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.It worked beautifully and usually it lifted Chee’s spirits.“I came to see you because I like you,” Janet Pete said.“If you weren’t my friend, which you happen to be, I would have come looking for you because you’re the arresting officer and it’s my job.”Chee thought about that.“So I had two reasons,” she said.“Is that one too many reasons for you?”“What did I say?” Chee asked.“I didn’t say anything.”“Hell you didn’t.Then why am I feeling like I’m on the defensive?” Janet said.“And not exactly knowing why.” She hurried a little faster.“Boy,” she said.“Boy, I can see why that white girl of yours went back to Wisconsin.”Chee caught up with her.“What was her name? Mary?”“Mary Landon,” Chee said.“Look, I’m sorry.I know how it is.Somebody has to represent Pinto and naturally it would be you.So what do you want to know?”Janet Pete, still walking fast, was out of the trees now, angling across the parking lot past Popejoy Hall.Chee followed her out under a morning sky that was dark blue and sunny—with just enough of those puffy forenoon clouds to suggest autumn was not too far along to produce afternoon thunderheads.“FBI’s not cooperating, huh?” Chee said.“What do you want to know?”“Nothing,” Janet said.“Come on, Janet.I said I was sorry.”“Well,” she said.And then she laughed up at him, squeezed his arm.“I can be as touchy as you are,” she said.“I can be a real bitch.” She laughed again.“But notice how neatly I put you in the wrong.Did you appreciate that?”“Not much,” Chee said.“Is that something you learn in law school?”“It’s something you learn from your mother.”Jim Chee’s taste for coffee had been brutalized by years of drinking the version he used to make for himself in his trailer under the cottonwood trees at Ship Rock—recently he’d taken to using little filter things that fit over his cups.The Frontier coffee tasted fresh but weak.Over a second refill they decided that he would cash in his return ticket on the Mesa Airlines flight and ride back to Ship Rock with Janet Pete.Tomorrow he’d show her the scene of the crime.By tomorrow, he thought, he would feel like talking about it.“Did you know Hosteen Pinto still won’t say anything about what happened?” Janet asked.“He’ll talk to me about other things but not about the crime.He just shuts up.”“What’s there to say?”“Well, everything.Whether he did it, for one thing.Why he did it, if he did.What he was doing out there.Did you know he’s a shaman, a crystal gazer? He finds things for people.That seems to be his only income.That and getting fees as an informant.From scholars, I mean.He’s sort of an authority on old stories, legends, what happened when.So the history professors, and the mythologists, and the sociologists, and that sort of people are always having him remember things on tape for them.He has a car, but it doesn’t run, so how did he get there? I mean where he was when you arrested him.What was he doing about two hundred miles from home? That’s what I want him to tell me.And if he did it, why.Everything.”“He did it because he was drunk,” Chee said.“Nez picked him up to get him out of the rain, tried to put him in the backseat of the patrol car, and Pinto got sore about it.”“That seems to be the official ‘theory of the crime.’ I know that’s what the U.S.attorney is going to trial with,” Janet said.“And that seems to be pretty much what went on,” Chee said.“But why didn’t Nez take that pistol away from him? You guys have a sort of standard procedure for things like that, don’t you? For handling drunks?”Chee had wondered about that himself.“He wasn’t arresting him,” he said.“We take drunks in for their own protection.So they don’t freeze.Or drown.” As Janet Pete knew very well.She sipped her coffee.Her dark eyes looked skeptical over the rim.“He didn’t take the pistol because he didn’t see the pistol,” Chee added.“The old man had it stuck in his belt, behind him.”Janet sipped.“Come on,” she said.“Gimme a break.Isn’t that sort of a usual place to stick a pistol?”Chee shrugged.“So how did Pinto get there?” she asked.“I don’t know.Maybe the guy in the white car brought him,” Chee said.“You’ve seen the FBI report, haven’t you? What did they say?”Janet had put her cup down.“White car? What white car?”“When I was driving down from Red Rock, I met a white—anyway a light-colored vehicle.It was raining and getting dark.But I think I recognized it.It’s an old banged-up Jeepster that one of the teachers at Ship Rock drives.What’d they say about that in the report?”“They didn’t mention it,” Janet said.“All news to me.”“They didn’t run that down?” Chee said.He shook his head.“I can’t believe it.”“I can,” Janet said.“You gave them all they needed.Their suspect, arrested at the scene of the crime, holding the murder weapon.All that’s missing is the motive.Being drunk takes care of that.He doesn’t even deny he did it.So why waste time and complicate things by digging out all the facts?” The question sounded bitter.“How about that fancy bottle he was carrying? Does the report show where that came from?”“Nothing.I didn’t know it was fancy.”“Like something you’d give a fancy drinker for Christmas.If you wanted to impress him.It wasn’t what a drunk would be buying.”Janet finished her coffee, put down the cup, looked at him for a while.“You know, Jim, you don’t have to do any of this.I know how you must feel.And I’m having trouble separating friend from lawyer when.”He held up his right palm, interrupting her.“When I think I’m hearing a lawyer, I’ll shut up,” he said.The thing about Janet Pete was that he could talk to her about things that were hard to talk about.She wasn’t Mary Landon.No soft, pale hair, no bottomless blue eyes, no talent for making him feel like the ultimate male.But by tomorrow, he thought, he could talk to her about listening to Delbert Nez laughing on the radio [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]