Read SpareDick Online

Authors: Sarina Wilde

SpareDick (9 page)

Her throat tightened. “What about Kevin and you?”

He blew out his breath. “Jill, other than being friends,
there was no Kevin and me. I need you to believe that.”

“I think I know that. At least, I know there wasn’t. What
about now?”

Adam sighed. “I won’t lie. I want there to be, but I want
you in on that too.”

And there it was, out there in the open. Her belly clenched
with desire at his words and she realized that the idea, one that might have
once shocked her, no longer did. This was different than imagining a night of
sex, pure and simple. What Adam was talking about was a three-way relationship.
She took a deep breath and tucked a stray lock of hair behind her ear. “What
does Kevin want?”

“A chance to talk.” Adam stepped closer, put his hands on
her shoulders and slowly pulled her to him. “Please forgive me. Give us both a
chance.”

It was so tempting just to lean into him and let everything
else fade away, but the idea he seemed to be proposing was so outside her
normal frame of reference, uncertainty churned inside her. To have two men in
her life? Could she really deal with that?

“I need some time, Adam. Can you both give me that?”

He released her. He didn’t look happy, but he nodded.
“Whatever you need. I just don’t want anger to be the only common ground we
find.”

* * * * *

Kevin wandered into the living room and sat, clicking the
wall-mounted flat screen on and tuning in a baseball game. The season was
winding down. The playoffs would come soon. But tonight it just didn’t matter.
Kevin watched it mindlessly, his thoughts scattering all over the place from
his need to talk to Jill, wondering where Adam had gone and finally to the
haunting similarities between Heather Stevens’ room and the room he remembered
Jill had when she was that age. He hoped like hell they got something useful
from the photos.

When eleven o’clock came and went, Kevin got ready for bed,
stripping before he slid between the sheets. He’d always slept buck naked,
something that had made Jill blush when they first got married until she too
had figured out how much more comfortable it was. He tossed and turned, heard
Adam come in around midnight and tossed and turned some more. He wasn’t used to
sleeping in an empty bed without Jill next to him.

Around one, Kevin went in search of something to help him
sleep. He thought he’d seen something in the kitchen next to a value-size
ibuprofen bottle. From the light above the stove, he sorted through the
bottles, at last coming across an over-the-counter sleep aid. That would do.
He’d shaken out two tablets when a noise made him look over his shoulder.

Adam leaned against the doorjamb, his boxers hanging low on
his hips. Kevin set the bottle down, pills in hand, conscious he stood in the
middle of his partner’s kitchen without any clothes on. Also conscious this was
the same place Adam had first gotten on his knees and taken him in his mouth.

“I couldn’t sleep,” Kevin muttered, feeling as though he had
to say something.

“Neither could I.” Adam straightened and stalked toward him.
For an instant, Kevin had the nervous urge to run, somehow knowing his life was
about to change for good. Adam stopped before him, holding his gaze. “I can’t
do this anymore, Kevin.”

“Can’t do what?”

“Can’t keep hiding, pretending. I have to get it out on the
table, because if this,” he gestured between them, “and Jill is a nonstarter
for you. I need to know now.”

“Why, Adam?”

“Because I want more than one night with you and with her.”

Chapter Nine

 

Kevin wished he’d put on clothes before he’d set foot out of
the bedroom, but who the hell was he kidding? Even boxers wouldn’t have
disguised his body’s reaction to what Adam had said. And Adam knew it. His gaze
slid down, pausing for a moment on Kevin’s lengthening cock. He looked away.

“I’m sorry, Ramsey,” he muttered. “I don’t want this to come
out sounding all girly and it’s going to fly right in the face of how I made
everything seem.” He closed his eyes for an instant then met Kevin’s gaze.
“This has to be about more than sex. Oh fucking hell. Listen to this shit. I
want a relationship.”

Kevin set the sleeping pills on the counter and walked over
to his partner. “And I won’t have sex with you without Jill. I guess that
leaves us in a difficult position.”

Going on gut instinct, Kevin cupped Adam’s neck in his hand
and drew him in until their foreheads touched. Inhaling the warm scent from his
partner’s skin, Kevin slipped his other hand around his waist, pulling their
hips together. Holy hell, Adam was as turned-on as he was. They stood there,
their hips rubbing together and their foreheads touching. Kevin closed his eyes
and simply enjoyed the contact.

“I went by your house, Kevin. I talked to her.”

It didn’t make him angry this time. He realized Adam was
trying to figure out where he fit in this whole picture. “And how did that go?”

“She says she needs some time.” Adam’s voice was hoarse.

He wanted to kiss him. His fingers moved to Adam’s jaw,
feeling the stubble of his beard growth against the pads. “She’ll figure it
out, man. It was more than sex from the first time, Adam,” Kevin assured him.
“Give Jill the time she’s asked for. She’ll figure that out.”

Adam reached for him, searching for and finding his mouth,
kissing him with a heat and passion that made Kevin’s heart pound and his body
harden.

“Please,” Adam whispered against his mouth. “If this is all
you can give me then give me this.”

Kevin leaned into him, amazed to feel his partner’s lean
body trembling. “Let me sleep with you,” he growled. “Being alone is part of
what’s getting to me. We can at least sleep together.”

“And we’ll talk to Jill?”

Kevin nodded.

* * * * *

The alarm beeped in the darkness of their bedroom. Jill
waited for Kevin to turn it off as he did most mornings. Only after the beep
had grown steadily louder for about thirty seconds did reality hit. Kevin
wasn’t there. He was the one who normally awoke this early. Her shift would be
later.

She stumbled to the chest of drawers on his side of the room
and flicked the button to Off. This close to his dresser, his aftershave’s
faint aroma lingered. She drew a deep breath, almost surprised when it ended
with a sob.

Adam had been right. Kevin had acted out of love. So had
Adam, but was that love only for her husband? Was she simply a means to ensure
he could have Kevin? She’d seen how much he cared for her husband and during
her conversation with him last night, she could have sworn Adam experienced
something more than lust for her too. It had certainly felt as though that were
true when it had been just Adam loving her there on the couch in the hotel.
Just the two of them had been hot, sweet, tender. It had even felt that way
last night when he’d pulled her into his arms.

Or was it simply wishful thinking? Could she even trust her
sudden flare of feeling? It was mad, insane—just as it had been when she and
Kevin first fell in love.

As she stood, her hands braced on the furniture, she knew
with a certainty Kevin wasn’t the only one she needed to talk to. All three of
them needed to talk, needed to face the fact that something major had happened
Saturday night. It had been beautiful. It had been about so much more than
fucking. They had to figure out what this relationship would look like, how it
would work.

She should call him, tell him to bring Kevin and meet her
somewhere after her shift tonight. Her shoulders slumped. She didn’t know his
cell number and she definitely couldn’t call the station. Her glance strayed to
her laptop. Email? She could leave something there then simply call his
voicemail at the precinct and clue him into checking it. She wanted her first
conversation with Kevin to be face-to-face.

Jill grabbed her robe and hurried downstairs to make coffee.
She would do it. He’d revealed his feelings to her. She could at least return
the favor. It took only a few minutes before she was seated with her laptop,
composing her mail.

Dear Adam,

I don’t know where to begin besides saying again that I’m
sorry. I’ve thought a lot about what you said and I realize I overreacted. I
know Kevin never meant to hurt me. I have twelve years that prove how much he
cares. I can’t throw those years away because of one night. But I also can’t
forget the amazing things that did happen.

I know it was supposed to be all about sex, about fun,
but it was obvious a lot more happened. A connection flared among the three of
us. I saw the way Kevin opened himself to you, the way he trusted you. I felt
the same.

I don’t want to lose that. So, what I guess I’m asking is
can we start over, figure out a way to be a trio in a society of couples?
Message me back with a place and time I can meet you both—please.

Jill also gave him her cell phone number. Her finger shook
slightly as she pressed Send.

* * * * *

The photos were waiting for them when they arrived at the
station the next morning. While Adam laid them out side by side, Kevin stood
behind him. Adam forced himself not to glance over his shoulder at his
partner—the man in whose arms he’d spent the night. They’d kissed and held each
other, the friction of their bodies enough that despite the best intentions,
they’d come just from the touching.

He had gotten Kevin to promise he would make an attempt to
talk to Jill this evening. He just prayed it would turn out all right.

Kevin reached over his shoulder, pointing to one of several
pictures showing a man with curly blond hair and dark eyes. “Who’s this guy?
Heather seems to have an unusual number of pictures of him.”

“Grab the yearbook. The shirt and tie are a good clue he’s
faculty.”

Kevin pivoted to his own desk and flipped through the book.
“Got him.”

“Who is it? I’ll crosscheck with the faculty we’ve already
talked to.”

“Grady Shelby…”

“Head of the English department now.” Adam glanced at his
notes. “We talked to him about Addy when we visited the school. Maybe we need
to visit him at home.”

Kevin grunted.

“What are you doing, Ramsey?”

“Checking the library to see if they have copies of the high
school yearbooks going back to the first girl.” Kevin grinned. “Looks as if
we’re in luck. Got your library card with you?”

Adam gathered the photos. “Let’s go. I have a bad vibe about
where this case is headed.”

Kevin’s brows rose. “He kept Annie five years, Heather ten.
He’s only had Addy a week if he is our guy and it seems obvious from the other
cases he’s keeping them alive.”

Adam rubbed his neck. “He buried the first girl in an area
well away from where she was taken, making a decent attempt to hide the body.
Heather, however, he dumped near to where he took Addy—almost as if he wanted
us to link everything together. Maybe he’s reaching the point where he can’t
control whatever’s driving him.”

Kevin drummed his fingers on the desk. “Let’s check it out,
see if those older yearbooks have anything to link him to Annie. If so, let’s
stop by and pay him a visit.”

They sat next to each other, flipping through the annuals
for the years Annie attended high school. Shelby wasn’t a faculty member her
freshman and sophomore years. Adam had shoved those books aside when he heard
Kevin murmur, “Pay dirt.”

Adam leaned over, scanning Grady Shelby’s faculty headshot.
He looked as if he were fresh out of college, with golden-boy good looks
guaranteed to make teenage hearts do backflips.

“Looks angelic,” Kevin growled.

“He still does,” Adam added. “Flip back to the activities
section.”

“Why?”

“I want to see if he was involved in anything Annie might
have been.” As Kevin turned the pages, Adam inhaled his fresh, clean fragrance.
“There. Stop.”

Kevin’s lean finger tapped the photos. “Journalism advisor.
Annie was a staff member.”

“Christ,” Adam blurted in angry frustration. “How has this
guy gotten away with this?”

Kevin leaned back in his chair. “Other than the fact he
would have been well-known to each of our girls, we don’t have anything to
directly link them to their disappearance. Shelby lives here in town. The odds
he’d be able to keep women hidden in his home for months, let alone years, are
miniscule.”

“Maybe he owns some property elsewhere. Maybe it’s similar
to that case with the kid in New York who was held in an underground bunker.”

Kevin shook his head. “She was only held for sixteen days.
If Shelby’s our man, he’s holding them for
years
. I don’t think the
bunker’s a viable route. Besides, Shelby’s been questioned before. His home’s
been searched… But other property is a possibility.”

They headed to the Register of Deeds Office. Right when Adam
decided they were searching in vain, he came across a deed transfer dated a
year earlier.

“Kev, I think I’ve got it. Grady Shelby’s name is on a deed
for a twenty-five acre tract in the northern part of the county.”

Kevin approached and looked at it too. “Previous owners are
Marion G. and Edith L. Shelby. Hmm. Parents?”

“Maybe. And if so, it might have given him a perfect place
to conceal someone.”

“Where his parents’ lived?” Kevin’s tone was disbelieving.

“Maybe they didn’t live there. Let’s see what property
improvements are listed.” Adam ran his finger over the deed. “Here we go.
There’s a house, barn and an equipment shed.”

“If he kept his victims out there, he’d have to have power
to run a well, if nothing else.”

Adam glanced sideways at him. “Feel like taking a trip out
to the county? Unofficial, of course, since we’ll be out of our jurisdiction once
we hit the city limits. If anything looks suspicious, we can involve the
necessary people. Besides, looks to me as though this might fall within my old
department’s jurisdiction. If it looks as though we’ve got anything, I can call
my former partner to meet us.”

“Sure. You drive, since you know the area better than me.
I’ll get on the laptop and see if I can pull utility records for this place.”

The day was warm, so they tossed their jackets in the
backseat before getting in their vehicle. Right after he put the car in gear,
Adam had to get something off his chest. It had been bothering him since last
night. “When you talk to Jill, I don’t want you to worry about me or what’s
gone on with us.”

Kevin stared at him. “That’s a part of it, Hell. You’re a part
of it.”

Adam shook his head. “No. You and she have to come first.”

“You’re my partner. I want you to be more. I saw how into
you she got. I know we said just the one time, but as you said—I want a
relationship too. It might not be the norm, but I think we could make a
threesome work if she’ll give us a chance.”

Adam wasn’t so sure. Or maybe he was too afraid to hope.
That would make anyone who’d known him laugh. He was a man with a reputation
for going after what he wanted, a man better known as an alpha in any
relationship he’d had—and it killed him to stay on the sidelines right now.

Adam nodded. “Let me know what I can do.”

“I’ll know more after I talk to her tonight. Drive. I’ll
start checking the power company.”

 

Kevin forced his mind back on their case even though it was
difficult. He’d put it into words. He wanted Jill and Adam and somehow he would
convince Jilly.

While Adam drove north, Kevin worked the computer. As what
he found registered, he gave a low whistle. “The billing address is different than
the property address, Hell. One guess who the bill’s sent to.”

“Grady Shelby.”

“You got it. It’s been that way for more than fifteen years.
Seems to me his parents must have moved somewhere else. Let me see if I can
verify that.” Kevin returned to the computer, looking for addresses for Marion
and Edith Shelby. It didn’t take long. “Bingo. They moved into an apartment
complex sixteen years ago then into assisted living facilities ten years ago.
Marion’s listed as deceased as of three years ago and his wife a year later.
I’m guessing the deed transfer occurred after probate, making the property
officially Shelby’s, when in actual fact, he’s had sole access to it for at
least sixteen years.”

They were stopped at a traffic light. Adam looked over at
him and their glances met and held. “You want me to call my buddy or should we
go on out there? We could claim exigent circumstances if someone questions a
lack of warrant. After all, if what we suspect is true, Addy Brown is there and
still alive.”

“What’s your gut feeling?”

“Given the deliberate carelessness in disposing of Heather
Stevens’ body, I think Shelby’s cracking and time may be a luxury we don’t
have.”

Kevin nodded. “My feeling too. Let’s keep your buddy out of
it for now, but I am going to notify Sarge about what we suspect and where
we’re going. I’m also going to suggest he send a patrol car to Shelby’s home in
town with a search warrant.”

“Our evidence is sketchy right now.”

“I think that will change once we get results back from the
samples taken from Heather’s body. I’m going to ask for a DNA sample from him
too.”

Kevin called in and relayed the information to their
sergeant. After explaining what kept bringing them back to the veteran teacher
as a suspect in all three cases, the sergeant agreed.

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