"I remember what I promised."
"You know what would happen if it got out that I took millions of dollars. Even though I gave it to the FBI, I’d be added to a list, and every time a government agency was hacked, I’d be dragged in and interrogated. Being on that list would follow me for the rest of my life."
"I’m not going to let that happen," he said, his tone emphatic. He pulled up in front of her apartment building, put the car in park, and turned to her. "Why are you worrying about this now?"
"Because you’ll be leaving, and I wanted to make sure . . ."
"You wanted to make sure I’ll keep my word."
She knew she had insulted him. His clenched jaw was a big indicator. Should she apologize? She’d probably make it worse if she did. He seemed so serious, as though he had something troubling on his mind.
"I guess this is the last time you’ll be driving me to and from the cyber unit," she said. "Good luck on your next assignment."
The doorman, a retired car salesman named Stamos, unbolted the glass door from within and opened it wide. Allison smiled at him before turning back to Liam. "You don’t need to go up with me." She was involved in a tug-of-war with her tote bag. She was pulling on it, but he wasn’t letting go.
Liam finally released his hold on the bag and followed her up the steps and into the foyer without saying a word. Allison couldn’t tell what was going through his mind, but the way he was looking at her, as though searching for the answer to some pressing question, was making her feel very uneasy.
She wanted to find out how long he would be staying in Boston without being too intrusive. Subtle, she decided. She would be subtle. "Will you and Alec be leaving to follow up on the leak? I imagine you’ve already taken another assignment after this one. Or is it too soon? Are you waiting to decide, or are you going to take a few days off? That’s what you should do. Take some time to relax." She couldn’t seem to slow down. So much for being subtle. Her words were fairly tripping over one another. Why she was suddenly feeling so nervous was beyond her. Perhaps it was because it was doubtful she would ever see him again. Maybe once she was away from him, she would come to her senses and figure it all out. It was impossible to distance herself now.
The doorman gained their attention. "Miss Trent, there was an incident you should know about." Stamos’s usually booming voice was hesitant. He kept glancing at Liam.
"Stamos, this is my friend Agent Scott. Tell me about the incident, please." She had a bad feeling she already knew what he was going to say, yet foolishly held out hope it was something else . . . anything else.
"You had some company," he began. "An older man and woman came by. They parked right in front of the door, so I saw what they were driving. It was a year-old Chrysler 300C Platinum with twenty-inch polished cast aluminum wheels, a dual-pane panoramic power sunroof, and HID headlights. It’s a nice, smooth ride," he continued. "This one had dents and scratches all over it, like someone had taken a hammer to it or maybe had been driving when he shouldn’t . . . if you know what I mean. They ruined that beautiful car."
Liam tried to get him back on track. "You were telling Allison about the man and woman. Who were they? Do you know?"
"Oh yes, of course. They told me they were your aunt and uncle. The woman even pulled out her driver’s license and waved it in my face to prove she had the same last name."
Allison felt as though the wind had just been knocked out of her. They had found her. And so soon. Damn. It was inevitable that they would track her down, but she had hoped it would take them longer to figure out she had moved, and even longer to find her new address. No such luck.
"When was this?" she asked.
"They showed up around four this afternoon, maybe four thirty." He scratched his jaw as he continued. "They were . . . difficult."
Difficult? That was putting it mildly. "Did they make a scene?" she asked, knowing full well they did.
"Yes, ma’am, they certainly did. They wanted to wait in your apartment. I refused to let them, of course, and that was when they started shouting at me. The woman told me she had your permission. Don’t worry. I would never let anyone inside your home," he rushed to add.
"Did they tell you what they wanted?" Liam asked.
"No, and I didn’t ask. They tried to push past me to get to the elevator. I pushed back and explained again that they couldn’t go beyond the lobby. They both became quite belligerent and as loud as a couple of broken mufflers. Your uncle threatened me, said he could get me fired. I’m pretty sure he was intoxicated."