much now, do you?"
"I don't want to get up there." Duncan slammed his drink down on the bar and glared at Eddie.
"Of course you don't, why should you? You wouldn't fit. Never ride a friend, don't push too hard to get upstairs."
"What do you mean?"
"I mean Joe's a nice guy, a white guy. He's going big places now, Duncan. You just don't fit." And after a pause: "And don't try to make yourself fit. Joe don't like guys who try to make themselves fit. Or did you try? How's your brother Frank?"
"Don't bring that kid into it."
Eddie didn't smile, though he knew "that kid" was twenty-seven, would stab his own father if there was enough in it, was disliked by even his own associates and had but one friend, a feared friend, a friend who made him tolerated along the Avenue, in the under life of a great city. And that friend was the impulsive, gun-toting, gun-using brother of the kid, Gunner Duncan himself.
"Bring the kid into what?" Eddie asked innocently.
A police detective is taunted by a racketeer he grew up with. The gangster thanks him for motivating him to get ahead, and grow so big that he couldn't be touched--he had too many politicians in his pocket. He offers the detective a cash reward, but the detective turns him down, saying he had a plan.
Surprisingly good characterization and plotting for such a short story. You'll probably be diverted for a few minutes, even if you don't like detective fiction.
A liitle bit pulp and little noir in only a dozen pages. May leave you, too, with a smile or at least a smirk. Very good.
2013 SFR GALAXY AWARD WINNER
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