The Id and The Odyssey; Episode 124

Uncomfortable Conversation 

Dennis raised his eyebrows and looked directly at Rich. “I worked for Sam a year. Actually I was a very good reporter. Sam and I had philosophic disagreements. I’m the reserved type. I don’t like involvement. I want to write and be left alone. Book signings, interviews, readings, and the like are painful for me. I was older than you when I started to work for Sam. I wasn’t particularly looking for a job. When it came to writing I could hold my own with him, but always valued his opinion on writing and that’s as far as it went. I left the paper to devote more time to creative writing. Sam, Katie, Peggy, and I have remained friends, but if not for the fact I was a writer with promise and Peggy and accomplished artist we would see very little of those two.”
Rich now turned completely on the bench to face Dennis. “I think I need to hear more. Is there a reason for drawing himself to artists and writers?”
“I think you know,” Dennis said.
“I’m not sure what I know,” Rich said.
“Let me say that Sam is an honest and decent man,” Dennis said, “but it has it’s limits. He is driven by what he thinks is a greater cause and the ends will justify whatever means. He gave me books to read. I dismissed them without reading. I’ve heard and read it all before when I was in college. It was just never my cup or tea. He is also an elitists. You must have really impressed him for the get go. He has no friends in Rockland but us. He considers us his intellectual equals. He has contempt for Rockland and its smallness.”
“Why are you telling me this?” Rich said.
“I think I know what you might be dealing with,” Dennis said, “and if I can help; if nothing more than a listening ear, I can listen.”
“Right now,” Rich said, “I’d like to leave things between Sam and I.”
“Sure,” Dennis said, “and perhaps that is best.”
Rich abruptly stood leaving Dennis sitting and confused.
“I should probably get back to the Jeep and head back to Rockland,” Rich said.
“Really,” Dennis said in sort of a challenging way, “I thought we could kick around and have another meal together before you headed back.”
“I really need to get back,” Rich said. “I don’t want to drive while I’m tired. I do have couple of things that need attention.”
“Yeah,” Dennis said, “we wouldn’t want you to fall asleep at the wheel.”
Rich shook Dennis’s hand. “My Jeep is opposite direction from the bookstore. So I’m going to take off from here.”
“I could get you a coffee,” Dennis said.
“That’s okay,” Rich said. “I’ll take a rain check. When you get back to Rockland give me a ring and we’ll have a meal together.”
“I’ll see you July 4th holiday,” Dennis said.
“Sounds great,” Rich said.
Rich walked away in the opposite direction of Dennis.

Rich was in a familiar state of mind. He thought as he walked toward his Jeep. “I don’t trust anyone. It is too convenient and coincidental that Dennis should bring this up. I felt as if he was trying to win my confidence to see what how I felt about Sam. This relates to the Gaffee ledger and the micro film in Sam’s safe. I know it does.”