Digger Brown sat legs splayed an uncomfortable chair in the hallway and takin care of business just to the right of the private hospital room occupied by Cassandra Diamond. He dug into the Cheeto bag with his fingers as a can of Coke crouched between his meaty thighs, pulled up two of the orange tinged puffs and thrust them into his mouth. Winters came back from the nurses’ station just as he swallowed them whole.

“Jeez, you’re a pig,” Winters folded himself into the adjacent chair, “seems the girl is still in critical condition.”

“We aren’t going to hang around here any longer are we?” Digger squirmed in his chair. “This place gives me the creeps.”

“It’s not like we have anyone else to interview?” Winters turned his head sideways towards the spectacle. “She’s really the only lead we have.”

“You mean she’s the only one that counts,” Digger threw three more Cheetos in his mouth. “The only one that isn’t a stain on the sidewalk. I mean, how are we supposed to find a perp when there isn’t one?”

“Where there is one,” Winters reached into his coat pocket. “Maybe, she can tell us something, more than Miller, less than that Hattie woman.” Winters moved to pull the cigarette out, then jolting, remembered where he was. “C’mon, it beats sitting in the office, dealing with Mosely.”

“Hospitals give me the creeps I tell ya,” Digger finished off the bag way blowing it up like a vacuum bag when the cleaner’s turned on then off again. “What say we check up a little more on that Miller character; I’m still not completely sold that he has nothing to do with all this.” His voice echoed into the bag.

“What’s there to dig up?” Winters fidgeted slightly. “He just got dumped, been on a drinking binge, it’s no wonder he can’t remember anything. I’m much more interested in what Miss Diamond has to say about our so called dragon.” He turned from one uncomfortable angle to another on the hospital chair. “You know that guy used to be a big time reporter, wrote for the Times. He’s the one that broke the west coast 911 story, even won some big award for it a couple of years ago.”

“So how you know so much about him?” Digger shot him a look.

“It’s called the Internet, Dumbass.” He nodded for Brown to follow him for a smoke outside. “Look, my wife loves that Horrorscope shit he writes. I used to read him back in the day, just happen to like his writing style, even checked out his website thought it was funny.”

“No shit.” Brown tossed the empty bag in the trash as they slipped out the side entrance. Winters lit up as soon as they hit the smoking zone, “So you’re starting up again?” Brown couldn’t help needling, after the condescending shit Winters gave him about his foul smelling cigars.

“Why you ask?” Winters looked thoughtful, “you know being a reporter and all, we could get him to do some of our legwork,” his voice took on a conspiratorial tone. “Save us having to run around and you know the bums won’t talk to us. They’ll be able to smell us coming a mile away.”

“Very funny,” Brown looked up as Saul Winters cracked a smile, looked to his thrice munched cigar. “So you think he’s on the up and up?” Brown moved the tip around in his mouth. “I still say we go back and smack him around, see what this guy really knows about all this.” Brown maneuvered the cigar between his lips several times then lit up, “At least when we get back to the office, we can give Mosely something,” Blowing a puff of blue smoke into the ozone, as he hit the sidewalk walking towards the car, “and I’m tellin ya, I’d rather give Mosely this Miller character than jack shit.”

Winters stayed put and chuckled, “Let’s just wait it out here for a couple more minutes, see if she can talk then?”

“Then let’s get back to the office,” Digger sucked again quickly, jonesing for the nicotine. “I have a life, ya know, outside of the office.”