This is Chapter Three in my sci-fi series starring Kreke, a man of mystery and intrigue, solving crimes throughout the galaxy with his investigative reporting. Each installment will contain the link to prior chapters:
Now, on to Chapter Three:
After tossing and turning through a restless night’s sleep Kreke stretched and rolled to a sitting position. He found his dependable droid butler Omar waiting at the bedside. In his hand was Kreke's morning cup of UltaBlend steaming at the perfect temperature and wafting up that heavenly aroma. Kreke had it imported directly from the growing fields in Barstow. Prohibitively expensive but an invigorating way to start the day, he limited himself to only one cup. It was one of the few luxuries he indulged in, other than this ultramodern maximum-security living unit. With his line of work though, the residence was more of a business necessity than a luxury.
“Thank you, Omar. I’ll have breakfast in my office. Just something simple with some fresh fruit. I trust that everything was in order with my luggage?”
“Yes, Kreke, everything was accounted for and has been laundered and assimilated back into your wardrobe. Your breakfast tray will be awaiting you in the office.” He turned and rolled efficiently out of the sleeping chamber. It continued to amaze Kreke how his household droid could always be waiting at his bedside at precisely the right time.
Kreke sat at his control center as Ona relayed his recent budgetary reports across his viewer. He was pleased to note that the deposit from the Chronicle contract settlement had arrived. And he saw there was an addition of an extra 10K Lunas with the memo “Early Completion Bonus”. It was nice to see that his efficiency was appreciated. No doubt the scoop on the story over the Chronicle’s competitors afforded them a nice financial boost as well.
“Ona, complete the travel expenses report and submit to The Chronicle, then send me the latest compilation list of the Freelancer jobs in my preferred categories. Time to start looking for the next contract.”
Kreke picked up his P-link and instructed it to call Andrea. She’d been on his mind off and on all day yesterday after their conversation. He was certain she was hiding something from him and for an investigative contractor, that wouldn’t do at all. He lived to ferret out the secrets of the world, especially when they involved him.
The P-link came back with the message that Andrea was unavailable. Now that was odd. Not even her usual recorded memo. Kreke couldn’t remember that ever happening before. Was she blocking him? That was almost unthinkable. Or was it?
“Ona, link with Andrea’s house AI and find out if she is in residence. Use my proprietary override code if necessary.” Kreke stood and began pacing around the room deep in thought.
“Kreke, I have ascertained that Andrea is not currently in the residence, nor did she return home last night. The last contact noted was her departure for the Crown Union building via shuttle yesterday morning at 9:39 AM CST.”
Kreke halted in mid-stride and his brows knit in consternation. Andrea was an independent grown woman, she could certainly stay out all night without his permission, but this total lack of communication was most unusual. He replayed in his mind her nervous attitude during their last link conversation. Is it possible she has found another lover while he has been away? He felt like he knew Andrea better than that. In fact, he was on the verge of asking her to cohabitate with him. A decision not to be taken lightly and one that he had given much thought about these few months.