Astride a Pink Horse

Astride a Pink Horse by Robert Greer

Book: Astride a Pink Horse by Robert Greer Read Free Book Online
Authors: Robert Greer
Tags: thriller, Mystery
fighter pilot. His father was a Tuskegee airman—99th fighter squadron.”
    “Man! You’re talking one iron-willed pair of color-barrier-busting brothers there.”
    “They were,” Bernadette said proudly. “But my granddad always claimed that they were a lot more badassed than barrier-busting.”
    “So what’s your dad do now?”
    “He’s retired.”
    “Pretty proud of you, I guess.”
    “Yes, but a little disappointed that I’m no longer flying A-10s.” The somberness in Bernadette’s voice let Cozy know he’d broached a subject that he should have avoided. Returning to the business at hand, he asked, “So besides the Takatas, the shotgun-toting Mr. Kane, and Sarah Goldbeck, do you have any more murder suspects on your list?”
    “You’re starting to sound like a reporter again, Cozy. I’m afraid my investigation can’t be quite the open book you’re looking for. So far you’ve ended up being in all the right places at all the right times with this Tango-11 thing. But I’m afraid your information pipeline’s about to end.”
    “You’re cutting me off,” Cozy said, sticking out his lower lip in a mock pout.
    “Have to,” said Bernadette, seeing the lights of Cheyenne twinkle in the distance.
    “Tell me you’ll still take my phone calls,” Cozy said with a wink.
    Unsmiling, Bernadette said, “I’ll take them, of course.”
    “Glad to hear that.” Cozy slowed down to just under sixty and glanced in his rearview mirror. “He’s still there. Maybe we should just stop and confront him.”
    “He’s my problem, Cozy, okay?”
    “Your deal, Major. Sorry for pressing.”
    “Thanks. Now, mind if I ask you a question?”
    “Go for it.”
    “It’s a little personal.”
    “As personal as mine have been?”
    “More so, I’m afraid. It’s about that limp you tend to hide so well. It’s not service related, is it?”
    “Nope,” said Cozy, wondering when Bernadette had first spotted his limp. “A present from a motorcycle accident. That’s why I drive trucks. Lessens the chance of me ever becoming pavement bait again.”
    “Sorry I pried.”
    “No problem. Things happen.” He eased the dually off the interstate onto Randall Avenue and past the three Minuteman missiles flanking the guard gate. When he stopped, Bernadette leaned over, said, “Hi, Skip,” to the guard at the gate, flashed him her ID, returned the guard’s salute, and said to Cozy, “Let’s head this chariot of yours to my office.”
    “Funny what a ruckus mama bear, papa bear, and baby bear back there can cause,” Cozy said, pointing back toward the three missiles, which stepped down in size from east to west.
    “I’m afraid they’re not storybook characters to be loved.”
    “I understand their purpose. I’m just wondering if they mightnot have cousins out there somewhere in the world who are linked to our murder?”
    Ignoring the question, Bernadette glanced out the rear window. “No more Captain Alvarez.”
    “Guess he got cold feet,” Cozy said, happy to be able to attach a name to the person who’d been following them.
    “I wish. He’s just using a different entrance. My car’s parked out in front of my office, by the way.”
    “So how will you explain your missing Jeep?”
    “With reams of paperwork. No worries, though. I’ve got motor-pool friends who’ll help me out.” She flashed Cozy a knowing smile. “The air force still has brothers around who revere the Tuskegee airmen.”
    “And their granddaughters, no doubt,” said Cozy.
    The impish smile on Bernadette’s face told Cozy that she obviously knew when to be spit-and-polish and when to work the system.
    Pointing at the only vehicle parked in front of her building, Bernadette said, “There’s my car.”
    “Nice,” Cozy said, admiring the Austin-Healey roadster that was lit up by his headlights.
    “It was my father’s. He used to race it. It’s a ’67 3000 MK III—totally restored. When he gave it to me after the air force

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