“Ray?” said Bernie. “Let’s not let this get any worse.”
Ray was still gazing at the gun in his hand like it was surprising him in some way. He looked at Bernie, then at me, and tossed the gun aside. It clattered on the tiles by Albie Rose’s pool. We went over. Bernie picked it up. He spun the barrel, ejected a round.
“Twenty-two long, Ray,” he said. His gaze went to the empty bottles of booze, the bloody towels. “What went on here?” he said.
Ray put his head in his hands. That’s something humans do from time to time. It means they’re not feeling tip-top. I myself was feeling tip-top at the moment. We were working on a case, getting paid, and all the guns in sight were in our possession.
“I don’t know,” Ray said. Perps said that kind of thing all the time. Take Smiley Frelish, for example, who’d said, “What money?” when we burst into his crib and found him counting big stacks of it, money that would have solved all our financial problems, but Bernie gave it back to the bank anyway. But forget all that. The point is that for some reason I was starting to like Ray.
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