EPISODE #159 (June
A Few Days Later
July 1936 – Late Evening
Fred Rutherford strummed his fingers along the edge of the bar and fidgeted
nervously on his barstool. He
didn’t necessarily like meeting Joyce Preston in such a public setting, but
she’d called the get-together and he felt he’d had no choice but to comply.
After all, considering he wasn’t even close to having enough cash to
make his next payment to her, it was the least he could do.
Ever since his wife, Leticia, had made the
stunning and unexpected announcement that she had closed their joint banking
account – his primary source of funding “discretionary expenses” –
he’d been racking his brain trying to figure out exactly how he was going to
come up with the money to placate Joyce and keep her threats at bay.
Unfortunately, Fred had swiftly found himself tapped out.
Of course Leticia had assured him that he still had access to their money
– her money – but he had to go through
her. She’d assured him that she
would approve anything he needed, but he found it highly doubtful that she would
approve of continued payments to Joyce to keep her from spilling everything she
knew about his prior involvement with late racketeer Stephen Lake, Stephen’s
late wife Annabelle, or a certain long-missing nurse with whom Fred shared a
rather secret illicit involvement. No,
Leticia most definitely wouldn’t understand any
Truth of the matter was that Fred was flat broke
with not even two slug nickels to rub together.
Until his next paycheck cleared from the hospital, he barely even had
enough money to cover the cost of the scotch and water he’d been drinking
which was starting to disappear almost as quickly as his financial prospects.
As he downed the last bit of scotch from his glass, nearly sucking every
last drop of liquor from the ice cubes in the process, he spotted Joyce from
across the room and his heartbeat began to quicken.
He exhaled slowly and pushed the now empty glass back across the bar.
No, he didn’t have the money to cover his next payment to Joyce, but he
surely had enough to cover just one more drink – because he was going to need
continue with this episode