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|The Collectors (standard:other, 1128 words)|
|Author: kendall thomas||Added: Feb 12 2001||Views/Reads: 2427/1321||Story 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 time. 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 them. 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. Click here to read the rest of this story (44 more lines)
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