Julie melted into him, then pulled back slightly as she flashed her special grin, chuckling as she answered, “I am recovering just fine, and I promise we can play later. This is really important, honey!”
Juan released his hold and pulled out her chair. After she was seated, he took his seat and saw she had several scraps of paper with various notations. He glanced at them and picked up a few words, including the name of his brother Carlos. Carlos was the older of the two brothers who both sported similar black hair, a mustache, powerful build, and darker complexion, in line with their Mexican heritage. Carlos was the taller of the two, but when they were together it was difficult not to notice they were related. “Alright, my darling, what is going on? Are you just doodling my brother’s name or working on a new problem? Start at the beginning, please.”
Julie nodded and calmly related the information she’d learned during the call. “Su Lin and Andy had intruders, apparently with weapons. Shots were fired, and Su Lin was grazed by a bullet. Andy suffered some blindness from being too close to one or more muzzles when the shots were fired. They are both at the hospital. Andy is currently having his heart monitored as well.
“The latest information I have is that the intruders got away. This in itself presents a bit of a mystery since Su Lin was certain at least one person was shot. The police are investigating, and we are trying to make certain we stay up-to-date on the latest findings. Law enforcement is suggesting it was a robbery gone badly.
“Not surprisingly, Quip doesn’t want EZ going to the farm in case the thugs are still around. Su Lin did not indicate that Andy was asking for EZ, but as you know she is devoted to her father.”
Juan looked at the sadness in the eyes of his darling wife. Her bruises were healing, but it would take time for her to reconcile being taken and beaten, even though she ultimately escaped by damaging her captors on the way out. He fully admitted that each minute together seemed so much more precious than before that fateful London assignment. “Honey, I’m glad they are being treated and we can monitor their progress from here. I know how much you respect and care for Su Lin, especially after your history together.” He reached for her hand, enclosing it into his and gently added, “You can’t travel right now and, to be honest, I would like to stay together here for a little longer.”
Julie agreed with a weak smile and stated, “I know. I’m not up to going. It is EZ who will want to get to her father. Quip hasn’t told her yet, but he needs to hurry. She will want to be there as quickly as possible. How could she not? Since she works for us, Quip was hoping we might delay her making the trip until more investigating is done.
“Added to this, Su Lin originally called Jacob with news of the ordeal. Petra doesn’t want him going because of the uncertainty of the intruders. The family called me to see if our team could help. I have been running over all the team members and their current assignments to decide who could go. I simply can’t decide who I would risk, if these thugs are still about. Also, Su Lin’s request of the state of health of a person she knew in China whom she has never mention before is out of character. That said it may actually mean something but I’m not sure what.”
Juan thought about her comment and decided she was still too vulnerable to even go to the office. He feared her current state would make her second guess her typically logical, deductive, reasoning skills. As soon as she recovered enough physically, he’d make certain they resumed their sparing and workouts to improve her self-confidence. His beautiful wife, mother of his children and the most fearsome badass female he’d ever met, would recover. It would just take time. When they had returned from London, he’d promised to work with her and support her while she recovered. He was somewhat uncertain as to how, and he had no clue or experience with being that kind of person.
“Julie, in what capacity was our team asked to help?”
“It was suggested that keeping a watchful eye and checking out the farm thoroughly was the initial request. With Su Lin, though, it must be someone she trusts, and her list of trusted people is fairly short. Jacob, Petra, and Otto are the top people, and they lack bodyguard capabilities. She trusts me, of course, but to be honest I am not ready for that sort of effort. Carlos is too far away, and he is actually in a better position in Brazil to keep Andy’s business rolling along. Quip knows Su Lin, and they get along well. But you know from working with him that technology and analysis are more his strengths.
“None of our team has really been around or worked with Su Lin.”
Juan chuckled, “Right, besides if Quip wouldn’t permit EZ to go, I’m fairly certain she would protest his going. What about Mercedes? Didn’t Mercedes help out when someone tried to nab Su Lin?”
Julie thought for a moment, and a small, genuine smile appeared. Her light brown wavy hair, now a bit longer, bounced a bit as she agreed, “You’re right, she did. I guess I’m a little muddled not to have recalled that. Mercedes has the right background to bodyguard. If we send her in first then Jacob wouldn’t need to go along for Su Lin’s comfort factor. With her lithe form and curly brown hair, no one ever suspects she could kill you in any number of ways with her bare hands and flush the body parts down the toilet.” Julie paused and said, “We were lucky to get her on our team.”
Juan mused, “I’d forgotten that part on her resume under special skills. Let’s tell her to catch the next flight, but please don’t offer to watch her cat.”
“Oh, Juan, the twins just love her cat. She is hardly any trouble at all, and don’t do that other white meat routine again.”
“Nope, that cat drives me crazy and makes me sneeze. The twins can visit and keep her food filled. A little responsibility wouldn’t hurt them.”
Julie flashed another smile reserved for Juan and raised her right eyebrow in total appreciation of her man. “Can you please call her while I just slip out of these clothes and into something skimpy? Meet you in the middle!”
Juan nodded and then realized what she’d actually said and replied, “You tempt me, woman.”
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish