A Word to the Wiseguy - Part 1 - A Craven Danger Mystery
Betty Fletcher flipped the switch on her intercom.
“Are ya sure ya don’t wanna come along to Miami? I’m gettin’ a swell hotel deal from my travel agent. We could get us a couple a sweet rooms with a view a the ocean. Get us away from this chilly concrete jungle for a few days.”
”Ya travel agent!” said Craven. ”Ya mean that little mug Boris what booked us on the Good Ship Sharone last summer? The one who scared me out of my wits? No. I don‘t wanna have nothin‘ to do with that little squirt and his wise guy ways. Can‘t ya get somebody normal?”
“Oh, yeah!” said a familiar voice. “If ya know what’s good for ya, you’ll do like the lady says, see? Otherwise, I just might have ta come back there and learn ya some manners about callin’ a mug a squirt, see?”
“Betty!" said Craven. “Ya coulda warned a guy. That mugs dangerous!”
“Boris?” said Betty. “I know the guy practically my whole life. He’s a sweet little puppy dog. If ya pet him the right way. And he’s married ta my sister Judy. They’re comin’ along with us.”
“With us!" said Craven. “I never said I was goin’!”
“Oh, You’re goin’ all right, see?” said Boris. “If I have ta stuff ya inna steamer trunk and carry ya myself, see? Ya ain’t gonna be disappointin’ this sweet lady ever again, see?”
“Betty,” said Craven. “Please tell me ya gonna be wakin’ me up soon and you’ll be bringin’ me my usual coffee with eight sugars and a squirt a cream.”
“I done that three hours ago,” said Betty.
“I was afraid of that,” said Craven.
“Then it’s settled, see?” said Boris. “We fly outta Idlewild airport at nine AM sharp, see? And if you ain’t buckled inta ya seat by eight-thirty, see? I’m gonna come and find ya, see? And I’m gonna strap ya to one a them propellers, see? And by the time we get to Miami you won’t know which way was up, sideways or longways, see? You’ll be walkin’ three different directions at the same time, see?”
“He’s prety convincin’, huh?” said Betty. “C’mon, Mr. Danger, it’ll do ya some good. I’ll bet Boris’ll even lend ya a pair a his Bermuda shorts, ‘cause I’m supposin’ ya don’t own a pair.”
“Since ya so good at supposin’,” said Craven. “Do ya suppose I’d make it out the window and down the drainpipe before Boris catches up with me?”
“I wouldn’t wanna be the one ta try it, Mr. Danger,” said Betty.
“When I was inna Navy, see?” said Boris. “I was first mate rat-catcher on board ship, see? So don’t go tryin’ nothin’ funny, see? I’m sure I ain’t lost my touch, see?”
”I guess that answers my question,” said Craven.
”You and me is gonna me pals, see?” said Boris. ”I‘m gonna take a likin‘ to ya, whether you and me like it or not, see?”
“All’s I’m seein’ is two weeks in hell,” said Craven.
“Don’t ya worry, Mr. Danger," said Betty. “I got plenty a sun tan oil.”
“My Irish blood don’t allow for no tannin’, Betty” said Craven. “Burn, peel and moan is how I’m seein’ it.”
With that, Craven Danger switched off the intercom, walked over to the office ice-box and stuck his head in.
I wish they made this thing bigger, thought Craven.