The Officer's Gamble

The Officer's Gamble

After a disastrous relationship, Officer Manner Pereira has one thing on his mind: get his career back on track. He comes across the stunning and dogged Sylvie Pelletier on patrol investigating burned vegetation. Hounded by a reporter looking for her next scoop, harassed by wealthy interests, and under pressure from his boss, Manny must shift through a series of complicated relationships to catch the culprit. Manny puts his career and life on the line to solve the case. 

Will his gamble pay off?

OFFICER ARMANDO PEREIRA stared at the leaning mountain of paperwork on his desk. His three-times ex-girlfriend, Gabrielle Lavallée, yakked in his ear through his cell phone, her voice smooth, her words poisonous. 

“Why did you move back to Kingston, Manny? You belong with me in Montréal. You’re not giving us a chance.” Her tone was rich, sultry, coated with enough sugar to give him diabetes. 

He turned his back away from his colleagues in the office, the half-cubicle wall a pathetic shield for this conversation. “You’re out of chances." 

”Remember the good times we had? We could have written a chemistry book.” 

Manny wrote DON’T GO BACK on his notepad. “I moved my stuff out over a year ago. Whatever I left behind, you can keep or throw out.” 

"It’s our condo, babe. Don’t you miss going to nightclubs with our friends?” 

His idea of a nightlife was sitting on a log and listening to the campfire crackle. 

“Come home. We’ll take two weeks. Rent a cabin somewhere."

"I’ve got nothing more to say to you. Don’t call me again.” He swiped the call closed without giving her a chance to respond. He shielded his face from his coworkers standing by the kitchenette forty feet away and cleared his throat to chase away a decade-long sugar high, but all he tasted was loneliness and regret. 

“Pereira.” Conservation Officer Pham approached more swagger than loping stride. The creases of his uniform were crisp like he walked around with a can of starch and an ironing board. Uniform aside, everything else about the man was a mess. 

“Yeah?” Manny pulled the top paper from the notepad, balled it, and shoved it in the garbage can under his desk. “We patrolling today?” 

Pham peered over the half-cubicle wall towards Warden Hall’s empty chair.  

“Thought you were due in court." 

”My case is on the afternoon docket. I didn’t sign up to stand around for hours at the courthouse to testify.” 

"It’s part of the job. The arresting officer testifies in court.” Manny’s voice was firm, like a parent chastising a child.