It was raining morbid black rain the whole day the way it does every once in awhile in Melbourne when God wants to throw a little respite our way. Except this didn’t feel like respite, it felt like there was something in the air.
And it wasn’t something good.
I was sitting holed up on a sidewalk cafe on Chapel Street waiting for the rain to die down so I could make a dash to my car. Except the rain wasn’t letting up. So I sat there knocking back Strawberry Spider after Strawberry Spider killing time the way time was killing me.
Staring at the street, lost in my head, I only became aware of the man sitting on table across from me when I smelt him. Tobacco and blood and something else I couldn’t place. He was a corpulent ostentatious looking man, dressed in a black suit with a black tie, looking like he hadn’t slept in 5 months but with a million dollar smile. Think Jack Nicholson meets John Howard.
This guy could be anywhere from his late thirties into his arthritic nineties. He was smiling at me like he had won the 67 million Tats lottery that was up today. It was then that I noticed the briefcase he had up on the table in front of me.
“So you’re the guy huh…” he leered at me. He pushed the brief case towards me.
“Go ahead, open it kid, you’ll see it’s all there.”
Well I’m not much of a deep thinker so I did.
Inside was hardware so advanced it took me a whole minute to figure out what I was looking at. It was a 12” Media Frame, with all the specs you could dream of, high resolution, Mp3 capacity, video playable, photo slideshow options. I didn’t know what exactly I was looking at but I knew I wanted it.
“All the information you need is inside that baby, so once you get what you need, you can get me what I need,” he said, then patted the briefcase shut, and stood up.
I stood up as well unsure what to say, so I kept my mouth shut.
“Oh yeah, and here’s my card.” He handed me something, smiled like he had bought my soul for a dollar and walked off into the rain humming Amazing Grace.
Standing in the dying rain, holding a prized trophy in the briefcase in my left hand, I felt good the way a lion does after eating a deer. Then I looked at the card in my right hand and it only had a phone number on it and a name: Mister Gines.
Then I felt like the deer.