Pub Date Tomorrow: To Fetch A Thief
So here’s an excerpt from To Fetch A Thief.
“Uncle Rio’s,” said Bernie, backing into a little parking space in one move, smooth and easy. Driving with Bernie: always a pleasure, unless the tools had to come out. “You’ll like this.”
I was liking it already. Me and Bernie together – what was not to like?
Uncle Rio’s was on a dark street not far from the fairgrounds. The only bright lights around were the top of the ferris wheel, spinning slowly in the night, and the neon signs in Uncle Rio’s window. It was a bar, of course: I can smell them from miles away, miles away being kind of far unless I’ve missed something. What do bars smell like? Stale beer, burned grease, puke. Hey! They go together! A strange thought, not my usual … I wondered …
And was still wondering when we went into Uncle Rio’s. It turned out to be one of those dark skinny joints, a long bar on one side, a row of tables on the other, a little dance floor at the end. No dancing happening at the moment, probably a good thing, since dancing sometimes gets me going. There was only one woman in the place, drinking down at the end of the bar. A few big guys sat by the beer taps, big guys with cut-off denim jackets, maybe bikers. The bartender serving them had a tattoo on the side of his face; a cigarette dangled from his mouth even though I was pretty sure there was no smoking in Valley bars. He looked at us, saw Bernie, and said, “You son of a bitch.”
The big guys turned and gave us tough-guy stares. The biggest said, “Want us to take care of this dude, Rio?”
Tags: To Fetch A Thief
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