FIFTEEN – BAD NEWS
The morning didn’t burn off the fog. Instead, a storm rolled in from the north, quashing any ideas of a return shoot on Wind Point for Zelda Baker.
She remained pissed at how Cofax had treated her, but not enough to worry about it. She had other stories to cover: a south side fire, a north end shooting.
In fact, she didn’t give Cofax much thought until she rolled back into the newsroom at three PM. Dodson greeted her at the door.
“Baker, what the Hell happened with you and Cofax last night?” he asked.
Zelda’s face flushed angrily before she realized she’d taken the question the wrong way. She composed herself, walked toward her desk, and said, “We went to Wind Point, but it was too foggy to get any good footage. Didn’t you see what I brought back?”
“Yeah,” said Dodson, “I saw it. Waste of time and money. But that’s not what I mean. I mean what happened to Cofax after the shoot?”
“Fucked if I know,” she said, putting her equipment down beside her desk. “He got flip with me, and I left him on the beach. He had his own car. What was I supposed to do, baby-sit him? Make sure he could hold his liquor?”
Martin Dodson chuckled. “That would have been pretty pointless.”
“That’s what I thought.”
“So, you haven’t seen him since last night.”
She sat down and leaned back in her chair. “Fuck, no. Why would I?”
“Nobody else has seen him, either.”
That made her sit up. “Really?”
“Do you think he might have been drinking?”
Zelda laughed. “Do ducks like water?”
Dodson frowned. “Shit.”
“What’s the problem?” she said. “He’s probably just sleeping one off.”
“Well, if he is, he’s not doing it at home. When he didn’t answer his phone, I sent someone ’round to his place. They said it looked like no one’s there.”
“Maybe he’s just dead drunk.”
“I hope he’s not just dead.”
A disturbing thought occurred to Zelda. “You think he could still be out at the point? Want me to run out and check?”
Marty scratched his head. “No. Wherever he is, we’ve wasted enough time and manpower covering his ass lately.
“If he doesn’t show up by tomorrow, I’ll have the cops look into it.”