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Los Desaparecidos

Storm at SeaUrban Waite is a brilliant new talent about to publish his debut novel The Terror of Living (Little, Brown, February 2011) which Stephen King has called, “A hell of a good novel, relentlessly paced and beautifully narrated. There’s just no let-up. An auspicious debut.” This is the second of two short stories that are appearing on MulhollandBooks.com. Visit the Original Fiction tab above to read “Don’t Look Away.”

Andres

It was snowing again in Santiago. On the news the boats were out in Valparaíso Bay, the divers in the water. I sat on the couch watching the flakes fall into the Pacific. The gunwales all but covered, and the simple blue of the boat turning white. And when I close my eyes the television disappears and I see bodies falling from airplanes, helicopters circling in the night. The snow taps gently against my window. It has been thirty years, and now they wanted to rush.

Valmer

Here is where it all started to fall apart. The wind coming up off the ocean, the grass moving on the low tableland, and the rocks in front of me like charcoal in the darkening air. My son, Andres, rode the small brown pony, wearing the rifle on his back, the woven leather strap across his chest. He called to the dogs, and the dogs were barking and leading the sheep down the mountain. The snow came then, riding in on the wind, until the flakes seemed to make their own paths, blowing down in streams like animals on a game trail.

Continue reading “Los Desaparecidos”

Los Desaparecidos

First published in The Southern Review

Andres

It was snowing again in Santiago. On the news the boats were out in Valparaíso Bay, the divers in the water. I sat on the couch watching the flakes fall into the Pacific. The gunwales all but covered, and the simple blue of the boat turning white. And when I close my eyes the television disappears and I see bodies falling from airplanes, helicopters circling in the night. The snow taps gently against my window. It has been thirty years, and now they wanted to rush.

Valmer

Here is where it all started to fall apart. The wind coming up off the ocean, the grass moving on the low tableland, and the rocks in front of me like charcoal in the darkening air. My son, Andres, rode the small brown pony, wearing the rifle on his back, the woven leather strap across his chest. He called to the dogs, and the dogs were barking and leading the sheep down the mountain. The snow came then, riding in on the wind, until the flakes seemed to make their own paths, blowing down in streams like animals on a game trail.

The sheep moved as they usually did, oblivious to the storm. “Keep them together,” I yelled, my words lost to the wind. My son was ten years old, eleven in a few months when he would be old enough to work in town with his mother. But for now he could only help me with the herd. He could stand on the saddle and ride flat out for a kilometer or more. He did tricks like they do at the rodeos: riding backwards, hanging sideways, shooting cans off fence posts. He said he’d like to be a gaucho one day. He’d like to wear bombachas and feel the wind cling to the wool and press the material along his legs. He’d like to be in shows and ride trick ponies. “You won’t have to work the estancia, and Mom can come back from the factory,” Andres said during late nights, the smoke from the wood stove clinging to the walls, bitterly cold air blowing in under the door.

We came to the bottom of the mountain, the land flat in front of us. Already the snow was clinging to the blades, and when I got down off the horse and looked back at where we’d been, the grass cracked like brittle twigs beneath my boots.

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Impulse Kill

DrivenA Popcorn Fiction Selection. A small-town sheriff has trouble disposing of a dead body in this twisted tale from screenwriter/editor John Patrick Nelson.

It had been an impulse kill.

Sheriff Dunne mentally kicked himself as he steered his beast of a squad car down the desert road, sweat dripping down his ass crack. Stupid, he thought, pulling the trigger like that. Just plain dumb. You’d think it would’ve at least given him a little bit of satisfaction, just the tiniest bit, but no, even when he drew his gun and fired, he’d known it was a major fuckup.

And here he was, cruising on the outskirts of his little desert town, with a body in the trunk, looking for a place to dump it. Another in a long list of stupid moves.

Number one being marrying Jean. Everyone warned him about her — hell, she even tried to warn him not to do it. And maybe she tried to be faithful, those first few years, when things were good and he was climbing from deputy to sheriff. But soon as he pinned that star on his chest, she was out the door, chasing after whatever she could get between her thighs. He couldn’t count the times he’d have to bust into some good ol’ boy’s house (or truck, or meth lab) and drag her out, usually butt naked. But he’d always managed to restrain himself, never to blow away her boyfriends, no matter how bad he wanted to.

And yet here he was, looking for a good place to dig a hole.

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Truegood

bloody snowThanks to the kind editors of Needle Magazine, we’re publishing a short story by Sophie Littlefield. This story, and many others like it, can be found in Issue 3 of Needle Magazine. Visit NeedleMag.com to subscribe.

Frank and me, we meet for happy hour every month or so. Last time was in March, when the crocuses were coming up through the rim of dirty snow at the edge of the yard, crocuses RoseMarie planted the year we bought the house. I stomped the shoots into a pulpy green mass with my work boots, and still some of the stubborn fuckers came back, opening their purple throats to the sun.

Now it’s May, and it’s irises rising up out of the ground to send me backward, only there’s been a new development and I don’t mess with RoseMarie’s flowers. Instead, I think of Frank. It’s time to call that old bastard, even if I didn’t have this other thing. But Frank owes me. After I think it through for a while, I see a way that Frank can fix my problem.

#

Frank shows up and right off I can see he’s doing fine. Looks to have taken off a few pounds, got a nice haircut and a new jacket, maybe pig suede, maybe the expensive stuff. Frank can afford it, ever since the Schapper boys put him in a half-million dollar house for free, contingent on him making it through that medically-induced coma with his head more or less glued back together after Josh Harrick took a bat to it.

Since he’s got no mortgage payment, Frank’s pension from the Toyota plant leaves more than enough to throw around. Still, you got to hand it to him: he never throws it in your face. Lets me buy a roundSoft & Sharp when it’s my turn. A little thing that means something to me, on my cop salary.

“Fuck me, you’re prettier every time I see you,” I say, as Frank hugs me. It’s a full-on hug, with no back slapping. That’s all the therapy for you, the twelve step shit. I know it well enough for what it is – I’ve lost two partners to extended AA sabbaticals, which is another way of saying they’re drinking themselves to death on the installment plan.

But Frank’s no backslider. He’s one who found a way to make it work.

I get my beer, he gets his club soda, we order one of those piles of fried onions, he looks at me long and hard and he gets down to it:

“You got troubles, Gil?”

Shit yeah, I got troubles. If it was someone else sitting across the table, I might try all night and never get it out. But there’s Frank for you. I tell him the whole story. When I mention RoseMarie he winces like it’s him who can’t breathe the air as good ever since she left, even though it’s been two and a half years. When I tell him about that fucking Stroker she’s taken up with, about the “save the date” card – the long sleeves she wore the last time we had coffee, the bluish bruise on the bit of cleavage I managed to see – yeah, I was looking, sue me – anyway Frank listens to the whole thing.

Then we figure out how to fix it.

I was counting on that. There’s been that offer on the table all these years. The quid pro quo. We’re friends. But our friendship kicked off with the balance on my side. I’m forty-six this spring, old enough to know you can pretend all day long that the past doesn’t matter – but owing is owing. And Frank’s owed me since that day twelve years ago when I walked into the Harrick house with my Sig drawn and found him lying in his own blood, gasping like a trout on a June dock in the morning sun.

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The Impossibility of a Diaphanous History Machine

WiresA Popcorn Fiction Selection. An explosive original short story from Mulholland author Charlie Huston.

Ten days before all signs of his existence were wiped off the face of the earth, Rail saw Booker and asked her if she could help him with a small problem.

He waited for her answer, watching a tendon pop up under the mat of freckles that colored her forearm an almost uniform brown. The wire stripper in her hand sliced through green insulation and she whipped the tool to the right, exposing a clean bristle of copper filaments ready to be braided.

She set the stripper aside on the tool bench she’d fashioned from barn planks and railroad ties.

“Why the fuck, Rail, would I help you? If you don’t mind.”

Rail studied the chaos of her workspace. Tools, tangles of wire, fragments of chipboard, heaps of bent nails, the guts torn from dozens of household electronics, lengths of pipe, jars of accelerant, loops of hose, more tools, and several half-disassembled radio control motors. Everything piled with no sense of order on the paint-stained, solder-burned, saw-scarred bench.

Booker’s work didn’t progress without a fair amount of hunting and pecking and cursing. Her mess wasn’t a custom system of organization that allowed her to unerringly find to hand exactly what she reached for. Rather, she required this level of anarchy to bring an element of poetry to her craft.

Indeed, Booker’s explosives and delivery systems were recognized for both their eccentricity and efficacy. And, occasionally, for their subtle humor.

From the mess, Rail plucked a fragment of metal that looked as though it were the remnant of a sheet of stainless steel that had been shattered like a pane of glass.

“What did that?”

Booker was twisting the bared copper strands with the callused tips of her thumb and forefinger. “Liquid hydrogen bath. Air hammer.” She pressed her thumb between her eyes.“Like they use on livestock in a slaughterhouse.”

Rail touched a fingertip to the needle -sharp tip of the shard. “Lot of trouble to make shrapnel.”

Booker shoved her hand into the pile on the workbench, heaved things this way and that. “Fucker.” She yanked and her hand came out of the pile holding a tube of stainless, cut on a bias at one end, a slight nip just before the lip at the opposite end, no more than 500 mm in length, 125mm in diameter.

She weighed it on her palm.

Continue reading “The Impossibility of a Diaphanous History Machine”

Don’t Look Away

Dog FightUrban Waite is a brilliant new talent about to publish his debut novel The Terror of Living (Little, Brown, February 2011) which Stephen King has called, “A hell of a good novel, relentlessly paced and beautifully narrated. There’s just no let-up. An auspicious debut.” Keep reading for the first of two short stories that will appear on MulhollandBooks.com.

I heard about Eddie on the news. Of course they didn’t say his name or list anything more than what happened. There was a police raid on a farm outside Seattle: about ten dogs were seized and a man had been arrested. For a long time I sat there. Shocked. Bathed under the dull flicker of the television, recounting the newscaster’s words. And then, after a while, I got up and stared out the window at nothing in particular. The weatherman was talking about rain, and as I watched, the wind kicked out the branches on a nearby tree, the water coming down out of the sky, highlighted and then lost in the shadows of the tree branches and leaves.

Anyone who knew Eddie Vasquez knew what he was doing out there with the dogs wasn’t right. “A man’s got to have his delights,” Eddie said, his hands on the steering wheel. This was many years ago in a Safeway parking lot.

I had asked him straight out, “What are you doing, Eddie?” The cat-piss smell of his truck wafting up through the cab, ammonia and dog hair mixed into the fabric of the seats. I hadn’t seen him in years. I was twenty-five. Newly married with a son beginning to take his first wobbly steps.

“How long has it been Raph?” Eddie said, more exclamation than question. I was standing in the parking lot, with my elbow up on his passenger door and a bag of groceries for the baby in my other hand. “Jesus Raph! How long has it been?” he said again.

I put a hand through my hair and stepped back from the truck, “Ten years.”

“Ten years,” Eddie repeated, as if it was something giant and wonderful.

“What are you doing here?” I asked.

I asked because the last time I had seen Eddie was just before we moved out of Long Beach, a month or two after my father had left and my mother decided she didn’t want to be in California anymore. We were fourteen and standing at the counter of a Walgreen’s, stuffing cheap silver Casios into our pockets. And as Eddie stuffed the silver bands down his pants, he listed them off in dollar amounts, five dollars, ten dollars, fifteen, like he was putting together an inventory.

“What does it look like,” Eddie said, turning a hand over the back seat of his truck, and motioning to about thirty pounds of beef on the floor of his cab. “I’m shopping.”

I looked at the meat and then I looked at Eddie. A wave of guilt passed over me, like it did whenever I thought of Eddie. I hadn’t even jaywalked in ten years, and here I was talking to my former partner in crime. It made me want to step back away from his truck and run all the way home. But for some reason I didn’t.

Eddie was listing off the various cuts of meat: a few chucks, a strip, some loin, and even a few miscellaneous bones.

“Are you having a barbeque?” I asked.

Eddie laughed, “No,” he said. And then after a little while, after he had stared off at the end of the parking lot, where the cement sloped down and entered the street, “Come on, I’ll show you something.”

I thought about not getting in, I thought about my baby at home. I thought about my wife. But what I did was get in the truck with Eddie. He was my brother, or as close to a brother as could be, without being related by blood. He had lived down the street from me all my life, right up until we moved to Seattle, and in the dusky nights of our childhood, we had run around on the Bermuda grass, playing soldiers with the other neighborhood kids. And no matter how uncomfortable I was with him, I knew he would never purposefully hurt me.

We turned out onto the street and took the onramp for I-5; we passed through downtown and headed south on the freeway. I was still holding a grocery bag full of diapers and baby food in my arms when I asked, “What is all the meat for?”

“Dogs,” he said, not turning from the windshield, as he hit the turn signal and merged onto the 167.

I looked at the meat in the back of the truck, measuring the dollar amount in my head, estimating numbers inside the plastic bags. I thought about the meat. I thought about what Eddie had said—dogs—and then I asked, “What are you doing, Eddie?”

Continue reading “Don’t Look Away”

Still Life

A Popcorn Fiction selection. An art dealer makes the bargain of his life in this riveting tale from screenwriter Mark Bomback.

Hi there and welcome to the 21st century!

The year that it happened began auspiciously enough: a festive New Year’s party at the Beverly Hills mansion of a movie star client, a ski weekend in Telluride, and the sale of a $1.2 million oil painting by an obscure 16th century Flemish artist named Bose to a Taiwanese financier looking to decorate new office space. The piece—a self-portrait—wasn’t itself particularly magnificent, but the artist was apparently something of an eccentric who had, in an attempt to block the local gentry from owning any of his paintings, destroyed nearly all of them. In doing so he had unwittingly allowed for the gross overvaluation of this, his one surviving but otherwise unremarkable work.

I had never been much of an art fan or even a critic, and my “eye” was admittedly mediocre. The accepted thinking in my line of work was that one needed to possess significantly above-average taste to make any sort of living at it. I don’t take issue with this, but I would add that if one hoped to become wealthy via the dealing of fine art, a good memory was of much greater necessity.

And I had an astounding memory. There was a game I used to play often as a child in which cards with pictures were placed face down. Each picture was printed twice, and the object was to pick one up, commit it to memory, and then over the course of the game, when stumbling upon its twin, remember which of the concealed cards you had flipped earlier and pick it up again to make a pair. He who possessed the most pairs at the end of the round was the winner. When it was time for me to choose a vocation, I discovered that the art trade was a game played by nearly identical rules. Simply put, the moment a trend was declared en vogue, I would immediately recall works that were clearly of this same ilk—works I had spotted months, sometimes even years earlier—and snatch them up for resale. I was merciless in my transactions, cared nothing for loyalty or propriety, and in a short time had transformed the modest sum left me upon my father’s death into an extraordinarily lucrative career.

I don’t think this sort of success would have been possible if greed had not been the primary motivating factor behind every decision I made. I was a want-er, and never knew greater joy than in that moment when the coveted became the possessed. I was, of course, extravagantly discerning in my tastes, because I could afford to be. I ate strictly at overpriced restaurants, drank only the most expensive wine, and dated exclusively gorgeous women. I never married because I never loved, and I never loved because I could never see anything to be gained in it. Sex was a pleasure, not unlike driving. Anything peripheral to the act was a banality to be endured.

It was on the second Friday in April of that same year that I attended a reception at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. As an “Angel” (a term that denoted the extent to which you supported the museum, a term that I believe was selected to intentionally play into the afterlife insecurities of the rich) I was invited to attend a private exhibition of Hideo Nakamura’s new collection of photographs.

I arrived at the museum at seven in the evening. Nakamura’s photographs were nothing spectacular, and the crowd was equally underwhelming. Making a great deal of money had always been easy in L.A., and this latest batch of the newly arrived had just figured out that contributing to art museums was equally as important as designer undershirts when it came to affirmations of one’s wealth. So to the museums they would flock to be fitted for their haloes. Of the 300+, I’d say I knew about a third, and of them, desired to speak with only five or six. In less than an hour I was back at the valet stand on Wilshire Boulevard, impatiently handing my stub to a young Mexican in the requisite red jacket and black bow tie.

sea, land, and airWhile I waited for my Mercedes, my gaze happened upon a bum standing, or rather slouching, directly across the street. I surmised that he was dead drunk, as he was bobbing and swaying with a pitiful lack of self-awareness. He glanced up and, noticing me, flashed me a brief, stupefied grin. I experienced an odd sensation of having met him before, however I immediately chalked this up to the inherent familiarity suggested by his greeting. Apparently mistaking my awkward and momentarily confused smile for some sort of encouragement, the bum started to wave at me, and then proceeded, much to my queasiness, to approach me—or at least attempt to approach, he began by practically falling the six inches off the sidewalk to the street. Nevertheless, with his eyes fixed on me, he stumbled forward, determined to lumber his way across Wilshire’s four lanes.

Of course I immediately averted my gaze, and observed his clumsy traversal only from the corner of my eye. His slouched figure had made it to the double-yellow lines when, some fifty yards past him, I glimpsed the approaching headlights of my Mercedes, the Mexican valet behind the wheel. In my mind’s eye I could instantly envision what the next three seconds would bring: the bum’s stupid gaze still fixed on me, the Mexican’s focused on the demanding crowd of patrons amassing by his valet stand, the grill of my Mercedes colliding with the bum’s pelvis, his filthy face smashing into my previously immaculate windshield—

Continue reading “Still Life”

A Conversation with Alvaro Rodriguez

Mix a love for Jim Thompson and Donald Westlake with a deep appreciation for the back alleys of genre film-making and you get Alvaro Rodriguez, an author/film-maker who spends most of his time envisioning the kind of pulp mayhem rarely seen this side of the drive-in era. Today, on Mulholland Books, Alvaro discusses his wide range of influences and weighs in on one of action cinema’s most heated debates.

Your scripts often reinvent classic or obscure genre films. What’s the most unexpected source of inspiration that you’ve found, film or otherwise?

The idea for From Dusk Till Dawn 3: The Hangman’s Daughter came from reading Ambrose Bierce’s “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” as a high school freshman and later the accounts of Bierce’s real-life disappearance at the time of the Mexican Revolution. So the prospect of creating a genesis story for Quentin Tarantino’s genre-bending vampire film, From Dusk Till Dawn, out of America’s most acerbic man of letters since Mark Twain seemed like an unexpected, and hopefully good, idea. Reading helps. One script idea came from seeing a nun’s obituary in the newspaper and wondering who goes to a nun’s funeral, then imagining she had a daughter she’d had to give up. I think a lot of my ideas are rooted in feelings and images, or memories, even cinematic ones. You can kindle something of the feeling you had as a kid going to the movies when it was a wholly immersive experience.

You started out writing short stories, then you wrote scripts such as From Dusk Till Dawn 3 and Machete, and now you’re back again. Was it difficult to make the transition between the pulp mayhem of your films and the bittersweet literary slant of “El Niño Actór“?

Not at all. They’re very compatible styles of writing, at least the way I write, because they’re both obsessed with the essential. Certainly there are writers who craft whole tapestries on the page in painstaking detail, but screenwriters aren’t really allowed to do that. In the short story format, I also aim for that economy of language. Jonathan Richman has a nice lyric about the Velvet Underground: “They played less notes and left more space.” It feels like a natural style of writing for me, and one that draws the readers to fill in the blanks with pieces of their own experience. Machete is liberating on another level because there are no rules in that world, not really, and you’re free to make things as brash and absurd as you can. That’s not to say that there aren’t bittersweet quieter moments that, I think, play well amid the mayhem.

You grew up around filmmaking; is any aspect of “El Niño Actór inspired by something you saw or experienced yourself?

The story was written as part of a series of connected tales set along the Texas-Mexico border, and like any frontier, the lines between A and B often blur and you’re left with myths and mirages. Throwing Hollywood into the mix was something I’d wanted to explore because it is a dream country as well. This story in particular was inspired by the making of Elia Kazan’s Viva Zapata! which was shot in the early 1950s in Roma, Texas, where my mother went to high school. As I was growing up, I heard the stories of how Marlon Brando and Anthony Quinn had come to the border to make their film, and I knew I wanted to draw on that fabled experience to create a story of loss and missed opportunities. It’s the myths and mirages that stay with me, just as they do for the character in the story who recounts his childhood experience as if he were recounting a folktale.

Peckinpah or Leone?
Damn, that’s a tough one. Still, I’m going to have to go with Sam Peckinpah. The Leone films are fantastic and of a piece, but I think Peckinpah explored more of the brute human condition and didn’t shy away from elegy, either. That the same director made Ride the High Country, The Getaway, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, Straw Dogs, and The Wild Bunch — he obviously understood this shadow world of broken men, again, these near-mythological heroes of an all-too-human kind. Peckinpah understood the urges of his characters at a gut level. It’s no mistake he adapted Jim Thompson.

You and your cousin are a force to be reckoned with in Hollywood. Are there any more Rodriguez family members that we need to worry about?
Nope. Just me.

Photo credit: Joaquin Avellán. Screenwriter Alvaro Rodriguez and actor Robert De Niro as Senator John McLaughlin on the set of Robert Rodriguez’s MACHETE.

Alvaro Rodriguez has been writing since childhood and, in fact, did his best work when he was 11. His Texas-border series of short stories, including a Pushcart Prize nominee, have appeared in The Mesquite Review, Bordersenses and flashquake, among others. Despite holding a masters degree in literature, he is the co-writer of Machete(2010) starring Danny Trejo, Lindsay Lohan and Robert De Niro.

El Niño Actór

A Popcorn Fiction selection. A Mexican man recounts the biggest moment of his life in this character study from screenwriter/ author Alvaro Rodriguez.

Celestino took the beer. The bottle was cold and wet, and it felt good in his hand. He had not had a drink since Hermelinda died. He wondered if it would taste the same. He had always been a beer drinker; it was inexpensive, prudent. That, and his stomach could never take the harder stuff. It burned the lining of his guts. He remembered the first time he had gotten fall-down drunk, off a half-empty bottle of gin he’d stolen from his Tío Anuncio, and how it turned his insides to fire and shit.

This beer, though, was perfect. It filled his mouth and trickled down his throat, settling low and deep in his testicles. It made him cool and warm at the same time, and even as he took another drink, he silently asked Hermelinda’s forgiveness for feeling this good.

“Come, sit with us, Tino,” Robles said, his arm around his wife. “I bet you get asked about it a lot, but would you do us the honor of telling us the story of your movie?”

Celestino took the chair offered him, set down his beer, and pulled himself in to the table.

“Nobody has mentioned it to me in more than 35 years,” he said, amazed at the honeyed fluidity of his voice, a melody of sound he hadn’t heard for such a long time. “Were you there, Everardo?”

“Was I there?” Robles asked. “I sure was. I was seven years old and you were the new Pedro Infante. We all saw it happen. But you tell the story.”

“What are you taking about, Evvy?” the comadre Altagracia wanted to know. She had grown up in a small town to the northeast, and many of the childhood stories were alien to her.

“I’m talking about Tino Macedo, el niño actór,” Robles said. “He made a movie when he was a boy. Go ahead, Tino. Tell it.”

Continue reading “El Niño Actór”

As the Crow Flies (Part II)

Halls Of HorrorAndrew Vachss uses storytelling to teach, to protect, and to make the world a better place. Today,we celebrate the publication of his new novel, The Weight, with part two of his original story “As the Crow Flies,” continued from yesterday.

7.

I knew who he was. Just like I knew Alfred Hitchcock hadn’t been his first one.

I didn’t need his name, because I had his path. His kind, they always move in straight lines. You may not know where they’re going, but you always know where they’ve been.

The local paper keeps the crime reports on a separate page. Not big crimes, like an armed robbery or a murder. Around here, something like that’s so rare it would make headlines. The “Crime Beat” page is just a printout of the entire police blotter. Drunk driving takes up most of it, with some domestic violence sprinkled in. Lately, a lot of meth busts, too. But you also see things like shoplifting, disorderly conduct, urinating in public . . . any petty little thing you could get arrested for.

The library has a complete archive, going all the way back for years and years. I read three years’ worth. Found seven little notices that qualified: five “animal cruelties”–no details; it wasn’t that kind of newspaper–and two fires they called “arson, unsolved.”

After I marked the locations on my close-terrain map, I could see they were all within a two-and-a-half-mile area. You wouldn’t need a car to cover that much ground, no matter where you started from.

I began leaving the door of my den open all the time, even when I wasn’t around.

Under the bookshelves, there’s a cabinet. It has a lock built into it, but I sometimes forget to use it. You can tell that by looking–the key is still in the lock, sticking out.

There’s magazines in there now. All kinds, from Soldier of Fortune to Playboy to the stuff I bought on that last visit to the city.

It took a couple of weeks for one of those new ones to go missing. Whoever took it would never notice that I had removed the staples and replaced them with a pair of wire-thin transmitters.

Those transmitters were real short-range, but I was sure I wouldn’t need much. I knew he was close. Continue reading “As the Crow Flies (Part II)”