"So are you allowed to fraternize with us when we're former suspects?" Dr. Taylor asks from across the dinner table.
"That case is well out of my hands now," Landry replies. "I'd say it's pretty air tight. Molly Johnson was fed up with Haverty. She went to his apartment with a .357 and forced him to write the suicide note. She was going to kill him and leave the gun in his hand. But he had his own .22, and when he went for it, she shot him in the back of the head and fled the scene and then dropped the gun in the creek behind the apartment complex."
After six hours of sweeping that creek, they'd found it. No fingerprints, but the ballistics were an even more probable match than Dr. Taylor's gun. Landry and Detective Wells then canvassed gun stores with Molly's photo. She couldn't have bought it herself, being under 21, but they hoped maybe she'd been window shopping. They got one better. One store owner said she was with a young man who bought a .357. They interviewed the young man, a senior at Antioch, and Detective Wells's costuming finally paid off. He confessed he was sweet on Molly, that they'd been friends but he was hoping for more, that he'd bought the gun for himself three weeks before the murder, but that when she came to him the night of and asked if he would give it to her because she was so scared walking home from Antioch at night, he'd gladly handed it over.
"How's Gracie doing?" Landry asks. She's not at the table. She's upstairs in her room. She's still depressed about learning that Molly was not the girl she thought she was. Julie has brought her dinner, and is eating with her, and they're watching some night time soap together, and having sister talk.
"She'll be a'ight," Coach Taylor says. "She just needs to stick to girls her own age."
Landry smiles at the implied acceptance in his acknowledgement.
"And," Coach says, "I've got to step up and be as involved as I was when Julie was dating boys."
From beside Coach Taylor, Matt looks at Landry and smirks.
"Both of us do," Dr. Taylor admits as she refills her wine glass.
"Well, I'm more to blame," Coach Taylor admits. "You've been a little busy, babe. What with your battle with cancer." He swallows. The cancer is still in remission and the prognosis looks good, but it's got to scare him, Landry thinks. "I'm gonna step up, babe. I am."
"I know you are. And maybe we just need to start running background checks on her girlfriends."
"Well, fortunately," Matt says. "I have a friend who can do that for you."
A friend, Landry thinks with a smile. A friend.
Matt and Julie are talking about moving to Seattle. "Gracie needs a big sister around," Julie told Landry. "No offense to Mom, but I think she needs her big sister around. And there's a magazine here I think I can get hired on as assistant editor. And once Matt does this sculpture, he might get more work here. Besides, we want to be near family when we adopt. Our son or daughter should have grandparents and an aunt nearby."
Life is looking up for Detective Landry Clarke. He's closed another case. He has his best friend back – maybe even in the same city. Now all he's got to do is find a woman of his own.
She leaps. "Dammnit, Landry, you have to stop sneaking up the stairs."
She unlocks the door, opens it, and turns. "I heard from Coach Taylor you did a pretty amazing job of cracking that case and getting him and his daughter off. He's pretty grateful for that."
"And I'm grateful not to be a suspect anymore."
"You were never a suspect."
"And that you," she zips her lips. "About the pot."
"I work homicide anyway."
"Want to come in for a bit?"
He smiles and follows her inside. It's a nice, two-bedroom apartment. Open living plan. Kitchen spills onto the dining room and across to the living room. She has a fireplace – gas. And a balcony. It's there that they sit, in two chairs, and split a bottle of wine. It's not raining for a change. It's not even drizzling. Seattle is gorgeous when it isn't gray. And really, there's a good 100 days a year it's this stunningly gorgeous. Not too hot, not too cold. Mountains in the distance. Pines rising high. Pedestrian-friendly city streets. Landry likes it here.
"But don't tell the East Coasters," Jess says. "Or the Californians. Just let them think it rains all the time. We don't want anymore of them here."
"But we could do with a few more Texans, right?"
She smiles. "Yeah. We can tell the Texans it doesn't always rain."
He leans forward. Turns his head. Looks at her. "You never got married," he says.
"You either. Why's that?"
"Never found the right one." He takes a sip of his wine. "You ever miss me, after you dumped me for Vince?"
She rolls her eyes. "Landry. Don't you think it's time to let go of that resentment?"
"Oh I let go of it before we graduated. I let go of the resentment. But I don't know if I ever one hundred percent let go of my feelings for you."
She lowers the Hawkins High Seahawks cap she's still wearing. She peers at him. "Are you asking me out?"
"Are you saying yes?"
"I'm not saying no."
He settles back into the chair, let's his legs fall comfortably apart, and smiles.