William “Bill” Cranston grabbed the railing as he jogged up the stairs to Precinct House 17. He may have been a linebacker in college, but that was thirty-five years ago and now he needed to pull himself up inclines when he jogged them.
He snapped his hand back as if he touched a high-tension line.
The railing was shaking?
Sure, ’17 was one of the oldest precinct houses in Boston, still brick-and-mortar as they say, and with wide-paneled hardwood floors and high ceilings and big fans hanging down because putting AC in a building about to be decommissioned was a waste of tax dollars, but that decommissioning order had been on the books for twenty years Cranston knew of once. The city discovered it would cost more to put up a new precinct house rather than get rid of this old one, but somehow the money set aside for a new precinct house never made it into a working AC system.
Cranston made it a point to dig deep whenever he had to investigate a city or state official. He was going to write a book once he retired. Fuckers I have known, he was going to call it.
Old or not, ’17 was still solid. granite anchored the railings. They could shake? Like that?
He looked up and down the street. No fifty-three foot TT or heavy construction vehicles in sight, but dogs barked and pulled on their leashes. Pigeons, robins, and starlings took flight. The leaves on sidewalk maples, willows, and elms shivered as if chilled by a late October wind.
He touched the railing tentatively, one finger stretched forward, his body slightly turned and ready to pull away.
He shrugged and continued up the stairs. The desk sergeant looked up and nodded as he entered.
“You feel that?”
The desk sergeant shook her head. “Feel what?”
Cranston continued up the next flight to the offices. His phone vibrated in his pocket. A moment later he heard his daughter Leddy’s distinctive TXT ring and read the screen. “U OK?”
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