Just By Chance – Chapter 3

Nikki Robb pulled the bed sheet to her shoulders and basked in the post-coital bliss of the night before. It had been a long time since she’d felt this satisfied…a very long time. To her left, Detective Anthony Spinetti slept on his side. Nikki watched the sheets rise and fall with his slow, deep breaths.

The last six weeks had been wonderful. She’d held out having sex with him for the entire time. It wasn’t that she didn’t want to have sex…she just wasn’t good with relationships, and she  was reluctant to take things to the next level. Last night, though, all the stars were in alignment, so she went with the flow and even let him stay overnight.

Nikki reflected on the circumstances of their first meeting. She had been hired as a computer security consultant by a technology company whose secrets were being discovered by a competitor. Management feared that their own employees might be leaking information, so they contacted the white-collar crime unit of the local police force who recommended hiring a consultant with special talents. They’d selected Nikki based upon her credentials and the fact that she was local. The company had already checked employee emails and phone logs, but couldn’t find anything awry. Nikki wrote some pattern recognition software that analyzed employee emails, and sure enough, she discovered an employee who had developed a set of code words and was sending encoded company secrets to a Yahoo! email address.

On her last day at the client site, Nikki was listening to her iPod as she worked on her computer and didn’t realize that she was moving to the music. Spinetti walked up and introduced himself and asked if she liked to salsa. Slightly embarrassed, she said she did, and that led to a date at a salsa club. Right off the bat they’d discovered two things in common…a love for dancing and a passion for cooking.

Nikki’s thoughts were interrupted by the ringtone on Spinetti’s smartphone. His long, tanned arm reached for the device on the nightstand.

“Spinetti,” He grumbled. “Where? Okay, I’ll be there in twenty minutes,” he said, and ended the call. He rolled over and looked at Nikki.

“Good morning,” she said. “Gotta’ go?”

“Yes,” he said, nodding. “Sorry. Part of the job.”

“I understand,” Nikki said. “Why don’t you shower, and I’ll make some coffee.”

“Espresso?” he said, rolling out of bed naked.

“Absolutely,” she smiled. “I know that’s the only kind you drink.”

Nikki watched him walk naked to the bathroom and sighed. Spinetti was thirty-five, three years older than Nikki, and was tall, dark, and lean, with wavy black hair. She hadn’t been this happy in years, and thought that maybe, just maybe, Anthony Spinetti would be Mr. Right.

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