“Let’s assume for the moment we believe you, Mr. Beemish.” Valdez handed the man’s driver license back to him, after writing down the pertinent information. She’d have a civilian friend of hers in the Department run a background check.
“Please, call me Lynton, ladies.” He smiled a toothy grin at both of them. The three sat at the tidy table in Representative Kang’s kitchenette. Kang had brewed coffee and each had a stoneware cup before them.
Valdez asked, “So why were you keeping watch on us, Lynton?”
“Actually just the Congresswoman. I was staked out to see who else might be keeping tabs on your place.” He shifted in his seat. “I’m rather cautious by nature.”
Kang and Valdez glanced at each other. That sounded pretty weak. Beemish claimed to be an oppositional researcher with extensive campaign experience. He mentioned that he knew McNair, the maniac chef and conspiracy nut Kang had tried to sic on Gilmore’s trail. Beemish also provided other names, K Street types, familiar to Kang. She’d put in a call to one of them back in DC.
“So Grish hired you to excavate the dirt on the Fallenbee Directive?” Kang reiterated, again looking at the man’s business card. It was bone white, pebble finish, with his name, his attribution and phone number. All in ten-point sans-serif type, set flush left.
“Yes. Ma’am,” he reconfirmed. “I was exaggerating some when Ms. Valdez got the drop on me.”
“Meaning Grish didn’t tell you to find me in the event of his questionable death,” Kang finished.
“Yes, that’s right.”
“When did he hire you?” Kang said.
Beemish looked toward the ceiling. “I’d say it was about two months ago. He was interested in their corporate holdings, of course, but also in me running down the ties and links among and between the various board members of the Directive.” He sat back, a lopsided grin on his face. “Very interesting stuff, as you might imagine…”
“How often did you report this to Grish?”
“Oh, we didn’t have a set time but as things came up, I’d tell him.”
“If at all possible, yes,” Beemish replied, sweeping a hand through the air.
“And I gather you have written versions of what you’ve amassed,” Kang said.
“Absolutely,” Beemish assured her. “I write out my compiled notes on a computer that’s not hooked up to the Internet. In this age of surveillance,” he repeated the hand gesture, “you can’t be too careful. And that’s bearing in mind the multiple firewalls and safety measures I have installed on my connected computers.
His subterranean hive must look like geek heaven, Valdez pictured. “What’s your angle, Lynton?” She sipped her coffee, eyeing him over the rim of her cup.
Before he could answer, Kang’s cell phone chimed. “Excuse me,” Kang said. “Hey, Mark, thanks for calling me back,” she said, walking into the bedroom.