The Detective hasn’t been sleeping well.
Too much late night snacking effed with his sleep cycle and did little to quiet the shame and fear that are so often his bedfellows.
He would take some Ativan if not for the glass of whiskey he drank after supper.
Those two don’t mix well.
So instead he makes a grilled cheese sandwich, like ma used to do back in Iowa, ketchup and a kosher spear on the side.
He plays a Chinese Checkers game with a long-dead French poet and loses.
He thinks on how he might collect a bill or two while he pays a bill or two.
Then he figures, no Ativan, might as well have another glass of whiskey.
Then there’s a knock on the back door. He knows who it is. Who else could it be?
The shot tore through a window, and he could feel the heat sear his shirt sleeve as it whizzed past. Bullets are hot. They don’t tell you that.
“Stop shooting!” the detective yelled, feeling immediately stupid for having done so.
No sound returned, and the detective felt queer about the situation, mostly because of the melted cheese coagulating is his gut.
“Danny?” he shouted, but again there was no reply.
The courage was summoned to take a peek outside. There was Danny Brewer, vice president of killing for the mob. From the looks of it, he’d opted for early retirement, no pension. There was a three-inch shard of glass digging a half inch tunnel into his voice box, blood turning the concrete into modern art.
“Shit, Danny, you missed,” said the detective, though he felt like a heel saying it.
The neighbor lady was out on her balcony, smoking a cigarette in a lavender nightgown. One or two times in the past the detective had caught her looking into living room with a nifty spyglass.
“Well, you like playing rough, don’t you,” she decided to say.
The full creepiness of this statement sent the detective back into the house. He sat down on the breakfast nook to call the cops, but he fell asleep dialing.