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Dockside (Blogophilia 35.13)

On the surface, it was a normal client meeting at the Dockside Cafe, sitting on the patio making small talk. It wasn’t. The Hazel eyes told a story.

It was my job to find out what it was. 

The server came with our drinks, beer for me, vodka and cranberry for her.  Over her shoulder,  a baseball game silently flickered over the bar. She might have been forty in a flowered sundress with a red carnation in her hair. The pink tints in her hair clashed. But who was I to judge? It was a possible job and the rent was due.

The project was simple. Her estranged husband had hidden assets and she wanted me to find them. Usually, I was hired by an attorney for this kind of work, not directly by the client. When I told her, the excuse was she didn’t trust the lawyer to do it. He was lazy. I’d heard this before. It made me wonder if was her stealing. I made a mental note to do an NCIC check if I took the job. An Aiding and Abetting charge would not make my day.

As the sun sank close to the far bank, she gave me the background. She was a cocktail waitress at a mobbed-up place when they met. He sold anchors and cordage and would drop by after work. He was tan, strong, and knew how to sweep a girl off her feet. I’m sure there was more but I didn’t want to know. They got married. He started a servicing company and things were going well. They had a nice house across the lake, a 21′ ski boat, and a 26′ Cabin Cruiser. Happily ever after.

It wasn’t. 

Last month, he went off the deep end. Divorce papers and an eviction demand was delivered to the house. It wasn’t totally out of the blue. She knew he’d been running around. Had been all along. Monogamy was blasphemy to him. Variety kept him alive. It hurt, but he never missed a bill or an anniversary and he never failed to share whatever new bedroom skill he learned with her. When she asked why all he said was “Money made me do it.”

Two days later, she’d landed at an extended stay. Most of her stuff was still at the house. Both she and her lawyer couldn’t reach him. He’d froze the bank accounts and instructed all the financial people to refuse to answer any questions without a subpoena. The lawyer said he couldn’t do any more until the first court hearing. 

“It’s like that commercial.” She said. “It’s my money and I need it now.”

I had to ask. 

“Any affairs yourself?”

“A couple. But none as good as him.”

Blind to the end. 

“Was he upset when he found out?”

“No, not really.” She smiled. “He might have been a cad, but he was fair about it.”

That’s a word you didn’t hear every day, cad. There was one more question.

“How did you find me?”

“Your name was on the bathroom wall here at the Dockside.”

Maybe not the best referral in the world, but it was a job. 

“The retainer is $2,500. Fees are $100 an hour plus expenses.”

She stood up, pulled a wad of cash out of her purse, and handed it to me. 

“This should cover most of it.” 

All hundreds, maybe ten grand. I see why she needed the money.

Yeah. I need to do that background check. This was going to be a wild ride.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Topic-Michael Todd

Pic Dahlia Ramone

Pic Guesses: Dockside (in blog), vodka and cranberry (in blog) far bank (in blog), cocktails, sunset, lake, happy hour

Published by anothergovernmentemployeehotmailcom

So, I'm late putting up a profile. Sue me. I'm an ex-government drone making his way in the world.

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