It didn’t take long for Libby to start second-guessing her decision to omit some of the details during the interview. The more she thought about it, the more foolish she felt about indulging some vague sense of unease – especially since Annie’s (Anita’s?) disappearance could indicate a serious medical emergency.
The difference between life and death; wasn’t that how Delgado put it? What if one of the things Libby withheld provided to key to finding Annie-Anita? And how would Libby feel, if the police managed to track Annie-Anita down without the additional details, but too late to save her life? Did Libby want to deal with that kind of guilt, knowing that she might have been able to prevent someone’s death, but decided against it because something seemed a little off?
Over the next couple hours, Libby brooded when she wasn’t fielding phone calls from people reporting various computer-related technical issues. Fortunately all the calls were for easily-solved things that happened on a regular basis; this was a very good thing, given Libby’s level of distraction. Auto-pilot was a beautiful thing.
Lost in her thoughts, Libby was finally startled out of her reverie when a koosh ball hit her left ear. Libby’s startled gaze flitted around and finally landed on Tonya’s mildly-irritated/vaguely-concerned face, peering at her from around the low divider that separated their desks. Tonya waved the koosh ball slingshot in Libby’s general direction.
“Girl, what is up with you today? It’s like you’re on Venus or something.”
Libby looked at her gravely. “I think I might have made a mistake earlier.”
“Earlier? You mean when you talked Detective tall, dark, and grumpy?” Tonya scooted her chair closer to Libby’s and lowered her voice to a murmur. “What – you think you said something wrong?”
“Something wrong like, ‘Oops, I used the wrong dinner fork’ kinda embarrassing social faux-pas, or something wrong like, “I picked out the wrong dude from a lineup’ life and death stuff?” Tonya raised an eyebrow. “‘Cause I love you, but you are the reigning queen of making something out of nothing. Remember when you cut Tina off in that meeting, and spent the rest of the day convincing yourself she was mad at you? And when you went to apologize, she had no idea what you were talking about.”
“Yeah, but I’m starting to think it’s more like ‘picking out the wrong dude from a lineup’ life and death stuff,” Libby admitted quietly. “And it seemed like the right thing to do at the time, but now I’m having second thoughts.”
Tonya regarded Libby for a few seconds. “Well, can you fix it? Instead of sitting here stewing about how you did wrong, can you at least try to make it right? If it’s as serious as you think?” Tonya’s phone rang. “Oops; duty calls.” She launched her chair back into position.
That was a perfectly reasonable question. Whatever weirdness gripped Libby’s over-active imagination during the interview had long-since dissipated. She couldn’t come up with a single rational reason to hold back the remaining details. At the very least, she could try to make it right. Libby started looking through the various items on her desk for Detective Delgado’s business card, frowning as the card failed to make itself known.
Muttering all the while, Libby turned her attention to her pockets, then the floor around her, then the trash can. No dice; the card was nowhere to be found. A brief web search led to the city’s web site, which in turn led to a list of contact numbers – including the non-emergency number for the Law Enforcement Center. Libby dialed the number.
“Law Enforcement Center; how may I direct your call?”
“Hi; I’m trying to reach Detective Delgado?”
“What is this concerning?”
“I may have some more information about that missing persons case. Detective Delgado left a business card, but I can’t find it,” Libby admitted sheepishly.
“Who shall I say is calling?”
Oh. Yes, Libby could see how that might be helpful information. “It’s Libby Edwards; we talked this morning. Well, not we like you and me; we, like Detective Delgado and me,” she clarified (likely unnecessarily).
Sounding vaguely amused, the operator replied, “Okay; I’ll see if the detective is available. Please wait.” There was a click, followed by tinny Muzak.
Grabbing a pen, Libby pulled a notepad closer, intending to jot down everything she remembered from Annie-Anita’s conversation. Before she could touch pen to paper, the hold music cut off abruptly.
“Ms. Edwards? I have Detective Delgado on the line.”
“Thank you,” Libby said (although given how quickly the operator removed himself from the conversation, it was doubtful he’d heard).
A woman’s voice said, “This is Detective Delgado. I understand you have some information for me?”
Libby hung up.