Noir: The Unexpected Phone Call

I figured I’d be fairly safe at home. Except for Tugger, I hadn’t seen anyone at the club who knew who I was. Nevertheless, I lay down on the living room couch with my pistol drawn.

It had been an expensive night. Between giving cash to Tugger, drinks, cab rides and bus tickets, my wallet was wiped out. My bank account was already spitting moths and I had no prospect of money coming in until early next week. I was well and truly skint.

The phone woke me from my doze. I looked at the clock. It was just short of midnight, less than three hours since I’d seen Maryanne off.


“Have I the honor of addressing Mr. Nicholas Beretta, the private investigator?”

“Yes. That’s me.”

“Excellent. I’m calling on behalf of Mr. Randall Stone. I believe you’re acquainted with his ex-wife.”

“Maryanne. Yes.”

“Mr. Stone would very much like to meet with you tomorrow morning. Would 9:00 be convenient?”

“My office doesn’t open until 10:00.”

“Excellent. I’ll send a car for you at 8:45. You should be back in time.”

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