The Bed You Make
Chapter 39
~ Calm before the storm ~

"Detective Marcus Taggert?" Marcus heard the delivery guy ask for him. He was already halfway out the door on his way to grab a little lunch; there was no way he was going to turn around just to sign for paperwork that the department required he open, verify, and then match to a pending request. It would set his lunch run back at least ten minutes, ten minutes during which his grilled Black Angus steak sandwich and home fries would be growing cold.

"Rani!" Marcus corralled a raven-haired detective walking by and nudged her in the direction of his desk. "Do me a solid," he pleaded. "Sign for those papers for me. I'll owe you."

Second-year detective Rani Kapoor glanced at the keys in Marcus' hand. She was a hair over five-two and weighed a hundred ten pounds soaking wet. "Why can't you sign for them?"

"Lunch run to the Outback." Marcus sweetened the pot. "I'll bring you back a pavlova roll."

"You better." Rani was already moving toward the other detective's desk. "Come back empty-handed and your ass will be mine." The young Indian detective, the other officers discovered, had a surprisingly profane vocabulary that was in direct contrast to her demur appearance.

"Deal. Marcus strode toward the back stairs of the PCPD. Marcus never bothered with the elevator unless he was escorting a shackled prisoner. Being a plainclothes detective was a prestigious position, but it brought along with it a lot of sitting around. Marcus took pride in his body. Every opportunity he got to keep it fine-tuned was taken.

He didn't meet anyone on his journey down the stairs. That wasn't surprising. Things were pretty quiet at the PCPD at the moment. A cat burglar's string of successful thefts had been ended when he'd chosen the wrong home to burglarize. The homeowner's three Doberman Pinschers had cornered the man and kept him there for nearly three days until the homeowner returned from a weekend cruise. Port Charles' rainy spell had ended and along with it the rash of petty crimes that inevitably occurred during such weather. The Corinthos organization was laying low due to the anonymous tips the police had gotten regarding their criminal activities.

Things had settled down for Marcus as well. His partner, Alex Garcia, had finally taken a few days off. Whatever went down between Alex and Dara had finally made an impression on the determined detective. Garcia had called the Commissioner at home and asked for a week's vacation. When Mac told Marcus about the request, Taggert's first instinct was that Garcia was going to somehow attempt to make his way to Greece. But he'd stopped by Alex's house unannounced late the other night and found his partner bleary-eyed and hung over. In between cups of freshly brewed coffee, Alex managed to convince Marcus that his days of going to the extreme to get to the bottom of Dara's situation were truly over.

Maybe Marcus would just happen to return to the station via Alex's neighborhood. That way he could see if Garcia's new-found resolve where Dara was concerned held fast in the cold light of day.