Beyond Beyond; Episode 42
Rich walked nonchalant to the entrance of pier. He stretched and looked around at the empty street. An eerie breeze blew down the street like the cloud of an evil plague. Only the squawks of gulls and the breeze. He strolled back to the boat and climbed on deck.
He went below and spied out one of the cabins portholes. A man in black suit walked from an alley and stopped at the entrance to the pier. He weaved back and forth as if not knowing what direction to proceed; onto the pier or continue on the street. The Odyssey was the only boat docked at the pier, so it was obvious the man’s interest was in Rich. The man walked to a doorway to take up station. He lit a cigarette. By the time he finished the cigarette it was dark. And the dark continued to settle. There glowed only the dull lights from the streets and houses beyond. A lighthouse light from the hills above St. George’s methodically swept the night sky.
Rich’s eyes strained wide and his heart beat heavily.
Rich slipped into the darkest clothing he had. He ducked low and crawled from The Odyssey and onto the pier. He crawled slowly along the pier and onto the street. He watched the man’s head turn away. Rich rose to his feet and dashed to a street that intersected with the street that led along the waterfront.
He ducked into a doorway in view of The Odyssey. He waited certain the man in black might eventually approach the boat.
“Don’t move, Larsen,” a man said.
Rich stood motionless.
“I have a gun,” he said. He whistled loudly.
The man in black trotted to Rich and the man holding him at gun point.
“We got him,” the man said.
“Let’s get him out of here,” the man in black said.
“Who are you?” Rich said and the thought crossed his mind to make a dash for the water. His eyes pivoted toward the waterfront street to see if there was an escape route.
“I’ll inform our client and somebody will take care of the boat,” the man in black said.
“Where are you taking me?” Rich said and turned around.
“We are going to take a flight,” the man said.
“To where?” Rich said trying stall for time.
“What difference does it make,” the man said, “you ain’t payin’.”
“Who is you client?” Rich said.
“You certainly have a lot of questions,” the man said.
“I’ve always been a curious sort,” Rich said. He eyed the gun and waited for the slightest relaxation. He planned to swipe quickly at the gun and kick the man in black’s groin. He thought he could make it to The Odyssey and have time enough to grab a rifle. The bench was unlocked.
Rich readied himself mentally and his muscle tightened, yet appeared relaxed.
“Excuse me, gentlemen,” a familiar voice said. “I am the police.”
Rich turned to his left. It was Galloway.
“Hand me your gun,” the officer said.
The man continued to point the gun at Rich.
“I have two men at each end of the street,” the officer said. “Hand me the gun and come with me all of you.”
The man handed the gun to Galloway and everyone followed him for two blocks. He opened the door to a small one story square building. Inside was a desk, four chairs, and two wooden file cabinets. Above the desk a ceiling fan turned slowly.
“You two sit,” Galloway said to the two men.
They hesitated and reluctantly sat in two chairs against the wall.
“Who are you?” the officer said.
“We are bounty hunters,” the man said. “This man is wanted in the United States, we want to return him to the authorities.”
“That means nothing here,” Galloway said. “Here, I am the authority. Let me see your passports.”
The two men pulled them from there back trouser pockets.
Galloway feigned suspicion examining the passports. “They look forged.”
“No they’re not,” the man said incredulously.
“What makes you think they’re forged?” the man in black said.
““They just look forged,” Galloway said.
“Are you an expert?” the man said.
“Ronnie,” Galloway said to one of his men standing at the door, “are you an expert at recognizing forged passports?”
“Yes,” Ronnie said.
“Come here and look at these,” Galloway said.
Ronnie removed a pair of glasses from his shirt pocket and put them on. He looked passively at the passports.
“Well, what do you think, Ronnie?” Galloway said.
“They look like forgeries,” Ronnie said.
“There you have it,” Galloway said. “and because Ronnie is not employed by the police and had to be called as an expert there will be a slight fee charged for his services.”
“I want another expert,” the man said.
“Certainly,” Galloway said. “Joe,” he said to the other guard at the door, “are you an expert in forged passports?”
“Never mind,” the man said.
“On the other hand,” Galloway said, “I’ve examined Mr. Larsen’s and his look official. You may go, Mr. Larsen.”
The two men were visibly upset.
“Thank you, sir,” Rich said and exited the office.