Crimes for Profit - A book by Tom Raley(3)
Author:Tom Raley

    Cheryl was allowed intothe old house by a young man dressed in a spotless white housecoat.He introduced himself as Jeffery Tucker and politely led Cheryl intoone of the large rooms that served as an office and, after offeringher coffee, he quietly left. closing the doubel doors behind him.

    The office, with itsfourteen foot ceilings and perfectly polished hardwood floors, waseven more impressive than Cheryl had anticipated. The furnishings,though sparse, were beautiful and each piece added a special flare tothe room. The centerpiece was a huge mahogany desk which sat just infront of the room's only windows. Placed neatly in front of the deskwere two high back chairs covered in dark brown leather. Along theopposite wall stood an oak hutch that was now used as a liquorcabinet. The only other furnishings in the room were a long, ornatecabinet, some five potted plants, two of which very nearly reachedthe ceiling, and an antique coat rack.

    Cheryl stepped in frontof the coat rack that was in the shape of a chair. Down each side ofthe back were pegs on which coats could be hung/ The base opened toallow storage of shoes and a small metal ring on one side was meantto hold umbrellas. Also on the back, mounted between the pegs, was along mirror. Cheryl checked her appearance and was generally pleased.The brown slacks with matching jacket and beige blouse fit herfive-eight frame very neatly. It was one of her favorite outfits, asit was most definitely feminine, but was also appropriate for anytype of business meeting. Cheryl smoothed her shoulder length brownhair and wished again she was ten pounds lighter. Despite a carefuldiet and rigorous exercise routine, she constantly remained tenpounds above her goal. What disturbed her even more was the fact thatthe extra weight seemed to settle in her hips. She was just preparingto touch up her lipstick when the doors opened.

    Cheryl recognizedWilliam Timber from a photograph she had once seen. He was animpressive man with broad square shoulders and a rough et handsomeface. Timber was also the best private detective in the city andcommanded a fee to match. He walked with a cane as he crossed to thedesk and took a seat. Cheryl had read of the accident that had endedTimber's police career and couldn't help but wonder if he felt atouch of bitterness. She quickly put her questions aside as Timbermotioned for her to be seated in one of the brown leather chairs. Asshe obeyed, he watched her with dark blue eyes that seemed incapableof missing even the most minute detail. Cheryl also noticed he seemedto be scowling at her. The two sat and watched one another for nearlya full minute before Timber broke the silence.

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