Fade Away Page 78

“Does he have a car phone?”


Myron shook his head and began pacing. “He lied to me,” Myron said. “The son of a bitch lied.”


“He met with the blackmailer.”

Calvin raised an eyebrow. He moved to the chair behind his desk and sat down. “What are you talking about?”

“The night she was murdered,” Myron said, “Clip went to her apartment.”

“But she wasn’t supposed to meet with us until Monday,” Calvin said.

“Did you hear her say that?”

Calvin plucked at his chin with his thumb and pointer. The track lights from above his desk reflected off the receding forehead. His face remained the ever placid pool. “No,” he said slowly. “Clip told me.”

“He lied to you.”

“But why?”

“Because he’s hiding something.”

“Do you know what?”

“No,” Myron said. “But I intend to find out tonight.”


“The blackmailer still wants to sell,” Myron said. “I’m his new buyer.”

Calvin tilted his head. “I thought you said the blackmailer was dead.”

“She had a partner.”

“I see,” Calvin said with a slow nod. “And you’re meeting tonight?”

“Yep. But I don’t know when or where. He’s supposed to call.”

“I see,” Calvin said again. He made a neat fist and coughed into it. “If it’s something damaging. I mean, something that could affect the outcome of the vote tomorrow.…”

“I’ll do whatever is right, Calvin.”

“Of course. I didn’t mean to imply otherwise.”

Myron rose. “Let me know when he gets here.”


Myron entered the locker room. TC was in his pregame pose—sprawled on a chair in the corner with a Walkman plugged into his ears, his eyes blazing straight ahead and unmoving. He did not acknowledge Myron. Leon was also there. He, too, studiously avoided Myron’s gaze. Not surprising.

Audrey approached. “How did it go with—?”

Myron shook his head to silence her. She nodded, understanding. “You okay?” she asked.


“You think they can hear us?”

“I’m not taking any chances.”

Audrey looked left, then right. “You find something new?”

“Plenty,” Myron said. “You should have your story tonight. And then some.”

The gleam in her eye expanded. “You know where he is?”

Myron nodded. The locker room door opened. Calvin popped his head in. He leaned over and spoke to the Kipper for a moment. When he left, Myron noticed that he turned right, which led to the exit, as opposed to left which would have taken him back to his office.

The cellular phone in Myron’s pocket rang. He looked up at Audrey. Audrey looked back. He moved closer to the corner and picked it up.


An electronically altered voice said, “You got the money?”

“You got lousy timing,” Myron said.

“Answer my question.”

Leon pulled up his gym shorts. TC stood and bobbed his head in rhythm to the music.

“I have it,” Myron said. “I also have a game tonight.”

“Forget the game. Do you know Overpeck Park?”

“The one in Leonia? Yeah, I know it.”

“Turn in the right side off Route Ninety-five. Then go down a quarter mile and make another right. You’ll see a cul-de-sac. Park there and look for a flashlight. Approach with both your hands raised.”

“Do I get to say a password?” Myron asked. “I loves passwords.”

“Fifteen minutes. Don’t be late. And for the record, I know your superhero partner is in his Park Avenue office. I have a man watching it. If he leaves between now and then, the deal is off.”

Myron turned off the phone. It was coming to a head now. In fifteen minutes it would all be over—one way or another. “Could you hear?” he asked.

Audrey nodded. “Most of it.”

“There’s going to be some weird stuff going down,” Myron said. “I need an unbiased journalist to record it. You want to come along?”

She smiled. “That was a rhetorical question, right?”

“You’ll have to keep on the floor in the backseat,” he went on. “I can’t risk having you spotted.”

“No problem,” she said. “It’ll remind me of my high school dates.”

Myron turned toward the door. His nerves were as frayed as an old horse whip. He tried to look nonchalant as they exited. Leon was lacing up his sneakers. TC remained still, but this time his eyes followed them out.

Chapter 38

Rain beat down, blackening the pavement. Cars were just starting to enter the arena lot in force. Myron took the back exit over the New Jersey Turnpike and onto the northbound lanes just past the final toll booth. He veered to the right, staying on Route 95.

“So what’s going on?” Audrey asked.

“The man I am about to meet,” he said, “killed Liz Gorman.”

“Who’s Liz Gorman?”

“The blackmailer who was murdered.”

“I thought her name was Carla.”

“That was an alias.”

“Wait a minute. Isn’t Liz Gorman the name of some sixties radical?”

Myron nodded. “It’s a long story; I don’t have time to go into details. Suffice to say the guy we’re about to meet was part of the blackmail scheme. Something went awry. She ended up dead.”

“Do you have evidence?” Audrey asked.

“Not really. That’s what I need you for. You have your microcassette player?”


“Let me have it.”

Audrey reached into her purse and handed it up front.

“I’m going to try to get him to talk,” Myron said.


“By pushing the right buttons.”

She frowned. “You think he’ll fall for that?”

“Yeah, I do. If I push the right ones.” He picked up the car phone. “I have two separate phones here: the car phone and the cellular in my pocket. I’m going to dial the car phone with the cellular and keep the line open. This way, you can listen in. I want you to take down every word. If something happens to me, go to Win. He’ll know what to do.”

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