DISCLAIMER: "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" and other related entities are owned, trademarked, and copyrighted by Anthony E. Zuiker, Jerry Bruckheimer Television, CBS Worldwide Inc., Alliance Atlantis Corporation, CSI Productions and CBS Productions. This is fanfiction and is written purely for the enjoyment of fans, and the author acknowledges that no profit is made from the writing and/or distribution of said writing.
SPOILERS: 'Lady Heather's Box', 'Crash & Burn' and 'Playing with Fire'.
SERIES: The 'Un'-titled Series - sequel to Unmasked.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Amy Jo

Part 41

Not surprisingly, Archie is nowhere to be found when I enter his A/V lab. The lab techs generally don't work the same kind of overtime that we do, and since shift is now over there is no reason for him stick around. A young kid, whose name I can never remember, is sitting at one of the consoles working on the backlog. Once again I'm given a packet of software to work with and sent off to my own A/V lab.

The software I picked up from the kid in the main A/V lab will let me reconstruct the outside of the restaurant and the accident itself. First I need to gather the right information to set up the scene in the program. Aerial maps, crime scene photos, weather information; I need to recreate the intersection as closely as possible to the way it was at the time Ms. Lambert ran that light.

A call to the National Weather Service Forecast Office and I have the precise recorded information for the time of the accident. Taking quick notes of the temperature and precipitation levels at the time of the accident, I'm not surprised at all by the meteorologist's report that the weather was good at the time of the accident and most likely not a factor. I hang up after asking for an official copy to be FedEx'ed to the lab for our final report.

Maps of the intersection and the pictures we took provide me with a layout to enter into the program. The software basically lets me create my own city; I can pick the type of car I want to use for the reconstruction, place the streetlights, the stoplight, and even the newspaper dispenser.

It's science, a little high-tech, but still science. And what it tells me is that Ms. Lambert actually accelerated into the restaurant. She was clocked at 52 miles per hour when she ran the light, but the reconstruction has her pegged at 60 when she hit the newspaper dispenser.

Unless Sara comes up with something mechanically wrong with the car, I'm not sure if we'll ever know what happened. Doc says there is no physiological reason for the accident; she didn't stroke out, have a seizure, or anything else that would have caused her to accidentally accelerate into the restaurant. If Sara comes back and tells me that there isn't anything wrong with the car, the only thing left is a psychological reason for Ms. Lambert to want to drive her car through that window.

Looking at the clock, I realize I've spent the better part of two hours working on a reconstruction that is barely thirty seconds long. I don't know how Archie does this kind of work without feeling frustrated. Being in the lab basically all night has left me itching to do some real work.

I know that the lab work is just as important as anything I might do in the field, but today it's giving me the distinct feeling of being trapped. Maybe it's the unfamiliarity of working with the computer software or maybe it's because even as I do this reconstruction, I know that the answer to the puzzle is not going to be found in thirty seconds of computer animation. Whatever it is, I feel the need to do something more . physical. Interviews, walking the scene again, anything outside of this lab.

I have the reconstruction running on a repeating loop; I don't even know how many times I've sent the Jaguar crash through the restaurant by the time Sara walks into the lab and stands next to me.

"Hey, check this out," I say when Sara is standing close enough to see the reconstruction. "The red light camera clocked her speed at fifty-two miles per hour, right?"

"Mm-hmm," Sara mumbles in response.

"The computer software pegged her at 60 by the time she hits the newspaper dispenser." Sara watches with me as the car in the reconstruction speeds up and slams into the newspaper dispenser before going through the window. "She accelerated into the building."

Sara remains quite for a minute, her face pensive as she watches the reconstruction again. In her eyes I can see that she is thinking hard and fast about what the reconstruction is showing her.

"You didn't find anything wrong with the car did you?" I ask her, already knowing the answer. If there had been something wrong, she would have mentioned it almost immediately after I showed her that the car accelerated; instead, she's thinking of alternate reasons for Ms. Lambert to have sped into the restaurant.

"No, the car is in good shape."

I can tell from her short answer and the look of concentration on her face that she has a theory about what may have happened. "So what are you thinking happened here?"

Sara turns and starts walking out of the lab, "I've got to see Doc about something."

"About what?"

Sara's answer is lost in the general noise of lab equipment as she walks rapidly down the hallway. It used to bother me the way Sara would chase a lead without telling anyone she was working with what was going on in her mind, but after a few years I've adjusted to this little quirk of hers. Eventually she'll come to us and let us know where her mind has taken her.

Intrigued by what has Sara running off to the morgue so fast, I shut down the reconstruction program and head to my office. I meant to read the autopsy and toxicology reports earlier but got distracted when Nancy called. From the speed that Sara took off, I can only hope that we all missed something in those reports that didn't make sense until she saw the reconstruction.

Reading the autopsy report, the only thing that stands out from either report is that Ms. Lambert was high. A little uncommon for a woman her age, but not completely unheard of. Doc amended his report to include the fact that she had glaucoma and this was probably her reasoning for the marijuana use.

The tox report tells me the specific levels of THC and there are also a few statistic pages from NIDA detailing that for a woman her age, height, and weight, the amount of marijuana she had smoked previous to the accident was not enough to have impaired her judgment to the point of being the cause of the accident itself.

Sara had both Greg and Doc Robbins reporting directly to her when their findings were ready, so she knew long ago that the marijuana use was 'medicinal' and that the levels of THC in Ms. Lambert's blood just weren't high enough to cause an impairment of motor skills. Nothing else in either report stands out. Ms. Lambert died seemingly healthy, if a little stoned.

So what has Sara running off to the morgue again? What am I missing?

Part 42

I can't find anything else in the reports that would have sent Sara rushing out of the lab and my curiosity is starting to get the best of me. Hoping that we can have this case wrapped up before day turns into night again, I drop the reports on my desk and head toward the morgue.

I get almost halfway to the morgue when I turn a corner and nearly run into Sara. There's a small smile playing at the corner of her lips that I am pretty sure means she found what she was looking for.

"Sorry Sara," I offer in apology for nearly running into her. "So what did you find out?"

Sara waves off my apology and starts walking back toward the labs. "I wanted to take a look at her blood panel. I had a hunch."

"And were you right?"

"Yes," Sara affirms my suspicion about the reason she is smiling. "Now all I need is to find the reason."

"The reason for what?" I ask her, trying not to sound too confused.

"Her acetylocholine was low and epinephrine was high; physically she was healthy, but her hormones were a little out of whack."

"And that means what, exactly?" I know Sara wouldn't be so specific about Ms. Lambert's hormones unless she knew what she was looking for. I, however, don't have the slightest idea what she's talking about.

"It means you were right."

I give up. I'm confused and I let it show. "I was right about what?"

"I think you were right about Ms. Lambert having a specific reason for driving her car into that restaurant. I don't know what that reason might be yet, but her hormone levels are telling us that this was no accident."

My mind is more on trying to decipher what Sara is saying than paying attention to where we are headed. When I take a second to focus on our surroundings, it seems that we are heading back to the A/V labs. Having walked this path so many times today, I move slightly ahead of Sara even as I groan inwardly at the idea of spending more time in the A/V lab.

"Can you elaborate on that? How do her hormones tell us that this wasn't an accident?"

Sara has developed Gil's bad habit of speaking in riddles and it sometimes takes very specific questions to get answers that won't leave me even more baffled. It's an annoying habit, whether it's Gil or Sara doing it, but tolerable as long as she doesn't also start quoting obscure literature to describe crimes or suspects.

"Kamikaze pilots from World War II had similar bloodwork. Those were men on a mission, every move they made was intentional. I'm thinking Ms. Lambert may have had a similar purpose when she drove from Laughlin to Las Vegas."

I say the only thing I can think of, "Oh."

"Her grandson says she hates it here, but she had the address to the restaurant programmed into her navigation system. That and her hormone levels make me think that everything she did was intentional. I'm thinking either the restaurant was the target or someone in side the restaurant."

"I'll call Brass. If Lambert had a grudge against the place, somebody there would know her," I tell Sara as we walk into the A/V lab. Earlier I had thought the same things; that maybe Ms. Lambert had a specific intention, but I couldn't come up with a reason or a connection that would make me act further on my suspicion. Now that it seems more certain, I should call Brass and see if we can't speak with the restaurant manager.

"If she was gunning for someone specific, there's a lot of variables. Maybe we should start with the most obvious targets, the people sitting in the window."

Sara and I walk toward the wall monitor, and I enter the code to run the program, "Let's run it."

I stared at this simulation earlier, thinking about the possibilities and coming up with nothing. But I'm hoping that a pair of fresh eyes will help. Sara had barely watched the accident reconstruction twice and she was off chasing a lead. Something that, when explained to me, seemed rather a little-known fact about kamikaze pilots. But if she can see something in the reconstruction that I never would have thought of, maybe she'll see something I missed in the simulation as well.

"Okay. Top to bottom ." Touching the screen in front of me, a driver's license photo pops up, "Cameron Black, deceased; from Jersey. First time in Vegas; unlikely mark."

Sara seems to agree and reaches up, pushing on another seat, "Second table. Rachel Krandall and Tom Krandall. Both dead at the scene, both worked for Sillmont Healthcare."

"Table three," I say pushing on what I know is the seat where Hank was sitting at the time of the accident. Trying to keep the lingering anger out of my voice I continue, "Hank and Elaine Alcott. Also works at the insurance company."

The only emerging pattern is Sillmont Healthcare. I'm not surprised by this; it was happy hour and the restaurant was less than a block from the insurance company. I'm sure Sara recognizes that too, but she turns to look at me instead of moving on to the fourth table.

"Three out of five people sitting at the window work at Sillmont Healthcare. Maybe I should go talk to her."

For reasons unrelated to the case, reasons that I wouldn't talk to Sara about when we're in the middle of a case, I agree that Sara should talk to Elaine. Quietly I tell her, "Yeah. Maybe you should."

Sara tilts her head and looks at me with a slightly confused expression. The change in the tone of my voice must have tipped her off. Still not sure that it's my place to talk to her about what I believe Elaine's real relationship with Hank is I simply watch her as she stares me, her eyes telling me that she is processing my tone and what it might mean. Lifting my eyebrows I wait for her to say something but instead she turns on her heel and walks out of the lab.

If Sara had asked, I would have told her why I really thought she should speak to Elaine. I think that would have lead to an argument; I've had plenty of those with Sara, but if she wanted to know I would have told her. I screwed up before by keeping things in and I'm going to try to not do that again.

I'm sure she would have said that I'm reading too much into things, that I've been burned before and just because I dated a cheating asshole doesn't mean that every man is a cheating asshole. I'm glad she didn't ask because it would have been hard to explain my reasoning without getting too personal. Having that conversation while we are working is not a good idea, and it's definitely a bad idea to talk about that in the lab itself.

Part 43

"Have you ever seen this woman, Mr. Lychock?" Brass asks, sliding a picture of Ms. Lambert across the table.

"Yeah. That's the lady that drove her Jaguar into my restaurant," Mr. Lychock's voice is filled with contempt as he shoves the picture back toward Brass. "I saw her when the paramedics were pulling her out of the car."

"Did you ever see her before that?" I ask. Brass is already getting impatient at the manager's attitude and we've only been in here for a few minutes.


"You're sure?" Brass slides the picture back toward the restaurant manager.

"Look Detective," Mr. Lychock says, his tone bordering on resentful when he calls Brass 'Detective'. "On an average day I see about one hundred new faces. I can't remember all of them."

"I don't want to know if you remember all of them, Mr. Lychock." Brass and the restaurant manager seem to have entered into a verbal pissing-match. "I just want to know if you recognize this one."

"And I told you that I did. But only from when she drove her Jaguar through my restaurant killing four people. If she's been to the Checkerbox before, I don't remember."

Brass looks like he really wants to say something, so I speak up first, "Thank you for your time Mr. Lychock. We'll call if anything else comes up."

The restaurant manager leaves the interview room grumbling about the pointlessness of his trip all the way down to the PD. Brass doesn't seem too pleased with the way the interview went either.

"That was all you needed from the guy?" Brass asks.

"Yeah," I say. Heading out of the interview room I shrug and try to explain, "Sara thinks this was intentional. Something about the hormone levels of kamikaze pilots."

Brass looks just as confused as I did when Sara tried explaining it to me, but thankfully he doesn't ask for details. "And you think that if he had recognized Ms. Lambert he may have been able to tell you her motive?"

"Well if she had some sort of grudge against the restaurant, it would make sense that the manager would be able to recognize her."

"So what now?" Brass asks as we step outside.

"Well Sara's talking to one of the victims, a worker at Sillmont Healthcare that was sitting in the window."

"You think maybe they know something?"

"I'm not sure Jim, but it's something that needed to be looked into." I don't bother telling him that the real reason I thought Sara should go talk with Elaine had nothing to do with Ms. Lambert. "Since the restaurant manager wasn't any help, do you think you could get her phone records for us? If this really was intentional, there might be something useful in the LUDs."

I climb in my Tahoe as Brass heads back inside the PD. Aside from signing off as primary on a few reports, there's nothing much for me to do at the lab, so I radio in to dispatch to let them know that I'm breaking for a little while. I could use a shower and a change of clothes.

A little more than an hour later I pick up a few files from my office and head to a layout room; my little cubbyhole of an office doesn't give me the space I need to spread out the reports and paperwork to get a better look at the case. Spreading the files out on the table in front of me I start reviewing the information we have, which is really nothing.

Ms. Lambert, an elderly woman who drove her Jaguar through a restaurant window, killing herself and three others, for reasons we still don't know. The car was in good condition or, at least, there was nothing wrong with it that precipitated the accident. Ms. Lambert herself was in good physical condition according to the autopsy. She might have been a little high at the time but there was no heart attack, aneurism, seizure, or other instantaneous health problem that would have affected her ability to properly operate her car.

"Hey," Sara walks in holding some files close to her body.

"Hey," I return her greeting as she walks behind me and sets her files on the tables. My curiosity has to be written all over my face, but Sara is focused on the files in front of her. "So? How did it go with Elaine Alcott?"

Sara doesn't look up from her files when she says, "She didn't have anything to add to the investigation."

Sara has never been the type to talk about personal issues at work, but over the years I've learned that it isn't what she does or does not say, it's her body language that talks. She's not looking at me as she answers my question, her posture and facial expression telling me that while Elaine didn't have anything to add to the investigation, Sara did learn something during their conversation.

Somehow blurting out 'So Hank cheated on you with Elaine, huh?', just doesn't seem the right way to start a conversation with Sara, and before I can find the right words to say Brass walks in the room.

"Hey how's it going?" Brass doesn't wait for either of us to answer before handing yet another file to Sara and continuing, "Here are the phone records from the driver of the vehicle that you asked for. You know, there may be something to that kamikaze grandma theory of yours. Last week Diane Lambert closed out her bank accounts, paid off her credit cards, and updated her will."

Damn, that was quick work with the phone records. It's barely been more than an hour and getting LUDs usually takes a few hours, if not days. Either Brass doesn't have anything more pressing to do, or he pulled a few strings to get these records this fast.

"Well that's certainly more evidence to suggest that her actions were intentional," I say to Brass as Sara starts reviewing the phone records.

"There's only one Vegas phone number on this statement and the prior statement," Sara says as she shuffles through the papers. "There's got to be eighty calls here to the same number."

No one makes that many phone calls to the same number unless something is up. "Dial the number."

Sara reaches down and pulls out her cell phone, dialing the number on the table.

"Sillmont Healthcare. How may I direct your call?"

Suddenly the room is quiet as Brass, Sara, and I take turns looking at each other. The evidence is piling up quick that Ms. Lambert's actions were indeed intentional. But how did she know that some of the workers from Sillmont would be at the restaurant?

"What's your address?" Sara asks.

We know that Sillmont is only one block from the restaurant, but even if we didn't this question could easily be answered by checking the phone book. I wonder if Sara asked that question for a specific reason or if she just wanted to give the call a purpose instead of just simply apologizing and saying she had the wrong number.

"16 South Meadows Lane," the voice on the other end of the phone tells us.

"Thank you," Sara says and disconnects the call.

"Right. The Checkerbox is 16 North Meadows."

"I don't think that's a coincidence," Brass states the obvious.

Sara asks the question on all our minds, "If Sillmont Healthcare was the intended target, how did she end up at the Checkerbox?"

"Well, I'll tell you what happened to me," Brass says. "Last week I was driving to a crime scene in the car and the GPS said go right. Had I done so, I'd be coughing up fish from the bottom of Lake Mead."

With a shrug I tell Brass, "Well GPS is hardly perfect. Maybe north was a directional default."

"Or maybe she put in the wrong address," Brass suggests.

"Either way it does leave one question: Why was Diane Lambert so angry?"

A good question. And one that I think can only be answered by Sillmont Helathcare.

Part 44

"Hi, we're here to see Elaine Alcott and ." I look to Sara, hoping she knows the name of Ms. Alcott's manager. When Sara doesn't seem to respond I turn back to the receptionist, "We're here to see Elaine Alcott and her immediate supervisor."

"And you are?" This girl looks like she could care less who we are or why we are here.

"Catherine Willows and Sara Sidle, Las Vegas Crime Lab." Well that got her attention. Ms. Attitude reaches for the phone to let someone in the inner sanctum know that we are here, her eyes never leaving us.

Sara hasn't said anything since we left the labs and she merely nods her head in recognition when Elaine Alcott walks down the hall and introduces herself to me. With a slightly confused look Elaine leads us down the hall to a conference room.

Elaine waits until Sara and I are seated opposite of a man I assume to be her manager/supervisor before saying, "Mrs. Lambert was a member of our HMO. I was, uh, going to call you."

Sara takes a few seconds to shoot a look full of both fire and ice at Elaine, who is looking more uncomfortable by the minute. Figuring that Sara won't be taking the lead I ask, "Well did she have some kind of problem with her policy?"

Responding just as I would expect the manager says, "Not to our knowledge."

It's hard to tell if the manager really doesn't think Mrs. Lambert had a problem with her policy. Either he thinks eighty phone calls in the course of two months is normal, or no one told him that Diane Lambert was calling at least twice a day.

Breaking off her staring contest with Elaine, Sara speaks up and says, "Then you won't mind if we take a look at her file."

"I'm sorry, member files are confidential." The manager speaks confidently, but he keeps moving uncomfortably in his chair. He's either picking up on the tension in the room between Sara and Elaine or he knows there is something in that file that might tip us off about Mrs. Lambert's anger with Sillmont Healthcare.

"Well, this member is deceased. Not even the doctor-patient privilege extends post-mortem."

Elaine and the manager exchange looks, even though they know that I'm right. Technically Sara and I don't have the authority to look at Mrs. Lambert's file right now; we would need to get an authorization from her next of kin or a warrant, but I think both the manager and Elaine know that it wouldn't be a problem for us to get either.

Elaine hands the file to Sara, who takes another second to stare her down. Elaine looks unbalanced by the animosity from Sara, uncertain about what exactly is the cause and she glances at me to gain back some of her confidence as Sara shuffles through the papers in the file.

Avoiding Elaine, I look at the papers over Sara's shoulder. Unable to read anything of significance, I turn back to the manager.

"Mrs. Lambert had colon cancer." Sara says, barely looking up from Mrs. Lambert's file.

The manager points at the papers that Sara is holding saying, "If you read further, you'll see that it was in remission."

"No, actually, her most recent CAT scan shows recurrence two months ago," Sara looks up, glancing at the manager and then Elaine before continuing, "That's about the same time she started calling your office two times a day. Why would she be calling you?"

Sara and I both know the answer to that: she was calling because she was sick and her HMO wasn't doing anything to help her. It really doesn't take a genius to figure that out. But neither the manager nor Elaine will answer Sara. In fact, glancing at the table then at each other and then back to the table, they both look like they'd give anything to be somewhere else right now.

Having reached my limit of tolerance for both Elaine and her smug sounding manager I tell them both, "You know what? Four people are dead, don't waste our time. We can do this downtown."

Elaine is the one that 'fesses up, her boss basically letting her take the fall in this conversation. "Mrs. Lambert's oncologist recommended immediate and aggressive treatment."

"Did treatment commence?" Sara asks, looking for an explanation of Sillmont's behavior. Sara and I both know, from the twice-daily phone calls and the lack of evidence of medical treatment from the autopsy, that Mrs. Lambert was not receiving any treatment for the resurgence of her colon cancer.

Looking very business-like and professional Elaine delivers the company line, "The recommendation was pending."

"Well, what exactly does that mean?" I ask, even though I'm pretty sure I know the answer.

"Not yet approved, not yet denied," Elaine's manager answers.

That's what I thought. The manager is having a hard time looking at me as I explain it to him, "In other words, Mrs. Lambert's health was in limbo. She wasn't receiving treatment, but she couldn't file an appeal since you hadn't officially denied her claim."

Not looking the least bit sorry, Elaine's manager gives me more company bullshit, "The authorization process takes, it takes time."

"Time Mrs. Lambert didn't have."

"We have a procedure, we follow it." He even manages to look smug as he sits here telling Sara and I that he was just going to let Mrs. Lambert die.

"And while you were following your 'procedure' and postponing a decision, her cancer cells were multiplying." These people disgust me.

"What were you, playing the odds?" Apparently they disgust Sara too. "Were you hoping she would die before you had to spend a dime?"

"We're not liable here. We're not responsible for Mrs. Lambert's actions."

Which is a polite way of saying that the company was trying to save a buck. "For what it's worth, that makes me sick."

Part 45

The crackling noise of the dispatch radio is the only sound in the truck on the way back to the labs. Glancing over at Sara, I can see that she is still thinking, her mind still piecing together all the evidence and trying to make a clear picture of what happened. I don't know if this is a puzzle that can be solved to our satisfaction.

Sure, Sillmont Healthcare's actions were irresponsible and negligent but there isn't anything criminal about what they did or, more accurately, failed to do. They knew Mrs. Lambert's health would get progressively worse the longer they waited to authorize treatment and they stalled anyway. They knew she would die but the almighty corporate dollar is their priority. Sillmont Healthcare showed a callous indifference to her suffering, and it makes me sick that there is no crime we can charge them with.

The only thing left to do is sign off on the final reports and let the DA's office know that there is no prosecutable crime involved. Once I've signed off on the reports I can leave them in the black hole that is Grissom's office and try to find a way to get rid of the sick feeling that talking with Sillmont Healthcare's representatives has given me.

Looking at Sara, it's obvious that it isn't just this case that is bothering her right now. I can tell that she's not satisfied that we have to close this case but there's a look of uncertainty lingering in her eyes that I assume is related to tension that was palpable between her and Elaine. It must be quite a jolt to the intensely guarded Sara to have a case collide with her personal life the way this one has.

I want to talk to her about it, see if my suspicions about Hank were correct, but I haven't figured out a way to approach her yet. Somehow blurting out "So, he was cheating on you, huh?" just doesn't seem like a good way to start a conversation. And I need to be a little more careful of what I say to her if I want to work on any kind of relationship with her, romantic or not.

Sara pulls into the lot at the labs and my time to think is cut short. Without anything more meaningful to say, I simply revert to work mode. "It's been a long shift, sign out and go home. I'll write up the interview and sign off on the reports. There's nothing left for us to do."

Stepping out of the truck, Sara still looks lost in her thoughts and I wonder if she heard me at all. It's not uncommon for Sara to be so involved in what's going on in her head that she doesn't notice what's happening around her.

"Don't sign off just yet, there's something I want to check on first," Sara says as she heads into the building, leaving me in the parking lot puzzled about what she's going to look for.

I'm not surprised that she doesn't want to give up just yet, but I can't think of what she wants to check that would make any difference in this case. It's clear that Mrs. Lambert intended to drive her Jaguar into that building, even if she had the wrong address and drove through a restaurant instead of Sillmont's offices. And now that we know Mrs. Lambert's motivation it seems even less likely that Sara will find something that proves this was an accident.

I head into the labs a few steps behind Sara and watch as she heads off toward the garage. I'm not sure what she thinks she's going to find; if I know Sara, she's already been over every inch of that car at least twice. I would tell her not to waste her overtime on a futile search, but I don't think Sara is actually expecting to find something. I think she wants the work to keep her distracted and maybe even to give her time to think about the situation with Hank.

I would be in Hank's face threatening him with castration for the way he treated Sara, but she is much more even-tempered than I am. Sara is more than likely off in the garage using the work as distraction until she is composed enough to let Hank off the hook for his behavior. From Elaine's nervous and confused demeanor when Sara and I were at the Sillmont offices it's clear that she is oblivious to Hank's wanderings. And Sara isn't the kind of woman that would tell Elaine and hurt her for Hank's actions.

I walk into my office, knowing there isn't much work waiting for me. I have reports to sign off on and files to close, but the menial task of paperwork is not going to stop me from speculating about Sara's personal life; and I'm not going to be able to earn Sara's trust, or her friendship, if I stick my nose in her personal life.

Sitting behind my desk, it's easy to see why Gil gets so involved in his bugs and his experiments; when mountains of paperwork is the alternative even I could get excited about the mating habits of the male fruit fly, or whatever insect of the month Gil is studying.

An hour passes with no word from Sara on what she did, or most likely did not find, and I decide that it is time to head out of here for the day. I was hoping to talk with Sara after we wrapped up this case, but now doesn't seem like a good time to talk to her. I'll catch some heat from both Nancy and Lindsey about once again failing to try to repair things with Sara. Nancy will tell me that I chickened out, but she should at least be understanding of the circumstances; it's Lindsey that I'm going to have a problem explaining things to.

I'm walking out of the locker room, adjusting my jacket and pulling my purse over my shoulder when Sara walks up behind me from one of the labs.

"Catherine, we missed something," she says as she starts leading me toward the break room.

I can't think of what we missed that might make even the slightest difference in the outcome of the case, but since Sara took the extra time to do the work, I follow her toward the break room and wait for her to explain what she found. Instead of continuing, Sara starts fixing herself a cup of coffee and my curiosity finally gets the better of me.

"What did we miss?" I ask as I take a seat at the table.

"The GPS unit," Sara says as she sits at the table with me.

"What about it? We already know that she entered the wrong address, or at least that it gave her north as a direction when what she wanted was south." I'm not following Sara's line of thought, but I'm hoping Sara will keep dropping breadcrumbs until I understand where she is leading me.

"See, that's the thing. GPS isn't always accurate but it is an advanced piece of equipment, both for the car and for Mrs. Lambert. I started thinking, what was Mrs. Lambert doing with an older Jaguar and a high-tech piece of equipment when she doesn't even have an email address?" Sara is staring at her coffee cup as if the answers are swirling around in the dark liquid.

"How do you know she didn't have an email address? And what does that have to do with the GPS unit?" She is giving me bits of information to follow along, but also skipping just enough information so that I'm still confused.

"From her insurance policy. They ask for different ways to contact their policy holders and Mrs. Lambert left the space for an email address blank. I was thinking that if she didn't have an email address, chances are pretty good someone had to help her program the GPS unit. So I printed the unit." Sara has stopped concentrating on her coffee and is now looking at me, the excitement of finding a new clue dancing in her eyes.

"And?" I ask, sensing that this is going somewhere even though I'm not sure where.

"And the prints on the unit belong not to Mrs. Lambert but to her grandson, Corey." A small grin spreads across Sara's face as she lets me contemplate what she has just said. "So if they were his prints that means he programmed the unit. Maybe he knew what grandma was planning."

"I'll call Brass and have him bring the kid in," I say, already reaching for my cell phone.

Part 46

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