Decker's Dilemma
Rusty whispered. “Sorry I couldn’t get you to Vega’s.”
    Decker held Rusty’s head off the hard concrete of the street. “That’s the least of our worries. We’ve got to get you to the hospital.”
    Decker took out his wallet and opened it. Forty-eight dollars and a hundred twenty-five pesos. He gave Rusty most of the cash and helped him into another trike for the ride to the hospital. With no phone nearby, Decker tore a page from his notebook, scribbled a note, and wrote an address across the top of the page. He gave forty pesos to a kid standing nearby and sent him to deliver the message to Rusty’s wife. Decker picked up the spilled trike and paid another kid eighty pesos to walk it to Rusty’s house.
    Decker walked to the sari sari store and examined the damage, wondering how much it was going to cost him. A police siren behind him gave him pause. He turned and saw a brown Toyota 4Runner pull up several yards from the scene. A middle-aged man exited the vehicle’s driver side. He had on jeans, a light blue polo shirt, and a police baseball cap. A young Filipina emerged from the passenger side. White blouse, khaki pants, and a similar police ball cap. Two more cops rode to the scene on bicycles and started clearing the area of bystanders. The man and woman walked towards Decker.
    Decker smiled. “You’re a sight for sore eyes.”
    Vega grimaced at Decker’s familiarity. She gestured with her left hand to the man standing next to her. “This is Inspector Navarro. What happened?”
    Decker explained the trike chase and gunshots and how Rusty crashed his bike. He described the Filipino who grabbed his arm at the trike stand, but was unsure if it was the same man. He assured Vega and Inspector Navarro that Rusty was on his way to the hospital, injured but otherwise doing well.
    The inspector raised his eyebrows. “Is that what really happened?”
    â€œOf course that’s what really happened,” said Decker. “Ask the fifty people who witnessed it. We could’ve been killed.”
    Inspector Navarro crossed his arms. “No need to get angry with me, young man. I just find it strange that someone would want to follow you and shoot at you. Does not make sense to me.” He turned to Vega. “It appears this man knows you. What’s his name?”
    â€œDecker. Elliott Decker, sir. He’s a friend of mine.”
    The Inspector smiled. “I see. Navy, not Marines, I presume from your haircut.”
    â€œYes, navy. I’m stationed on the Harvey .”
    The inspector reached for a notebook in his back pocket. “Interesting. Where were you earlier this evening?”
    â€œCal Jam for a little while. That was the only place I’ve been.”
    â€œCal Jam, huh? Nice place. Don’t go there myself. Too many sailors, but they have pretty girls.” He leered at Vega. “But pretty girls are everywhere.”
    Vega ignored the comment and focused on Decker. “Did you get a look at him? The trike driver?”
    â€œNo, I couldn’t see his face. Just that it was a man. Maybe Rusty can tell you more, but the guy was wearing a cap and he had a cover on his trike that blocked the view of his face.
    Vega nodded. “What about his trike? Can you describe it?”
    Decker shook his head. “Only that it was red and yellow. But half the trikes in town are red and yellow.”
    Inspector Navarro looked both ways along with street. “Where were you headed, Mr. Decker. Do you live around here?”
    Vega urged him with her eyes to fib. Decker then remembered Lee lived somewhere in the area. “I was going to visit a friend,” he said. “His girlfriend lives nearby.”
    â€œAnd does this supposed friend and his girlfriend have names?”
    Decker hesitated but Vega nodded for him to cooperate. “Hack and Lee.”
    Inspector Navarro eyes narrowed. “I thought you said

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