ADA James Conlon sank onto the bar stool and nodded a the bartender as he ordered a drink, his thoughts focused on the case that his lawyers had just closed. At least those two wouldn't hurt another innocent young woman again for a long time - if ever.
The case had brought too many memories rushing back - those memories were one reason why he had stayed away from the courtroom and the Sextons. Just the idea of watching the testimony had been too painful to consider. And as for being the same room with those animals - the very thought made his skin crawl.
"Hi, boss," a familiar voice said, and Jimmy looked around to find Ray Blackwell.
"Ray." He indicated the stool next to him. "Have a seat."
"Thanks," Ray replied, ordering a draft beer. They were silent until the beer was sitting before him. "Rough case, huh?"
"Yeah," Jimmy agreed. Ray was the only one here who knew why this case had been so difficult for him.
"Have you talked to her lately?" Ray questioned, reading Jimmy's mind the way he often did.
"A couple of weeks ago. I tried, anyway.. She was busy with a school project, didn't have a lot of time."
"You need to try again. Especially after this week."
"So why don't you do it?"
Jimmy's eyes narrowed slightly as he turned to look at the other man. "Don't push our friendship too far, Ray."
Ray shrugged, shaking his head. "Whatever." He finished his beer and stood up, reaching for his wallet, but Jimmy stopped him.
"I'll get it."
"Thanks. See you tomorrow."
After Ray left, Jimmy sighed again and took out his cell phone, mulling over what his friend had said. Ray was right: he needed to call, see how she was doing. His sense of guilt - misplaced or not - had kept him away for too long - even when he'd been in the same city. That sense of guilt had been one of the things that had led him here - back to his roots, so to speak.
Making a decision, Jimmy opened the phone and pressed the preset button that dialed her number, and waited for someone to answer on the other end. When someone did, Jimmy found himself smiling.
"Hey, Jessy. It's Dad."