Bird's Nest Surprise

I mulled the whole sorry story as I slouched my way to the flophouse’s sad door.

The botched gig was supposed to be a cinch, a real eggs in the coffee job. At least, that’s the tune Stuyvesant had been singing. I had known better, of course. Favors don’t come cheap in a business like ours, even for a big cheese like him. And debts? Even less so. He wouldn’t have called in my mark if he’d had another angle to play.

Since the job went south, I’d been reduced to hiding out, holing up with hop-heads and hobos, laying so low I had dirt on my chest. Of course, if Stuyvesant’s trouble boys had found me, they’d have been happy to lay me even lower.

Where had that damned librarian got off to? Stuyvesant’s prize had disappeared when that little bird had flown away. I knew my only chance was to find her, ruffle her feathers and rifle her nest.

Sighing, I reached the door. I had just enough time to turn the knob before the blackjack caught my temple and everything went darker than the devil’s boot polish.

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