November 30, 2012

No. 257

Tom Carolla tore up his betting slip and left the track. The races had not been kind to him. As he rounded the corner at the end of the block, a large man approached him.
“Tom, I hope you still have Mr. Solomon’s money,” said the giant.
Without saying a word, Tom handed over a small roll of bills.
The big man counted to make sure he had been given the appropriate amount. “This should cover it,” he confirmed.
“I might not be a great judge of horses, Dino,” Tom said. “But I’m not stupid.”
The man nodded. “That’s right. That’s why Mr. Solomon told me that if you paid up, I could offer you a job.”
Carolla’s interest was piqued. “What kind of work?”
“Mr. Solomon has a boat coming in tonight. He wants you down at the docks to deal with one of the passengers.”
Tom knew instantly who he was meant to “deal with”. “It’s Kate, isn’t it?”
Dino touched his nose, and his pointed silence confirmed Tom’s suspicions.
“Great,” Tom grumbled.
“And Mr. Solomon doesn’t want what happened last time to happen again,” Dino warned.
“Then can I have my money back?” asked Tom.
Dino smiled and tossed the roll to Carolla. “Not like last time,” he repeated.
The two men spent a moment watching each other in awkwardly.
“She’s my sister. I’m not her boss,” said Tom defensively.
“It’s a good thing she’s your sister, too, Tommy, or Mr. Solomon would have cut you loose years ago,” Dino laughed.

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