“No sign of him yet?”
Zamir adjusted his cuffs. He never used to do so as much. It was becoming a nervous habit. He stopped himself. “What are you talking about?”
Raz lazed on the other side of the hotel room. Zamir wasn’t about to change his lodgings for the man, or give up his bed, but Raz looked at the recliner and determined himself absolutely happy about it. He certainly had made a one eighty from his previous disinterest for intended charity. “You’re still looking. You brushed it aside before.”
“Shachaf.” Zamir sat down on the bed.
“Yep.” Raz stroked Haven’s back. She slept on his shoulder, unaffected by the noise around her. “You think if he wanted to see you he would of called. It’s not like you vanished off the face o’ the land or anything.”
“True enough.” But this had nothing to do with what Shachaf wanted, if Zamir was being honest with himself.
The room fell quiet. Zamir knew exactly what Raz was going to say, right before he said it. “So what happened? What was he runnin’ from?”
Zamir closed his eyes.
Zamir would admit, Haven was a rather pretty bird. Raz was certainly smitten with her and the entire process of obtaining her had gone much more smoothly than Raz had made it sound.
“I introduced ya as my police friend, of course.”
“Which is incorrect, technically.”
Zamir’s words once again didn’t matter, as Raz ruffled up Haven’s feathers. She opened and closed her beak next to his finger, which made Zamir antsy, but Raz didn’t seem to mind. Then again, it didn’t look like Haven was closing it with that much force.
With a sigh, Zamir readjusted his suit. “Now what? Going back home?”
“Eh, can’t afford to. Have to feed this pretty now.”
Health forsaken for beauty. It was the first time Zamir had seen it done like this. He sighed.
How had he gotten so wrapped up in this?
“Her name is Haven.”
“Haven?” While he had agreed to hear Raz out, Zamir had the distinct impression he was going to be paying for Raz’s food as well. Just as well he had let Raz pick the place to eat. Zamir might have picked a place more classy, but he would have paid for it with Raz’s large order.
“She’s lived here for the last couple of years, but the people she lived with have split up. Leaving her torn between the two of them unless I do something.”
“Were they her caregivers?”
Raz nodded, wiping his face with a napkin. “They treat her right, I know that. But the fact they both like her makes this all a bit more complicated, y’know?”
Zamir frowned, leaning back in his seat. “What did you come here for?”
“I’m taking her.”
He should have expected that. “Would there be something keeping her from leaving herself?”
“Probably the cage.”
Zamir paused. He paused for a few moments. “What species is she?” he finally asked.
A parrot. That made some more sense. He supposed.