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Most people talk to their cat or dog or occasionally their family, but our hero has a different kind of friend…






     When I arrived at the crime scene, the deceased were already posing for their evidence shots. Phil Rudman was gleefully snapping away as if he were shooting a fashion ad for Cosmopolitan. I mused he would be rattling off instruction and encouragement if he knew it wouldn’t raise any eyebrows. The female victim seemed to enjoy the attention, and proudly paraded her corpse on the sidewalk.

Two feet over, her male counterpart was less enthusiastic, and showed clear displeasure at the multiple knife wounds in his throat and chest. Both were clad in sweat-pants and tee-shirts, tennis shoes and wristwatches. I stood next to Phil and pulled a cigarette from my inside pocket.

     “Ironically, jogging is supposed to extend life...”

     “Tell me about it.” I replied.

     Phil looked over to me. “What was that, Frank?”

     “Nothing.” I waved him off. “I was talking to my gun... where’s the lucky constable who discovered the scene?”

     Phil pointed me to a squad car, parked illegally, in a handicap slot ten yards north of the bodies. A young Latin-looking buck was conversing exuberantly, yet with his arms folded, to a group of three peers. I sensed this was likely his first grisly murder discovery, and he held the self-conscious macho composure of all fresh-from-the-academy grinder meat. Through the thin veneer of his toothy smile, I could see the troubled nausea in his eyes. He was fully humoring his peers, but inside wanted to run to a desolate alley and puke. To his right I watched a news van pull up. Tina Hardley, channel seven, rustled for a moment in the front seat then exited the vehicle, directing her driver and cameraman to the scene. I recalled that she hated my guts, because I was a man. Her cameraman also hated me, because I was white. Hey, eighty-seven percent of American police officers are white males, I just go with the majority.

     “What’s the story, Frankenstein?”

     I exhaled a healthy fog of smoke in Tina’s direction to insure she came no closer than she had to. She wasn’t calling me a monster. Frankenstein was a nickname I picked up early on from friends and enemies alike. First name Frank, last name Stein, you do the math. I considered my options. I could be truthful, explaining I just got here and point her towards the rookie, or I could tell her to blow while I questioned the officer myself.

     “Why don’t you just screw with her...”

     “Good idea...”

     Tina stopped just short of my Marlboro barrier and cut her eyes to the fashion shoot. “How many victims? Just these two?”

     “Oh... these aren’t the victims, these are the witnesses... you’ll have to wait until we’re finished questioning them, but I can tell you it involves a highly influential political figurehead, a Jamaican peanut vendor and several midgets of unknown origin... should make quite a story...”

     Tina frowned. “You’re so... strange, Frank.”

     I couldn’t argue of course. Although the random comment was only my attempt at making a joke, I was without doubt the strangest person I knew. Two years ago I worked a four month stint in narcotics. I had put in for the transfer after spending twelve years in homicide and someone finally cut me a break. Twelve years of studying death will take its toll on one’s family life. Zoe, my daughter, grew up to daddy in the living room floor with dozens of snapshots of bloody corpses. My wife was disturbed at her spiral towards the goth scene, but it all made sense to me. She was saturated, if not obsessed, with the ever-present human condition of decay. Couple that with my inattention and her mother’s Ferris wheel mood swings, and frankly, I’m surprised she didn’t attempt to slit her wrists earlier than fifteen. I was the one who had the pleasure of finding her in the bathtub that Friday night, and the image is forever burned into an isolated corner of my retina. Zoe survived, but was in a coma, narcotics was supposed to be a vacation, however, I found that the position had its own pitfalls.

     “What pitfalls?” Tina asked, breaking me out of my reverie.

     I blinked and my breath caught in my throat. Was I speaking out loud again?

     “Excuse me?” I asked.

     “Frank, are you going to stand there acting like a jackass or will you give me a statement?”

     Inna-godda-davida played in the background as her fiery red locks swayed to the groove. The effect was quite mesmerizing and I had to make a sincere effort to pull myself away from it.

     “I like your hair.” I commented, and walked towards the rookie.     

The kid turned to me and nodded. “Detective.” He greeted.

     “Frank Stein, homicide.” I said all official like, as if he hadn’t just acknowledged me as a detective. “When did you find the bodies?”

     “Twenty-two hundred hours...” Dominguez (according to his name-plate) replied, like I was his drill sergeant. “We were following up an earlier complaint at the bar across the street.”

     “Brady’s?” I  asked, scribbling in my notepad.

     “What was the complaint?”

     “A fight had broken out in Brady’s. A local was drunk and was making threats to several patrons... we escorted him outside and he agreed to go home...”


     “Dennison, Thad.”

     The very mention of the name sucked me into a time warp. I remembered the call in vivid detail and clarity. I had been in narcotics for three months, but my situation at home failed to improve. Zoe still lay comatose, and Theresa only grew increasingly bitter and aggressive, no matter what I did for her. She had kicked me out of the house the night before, and I had slept in my office. Coming out of the 14th precinct’s men’s room, where I had shaved and washed up, I was informed of the call. An informant was on the line with the whereabouts of a perp we had been tracking for weeks.

     “This is Stein...”

     “Yeah, you lookin for Ceaser right?” Came the hard-edged gangsta-rap dialect.

     “You know where he is?”

     “Look, I usually deal witah that dude Jackson... Jackson always make sure I get paid an everything, but when I asked for him they gave me you... I don’t know you... and I don’t trust cops...”

     “Everything will be the same, as long as you’re not jerking us around. My name is Frank Stein, this is my case now... where is Ceaser?”

     There was a hesitant pause on the other end. I patiently waited it out. Sometimes being a cop is like being a salesman, you push too hard and they run.

     “This mornin...” He Continued. “He checked into The Quality Inn... one of my girls work the counter there...”

     “One of your girls?” I asked. Dealing with informants offers a mixed bag. Was he a pimp? A polygamist?

     “So anyway...” He ignored me. “Fool’s in room 231, he’s had three visitors so far and six phone calls...”

“You’re quite the efficient informant...”

“Make it worth my while and I get you that nigga's blood type...”    

“That won’t be necessary.”

“Fine, I’ll be expecting the usual.”

“Sure, sure, as soon as we make the arrest. What is your name and address?”

“You don’t need no address... this is Thadius, Thadius Dennison... ask around your station, Frankenstein, they all know me...”


“Sure, ok, we’ll get on it and you’ll be taken care of, don’t worry...” I said.

“I’m sorry?” Said the rookie, looking concerned, like he missed something important.

I blinked and stared at officer Dominguez, slowly trailing my way back into the present. His thick, short-cropped hair was at least easier to focus on compared to Tina’s disco snakes. His mustache, however, was another story. What was once a short trimmed cop job, had become long and twisted at the ends like a ninetieth-century gentleman. I had to look away.

“You sure about the name?”

“Yes sir, we were coming back on a routine checkup of the situation, not even planning on getting out of the car, when we spotted the victims.”

“Any witnesses?”


After a few more routine questions I turned to leave, brushing past Tina who continued to jabber nonsense at me. Getting into my car, I hauled out with a screech of my balding tires and headed into the night desperado style. Dennison had several known hangouts around town, but no known physical address. Finding him wouldn’t be too much of a problem, but I had a stop to make first. The street lights blurred past me as King Crimson sang about the Great Deceiver on my tape deck. I grew up on Joplin and Hendrix, you know, “psychedelic” music. Looking back, however, it never seemed so far out there. Having never indulged in any unlawful mind alteration, I was always able to relate to John Lennon and Jim Morrison. But Crimson... what in the world were they on?

     Cigarettes, ice cream, figurines of the Virgin Mary. The Virgin Mary. Yes, there was the old girl now, in her usual pose, adorning the entrance to my daughter's hospital. I parked in back and made my way through the doctors entrance. All the staff knew me on a nickname basis, and I traversed the corridors undisturbed, barely offering nods of acknowledgment to those I passed. As I made my trek to the south wing elevator, I replayed the eventful bust in my head. Thad was on target, as expected. Minimal surveillance verified Ceaser was right where Thad told us. We didn’t see the point on sitting on our thumbs with this one. There was already substantial reason for prosecution, and we needed to sweat him into a deal for bigger fish.     

            The Quality Inn turned out to be a sunken rathole on the lower east side. One officer swung the battery into the door and four other bullet-proof civil servants rushed in with guns drawn. Ceaser was on the floor, with a knee in the back of his neck, before he could go for the Uzi on top of the television. I walked in behind and began to take account of the goodies.
     “Check it out Frank, he’s got pantyhose on!”

     I glanced at Jason Simms, who was kneeling on Ceaser’s back. His pants had started to come down, revealing his sheer elegance obsession.
     “Don’t get him too excited then...” I said.     

            I turned back to inspect the duffle bag on the bed. About half a kilo was present. I assumed the visitors Thad had mentioned were in possession of quite a bit more. Next to the duffle, were several guns, a scale, and a few syringes. Other objects lay haphazard across the room, like porn rags with some of the images cut out, and a few jars housing several insects. There was a milk crate full of doll heads in one corner, and Q-tips littered the floor. Ceaser was a strange one. As I played the “what does Ceaser do with those Q-tips” game in my head, I came upon the most out-of-place object in the entire place. On the bathroom counter stood a half-inch vial of clear liquid with a happy-face logo stamped on the cap. Recognizing it instantly to be acid from a raid on a van of deadheads two weeks prior, I snatched it up and slipped it into my shirt pocket.

     In the world of narcotics there are certain politics and factions at play. Your crack heads group together, sometimes mingling with the sherm freaks, while heroin and meth addicts make up the other major half of the junkie pie chart. Then you have the party kids with their lines of designer drugs and varied smokables. LSD is an odd bird these days. Since the arrival of ecstasy, it isn’t much in fashion. There is a core group of hippie throwbacks and ravers that keep it in the market, but the chances of them mixing it up with the likes of Ceaser’s peers is substantially low.

     “Anything interesting?”

     I spun around to see Simms leaning in the bathroom doorway, grinning like he just gave Ceaser a pantyhose wedgie. “No...” I said too fast. “Nothing in here...”

     “Well the lab team is here, we’re about done, and “He’s got legs” is en route to the station, awaiting your company...”

     “Thanks, Simms...”

     Simms was an alright guy. Too bad he had to get shot in the throat by Ceaser, three weeks after we released him on a plea bargain. It would seem that humiliating a cross-dressing Argentinean heroin dealer carries its consequences. The real kicker, was that we never even got to bust Ceaser’s supplier, because Ceaser had killed him as well. The doll heads in that milk crate turned out to have heroin sealed into the inner molding of the plastic, awaiting their counterpart bodies in Ceaser’s van. This made little sense, considering they were already stateside. Where was he smuggling them to? Unfortunately, the discovery wasn’t made until we had already let Ceaser go. Everyone on the investigation team got reamed real good. The whole thing was a nightmare holocaust. And it all went down when I was in the throngs of my initial psychosis.

     I took my daughter's hand and slid into the chair adjacent to her hospital bed. She stirred and turned to face me. Looking at her serene face, my gut clinched and I had to swallow back something I didn’t want to surface.

     She lay still, eyes closed and motionless aside from her shallow chest falls as she exhaled.

     “Zoe, it’s daddy...”

     I began to wonder if she would talk to me tonight. Of course, on average, when one visits a loved one who has been comatose in excess of two years, they rarely expect a conversation. But Zoe and I spoke regularly.

     “Zoe... I...”

     There it was, the peculiar glow that illuminated her face as her eyes fluttered open and blinked the sleep away. Looking up to me she offered only the faint hint of a smile. As if she didn’t really want me to know how glad she was to see me. Our relationship had improved over the last twenty some odd months, but I knew there was still resentment. I’m not sure if she blamed me for her condition, but I was certainly a contributor to her careless mistakes. Parents are supposed to guide their kids out of danger zones long before something like this happens.

     “Time to go home?” She said in a small seventeen year old voice. My heart imploded.

     She was testing me. Knowing I had no option but to leave her here and let the doctors feed her intravenously and care for her around the clock potential needs.

     “I wish for nothing more...” I finally replied.

     She closed her eyes and took a deep breath. “I know... how are you?”

     “You know me... content as ever...”    

     “See any dead bodies lately?”

     “As a matter of fact...” I recalled the night's earlier carnage. “I did.” I tried my best not to encourage her morbid daydreams by describing the details as she would have liked. “How are you feeling?”

     “Oh, peachy... they fed me tube today... yummy...”

     I smiled and brushed her hair away from her eyes. “Now listen young lady, there’s children in Africa who would kill for some good tube.”

     “I’d kill to eat some Ethiopian slop... with my mouth.”     “I brought you something...” I decided to change the subject. “I saw it, and it reminded me of you.” From my pocket I pulled the troll doll. Just like the ones that were so popular in my era, with the pug nose and frizzy hair, except this one was decked out Gothic style, complete with black hair, eyeliner and clad in leather.

     “That's pretty rad...”

     I placed it in her limp hand and closed her fingers around it.

     “He’s been complaining all night...” I made my bored goth-guy face. “I’m so depressed... life is hell... America is a nightmare...”

     “America is a nightmare...”

     I began to speak, but stopped myself. I was a homicide detective, could I argue?

     “He’s cute though... I think I’ll call him... Poindexter.”

     “Oh yeah... that’s real tough...”

     “He isn’t tough... he’s smart... and sensitive... and he brings me Cheerios every morning, with honey...”

     When she was six, and had chicken pox, I brought breakfast to her room one morning. I told her that I did something special to the Cheerios to make them fix her all up. It was only a few tablespoons of honey, but it did the trick. After that she wasn’t happy unless daddy made her Cheerios every morning. For years I made her breakfast. I’m ashamed to say that I can’t recall when I stopped. You would think that would be something a parent dreads to give up. But it passed without my recollection, and then came Skinny Puppy.

     “Cheerios, huh?”

     “Mmm hmm, with honey.”

     “How would he carry the bowl? His arms are all stiff and he’s too small... he’d be spilling the milk everywhere...”

     “Shhhh... I told you Poindexter is sensitive...”

     Grinning, I just sat for a while admiring her simple beauty. So much a reflection of Theresa when I first met her. The pale skin in contrast to the dark brown hair offset her features perfectly. A slender nose and full, but subtly shaped lips were graced by the occasional ultra light freckle that stood out so prominently when she was a child. As beautiful as she was, her face will now forever bring with it the memory of her lying in a blood red bath. For the first year I could barely get the image out of my mind. I remember sitting on a motel bed, the night after the raid on Ceaser’s. Torrents of tears came gushing from my eyes. Self pity mixed with unbearable guilt can bend even the straightest of arrows.

     Drawing the vial from my shirt pocket I stared at the liquid inside. The promise of euphoria lay in it. An indescribable enlightenment that was supposed to push my problems in the far distance, if only for a little while. I removed the plastic cap and took a deep breath. Just a dab on the tip of my finger would have penetrated my pores and given me the desired effect, but I was adventurous. Slowly, I poured a drop, or what felt like a drop, on the tip of my tongue. Regret set in almost the moment the cool liquid hit my saliva. Quickly placing the cap back on, I lay the vial on the night-stand and stood. What had I done? This was the very mentality I had spent my life fighting against. The mind set that takes a bad situation and does whatever possible to make it even worse.

     I went to the bathroom and washed my face. I couldn’t feel anything, I thought maybe it wasn’t really acid. I lay on the motel bed and turned on the tube. There was a documentary on about UFOs. Eerie music, à la Unsolved Mysteries played over still shots of pie tins and light reflections, as the narrator rambled on about the similarities between witnesses miles apart. My mind was elsewhere. I lay there for some 45 minutes, but all I could think about was Zoe. She had stabilized, but not regained consciousness. The doctors were characteristically vague in their prognosis. I stared passed the backwoods machinist being interviewed to the image of a humble farmhouse where he had presumably found countless cattle mutilations. I watched as one of the gutted dairy cows lifted its head and grinned at me.

     What struck me odd was the apparent lack of pain in the animal's expression. It’s guts were scooped out like a jack-o-lantern but it looked serene. I was reminded of dissecting frogs in high-school biology. It is a natural instinct to believe living things feel sensations in the same way we do. But that isn’t correct, is it? How could something that looks so different feel the same? From an introverted perspective you might say that a living thing is the sum of it’s feelings. From hindsight you would say we are the sum of our experience. Yet to everyone else, upon initial inspection, you are only the sum of your material, physical appearance, and nothing more. As I pondered this, I felt I had breached a new level of maturity and enlightenment. The euphoric personal glory lasted only a few moments before I once again began to think about Zoe. I had the overwhelming impulse to drive to the hospital to see her so I could tell her about my enlightenment, but it was her mothers shift, and I was forbidden.

     “How can you even work at a time like this?”

     “It’s the only thing that keeps me from completely breaking down.” I replied defensively.

     “Nothing is the same from this point on... you have choices...”

     “I don’t have choices...”

     “You have the choice to walk away.... find a new life, change your name, your profession...”     “I could never do that...” I answered. The voice was blissfully androgynous, and spoke to me like it had access to my thoughts.

     “Then you can choose to end it now... a nice clean break from existence...”     “That isn’t what I want.”

     “What you want is not attainable... you can’t fix this one... there’s nothing to solve, no lead to follow... your life from this point will always be marked by misery...”

     “Then I choose misery...” I closed my eyes and buried my head into the motel pillow, which I perceived on a subconscious level to have the faint odor of vomit.

     “At least you’ve managed to lessen the blow...” The voice was stronger now, seemingly whispering directly into my ear.

     “I thought it would be different...”

     “You didn’t know what to think, you acted out of impulse... a wave of desire you had no idea existed... and now you are something you never were yet always will be.”

     As I opened my eyes, my vision adjusted to the night stand and the barrel of my 38. I was pursed to respond for only a sliver of a moment before I realized I was talking to my gun. For some reason, that fact, in a sea of abnormalities, struck out and bit me in the face. I recoiled off of my bed in fear, letting out a gasp that sounded shamefully feminine. I stumbled backwards until my back was against the wall. Everything around me seemed drained of color, and distorted in a carnival fun house mirror reflection. I could hear countless voices, all spraying a fountain of emotions. For what felt like hours, it was my sole ambition to reach out and take hold of the positive emotions, and dodge the negative ones, a frustrating game that seemed safe if merely in its repetition.

     Repetition became a staple of existence. My life carried on like a broken record. On some level of consciousness I understood I was moving, making my way to the bathroom, but every material object I laid my eyes upon became a world unto itself. I was forced to land on that world and explore. I soared its skies and braved its dungeons, laughing and crying as the cascade of eternal proximity gave me constant relation to my existence. At times my journey was scored by symphony and choir, at other times demented laughter or horrific screaming. I was looking in the mirror. I hadn’t come there, nor was I taken, I was simply there, and every line on my face carried with it a new facet of my being. Stories revolved over and over again as I seemed to relive and reevaluate my past and future.

     The future had arrived. I dragged a new cancer stick and glared at my steering wheel. I didn’t remember leaving Zoe’s room. Frankly I didn’t even remember lighting my cigarette. But this was my life now. All I can do is carry on and trust the gaps will fill themselves in as I progress this trip. Part of me is still there. Part of me will forever be there, staring at my face in the bathroom mirror of a cheap motel, frying on acid. It’s not always so intense, I’m even able to manage my life to a reasonable degree, but there is an opening in my mind that will forever inhale intangible phantoms and let some lucidity escape. After researching the matter further, I learned how lucky I was. All statistics on the matter show me to be in a one-percent bracket of people who suffer permanent effects from their initial use of LSD. The condition is called LSD psychosis.
     I headed towards Seduction, a dumpy little strip club on 5th that Thad was known to frequent. It was the closest to the crime scene and seemed the best place to start. A handful of scattered patrons were laying about the place, most barely paying attention to the entertainment. The stage caught my eye however, as on it sat a giant, wart-laden bullfrog. I swallowed back my disgust as it glared at me and croaked. Forcing my attention towards the bar, whilst keeping one eye on the slimy green pole dancer, I slipped my badge out.

     “Thadius Dennison.” I said flatly to the bartender.

     He looked at me as if cops annoyed him hourly and shrugged.

     I sized him up for a minute. He wore a sleeveless leather vest and no shirt. Sporting a shaved head and loop earrings, I figured him for the decent church going type.

     Cutting my eyes to the stage I asked. “Wouldn’t you get warts from touching that?”

     He crossed his full sleeve tattooed arms and clinched his jaw in a way that made his ears twitch.

“Why doncha go find out.”     

Donning a look of disappointment I shook my head. “Look... if you want, we can play it your way, and I’ll have officers in here every other hour enforcing the laws of lap dance limitations. I’m sure your profits will soar when your patrons realize what a fine upstanding joint you’re running. Then again, you can point me in Thad’s direction and I’ll be on my merry way. You and your bullfrog can go do lines off a lilly pad for all I care.”
     He held an expression that was half intimidated and half confused. “Listen man... I don’t know where he is... he left with Gina earlier, that’s all I know.”

     I pulled out my notebook. “Is Gina reptile or amphibian?”

     “What?” He almost sounded panicked.

     “Forget it, where does she live?”

     “Look, I don’t know alright... you’re kind of freaking me out...”

     I narrowed my eyes and felt my impatience swell. As of late I had developed a temper. Rage would boil inside me and I would act out of character. I even scared myself. When anger got the better of me my hallucinations would also follow suit. The world became a tumultuous and highly unstable nightmare.

     “I don’t want to become angry with you.” I said in a voice that was deceptively calm, underlain with tension. I could tell by the look in his eyes that my intensity was coming through loud and clear. “The number you call when she doesn’t show up, the information on her W2s, I don’t care. I just want it now.”    

“R-right... right... just hang on...”

     I watched him make his way to the office tucked behind the bar and listened to the condemned scream from hell below. The shot glasses were all full of blood and I hadn’t realized it, but my nails were digging into the bar top.

     “Easy frank, save it... save it for tonight...”

     “I’m OK.” I said.

     “You lose it now, and you may not have another chance... self deception is a tricky game...”

     “I said I was alright...”

     In under a minute the bartender came back out with a piece of paper in his hand. “This is all I got. No phone number, but there’s an address on Garfield. I don’t know if it’s legit or not... Gina really just comes and goes as she pleases...”

     I took the address and shoved it into my coat pocket. “I’ll be back if I don’t find him.”
     On the drive to Gina’s, my mind replayed several eventful moments in my life. My honeymoon was a fond recollection, but it left only a sour aftertaste as I considered my rocky divorce. I could recall every smell and sound from the hospital room the day my daughter was born, all the while flashes of her suicide attempt contended for dominance. Then there was the day she began to speak to me from within her coma. I swear if it wasn’t for that small ray of sunshine in my dark expanse of hell, I would have surely gone mad. And now I’m in front of Gina’s apartment building. And now I’m walking down the hallway on the fourth floor. And now I’m kicking in the door with my gun drawn.

            Thadius springs upright from inside the bed in the tiny studio apartment. I fire a shot into the headboard just left of center to immediately establish just how serious I am. Aiming at the succubus who shares his sheets, I tell her to leave. She obliges without a word. Thadius is talking but I can’t hear him. My heartbeat is thundering in my ears like a machine shop. He becomes the scapegoat for everything wrong in my life. My entire plate of torment seems to have been served by one malicious waiter, and now it’s time he got his tip. If I stop to rationalize, I might come to another conclusion, so I keep pressing this swelling urge to complete the cycle I’ve started. He’s resisting arrest. He must be resisting arrest. Shoot Frank. Shoot. If you don’t shoot he’ll get away. Will you let a murderer get away? I shoot. One shot goes through his left eye. The second shot pierces his jawbone. I hear the residual echo of my gunshots in a sea of silence. It’s over.


     I sat at my desk staring at my hands. Most people never stop to think about the significance of their hands. The majority of your sins as well as the good you offer to humanity are accomplished by the oddly yet conveniently shaped extremities we so often take for granted. I wondered what stories could be told if the cosmic record needle of time was set into the continuous and unique groove that makes up a handprint.

     “You should be happy such a thing doesn’t exist.”

     “I don’t know... it would make my job easier... I’m a cop, I’d probably be exempt...”

     “Exempt from what?” Said Chief Holloway, sneaking up from behind me.

     I swiveled in my chair and shook my head. “Nothing... I was talking to my gun...”

     “Right, whatever Frank... listen, I got a hysterical woman on Garfield. Says she was forced out of her apartment at gunpoint, and when she came back this morning, found her boyfriend all shot up. It’s one of our informants... could be connected to something recent.”

     I grimaced in thought and rubbed my stubble. “You know... I’m still up to my neck with those stabbings across from Brady’s. Give it to Connelly, he owes me a favor.”

     The Chief shrugged. “Long as it gets done. How’s that case going anyway? You follow that lead from the officer on scene?”

     “Yeah, that was a bust... “ I reached into my shirt pocket for my notepad. “Uh... Chad Benjamin... he was stirring things up in Brady’s a few hours prior, but he went home and slept it off... just a local factory worker. I’m looking into friends and relatives at the moment... trying to sort out the details.”

     “Yeah... alright, fine... let me know what comes up. And go home and take a shower for cryin out loud, will ya?”    

As he walked away I winked at the devil sitting on his left shoulder. His angel wouldn’t look at me. In all of this, I have to say, I’m still the most coherent person I know.