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The Model Citizen

The Model Citizen
by William Dylan Powell
Art by Mark Evan Walker

Corpus Christi, Texas, 1984

 

I pulled the trigger once. Then again. Then over and over, scrubbing with the terry cloth and spraying Mr. Clean on our giant San Pellegrino umbrella on the deck of David’s Fifth Margarita. Monkeys are all but useless when it comes to cleaning a yacht, so Ringo slept in a hanging fern that swayed from the mainsail as I made yet another pass at the fabric on the deck chairs, umbrellas, bench cushions, and bar seating.

Can’t imagine any other life but mine out here on Redfish Bay. But Patrick O’Brian or Joseph Conrad never wrote about the mold and mildew that requires constant cleaning of almost any surface that isn’t glass or fiberglass. Cushions. Life jackets. Biminis. Cabin liners.

And I was so engaged, listening to Johnny Cash, smoking a Marlboro red, and making another pass at the umbrella, when Martín Aldersflügel docked his big white Buick next to my Jeep.

Setting aside the spray bottle and turning down the stereo, I was relieved on two fronts—first to have an excuse to stop scrubbing and second at the prospect of interesting work. Nobody visits my private boat, on my private pier, on my private beach unless they came out here for a reason. And I hadn’t taken a case in weeks. Since then it’s been nothing but flounder gigging in the morning and Mr. Clean in the afternoon. Which wasn’t a terrible life, admittedly, though boredom tends to come at me as relentlessly as the mold.

Martín Aldersflügel ran the Mini Marina—a museum and emporium housing one of the world’s largest collections of model ships. Aldersflügel had been born in Mexico and owned a shipyard down there. Rumor has it he’s sailed the world seven times—which sort of makes my sailing it once seem like beginner’s luck. Though I do have a real-life wooden leg (on my body, not just in a display case), so that gives me a little extra street cred on the ocean waves.

Just past seventy and tan as a boot, Aldersflügel strolled up my pier like he strolled anywhere else—relaxed and confident in leather deck shoes, one hand in the pocket of his Dockers and the other keeping an old-fashioned
Liverpool pipe stoking like a coal-fired steamship crossing the Atlantic.

I pulled two cold Lone Stars out of the deck fridge and washed the Mr. Clean off my hands. Ringo hopped out of his fern and ran to meet our guest, smelling the man’s shoes as he stepped aboard and sticking one of Aldersflügel’s shoelaces in his mouth like a piece of spaghetti.

“Howdy, Mr. Aldersflügel,” I said, handing him a cold beer. “Don’t mind the monkey.”

He waved his hand. “Please, call me Martín. This is an extraordinary boat,” he said. “What is it, an eighty-footer?” His pipe smoke smelled sweet, and reminded me of a professor I had at UT Austin Law before I’d dropped out.

“Yes, sir,” I said. “Made in Argentina. Astilleros Mestrina.

Aldersflügel looked the boat up and down, then gazed out at the bay puffing on his pipe. In the distance a pair of porpoises followed a yellow-sailed catamaran out toward Ransom Island—a handful of seagulls trailing the procession.

I gestured for him to sit in one of the chaise lounges facing the bay.

“Don’t get old,” he said, easing himself down into the deck chair. “It’s terrible for your self-esteem.”

“Seems to beat the alternative,” I said.

“True.”

“What brings you out this morning?”

He cocked his head and thought for a second. “A few years ago I read in the newspaper a very interesting story about you. Right about when the big storm hit. Very clever,” he said. “And then we talked once at a Shriner’s breakfast. You probably don’t remember.”

I remembered the incident during the storm, of course, but not the breakfast.

“I said to myself that if I ever needed a private investigator, I was going to call Billy Raskolnikov.” The old man’s voice was salty and gruff, with the rolled R’s and exotic accent of a Mexican native, though he’d lived in Corpus Christi for decades.

“You realize I’m not a licensed P.I., right? They don’t license convicted felons in Texas. So I’d just be some guy you hired to help think things through.”

Aldersflügel took his pipe from his mouth and wiggled it in the air. “I don’t need more stinking paperwork. I need somebody with a brain. A brain and some cojones. I’ve been robbed! Robbed in a most professional and unusual way. Can you help?”

I finished off my bottle of Lone Star and removed my University of Texas baseball cap. Ran a hand through my hair. “You know, the Corpus Christi Police Department has people who do this for a living. Think you might want to start with them? Who knows, they may have already found whatever was stolen.”

He shook his head, smoke from his pipe propagating like a volcano. “Useless,” he said. “Came out to the Mini Marina, made a report, and told me not to get my hopes up. The dollars of your taxes at work, eh?”

I shrugged my shoulders. “What was stolen?”

“Something that can never be replaced.”

 

It was two o’clock by the time Ringo and I pulled up to the Mini Marina. Despite the name, it was nowhere near the water—up on Lipan Street north of the bluff in a huge old warehouse originally used to store cotton in the 1920s. Aldersflügel never did let on what was stolen, and my curiosity was up as I climbed out of the Jeep, careful not to land my peg leg too hard down on the concrete.

When I first lost part of my leg below the knee, long story, I saw a specialist in Houston who made me a custom prosthesis of titanium and special composites used by NASA. Quite comfortable and functional, actually. But on my sailing trip around the world a bit later I met an old man in Indonesia who hand-carved and painted beautiful works of art for unfortunate island locals who’d stepped on mines left over from World War Two.

Carving from a hard and fragrant wood called garu, for which there is no English translation, the old man engraved batik dragons, exotic birds, and butterflies into the wood, using natural dyes of every imaginable color. He melted a dark wax made from palm oil and wild boar lard onto my leg to sculpt it to a proper fit, then set out to work. I paid him generously, gave him my address in Texas, and sailed on, figuring I’d never hear from him again. But six months later, a UPS van appeared on my beach. The end result was a twenty-thousand-dollar piece of NASA-approved hardware in the back of the Jeep and an amazing work of art that I wear everywhere no matter how uncomfortable or impractical.

When I hooked Ringo’s leash around his neck, he acted as though I were strangling him. I hate putting a monkey on a leash, but bringing a climbing animal into any museum is a risky affair.

Throwing the Mini Marina’s door open, I saw a dozen or so visitors milling around. Everyone was whispering, reading the placards by the model ships or pointing out details. The walls were covered in small replica ships up to the cavernous warehouse ceiling, and larger model ships rose from the floor like islands—some far taller than a man.

Walking around the polished concrete floors of the warehouse-turned-museum, I saw an entire space big as an apartment full of nothing but ships-in-bottles depicting clippers, sailing British warships, Spanish galleons, and pirate vessels, all amazingly constructed inside bottles ranging from the size of a grasshopper to that of a motorcycle. There was another section of nothing but ships in shadow boxes. And yet another of pricey-looking nautical-themed oil paintings. Islands of precisely scaled dioramas were scattered about, depicting epic naval battles, explorers, and myths such as the Kraken, mermaids, and the Lost City of Atlantis.

An additional section housed model ships of the ancient Middle East and Asia. Still another was dedicated to exactingly scaled replicas of luxury trans-atlantic cruise liners. Offshore oil and gas ships. Personal sailboats of the early twentieth century. Intimidating modern war vessels. Even old triremes and Viking boats. All of the world’s maritime history had been shrunk and scattered about the place.

Ringo grew bored, trying his damnedest to climb onto a flat replica of the CSS Atlanta and then sulking when I wouldn’t let him scale the wall of antique sextants. I found Aldersflügel’s office just past a small gift shop, behind a wall of wooden crates and pallets labeled “flotsam and jetsam” in black stenciled paint.

His office door was open. “Howdy!” I said.

“Hello again,” said Aldersflügel. He closed a giant leather-bound book on his desk and waved me in. He stood slowly to shake my hand. “You ever go anywhere without that thing?” he asked, pointing at Ringo.

“Tough finding a monkey-sitter last minute,” I said. It was the truth.

I sat in front of his desk, stuck a Marlboro in my mouth, and snapped my fingers. Ringo hopped up in my lap and took the University of Texas Zippo out of my front pocket, then opened it up, striking the flint and creating a nice-sized flame. Then he threw the lighter onto Aldersflügel’s desk. I snatched it and closed it before anything caught fire.

“Sorry,” I said. “We’re still working on that trick. I saw a monkey in São Tomé do it once and I’ve been trying to train him ever since.”

“That’s fine,” he said. “I actually prefer people not to smoke here anyway. It is basically just a building full of rare, flammable, intricately carved wood, glue, paper, and paint, when you think about it.”

“Ah. Gotcha.” I put the lighter back in my pocket.

“But thank you once more for your time today, Billy. Are you customarily paid upon engagement or when you get a result?” he asked.

“Whoa there, partner. Let’s just slow down. I don’t even know what you’re talking about yet. Why don’t we go through the basics first.” Ringo climbed into Aldersflügel’s inbox and went to sleep on a stack of unopened mail. He does that sometimes.

Aldersflügel glanced at me over his reading glasses and stoked his pipe like a potbelly stove. “Somebody has stolen the Zavala.”

 

Aldersflügel plucked a folder from his desk and ushered me out of his office, past the wooden crates and back out into the gallery. I left Ringo behind, asleep on Aldersflügel’s desk.

“You know, our pieces find their way here for a variety of reasons,” he said. “Before air travel, the ocean was much more culturally important.” As we walked toward the back of the gallery, the sound of my leg on the polished concrete echoed across the walls.

“And at one time marine insurance companies insisted on having a perfectly scaled model for every ship they covered,” he continued. “So that accounts for a good number of the mid twentieth-century replicas.” As we came toward the back of the building, we stopped at a door with iron bars spanning its length.

“But my favorites,” said Aldersflügel, “are these.” A sign next to an authentic jail-cell door read “Convict Constructions.” Aldersflügel removed an old-fashioned jailer’s key from his pocket and fit it into the lock, sliding the door sideways—its heavy metal groaning and clanging.

“All of these model ships were made by convicted prisoners during their time behind bars,” said Aldersflügel. “Huntsville. Angola. Leavenworth. Made with whatever was at hand—matchsticks, toothpicks, soap, popsicle sticks, bones, fabric. You name it. And each held together by the desire not only to create something beautiful in a desperate situation but also to simply imagine oneself sailing off into the horizon.”

The room was designed and decorated with a prison motif, and filled with ships and boats made of various materials, from a small regatta scene with sailboats made of Ivory soap to an elaborate Spanish galleon made of papier mâché. Two dozen or so waist-high pedestals sported ingeniously crafted ships of all kinds around the room. And as we walked to the very back of the exhibit, I saw that the very last column stood bare.

“Behold the rightful home of the Zavala,” said Aldersflügel as he gestured to an empty pedestal. “Not in a million years could I have ever imagined theft at the Mini Marina. And if I had . . .” He shrugged his shoulders. “I certainly wouldn’t have envisioned this particular work being stolen.”

The model ship was gone, but the sign affixed to the column was still there. It read:

 

The Texas Schooner Zavala: Created by convicted embezzler Jarvis Mayhew during a six-year stay in Huntsville Penitentiary (1974-1980). This remarkably detailed replica of the Zavala, which sailed on behalf of the Texas Navy of the Republic, is composed of more than 100,000 matchsticks and 5,000 matchbooks, each won by the artist in poker games during his stay at Huntsville. After falling into disrepair, the real-life Zavala was scuttled in 1842 and lost forever.

 

I whistled. “That’s a lot of matches,” I said.

“Yes,” said Aldersflügel. “It was a very fine work. Great detail, given what the artist had to work with, and beautifully lacquered and painted. Mr. Jarvis had just been released from Huntsville and returned home when I started the gallery. He read about the opening in the Caller-Times and brought his model the next morning. Donated it on the spot.”

I looked around the room at the ramshackle collection of handmade sloops and corvettes, galleys and warships—all made with hands that had not much else to do at the time. “Why this one?” I said.

“Precisely!” said Aldersflügel. “It makes no sense. This model, for example,” he said, pointing to a nearby pedestal, “was made from bone in a French prisoner-of-war camp more than two hundred years ago. It’s surely worth a fortune. Why steal Jarvis’s Zavala?”

“Well,” I said, “you yourself admitted these works were your favorite. And that the Zavala was irreplaceable. Apparently, somebody shares your good taste. When exactly did you notice it missing? Can you tell me what you saw?”

Aldersflügel removed his pipe from his pocket, tamped it down, and lit it with a match. I thought this hypocritical after my cigarette denial, but I was his guest, so whatever.

“Not much to tell, I’m afraid. It happened last Friday,” he said. “I showed up to the gallery as usual. Unlocked the front door. The alarm was still on. I turned it off and went into my office. As I went about dusting the place prior to opening I eventually got to the Convict Construction room. The barred door, which is a real jail door I bought at auction from the Nueces County Sheriff’s Office a few years ago, was locked. I unlocked it with the big heavy key and began dusting. When I got to the Zavala, it simply wasn’t there.

“Who else has a key and knows how to turn off the alarm?”

Aldersflügel puffed on his pipe. “Other than a part-time docent, who was in Louisiana during the break-in, I have no employees.”

“Is there another way out of this room?” I asked, though there clearly wasn’t.

“No. And when I bought the building, I had the warehouse bay doors bricked in. So there is only a front door, two side doors, and a door that exits to the roof. I checked them all after finding the model missing, and each was locked up tight from the inside without any sign of disturbance whatsoever.”

“What did the police say, exactly?” I asked, as we stepped back out into the larger gallery. A man in a Hawaiian shirt and porkpie hat was having his picture taken in front of a twelve-foot-tall replica of the Cutty Sark.

“Two cops came out,” said Aldersflügel. “One tall and thin, the other short and stocky. They stood around where the model had been, checked all the doors and windows. One asked me a few questions, had me fill out a report, and that was it. I hold out no great hope.” He removed a copy of the police report from his folder and handed it to me.

As we got back to the front of the gallery, I spotted Ringo perched atop a wall-mounted display of Mississippi riverboat replicas, arms splayed around the black smokestacks, eating something unidentifiable.

I snapped my fingers, but the monkey ignored me. Aldersflügel raised one eyebrow and, taking his pipe from his mouth, said: “I think your monkey is smart enough to understand what you want, but also smart enough not to want the same thing.”

“Yeah, there’s something to that,” I said, snapping my fingers again with the same result. “So you can’t think of anyone at all who’d want to steal the Zavala? Think hard, now.”

Aldersflügel shrugged. “I’ve been thinking of little else all week. I mean, I love these old prison ships, and enjoyed that particular piece. After all, they literally represent years of a man’s life, as well as great resourcefulness and passion.

“But . . . why? Why would someone, I dare say a professional thief by the look of things, go through the trouble to steal something that’s beautiful and rare but has little true value?”

“Well, it has value to one person,” I said, leading Ringo back down the wall by his dangling leash.

“Oh?”

“Of course,” I said. “The person who made it.”

 

George Strait was on the radio with “Fool Hearted Memory” as I cruised up Highway 35 toward Rockport, where the Mini Marina’s phone book said Jarvis Mayhew lived. I put the roof down in the Jeep so we could soak in the sun, enjoying the warmth of the Gulf Coast breeze as Ringo perched in the shotgun seat sticking his head out the side window, cheeks puffing out like windsocks.

Seagulls barked overhead, and out in the bright waters of Redfish Bay fishermen dotted the surface of California Hole; probably refinery workers on their day off hoping not just for redfish but black drum, sea trout, and maybe a flounder or two off the bottom. Sailboats cut across Estes Cove and kayakers splashed foamy white trails out toward Turtle Bayou.

A bright red Porsche was parked crooked and halfway on the lawn of Mayhew’s goodly sized waterfront home, which was designed with round portholes for windows and sported a rooftop terrace laid out and decorated like the deck of a ship. The homes in the neighborhood all had names, common among some coastal vacation communities, and this one was “Driftwood,” according to the sign on the mailbox. I laughed because that’s what some of the guys on the force call me these days. While they’re still arguing with drunks down on the waterfront I’m lying around reading on the deck of David’s Fifth Margarita. I’d rather be lucky than good.

I parked behind the Porsche. It still had the tape where the dealer’s sticker price had been listed. The color reminded me of the polished-looking apples in the lobby of my father’s law firm in Houston.

Nobody came when I rang the doorbell. I heard music from inside. Shostakovich if I’m not mistaken.

After waiting at the door long enough to feel silly, I strolled around back. There was no fence, and as I rounded the side of the house Mayhew’s view of Aransas Bay stretched out before me—the waters jade green with pockets of dark sea grass and thick flocks of migrating birds creating splashes of brown and gray and white overhead.

The music got louder as we neared the back and discovered a huge and intricately designed swimming pool in the shape of Texas, with a water slide somewhere around El Paso and a handful of sunbathing women scattered about the Oklahoma border. About a dozen people were in the pool playing volleyball, a sagging net stretched across the water about where I-35 would be. The players screamed and splashed and jumped around, smacking the ball about with wet slaps that echoed off the neighboring houses.

Huge metal sculptures of fish, birds, people, and unidentifiable abstract shapes littered the rest of the seashell-covered backyard—dozens upon dozens of them scattered across its sloped expanse leading toward the beach and the water’s edge. A large metal workshop stood open on the opposite side of the house, sporting a forge, a variety of tools, and other specialized machinery.

As we neared the pool, one of the volleyball players saw me and waded out. Tall and blond, the bikini-clad girl of about twenty-five kneeled in front of Ringo. “Aren’t you just a cute little thing!” she said. “What’s your name?”

“His name is Ringo,” I said. She tickled his belly. He bites me when I do it, but I guess bikini-clad women get a free pass.

“Ringo!” she said. “That’s so cute! Like the Rolling Stones or whatever.”

I realized that likely I had diving equipment older than this young woman. Asked: “Is Jarvis Mayhew around?” She pointed to the back patio, where a dark-skinned man sat at a drafting table, sketching.

The young lady led Ringo to the edge of the pool so others could see him, and I split off to join Mayhew.

“Whatever you’re selling, I don’t want any,” he said as I walked up to the drafting table. On the page, Mayhew was pencil sketching a herd of wild
mustangs, and doing a pretty darn good job of it. He was a hard, wiry-looking guy in a straw hat and gold shirt. The backs of his hands and knuckles were covered in tattoos, though they weren’t stationary enough for me to decipher. He drank a glass of rum with thick slices of lime in it. A half-eaten piece of pecan pie sat on the table, attracting flies.

“Mr. Mayhew, my name is Billy Raskolnikov.” I took a business card out and threw it on the table. It simply had my name and the name of my boat, David’s Fifth Margarita, with the latitude and longitude directions to the pier from the Redfish Bay causeway. If I ever get my P.I. license, I’ll add a few more details.

“I’m a friend of Martín Aldersflügel,” I said, having to yell a bit over the music.

Finally, Mayhew stopped sketching and looked up.

“Sorry to drop in unannounced,” I said. “Do you have a few minutes?”

He drained his rum, stared at my wooden leg for a second, and then looked out at the pool. The volleyball game had broken up, and everyone was gathered around She Who Knew Not the Beatles playing with Ringo.

Then he smiled. “Good old Martín,” he said. “I have a feeling in a past life he was just like me—never went anywhere without a few beautiful women.” He stared out at the girls in the pool long enough for it to be a bit uncomfortable. “They’re mares,” he finally said, pointing to the sketch. “New Mexican mares. My next work. The bronze for the piece gets here next week off a Chilean freighter. The foundry promised to throw in a case of Metropolitana wine, but we’ll see how much of it actually makes it here.”

He stood and tossed his pencil down, stretching as if he’d been seated a long time. “I’m typically known for nautical subject matter,” he said. “But I thought I’d do a few land-based pieces now and again. Give the serious collectors something to shoot for.”

Mayhew waved me inside, where he turned down the stereo and poured me a rum while refilling his glass. The inside of the house was entirely white—white carpet, white leather furniture, white pillows and shelves and tables. But it certainly wasn’t spotless, with not-very-well-repaired stains on practically everything.

We sat at a white glass octagonal table painted to look like the face of a seagull. The table’s seagull eye was sunken and held fruit like a bowl; the effect was disconcerting. “What’s Old Salty up to these days?” Mayhew asked, pulling off his straw hat and fanning himself with it. I explained what happened with the replica of the Zavala, sparing no details—not that there was much detail to spare. He lit up a menthol cigarette and offered me one. I hate menthols. They’re like the Altoids of the cigarette world, but I smoked one with him anyway just to break the ice.

The sunburned skin on his forehead bunched up. He was quiet. I waited him out. As Mayhew drank and smoked in the well-lit room I could make out the tattoos on the backs of his fingers. If you read across all 10 knuckles they spelled out RODEO CLOWN.

“Huntsville was the best thing that ever happened to me,” he finally said, blowing a menthol cloud overhead. “The good old Zavala.” He stared some more at the table, seeming to gaze into the eye of the seagull. Finally, he said: “What happened to your leg?”

“Long story. But basically, a crazy person shot me a few years back,” I said.

He raised his eyebrows, nodding.

“Well, I’d be lying if I said the theft of my Zavala didn’t bother me,” Mayhew said. “Because truly, it changed my life. I was the comptroller for a conglomerate of dry cleaners across Texas when I went in. Kept all the books. Problem is, I’m just terrible with money. Terrible. I wasn’t even stealing to gamble or buy nice things; I’m just crappy with numbers and can’t ever stick to a budget.”

“Yeah, I can tell by the Porsche out front,” I said.

He smiled. “Well, budgets are less important when you’re really good at something.”

I didn’t have much to add. I live on a yacht, and I’m not particularly good at anything.

“Turns out I’m a pretty talented guy, far as this stuff goes,” he said, stabbing his cigarette toward the sculptures out back. “It just never occurred to me people sculpted as an occupation. I’m not saying I’m a genius or anything,” he said. “But I’m good as most folks doing it for a living. Making the Zavala opened a door in my mind. After that all I did was sketch, paint, and sculpt twenty-four hours a day. That and work the prison rodeo every year. Made works of art out of soap, leather, and rocks. Seemed like just some silly way to pass the time but it changed my life in the end.”

“Who took the Zavala?” I asked.

Mayhew shook his head and took a draw off his cigarette, staring down into his rum. “Don’t know. Who’d want it?”

“Seems like you’re the person it meant most to.”

He nodded. “No doubt about that. But it was right where I wanted it. If I’d asked for it back, Martín would have just had me come pick it up.” He shrugged. “Why would I steal it? Besides, I’m too busy to break the law these days. If you don’t count all the speeding tickets.” He smiled.

“Have any enemies?” I asked.

“Well, it’s hard for me to have a decent suit pressed around here,” he said, chuckling.

The doorbell rang. “Excuse me,” said Mayhew. It was a deliveryman, who handed him an envelope. Mayhew ripped it open and read silently, a fresh menthol cigarette dangling from his mouth. He raised his eyebrows.

“Check that out, will you?” He sat back down and placed a Western Union telegram in front of me. I hadn’t seen a telegram in years. It was a request for a commission from a Saudi royal prince. The prince had seen one of Mayhew’s works in the Houston lobby of an oil company and wanted a similar one for his office in Riyadh.

I whistled. “Your work sure makes an impression.”

He shook his head. “I’m lucky to be doing this at all, if I’m honest. For every piece that turns out as nice as that one in Houston I do three that end up being melted back down into something more useful. Like an ashtray!” Mayhew slapped his knee and laughed.

She Who Knew Not the Beatles came inside with a few friends, walking Ringo—who now sported a pair of ladies’ sunglasses. “What does your monkey eat?” she asked.

I wasn’t getting much of anywhere with Mayhew, and while we all made small talk about Ringo, the Mini Marina, the real-life sinking of the Zavala, and Mayhew’s latest sculpture, I listened to the man’s rough, sonorous voice, trying to determine if I could believe a word that came out of his mouth.

 

“That dirty monkey isn’t coming in here,” said Bubba Guidry. Bubba crossed his phone-pole-sized arms and glared at me, stoking his cigar blood red. Bubba was my partner during my less-than-successful tenure at the Corpus Christi Police Department. And for me, he’s always been that friend you keep just because you don’t want him as an enemy.

“The dirty monkey brought you a bottle of Garrison Brothers whiskey,” I said, holding up a fresh bottle.

“Smart monkey.” Bubba stepped aside so we could pass. Ringo squinted his eyes as he walked by Bubba’s angry smoke cloud and I led him to the kind of giant table they use at weddings and banquets.

After Jarvis Mayhew’s place, I decided to get the real take on what the police thought about the incident. I visited the two Corpus Christi Police Department patrolmen listed on the police report Aldersflügel had given me.

Manuel Arola, short, stocky, and quiet Vietnam veteran, didn’t have much to add. We knew each other in passing from my brief time on the force. I trusted Arola; cautious and intelligent, he was both thoughtful and articulate recounting the case—his interest piqued but not revealing any additional inroads. His partner responding to the Mini Marina burglary, Edward Stratton, wasn’t there, but Arola told me where he’d be later that night. Which is how I wound up at Bob’s Surplus Plumbing Supply Warehouse.

It turned out to be my lucky night at cards. . . .

 # # #

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The Model Citizen by William Dylan Powell. Copyright © 2017 with permission of the author.

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