Fade Away Page 58

Myron unlaced his sneakers. He wondered if his parents were going to wait for him. Probably not. They would figure he would want to be alone. His parents, for all their butting in, were actually pretty good at knowing when to make themselves scarce. They’d wait for him at home, staying up all night if they had to. To this day, his father stayed awake watching TV on the couch until Myron got home. Once Myron put the key in the lock, his father feigned sleep, his reading glasses still perched at the end of his nose, the newspaper lying across his chest. Thirty-two years old and his father still waited up for him. Christ, he was too old for that anymore, wasn’t he?

Audrey peered tentatively around the corner and waited. Only when he signaled with a beckoning wave did she approach. She stuck her pad and pencil in her purse and shrugged. “Look at the bright side,” she said.

“And that is?”

“You still have a great ass.”

“It’s these pro shorts,” Myron said. “They really mold and hold.”

“Mold and hold?”

He shrugged. “Hey, Happy Birthday.”

“Thanks,” Audrey said.

“ ‘Beware the Ides of March,’ ” Myron pronounced in dramatic fashion.

“The Ides are the fifteenth,” Audrey said. “Today is the seventeenth.”

“Yeah, I know. But I never skip an opportunity to quote Shakespeare. Makes me look smart.”

“Brains and a good ass,” Audrey said. “Who cares if you have no lateral movement?”

“Funny,” Myron said, “Jess never complains about that.”

“At least not to your face.” Audrey smiled. “Nice to see you so chipper.”

He returned the smile, shrugged.

Audrey looked around to make sure no one was in earshot. “I got some info for you,” she said.


“On the private eye in the divorce case.”

“Greg hired one?”

“Either him or Felder,” she replied. “I have a source who does electronics work for ProTec Investigations. They do all of Felder’s work. Now my source doesn’t know all the details, but he helped set up a videotaping at the Glenpointe Hotel two months ago. You know the Glenpointe?”

Myron nodded. “The hotel on Route 80? Maybe five miles from here?”

“Right. My source doesn’t know what it was for or what ended up on it. He just knows the work was for the Downing divorce. He also confirmed the obvious: this thing is usually done to catch a spouse in flagrante delicto.”

Myron frowned. “This was two months ago?”


“But Greg and Emily were already separated by then,” Myron said. “The divorce was practically finalized. What would be the point?”

“The divorce, yes,” she agreed. “But the child custody battle was just starting.”

“Yeah, but so what? She was a near-single woman having a sexual encounter. That kind of thing hardly proves parental unfitness in this day and age.”

Audrey shook her head. “You are so naive.”

“What do you mean?”

“A tape of a mother getting it on with some buck at a motel, doing lord-knows-what? We still live in a sexist society. It would be bound to influence a judge.”

Myron mulled it over, but it just wouldn’t mesh. “First of all, you’re assuming the judge is both male and a Neanderthal. Second”—he sort of held up his hands and shrugged—“it’s the nineties for crying out loud. A woman separated from her husband having sex with another man? Hardly earth-shattering stuff.”

“I don’t know what else to tell you, Myron.”

“You got anything else?”

“That’s it,” she said. “But I’m working on it.”

“Do you know Fiona White?”

“Leon’s wife? Enough to say hello. Why?”

“She ever model?”

“Model?” She sort of chuckled. “Yeah, I guess you’d call it that.”

“She was a centerfold?”


“You know what month?”

“No. Why?”

He told her about the e-mail. He was fairly sure now that Ms. F was Fiona White, that Sepbabe was short for September babe, the month, he bet, that she was a centerfold. Audrey listened raptly. “I can check it out,” she said when he finished. “See if she was a September playmate.”

“That would help.”

“It would explain a lot,” Audrey continued. “About the tension between Downing and Leon.”

Myron nodded.

“Look, I gotta run. Jess is getting the car around back. Keep me posted.”

“Right, have fun.”

He finished up, toweled off, started dressing. He thought about Greg’s secret girlfriend, the one who had been staying at his house. Could it possibly be Fiona White? If so, that would also explain the need for secrecy. Could Leon White have found out about it? That seemed logical based on his antagonism toward Greg. So where did that leave us? And how did this all tie in with Greg’s gambling and Liz Gorman’s blackmail scheme?

Whoa, hold the phone.

Forget gambling for a moment. Suppose Liz Gorman had something else on Greg Downing, a revelation equally if not potentially more explosive than laying down a few bets. Suppose she had somehow found out that Greg was having an affair with his best friend’s wife. Suppose she had decided to blackmail Greg and Clip with this information. How much would Greg pay to keep his fans and teammates from learning about his betrayal? How much would Clip pay to keep that particular warhead from detonating in the midst of a championship run?

It was worth looking into.

Chapter 27

Myron stopped at the traffic light that divided South Livingston Avenue and the JFK Parkway. This particular intersection had barely changed in the past thirty years. The familiar brick facade of Nero’s Restaurant was on his right. It had originally been Jimmy Johnson’s Steak House, but that had to be at least twenty-five years ago. The same Gulf station occupied another corner, a small firehouse another, undeveloped land on the last.

He turned onto Hobart Gap Road. The Bolitar family had first moved to Livingston when Myron was six weeks old. Little had changed in comparison to the rest of the world. The familiarity of seeing the same sights over so many years was less comforting now than numbing. You didn’t notice anything. You looked but you never saw.

As he turned up the same street where his dad had first taught him to ride that two-wheeler with a Batman reflector on the back, he tried to pay true heed to the homes that had surrounded him all of his life. There had been changes, of course, but in his mind it was still 1970. He and his parents still referred to the neighboring homes by their original owners, as though they were Southern plantations. The Rackins, for example, hadn’t lived in the Rackin House for over a decade. Myron didn’t know anymore who lived in the Kirschner Place or the Roth House or the Parkers’. Like the Bolitars, the Rackins and the Kirschners and the rest had moved in when the construction was new, when you could still see some remnants of the Schnectman farm, when Livingston was considered the boonies, as far away from New York City at twenty-five miles as western Pennsylvania. The Rackins and the Kirschners and the Roths had lived a big chunk of their lives here. They’d moved in with infant children, raised them, taught them how to ride bicycles on the same streets Myron had learned on, sent them to Burnet Hill elementary school, then Heritage Junior High, finally Livingston High School. The kids had gone off to college, visiting only on college breaks. Not long after, wedding invitations went out. A few started displaying photos of grandchildren, shaking their heads in disbelief at how time flew. Eventually the Rackins and the Kirschners and the Roths felt out of place. This town designed to raise kids held nothing for them anymore. Their familiar homes suddenly felt too big and too empty, so they put them on the market and sold them to new young families with infant children who would too soon go off to Burnet Hill elementary school, then Heritage Junior High, and finally Livingston High School.

Prev Next
Romance | Vampires | Fantasy | Billionaire | Werewolves | Zombies