"The Right Man" is a crime/detective fiction short story.

            “Answer me one thing, Tomas.” I said. “Why’d you blackmail Mary for sleeping with you along with the prescription abuse? Weren’t the drugs enough to extort her father?” Tomas grinned at me.

            “Who said we were going after her father?” Tomas started to laugh. It wasn’t a friendly laugh. It was the laugh of a man who just got away with murder. I looked down at my glass. A cold sweat broke out on the back of my neck.

            I tried to stand up, but my legs were rubber. I fell back in my chair. I started to lose focus.

            “Thanks for the helping hand, kid.” Tomas cackled. “But I think I’ll be just fine without it.”

            “F— you, Tomas.” His laughing started to drift in and out. All I could make out was the blurry outline of his face. Another person came into view, but trying to focus on his face took too much effort.  There was nothing I could do to fight the darkness this time.

14.

            Noises drifted past my ears. They echoed all around the inside of my head and came back out. Nothing stayed long enough to comprehend. Eventually there was silence. How long the silence lasted, I’ll never know; but eventually, the darkness began to go away. Light seeped into my eyes and the image of Tomas’s office burned into my retinas. My body felt like it had been filled with sand. I tried to move my right hand first. It took a lot of effort but eventually it started slink off the armrest and down into my lap.

            I tried my left hand next; this time it was more difficult to move my fingers. I learned why when I moved it off the armrest. In my left hand I held Tomas’s .38 snub-nose. I looked at the desk. A body with sandy blonde hair was slumped in the chair. It turns out the ugly tie wasn’t so ugly; it just needed a burgundy shirt.

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  • Sam Clemens on May 1, 2010

    If Raymond Chandler had been born one hundred years later, this is what he would have written. A very well done piece.

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