Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Crime/Gangster · #1979900
I've always wanted a reputation, the kind that precedes me. I imagined myself greater.
I guess I just had to assume I was approaching the right man.
I was told next to nothing of his appearance, but the only person in a bar in the middle of La Pearla wearing an old Hugo Boss suit had to be my contact. He was on his fourth drink, the silver rum disappeared as fast as it was poured into the double glass.
I sat next to him, ignored the bartender and waited to be noticed.
"You could order a drink. I mean, I know you yankees are flamboyant but don't stand out that much. Even with wrinkled cargo shorts on."
I half stuttered, this contact was to be one of the best on the east coast, he was so glib.
He didn't seem to care what I called him, he ordered another drink and simply kept the bottle next to him.
I repeated the question.
"I received the funds this morning Claus, you'll have your answers." He finished the drink slower and held the small ice cube between his teeth. Mr. Moyers turned to me and sighed.
I brushed past it. "Could we go somewhere else? I don't have much time to drink. I need to find this man."
Mr. Moyers didn't budge.
This time I sighed. "What do you know about Alex Stone?"
"Alex? Hmm." He paused, almost as if he had no idea who I spoke of, " Alex is a number of things. Depends what you need."
"We need someone who can talk to people, make them believe things, say things."
"Yeah, yeah he can do that."
"What else can he do?"
He looked at me now, then turned entirely around to face the view of the sea from outside the bar, "Alex can do a number of things.
I saw him once stabilize a man from dying for three days before he executed the same one for a sexual violence charge.
He can write you a speech in the morning and teach you to dance at night. In between he could save and kill someone.
He can show you why your mother leaving you at an early age explains the women, or in your case, men you like."
Quickly growing annoyed I tried to ignore him and the bartender asking if I would order a drink. "We need someone with various skills. But we need his talk. His ability to talk to people.
Where is he?"
"Oh that changes often.
Two years ago if you asked me I'd answer at a rebel hospital in Turkey. Recently I'd have said California, but then a year later I'd be staying Chicago studying to be a critic.
Nowadays? He's like me. Retired, drinking cervesa on a Latin coast, this time he's on a small island off the coast of Panama."
"Why do you know this?"
"Oh boy, you're not the only one searching for him.
Actually" he spun back to the bar to finish the bottle, "you should have ordered a drink."
I looked forward to the barrel of the 12 gauge behind the bar but it was too late. I wouldn't find Alex Stone. And I didn't want to know what he was to warrant these people looking for him too.
Mr. Myers ordered another double from a new bottle thinking of the plane ride that night to Panama. He had a reason to find Alex Stone, and it was mostly to show him that a shotgun behind a bar is a kind way to die when you cross the Family.