Friday, October 15, 2004

Stormy Day!

"She put her hand into the thresher," you say. "That was that."

Captain Gleason pours his brandy. He knows by now not to ask you if you'd like a glass. And tonight, he's not even going to crack a joke about it. He won't be laughing with you anymore.

"I appreciate you coming all the way up here to tell me in person," says Captain Gleason.

"You put a lot of money behind her," you say.

"Behind you both," he says, loud, like a door-slam. "She played the tournaments. You were her manager. I trusted my investment in you both."

Captain Gleason is standing by the window, staring out at the trees bending their backs with the wind. His back is to you. He probably learned a long time ago that this is how to stand in the company of someone whose life is in his hands.

"That storm won't let you go home tonight," he says. "Dalton will fix a room for you. You'll stay here tonight."

"I'll be living through the night then?" You asked it before thinking twice.

"Of course," says Captain Gleason. "How else will you help me find that miserable whore of a pool shark?"

Happy Stormy Day!