they were in the house and she found them she would have killed him outright.”

Steve scratches his head. “I already found his girlie magazines remember they were under his bed.”

“I know but I think a guy who raped an 8 year old girl at one time wouldn’t be satisfied with grown women that would just add fuel to the fire….bingo look what I found!”

Neal reaches up to the shelf to grab the box.

“Need a step ladder shorty?” Steve asks as he laughs.

“No smart ass I think I can reach it.” Neal replies as he stands on his tippy-toes to retrieve the box.

Neal holds the box as Steve removes the lid and they both whistle. “Oh man.” Neal replies.

“Polaroids of little girls and recent ones too, see the dates?” Steve replies as he holds up a picture for Neal to see in his gloved hands. “I wonder who these girls are.”

“More than likely girls from the neighborhood. Steve I will admit I don’t know much about child molesters and what motivates them but from the looks of this he was getting ready to re-offend.”

“I agree and look more film and the camera.” Steve replies as he holds it up.”

“Alright let’s close this house up and get this stuff back to the precinct.”

“Who would ever think in this quiet neighborhood…?” Steve replies.

Even as the words were leaving his mouth shots rang out from the up the street and then they hear yelling.

Neal holds the box as he takes his gun out of its holster as Steve opens the door to the garage. “Let’s go man!” Steve grabs his weapon as he runs out of the door and down the driveway and keeping close to the hedges that separate the two houses they run to Neal’s car just in time to see a car drive passed at a high rate of speed.

“They robbed me! They robbed me!!! Those guys in that car!!! Call the cops!!”

“We are the cops!!” Steve yells as he slides across the hood of Neal’s car and even before he has the door close Neal has started the car and is in motion.

“Ocean this is Victor 7, shots fired! I repeat shots fired. We are in pursuit of possible 211 suspects. Two white males driving a red Mustang, license plate
California, Ocean Victor Union-42 Boy. We are headed East on Gardener.” Steve replies as he puts the bubble light on the roof.

“Attention all units Victor 7 is in pursuit….”

“Can you catch em?” Steve asks.

“Of course I caught you didn’t I?” 

“Uh huh but that was a while ago!” Steve replies.

“Hang on.” Neal replies as he looks over at him.

Neal hit the gas and when he did so the passenger in the Mustang suddenly appeared hanging out of the passenger side window pointing a gun in their direction.

“Neal gun!!” Steve yells.

“Hang on!!” Neal yells as he begins to weave back and forth as the passenger fires at them.

“These guys are serious!” Steve replies as they duck and dodge bullets.

“Can you pop them one?” Neal asks as he still continues to weave back and forth. “Show me why you earned that high marksmen score.”

“I can certainly try.” Steve replies as he reaches for his gun.

“I’ll straighten out and then you can get them but watch your ass!!” Neal replies.

“Always. Hold it steady man.”

Steve stands up and he leans out of the window and even before the other guy can get a shot off Steve raises his gun and he levels it at the car and he lets loose with a barrage of bullets aimed at the tires and two of them found their mark in the rear tire. When the rear tire exploded it sent the Mustang fishtailing back and forth but it held the road and their next shot took out the bubble light next to Steve’s head.

“Damn! That was close!! That bubble light was new!” Neal exclaimed as he reached over and grabbed Steve and pulled him back down into the seat. “Good driver.”

“Thanks a lot!” Steve exclaims as he looks over at Neal. “Yeah he is but he’s running out of real estate….look.” Steve points. “He’s headed right to the rail yard.”

Two minutes later the Mustang rolled into the rail yard and they slid to a stop.

“Ah man their going to run and it’s a 102 out here! Ocean this is Victor 7 we are in foot pursuit of the two suspects at the rail yard!” Steve replies then he throws the mike down in the seat as he takes off after Neal.

The rail yard was a maze of empty rail cars parked everywhere and they made great cover when the bad guys decided to fire upon them.

Steve ducks behind a car as a bullet bounces off the rusty metal and zings passed his head. “Damn it that was close!” Steve replies as he shoots back.

“They would pick the worst place on earth.” Neal replies as he fires back at them.

“My ammo like my patience is running thin.” Steve replies as he ducks closer to Neal to avoid another bullet.

“Let’s shake the trees a little I’ll run around this way, cover me?”

“You got it.” Steve replies as he reloads his gun. “Let’s do it.”

Steve steps around the corner and he begins to fire in rapid succession as Neal runs pass the rail cars firing into them as he goes and that causes the two men to jump out of one on the other side.

“Stop Oceanview Police!” Neal yells as they run.

They chase them across the rail yard dodging rail cars hiding behind them every so often to exchange gunfire until finally the only place left to run is over the tracks themselves but somewhere along the way Neal lost Steve.

“NEEAALLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!” Steve yells.

“Steve! What in the hell happened?” Neal asks as he runs back to where Steve is.

“What does it look like? My foot is stuck!!!”

Neal puts his gun back in its holster as he looks at Steve’s foot that is stuck underneath the railroad tie.

“How in the hell did you manage to do that?” Neal asks.

“I don’t know I was running and then the next thing I knew my foot was stuck! Did they get away?”

By now Neal had gotten down on one knee to inspect Steve’s foot further. “What do you think?” Neal replies as he looks up at him. “Can’t you pull it out?”

“It won’t budge.” Steve replies.

“How about untying the shoe and pulling your foot out?”

“Neal my foot is too far under to reach the laces.”

“Does it hurt?” Neal asks.

“No not really….ow what are you doing?!”

“Trying to pull your foot out man you are really wedged under there.” Neal replies as he scratches his head.

“Well do something I can’t stay like this!! Go, go and get help from the railroad guys, maybe they can do something.”

“Alright don’t go anywhere.” Neal replies.

“Ha ha very funny find me some cold water while you’re at it!” Steve replies.

“Alright relax man it could be worse you know.”

“Neal it’s about 104 out here, there is no shade, I am hot and thirsty and since you were pulling on my foot it’s starting to hurt, we lost the bad guys….”

Neal points at Steve. “No you made us lose the bad guys.”

Steve waves his arms from side to side. “Okay I made us lose the bad guys and I have to go to the bathroom so tell me how it could be any worse than this?”

“There could be a train coming.” Neal points out.

“Ewwww don’t even say that!!! Why did you have to say that!!!” Steve replies as he freaks out slightly.

“Steve calm down man there isn’t a train coming this is an old track, I bet they don’t even use it anymore. I’ll go and get help….”

“Neal wait.”

Neal stops and he looks back over his shoulder. “What?”

“Do you feel that?” Steve asks as he looks over at him.

“What?” Neal replies as he walks back over to him.

“It’s like a vibration.”

“Maybe we’re having an earthquake.” Neal replies.

“No.” Steve bends over and he touches the metal rail of the track then he quickly looks up at Neal with his eyes wide. “Feel this.”

Neal bends over and he touches the rail.

“Train!” They both say.

“Get my foot out of here!!” Steve yells.

“It could be miles away.”

Then they hear the train whistle causing them both to turn their heads and look up the track.

“That isn’t miles away!! Get my foot out of here!!” Steve yells.

Neal wraps his hands around Steve’s ankle. “Unflex your toes!!”

“Unflex my toes? They are unflexed!!” Steve yells.

The train whistle blows again which causes Steve to look back over his shoulder and Neal to look up in its direction and this time the train comes into sight.

“Neal!!!! Do something!”

The whistle blows again as it comes closer.

Neal grabs a hold of Steve’s ankle and he pulls.

“OWWWWW!!!!” Steve replies as he beats Neal on his shoulder. “Neal do something!” Steve replies as he looks back over his shoulder at the approaching train and it blows its whistle again.

“I’m trying.” Neal looks up. “Steve do you trust me?”

“Yeah you know I do.”

“Then you’re trust me to do what’s right right?” Neal replies as he takes his pocket knife out of his pocket and he opens it.

Steve looks at the knife as the train whistle continues to blow. “Yeah man whatever you have to do, do it! Just make it quick!!”

“You might want to close your eyes.” Neal replies as he rolls up the pants leg to expose the ankle.

“How, how close is it?”

Neal glances up. “Don’t worry about it now it might you to scream. Ready?”

“Yeah, yeah do it man just do it……AHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!”




“You know guys this isn’t funny!!” Steve replies.

“What isn’t funny?” Neal asks.

“This.” Steve replies as he holds up a toy train that was on his desk. “Those bozo’s thinks it’s funny! Well it isn’t do you have any idea how close that train came to us?”

“Yes I do.”

“Not to mention the fact I got wounded in the line of duty from that sharp knife of yours!” Steve replies.

“You gave it to me for Christmas remember?” Neal points out.

“And thank god I did too!”

“I had to cut that shoe off fast, what did the doc say about your foot?”

“Oh it’s just a scratch and it’s bruised but otherwise its okay. How did it go with the store owner?” Steve asks.

“It didn’t.”

“It didn’t?” Steve repeats.

“No it didn’t.”

“He couldn’t identify them?” Steve asks.


“How can that be I mean he came running out of his store yelling that those two guys had just robbed him and he couldn’t identify them?”

“He says that they were wearing masks.” Neal replies.

“Masks? Oh come on no they weren’t! Somebody got to him.”

Neal throws up his hands. “I got that feeling but we can’t make him ID those guys.”

Steve takes a deep breath. “Yeah I know. Well at least we got that box out of Brian’s house and the lab has it now. And looking back over my notes with that interview with Greg it was certainly strange and not to mention the fact that, what’s his name, Ted seemed shocked to see us.”

“Yeah he did Steve what is that?”

“What’s what?”

“That?” Neal replies as he points to one of the drawers at Steve’s desk.

Steve looks over and he shoves whatever it is that Neal sees back down into the drawer. “Nothing. Now let’s talk about ways of finding those two that robbed that store….”

“No let’s not I want to see what’s in that drawer.” Neal replies as he gets up from his chair.

“Ah Neal come on!!”

“Come on Steve give!!”

“Oh alright but you have to promise not to laugh.” Steve replies.

“I promise.” Neal replies.

“Really truly?”

“Yes Steve really truly.”

“Okay.” Steve replies as he slowly opens the drawer and Neal takes out what was in the drawer.

“Steve needlepoint?” Neal says loud enough that it causes the other detectives in the room to laugh.

Steve looks around. “Yes needlepoint and would you laugh at Rosey Grier? Huh would ya!!! If he can do it then why can’t I!!!!” Steve yells loudly.

“Steve you did this?”

“Well yah I mean I have to do something with all my free time since I can’t date.”

“This is really good.” Neal replies.

“It’s going to say ‘Cops Need Luv Too’ when I get finished with it.”

“Steve I had no idea you were so talented.”

“I didn’t either.” Steve replies as he shrugs. “It’s very relaxing.”

“Steve are you wearing my shirt?”

Steve looks down. “Well yah I thought since all of your clothes were hanging in my closet that I would you know, wear a few of them.”

Neal takes a deep breath. “Just don’t get shot wearing it okay.”

“I will do my best Neal. Those are my pants right?”

“Yeah you know they are.”

“They just look different.” Steve replies.

“I washed them that’s why.”



They both turn at the sound of the Captain’s voice.

“Cap.” Steve replies.

“Hey Cap.”

“Needlepoint? My wife loves needlepoint. Steve the doctor cleared you to go back to work and that’s a good thing because dispatch got a call from the manager of the Sand Dune Motel...” The Captain replies.

“That dump is still around?” Steve asks.

“Unfortunately, he says that two of his guests….”

Steve and Neal both laugh at this.

“….are dead. Sam has already been dispatched and since this is your district you two get it.”

“Alright Cap we’re on our way.”

“Yep we’re rolling.”




“Hey Sam.” Neal replies.

“Sam so what cha got?” Steve asks as he follows Neal into the room.

“Well this is interesting.” Sam replies.

“What is that smell?” Steve asks as he looks around.

“Decomposition, stagnant water, and burnt flesh.” Sam replies.

“Oh that’s lovely.” Neal replies.

“So where are they?” Steve asks.

“In the bathroom boys.”

Sam takes them into the bathroom where one of them is lying prone in the bathtub and the other has his head shoved down into the toilet.

“The one in the bathtub was electrocuted see the radio.” Sam replies as he points.

“Oh yeah.” Steve replies as he takes notes.

“What about the one in the toilet?” Neal asks.

“Drowned pure and simple.” Sam replies.

“So….which one got it first Sam?” Neal asks.

“Well the way it looks like is that the one in the tub died first and then his buddy. They have been dead since yesterday.” Sam replies.

“Alright Sam I’ll leave it to you while Steve and I take a look around.”

“I’ll send you my report when it is all said and done.” Sam replies.

“Thanks Sam.”

Neal goes out to the other room where Steve is looking thru their clothes. “Neal does this look familiar to you?” Steve asks as he holds up a shirt.

“Yeah I think so why?”

“You know who those guys are right?” Steve asks.


“Those are the two guys who robbed that grocery store near Brian’s house. The ones we chased to the rail yard and the ones who almost got me splattered by that train!!”  

“Oh yeah they are and I bet somewhere around here are those guns they were using.” Neal replies.

“You know I would say it looks like this place has been ransacked but it’s hard to tell.” Steve says as he looks around.

“Alright so who goes out and talks to the manager?” Neal asks.

“I think it’s your turn.” Steve replies.

“No it isn’t it’s your turn kiddo.”

“Ah Neal that guy just gives me the hebbie jebbies, you know little hebbies and big jebbies. He keeps asking me over to his office for tea.”

Neal laughs. “Steve you said yourself that you have a lot of free time on your hands.”

“Shut up! Let’s toss for it!”

“Good idea!” Neal reaches into his pocket for a quarter. “Heads or tails?”


Neal tosses the coin into the air and then he catches it in his hand then Steve leans in to look at it after Neal opens up his hand.

“Sorry kiddo, its heads.” Neal replies.

“Ah shit! Okay see if you can find any of that money they took.” Steve replies.

“You got it.”

Steve turns around and he goes out to find the manager pacing back and forth outside.

“Detective Steve! Detective Steve!” He says as he rushes over to him.


“Oh my goodness I am so glad that it’s you! Oh my goodness is that a new shirt?”

“Yeah it is.”

“Oh my goodness your hair could do with a trim I know somebody….” He says as he reaches out to touch Steve’s hair but Steve just gives him
that look as he glances up from his notepad.

“I don’t suppose that you know the names of the two dead people in that room do you?”

“Not right off the top of my head but its back in the office, would you like some tea?”

Steve takes a deep breath. “Not right at the moment Jerome how long have they been here?”

“They were paid up for a week and today I came here to find out why they hadn’t checked out yet.”

“Okay, do you know if they had any visitors, a lot of traffic? Like maybe they were selling drugs or something like that?”

“Oh no no I don’t allow that here.” Jerome replies.

“No of course not. So none of your other ‘guests’ reported hearing anything or seeing anything?”

“No.” Jerome replies.

“Okay Jerome you know we have to talk to your other ‘guests’ so lets start down here shall we?”

“Oh yes Detective I would follow you….anywhere!”

Steve just rolls his eyes as he shakes his head.




“Morning you must be Detective Perry, I have messages for you and I’ve made coffee.”

Steve takes the cup of coffee from her. “Thank you ah….what did you say your name was again?”


“Alicia.” Steve replies as he smiles and nods. “Now I know I’ve been busy but I would remember a pretty girl like you….”

“Hey Steve.” Neal replies as he walks up behind Steve.

“Oh….hey yourself.”

“Hi Alicia how are you doing?” Neal asks.

“You know her?” Steve asks.

“Yes Steve I know her.” Neal says matter-of-factly. “She’s the new secretary for our department; you really should read those memos Steve.

Watcha got there Alicia?”

“Messages and paperwork. These are yours Detective Perry and these are yours Detective Schon. If you don’t mind me saying so you look very nice Detective Perry.” Alicia replies.

Steve smiles from ear to ear as he stands up straighter. “Thanks Alicia and you can call me Steve.” Then Steve remembers the bet.

“The only reason he looks nice is because he is wearing all of my clothes!!!” Neal points out.

“And Neal you’re wearing my clothes….”

“You two wear each other’s….clothes?” Alicia gestures.

“Well yeah sure doesn’t everybody?” Steve asks. “I better get to work see ya later Alicia.” 

“Yeah me too thanks Alicia.” Neal walks over to their desks and Neal pats Steve on the back before he sits down. “Alicia was pretty don’t you
think so Steve?”

“Hmmm I didn’t notice.” Steve replies as he shuffles papers around.

Neal laughs. “Right.”

“Well Jerome got back to me with the names of our two dead guys.” Steve replies.

“You can’t be surprised Steve since he would follow you anywhere.” Neal replies as he laughs.

Steve takes a deep breath. “Ha-ha very funny!!! Do you want to know who they are?”

“Yes I do sorry.”

“Jerry Foster and Kyle Whitaker.” Steve replies. “I’ll talk to Records to see if they have any info on them, watcha got there?”

“A message from Jackie he wants to see me.”

“You’ve known Jackie for quite awhile haven’t you Neal?”

“Yeah I was a rookie back then and Jackie was just a young, tough street punk and hype but after a few stints in jail he came out clean. He
always tells me that day I arrested him saved his life so from then on he has been a very reliable informant.”

“Sorta like me.” Steve replies as he smiles.

Neal smiles back. “Yeah sorta like you.” Neal glances at his watch. I better go I have to catch a cab.”




Neal stepped off of the curb and hailed the cab and then he watched as it made a u-turn and stopped at the curb and then he got in.

“Where to Mac?” The cabdriver asked.

“The docks.” Neal replies.

“You got it.” The cabdriver replies as he pulls out into traffic.

“What’s the word man?” Neal asks.

“The two guys that bought it in that Motel….”

“Yeah?” Neal replies.

“….were assassinated.”

“Do tell man.”

“Hey man you got a smoke I can bum off of you?” The cabdriver asks.

“Sure.” Neal takes a pack out of his shirt pocket and he hands it to the cabdriver. “Keep it man I have more.”

The cabdriver takes it and as he takes a cigarette out he sees the fifty dollar bill inside. “Thanks man.”

“No problem Jackie talk to me….”




“Detective do you know what you’re saying?” The Captain asks.

“Yes sir I do.” Neal replies.

“Jackie told you this?” Steve asks.

“Yeah and his info has always been right on, what did you find out about Foster and Whitaker?”

“Well….” Steve replies as he opens up the file. “They are from
L.A. and they have a long record and it goes all the way back to when they were juveniles. They have been the terrible twosome for some time now. A Detective Rhodes from the LAPD will contact their families.”

“What about the guns and the money they took from the store?” The Captain asks.

“The guns were still in the room but the money they stole was no where to be found.” Steve replies.

“That fits with what Jackie told me.” Neal replies.

“But he doesn’t know how many there are?” The Captain asks.

Neal shakes his head.

“And you’re sure that he used the word ‘assassinated’?” Steve asks. “Not ‘taken out’ or ‘offed’.”

“No he used the word ‘assassinated’.” Neal replies.

“Alright boys you know we can’t have this here, the Chief frowns greatly on vigilantly justice. Right here and now I am authorizing overtime for the both of you. Start with the Brian McDermott case, check out the relatives and go from there. Whatever plans you have for the rest of your life, cancel them, and concentrate on this, now get to it gentleman.”

“Yes sir.” They reply at the same time.




“Mrs. Marshall I’m sorry I really am….” Steve replies as he glances over at Neal. “I….understand completely but I have to ask….yes ma’m once again I’m sorry….okay thank you and good night.”

“She was pissed right?”

“Wouldn’t you be I mean your 8 year old daughter is raped by your neighbor, he‘s caught but he doesn’t get what he deserves, fast forward 6 years later and he gets out and moves back to the same neighborhood and bam! Somebody kills him and some dopey Detective, me….” Steve replies as he points to himself. “….Has to call the family of the victim, who is now 14 going on 15 and who has problems because of the rape has to ask her mother if there is anybody who would want to kill the rapist!!! Doesn’t that just sound….stupid!!!!”

“Where are they living now?” Neal asks.

Steve rubs his eyes. “
Michigan, after the trial they moved as faraway as they could get. Is there anymore coffee?”

“Yeah but it isn’t fresh.” Neal replies.

“I’ll make a fresh pot I need some.” Steve replies as he gets up from his desk just as the phone rings at Neal’s desk.

“Detective Schon….yeah sure we’re be there alright.” Neal hangs up the phone. “Save the coffee for later Steve we have a double shooting….”

Steve puts the pot back. “Our helper again?”

“Possible let’s roll.”




“Sam.” Neal replies.


“Well Neal look who we have here Ransom and his main Lady both shot dead in his Caddy.”

“That he bought from the money those young girls made lying on their backs….”

“….And lets not forget the hundreds he sold his poison to. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy as far as I am concerned.” Steve replies as he peers into the car.

“Miss Melanie his head recruiter bitch, Steve do you have any idea how many girls she brought into his stable?”

Steve shakes his head. “Has to be in the hundreds. I never thought I would live to see the day that old Ransom the Pimp got his. When I think of all the years we tried to put this scum away….”

“There is a god after all. So Sam what’s the word?” Neal asks.

“They both have been shot twice in the head, close range and it was quick they didn’t suffer much.” Sam replies.

“That’s a damn shame.” Steve replies.

“Yeah what a pity.” Neal replies.

“You know Neal in some ways I sorta like this vigilante guy.”

“Oh no you didn’t just say that out loud did you?” Neal asks.

“Well yeah I mean lookit we have been trying for years to get this bastard and his whore off of the streets and in one night he accomplished what we couldn’t. Don’t get all high and mighty on me Neal, you can’t tell me that you don’t agree?”

Neal takes a deep breath. “Alright I’m glad that we or the public don’t have to worry about this scumbag anymore but Steve you and I both know that having a vigilante running around the streets of Oceanview is not a good thing.”

“I know….” Steve replies.

“And we can’t be sure that the vigilante guy even did this, you know just as well as I do how many people wanted this guy dead….”

“Hey Detectives you might want to see this.” Robert from the crime lab replies. 

They follow Robert to the back of the car and they look to the back windshield and written in blood it says, “COMPLIMENTS OF T.N.W.”

“T.N.W. who or what is that?” Steve asks.

“Okay well I might have been wrong about this one, Robert get a few shots of that okay?”

“You got it.” Robert replies.

“You know I think the little prick is mocking us….” Steve replies.

Neal looks at him. “Didn’t you just say that you sorta liked him?”

“I was wrong….come on we have work to do.” Steve replies.




“This isn’t good.” Neal replies as he looks at the headline in the morning’s paper.

“IS THERE A VIGILANTI LOOSE IN OCEANVIEW?” Steve says as he reads it out loud. “Leave it to Wendy.” Steve replies as he looks over Neal’s shoulder.

“Morning guys.” Alicia says as she walks up to the desks.

Steve stands up a little straighter. “Oh morning Alicia how are you this fine morning?”

“I am fine….” Alicia replies.

“Yes you certainly are.” Steve says under his breath.

“What?” Neal and Alicia say at the same time.


“I made fresh coffee and I have some files for you.”

“Thank you Alicia we’re see you later.” Neal replies as he takes the files from her.

“Alright and you look very nice again today Detective Perry.” Alicia says as she walks away.

“Thank you.” Steve replies as he watches her walk away.

Neal looks over at Steve. “Steve….”

Steve ignores Neal concentrating on Alicia’s rear view instead.

“Steve!!!” Neal replies as he elbows him.


“Why are you wearing my clothes?” Neal asks.

“What do you expect me to wear? You have all of my clothes you know.” Steve points out.

“There are things called clothing stores where you can buy yourself some new clothes you know.”

“Neal why would I do that when I have a lot of perfectly, dry cleaned clothes hanging in my closet! I promise not to get shot in them, okay.”

“I’ll be glad when this month is over.” Neal replies.

“Yeah me too it’s hard to go without women I don’t know how monks do it.” Steve replies.

“Maybe you can look one up in the phone book and ask him….oh hello!”

“What?” Steve asks.

“Remember that box we took out of Brian’s house?”

“Yeah.” Steve replies.

“They dusted it for fingerprints and this is what they got back.” Neal replies as he hands Steve the file folder.

“Wow this is certainly interesting let’s have a squad car bring him in.”

“Good idea.” Neal replies.




“Hey Ted come on in and have a seat.” Neal replies.

“Do you want some coffee man?” Steve asks.

Ted sits down across the table from them as he looks back and forth between them.

“What’s wrong man you look scared.” Neal replies.

“Yeah man don’t be scared we won’t hurt you….boo!!!” Steve replies as Ted jumps.

“Cat got ya tongue man?” Neal asks.

“Yeah man we know you’re there we can hear you breathing.”

“What….what am I doing here?” Ted finally asks.

“He talks Neal!!!” Steve replies.

“Yeah I am so proud….alright Ted lets cut to the chase we have better things to do than play footsies with you all frigging day.”

“Now Neal come on be nice can’t you see that he’s scared.” Steve opens up his file folder. “According to this Teddy you had a traffic ticket last year that you didn’t pay so the court issued a warrant for your arrest. This is good for us because we have a few things we would like to discuss with you.”

“A traffic ticket?” Ted asks.

“Yeah man try and keep up.” Neal replies as he snaps his fingers at him. “Last year you were driving the H&H welding truck when you got pulled over for speeding and you never took care of the ticket so that is why you are here!!!”

“Among other reasons of course.” Steve replies.

“Other reasons?” Ted asks.

Neal leans over the table. “Yeah Teddy you have been a bad boy, a very bad boy.”

“I don’t know what you mean.”

“Sure you do Teddy old boy and this is a lot worse than a speeding ticket you didn’t pay.” Steve replies.


“It’s called murder.” Neal replies.

“MURDER!!!” Ted yells.

“Yeah man we found your fingerprints on a box in Brian McDermott’s house….”

“That was in the garage actually….” Steve replies.

“And Brian McDermott was murdered.”

Teddy shakes his head back and forth. “No, no man it wasn’t me!! I don’t know anything about any box!!!”

“But we found your fingerprints on that box man and that is very incriminating.” Steve replies.

“Okay man I’ll admit to taking the pictures and putting them in the box but….but I was never, ever in that guy’s house.”

“Ted.” Neal replies as he leans over the table.

“Yeah?” Ted replies.

“We never said anything about pictures.” Neal replies as he raises his eyebrows.


“So come on man give.” Steve replies.

“Okay, okay, it was my box and my camera and took the pictures but he made me do it!” Ted replies.

“He who Ted?” Neal asks.

Ted shakes his head back and forth. “No way Jose the guy is a serious nutcase….”

“We’re dealt with serious nutcases before Ted.” Neal replies.

“Yeah man after all this is
California.” Steve replies.

“….He’ll kill me!”

“You’re be in protective custody Ted.” Neal replies.

“No way man! I know how this works! I’ve seen cop shows on t.v. and how the guy in protective custody always gets killed!! No way Jose!!”

Steve looks at Neal as Neal takes a deep breath and scratches his head.

“Ted having your fingerprints in a house where a guy was murdered is not good.” Neal replies.

“No Ted not good at all man.” Steve replies.

“Another thing you need to realize Ted is that this isn’t t.v. and we aren’t t.v. cops and if you knew anything about who killed Brian McDermott and you don’t tell us that is called interfering with a police investigation.” Neal replies.

“And Ted even if you don’t tell us and you go about your merry ways this guy may think you told us about him anyway.” Steve points out.

“But….but I didn’t!” Ted replies.

“But how does he know that?” Steve replies.   

“And the answer is Ted he doesn’t know.” Neal replies.

“So he could kill you anyway….” Steve replies.

“You’re damned if you do….” Neal replies.

“And damned if you don’t….so come on Ted what do you say?” Steve replies. 

“And Ted if you help us we’ll help you.” Neal replies.

“How?” Ted asks.

“We’re make the speeding ticket go away.” Steve replies.    

“You can do that?” Ted asks.

“Oh yeah.” Steve replies.

“And the warrant.” Neal replies.

“You can do that?” Ted asks again.

“Yeah man no problem but first you give him to us.” Steve replies.

“You guys swear I’ll be okay?” Ted asks.

“Scout’s Honor man!” Steve replies as he holds up his hand.

Ted takes a deep breath. “Okay man I’ll tell you what you want to know….his name is….”




Neal kicks down the door then they run in with their guns drawn and then they realize that the place was empty.

“Damn it!” Neal replies as he takes a look around the living room combination kitchen.

“Neal take a look at this.” Steve yells from the bedroom.

Neal comes into the room and his mouth drops open as he looks at the numerous newspaper clippings that covered the wall.

“Look Neal here’s the newspaper article about Brian McDermott on the day that he was convicted and also on the day when he got parole.

Newspaper articles about Ransom the pimp and a little story about that grocery store that was robbed.” Steve points out.

“This must be the grandmother Ted told us about.” Neal says as he picks up a picture encased in a frame from the table.

“She looks like she is a nice lady.” Steve replies.

“Yeah man you know it don’t take much for somebody to snap.”

“If something like that had happened to my mother or grandmother I would snap too.” Steve replies.

“Yeah man me too. Let me call Robert and the crime scene guys to come and process this place, we’ll leave Tony here in case he comes back.”

“He wasn’t here and he wasn’t at work that leaves only one other place.” Steve replies.

“Always the dutiful grandson.”

“Let’s go partner.” Steve replies.




“This is an old folk’s home Neal….”

“Yeah man so we better wait out here for him to come out, his car is right over there.” Neal replies.


“Yeah Steve?”

“Have you ever though about getting old?” Steve asks as he looks at the building.

“Well yeah sure I think everybody does but now things are different with Joey, I think more about him then I do myself.”

“What worries you most about getting old?” Steve asks.

“I guess ending up in a place like this, what about you?”

“Oh I guess the usual….” Steve looks over at Neal. “….Being alone.”

“Steve you know someday we can get a house and live there together, we’re be those two old retired cops that live up the street.” Neal smiles.

“With a dog.” Steve says.

“With a dog.” Neal replies.

“You know this place doesn’t look too bad.” Steve replies.

“No not too bad at all, the rosebushes are a nice touch.”

“Hey look here he comes.” Steve replies as he points.

“Alright let’s follow him and see where he goes then we grab him there.” Neal replies.

“Good idea.”

They watched as he got into to the car and when he took off Neal followed him. They followed him across the city, keeping a respectful distance and he lead them right to H&H Welding. Neal followed him into the parking and he stopped behind him.

“Greg we want to talk to you.” Neal replies as he gets out of the car and that is when Greg ran. Steve runs around the building as Neal takes his gun from his holster as he follows after Greg in the warehouse.

“Greg this is Neal remember me?” Neal asks as he slowly moves pass the equipment looking all around him. “We know all about it Greg. We’ve been to your apartment and we saw the newspaper clippings…”

Neal continues to slowly move thru the warehouse being careful to look all around him. “Greg we need you to come out, hear those sirens? We don’t want you to get hurt. Greg we know about your grandmother….”

The next thing Neal heard was the sound of a welding torch being fired up and then Greg was right in front of him holding the welding torch out using it as a weapon and of course out of reflex and his many years as a cop Neal raised his gun and fired.

The heat and pain was intense and Neal felt like his right hand had been thrust into a blast furnace and the gun in his hand melted right before his eyes. At the same time the sleeve of his jacket caught fire and still Greg advanced on him.


Greg turns at the voice behind him to find Steve and he was holding a fire extinguisher which he used on Greg and the welding torch. Steve covered the welding torch with foam from the fire extinguisher and then Neal jumped on him and he took Greg to the ground.

“Let me go!!!” Greg yells. “My grandmother, you don’t understand!!”

“Yeah Greg we understand more than you will ever know.” Steve replies.

“Greg you’re under arrest for the murder of Brian McDermott….” Neal replies.

“He was a sick pervert!!!!” Greg yells.

Steve handcuffs him. “You have the right to remain silent….”




“Do you have any idea how much this gun was?” Neal asks as he looks down at his melted firearm.

“Do you have any idea how much my jacket cost that you were wearing when it caught on fire?” Steve asks. “Neal you have to go to the hospital.”

“Na man its okay it doesn’t….OWWW!!!” Neal replies as he grabs his arm.

“You were saying? Come on I’ll take you to the hospital.” Steve replies.

“What about Greg? We have a lot of work to do.”

Steve takes a deep breath. “Greg isn’t going anywhere and I can take care of it.”

“Yeah but….” Neal protests.

“Neal do you smell bacon frying?” Steve asks.


“It’s your arm, Neal you have to go to the hospital. Come on partner.” Steve replies.




“Neal you should be at home.” Steve replies.

“It’s alright.” Neal replies as he holds his bandaged hand and arm up.

“You look like the mummy’s cousin.”

“I’ll make a deal with you when all of the paperwork is done then I will go home.” Neal replies. “So tell me what I missed.”

“Well you missed Greg’s confession.” Steve replies.

Neal sits on the desk. “Tell me more.”

“This whole thing started two years ago with his grandmother, she was mugged but it wasn’t just a simple, mugging. The mugger hurt her and she ended up in that nursing home we followed him to.”

Neal nods his head. “And I suppose that Burglary and Robbery didn’t catch him right?”

“Nope and that made Greg more determined than ever, he decided to become a cop.”

“Really?” Neal replies surprised.

“Yeah really but he didn’t make it through the Academy and during that time he watched the neighborhood and his grandmother deteriorate and just guess where his grandmother lived.”

“Behind Brian McDermott’s house.”

“You got it.” Steve replies. “He couldn’t find the mugger that hurt his grandmother so he decided that he would get rid of the scum of Oceanview and he started with the child rapist who had just gotten out of prison. He planted the box with the incriminating pictures in the garage. He was in the grocery store that day it was robbed and from what he learned at the police academy he was able to track them down and he also admitted to killing Ransom and his lady. Now it is up to the D.A. Did the doc give you any pain medicine?”

“Yeah he did.” Neal replies.

“Then I suggest you go home and take it partner.” Steve replies.

“Alright I’ll call you later okay.”

“You got it partner now go home.” Steve urges.




“So Alicia how did you like the ride in my new car?” Steve asks.

“It’s wonderful Steve it’s a beautiful car.” Alicia replies as Steve slides closer to her.

“Not as beautiful as you Alicia do you think I can have a kiss?” Steve asks.

“Hmmm I don’t see why not.” Alicia replies as she puts her arms around Steve and Steve does the same thing and five minutes into the kiss there was a knock on the driver’s side window.

“Excuse me just one minute.” Steve replies before he turns his attention to the window.

Steve rolls down the window as Neal waves. “Hey Steve watcha doing? Another new car?” 

“What does it look like I’m doing man? Can’t you see I’m busy?”

Neal leans into the window. “Hey Alicia.”

“Hi Neal.” Alicia replies as she waves.

“To answer your question Steve it looks like to me that you’ve lost the bet!”

Steve sits up straighter in the seat. “Wrong Monsieur!” Steve exclaims.


“Yeah Monsieur and it is passed
midnight, well passed midnight. See the clock it says 12:30 and that makes it the first of the month! So no bucko I didn’t lose! So if you don’t mind shove off, it’s been a long month and I have a lot of catching up to do!” Steve rolls the window back up and once again he turns his attention back to Alicia.

“Now where were we baby?” Steve asks. 

Neal knocks on the window again.

“Excuse me again.” Steve replies to Alicia. “What….is it now!!!” Steve asks loudly of Neal.

“You didn’t answer my question.” Neal points out.

“What question?” Steve asks irritated.

“If this was a new car, did you get it from Willie?”

“Yeah as a matter of fact I did.” Steve replies.

“Well that certainly explains a lot.”

“What in the Holy shades of Hannah does that mean?” Steve asks.

“It means Steve that the clock in your car is wrong.” Neal replies.

Steve looks back at the clock then he looks at Neal. “No it isn’t.”

“Yes it is.” Neal replies.

“No it isn’t.”

“Steve it’s only
11:35 and that makes it the 30th….still. So you lost the bet.”

Steve gets out of the car then he grabs a hold of Neal’s wrist looking at his watch.

“Oh shit!!! So that means I have to….”

Neal smiles. “Oh yeah!!!”

“Hey wait one damn minute! You’ve lost the bet too!!!” Steve replies as he still holds onto Neal’s wrist.

“How so?” Neal asks.

“Those are my pants!!!” Steve replies as he points.

Neal looks down. “Yeah so….”

“You had them starched and pressed! Look at that crease man it is so sharp I could cut my finger!!!”

Neal shakes his head back and forth. “Oh no I didn’t!!!”

“Yes you did!!!! So we both lost the bet!!!!”

Neal looks down. “Oh alright I guess I did have them starched a little.”

“Uh huh so what do we do now?” Steve asks.

“We’re partners right, we do what we always do….take turns.”




“Hey what are you doing?” Neal yells.

“What does it look like I’m doing? I’m giving you a parking ticket.” Steve replies as he slips the ticket underneath the windshield wiper.

Neal quickly snatches it up. “You can’t give me a ticket!”

“I just did! This is a Fire Zone you can’t park here Neal!” Steve replies.

“I park here all the time Steve!”

“Not when it’s my day to do Meter Maid duty you don’t!!! You’re just lucky I didn’t call a tow truck!!”

“A….A tow truck?” Neal says loudly. 

“Yeah you know that big truck that backs up to cars, that are illegally parked, and they hook up to it and they tow it away!!! A tow truck!!!”

“I can’t believe that I, as your partner, you would give me a parking ticket.” Neal replies.

“Why not you gave me one.” Steve replies as he puts his hands on his hips.

“Oh right I did do that didn’t I? Nice skirt by the way….” Neal says as he laughs.

“This isn’t a skirt Neal.” Steve replies.

“Oh no it sure looks like one.”

“It’s a skort.” Steve explains.

“It’s a what?” Neal asks.

“A skort Neal!!!” Steve shakes his head as if Neal should know these things. “It’s a combination skirt and shorts, see in the back, it’s shorts.”
Steve says as he turns around.

“And in the front it’s a skirt.” Neal points out.

“No it’s just a flap it just sorta hangs there….”

“Hey isn’t that what your girlfriends say about you? It just sorta hangs there….” Neal laughs.

“Oh ha-ha very funny Neal! Actually it’s very comfortable.”

“You’re not serious?” Neal replies.

“Yeah I am and you know this whole Meter Maid thing isn’t that bad. I mean ever since the heat wave broke it’s been sorta nice to be outside with the wind in my hair, the blue of the skies and I’m glad that you showed up.”

“You are why?” Neal asks.

“Because I did lose the bet and you caught me so I thought I could take your turn for you tomorrow.”

“Really Steve well that is very nice of you.” Neal replies.

“Ah heck you know I wouldn’t mind taking the rest of the month.”

“The rest of the month Steve? Oh no I don’t know I mean I would feel bad what with you doing all of this you know.” Neal replies.

“Oh no really I don’t mind at all….”

Just then a car pulls up close to the curb and it stops and the girl in the passenger seat rolls down the window.

“Hi Steve!!” The girl replies.

Neal looks over at Steve.

“Oh hi girls, this is Neal.”

“Hi Neal!!” The girls say happily at the same time

“Hi girls.” Neal replies as he waves at them.

“Are we still on for dinner?” The girl in the driver’s seat asks.

“Oh sure I’ll be there at seven.” Steve replies.

“Bring your friend there he’s cute.” The girl replies as she twirls a strand of hair around her finger.

“Alright honey don’t be late.” The girl in the driver’s seat replies.

“I won’t, see you later.” Steve waves at them as they drive off.

“So you like the blue skies and the wind in your hair? Were they twins?” Neal asks.

“Yeah they were, Betty and Barbara.”

“Which one is which?” Neal asks.

“I’m not sure….yet.”

“You meet them out here?” Neal asks.

“Yeah they doubled park and I had to give them a ticket.”

“Oh nice car I wonder….” Neal replies.


“What?” Neal laughs. “Twin strippers? Steve you old devil you!!!”

“Yeah I would invite you along I might need some back-up but you know….”

“….Yeah Ruby she would kill me. So Steve what’s your secret?” Neal asks.

“It’s the skort man they loved the skort! And my knees aren’t bad either. Neal I know that you love Ruby and all but do you ever miss being single?”

“Do I ever miss being single?” Neal repeats.

“Yeah man do you ever miss being single?”

“I….not usually no but right now yeah….yeah I do. But you know I can live vicariously thru you my best friend.” Neal replies.

“Neal you know I don’t kiss and tell.” Steve replies as he heads for the Meter Maid cart.

“I know but I just thought you know you might tell me just a little like if they are identical twins or not.”   

“I think about it.” Steve replies as they both get in the cart. “Where are you going?”

“I just thought I would hang out with you for awhile.” Neal shrugs. “I can still look.”

“Right! Let’s go partner.”   




“Neal what in the holy shades of Hannah are you doing?”

“This ceiling fan stopped working and it’s hot in here. I’m going to fix it.” Neal replies.

“Wouldn’t it be better to open a window?” Steve replies.

“No there’s not a breeze out there to be had.” Neal replies as he climbs the step-ladder. “Hand me that screwdriver.”

Steve glances at the screwdriver. “Neal why don’t you call maintenance?”

“Steve you know as well as I do that you need an act of Congress and a work order before they can do anything and it maybe a year before they get here. It’s no biggie I can fix it so please hand me the screwdriver.”

“Neal I don’t think this is a good idea.”

“Why? Are you saying that I am not handy?” Neal replies.

Steve nods. “Yeah because you aren’t I mean it took you days to put together the baby’s crib.”

“Is it my fault they neglected to put the instruction book in the box?”

“Neal it took me an hour and a half.”

“Okay then you come up here and fix it.” Neal replies.

“Oh no no that is electrical and you don’t mess with anything that is electrical! Like my grandfather always told me ‘nao fure essa forquilha no toaster!’”

“What does that mean?” Neal asks.

“Don’t stick that fork in the toaster!!!”

“Steve this isn’t a toaster and I’m not you….”

“Thank god I mean that would be confusing don’t you think?” Steve asks.

“Steve hand me that screwdriver.”


“Steve please.”

“Oh alright here.” Steve replies as he hands Neal the screwdriver.

“Thank you. Don’t look so worried I know it is something very simple.” Neal replies as he removes the plate from the ceiling fan. “See look I told you this wire is loose.”


“All I have to do is tighten this and….”

When Neal touches the screwdriver to the wire there is a flash and a loud sound of electricity discharging and then the lights go out.

“Are you alright?” Steve asks.

“Yeah but I think my hair is really, really curly now. What just happen?”

“Well I think it would be safe to say that you did something to the electricity and now the whole precinct is dark.” Steve replies.

“The whole precinct?” Neal asks.

“Yeah the whole precinct.”

“Wow that was quite a jolt.” Neal replies.

“Well at least I have a flashlight I’m going to go and find maintenance.”

“Steve what about me? Don’t leave me on this stepladder! Steve!!! It’s dark in here!!! Steve!!!!! Oh well okay I guess this is Victor 7 over and out! Steve!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Man you know I don’t like the dark!!! STEVE!!!!”




©LAB and SRP & JRNY FANFICTION 2007 to 2008. All rights reserved. Steve Perry and Neal Schon’s likenesses appear only as characters. Any resemblance to any one living or dead is purely a coincidence. This fictional story is for entertainment purposes only and for the complete enjoyment of the author and the readers. I have no permission from Steve Perry or/and the members of Journey to use their likenesses or names and this story is purely fiction and written solely for the love of things and people back in the day.  No real rock stars were injured in the writing of these stories and I put them back when I am finish with them.











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