Jimmy got the call from Mark. He borrowed Rawl’s lime green Eldorado, and told him he would be back in a couple of days. He pulled up opposite the park and Mark hopped in.
“Take the M5, we are going to Connecticut.”
“What’s the gig?”
“Picking up a shipment, simple.” Mark opened his bag and took a loaded 38.
“Fuck, what’s that for?”
“Calm down, we are in America mate, it’s just for show. These are serious dudes. They will search us, if we’re not carrying they’ll think we’re soft and jack us. Trust me we need to pack.”
“I think my face is numb.”
They drove to Hartford on the edge of town and pulled up into a sketchy Motel. The surrounding houses were derelict, shops closed windows boarded.
“Just be cool, look mean, say nothing.”
They knocked on a shabby blue door, room 25b. A hefty Latino peeped through the window blinds. They were frisked and the 38 placed on the table. A shabby fat man grinned at Jimmy shovelling tortilla chips as he spoke.
“Look, it’s Boy George ! ” They laughed.
“Have you got the gear?” said Mark abruptly.
He licked his fingers clean. “Marco load him up,” Marco bought out two large boxes and took one can out.
“What’s that dog food?” said Mark. They laughed. Jimmy boldly walked over grabbed the can, flicked a switchblade from his ankle, stabbed it open and snorted dust off the tip.
“We’re good.” said Jimmy with a stony face.
“Boy George grown some balls,” said the elder. “100% Columbian. They use local fisher vessels, load up in international waters. No-one suspects.”
They stashed the cans in the boot and left. Jimmy exhaled jittering. “It’s tinned goat meat, coke in goat meat.”
Mark laughed “You were un-fucking-believable, proper fucking gangster. How did you know, Cosmo?”
“Miami Vice, Crockett and Tubbs,” Jimmy pulled over. “I feel sick,” he quickly stepped out barfed the tarmac and got back in the car.
“Which one’s Crockett again?”
“I don’t fucking know, I just want to get out of here,” He twisted the key, the car turned over but wouldn’t start. “Oh that’s just dandy,” He tried again.
“Don’t pump the accelerator you’ll flood it,” said Mark. Jimmy grew frustrated, he repeatedly turned the key draining the battery till dead.
“Where did you get this piece of junk?”
“Rawl, my cousin…. Can we walk to the station?”
Mark scratched his forehead. “With two cases of coke and a 38; what do think!? It’s no use we’ll have to get a jump.” He slammed his fist on the dashboard. “Shit!”
There was a car parked opposite. Jimmy approached and knocked on the window. A beefcake blond with a moustache wound down the tinted window. He was quite obliging and offered to help. As he stepped out Mark grew faint, Jimmy choked panicked. Their saviour was sporting blues, an Officer’s uniform; Jimmy had approached an unmarked car. He switched gear, racking his brains to think of a way to abort without raising suspicion but it was too late. The officer drove over Jimmy popped the hood, hooked up the battery and cranked it but it wouldn’t start. Mark intervened. “It’s ok Officer, we’ll get it towed,”
“No need sir. Just leave it for a while, then try again it will start.”
“Really it’s no trouble, we’ll get a tow.”
The officer glanced at the out of State plates. “You got somewhere to be?”
Jimmy jumped in pre-emptive. “I’m a cook, got to cater for a surprise party.” Mark forced a lop-sided smile whilst supressing a stage-one coronary.
The officer went round the back. “Can you pop the trunk please Sir?” and there they stood, peering down on 48 cans of jailbait. He took out a can and inspected it.
“What’s your name?”
“Where do you work?”
“The Roti House 127th and Lennox in Harlem.” He went back to his patrol car for a radio check. In the meantime the car started.
The officer came back. “Ok, you can go. Good luck with the party.”
They pulled away gently then quickly sped into the distance. “Phew..Ha-ha, man I thought we’d had it, where did you come up with that shit?” asked Mark.
“It’s where I’m staying, The Roti House.”
“They do curry goat?”
“It’s my favourite.”
“No shit, me too.”