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The Collectors (standard:other, 1128 words)
Author: kendall thomas Added: Feb 12 2001Views/Reads: 2427/1321Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
Loan shark wants his money back--or else.

~The Collectors~ 

Sid led me and Sam to his office in the back of The Pink Pussy, a strip
joint on the lower end of 54th Street.  A society doctor by the name of 
Richard Bolton was into him for thirty grand, and Sid wanted us to do a 
piece of work if the juice didn’t flow. 

It was raining when we climbed back into the black sedan parked out
front.  We had already paid this guy Bolton two previous visits. 

On a first visit me and Sam are always polite.  We tell the guy he’s
short and that so-and-so wants his juice.  And that’s it.  But if the 
guy doesn’t get the message straight, we come back a second time for a 
conference.  This is where we break an arm or a leg.  But since this 
guy’s a surgeon and needs his limbs to function, we can only smash his 
face a little.  But it seems like some people never get the message.  
This guy was still holdin’ out.  Now we’d have to pay him a third 
visit, and those are the hairy ones. 

Bolton lived in a swanky neighborhood in the suburbs with a wife and two
kids.  So that’s were we headed. 

Sam and me have been associates for years.  In this kind of business
it’s good to have a little backup you can trust cause you never know 
what’s coming down.  Both of us met while working for a legitimate 
collection agency.  After a few years, if you do all right, you get a 
reputation among certain circles.  Word gets ‘round and soon you’re 
gettin’ some business on the side from people who want their money back 
and who don’t much care how you get it--as long as you get it.  Loan 
sharks like Sid.  Pretty soon me and Sam go into business for 
ourselves.  Our own private firm, and we do pretty good most of the 

The rain was a little bit heavier when we pulled into the drive of
Bolton’s two-storey brick, with the white columns, and parked in front 
of the four car garage.  Society doctors make a good living healing the 
sick who can afford them. 

Mrs. Bolton was a looker as you might expect being married to one of
these hotshots.  Young, attractive.  A classy dame.  Groomed, no doubt, 
for upper-class existence in some fancy ivy-league college.  Strange, 
but it seems like these are the kinds of people who are always slowest 
to pay their debts. 

She had on expensive Gucci sweats and kept the chain on the door while
she conversed with us.  She knew, all right, what we were there for. 

“Dick” wasn’t home, she said.  Gone to New York for a medical seminar of
some kind.  She wasn’t sure what.  No, she didn’t know when he would be 
back, and if that was all, she had a tennis appointment... 

Sam kicked the door in.  He was a big guy.  No one to fool with.  We
told her we didn’t believe her husband had gone to New York for some 
seminar or other, that maybe he’d decided to go south. 

Mrs. Bolton had nice fingers:  long, slender, nicely manicured. 
Perfect, delicate things. 

After I broke two of them, she told us her husband was holdup in a suite
above his uptown office. 

When Sam and me got to the suite an hour later, I slid a round into the
chamber of my .22 automatic.  It had a silencer, in case I had to use 
it.   Then Sam and me put on latex gloves.  I used a universal key card 
to open the door.  Cops have ‘em; it’s the modern day equivalent of the 
old skeleton key that could open any door.  I’ve done favors for meat 
eaters over the years and they’ve done some for me.  The UKC was one of 

The doctor was humping some broad in his king-sized bed under a mirrored
ceiling.  We explained the nature of our business again--in case he’d 
forgot--and told him that he’d become a ‘problem’ and that this was his 
last chance to make good.  He gave us the old song and dance:  that 
he’d have our money for us soon; he just needed a little more time; he 
would cash in a few bonds; he’d make good.  He swore to God. 

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