The Warehouse (Ginger Man 9H)

The Sleeping Jaywalker turned to the fortune teller, who just shook her head. “He can’t see me,” she says — something didn’t seem write to Charlie about that last word he had written, but he was too tired to stop, identify, and correct the problem — “If you try talking to me, he could think you’re being followed.” The Sleeping Jaywalker looked back at the man in the leather jacket, who motioned with his pistol to walk to his right.

“Through that door, up the stairs.” The Sleeping Jaywalker obeyed the orders of the man in the leather jacket. He didn’t turn back to see if the fortune teller followed them, but sensed her spiritual presence as they walked up the creaking wooden staircase, a solitary door at the top.

The Sleeping Jaywalker stopped in front of the door, and a moment later felt the cold steel of the pistol’s barrel press against his back. “Get in.” The leather sleeve of the man behind him brushed past his ear, pushed the door open, revealing a large warehouse room, empty save for a small wooden desk at the far end.

As the Sleeping Jaywalker walked across the barren wooden floor, he saw three men seated at the desk. He did not recognize any of them, but in their faces he saw the look of annoyed recognition.

A muscular man seated at the right end of the table groaned. “Jesus Christ — YOU again!”

“Why not?” A fat man seated at the other end of the table leaned back in his chair, a bemused smile growing on his face like a virulent rash. “Guy’s shown up every night there’s been action.”

The man seated between the fat and muscular men stood up, spread his hands across the table and leaned forward. He was dressed in a suit, and his hair was impeccably styled. “You sure he hasn’t said anything to the police?”

The Sleeping Jaywalker opened his mouth to say no, but stopped when he heard footsteps behind him. “Kurecki says he ain’t said a thing.” He turned in the direction of the voice — standing beside the fortune teller, who now had a look of knowing terror on her face, was a man the Sleeping Jaywalker instantly recognized, from the photograph he had seen in the newspaper.

The cop who had been reported missing, whose bdoy had been reported found that morning, brushed past the fortune teller.

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