JOE COFFEE CHRONICLES ©
Keith slid a cashier's check across the wood desk to Ronny Quinn. "This is next month's payment for keeping an eye on my daughter."
Ronny glanced at the check. This is a whole month's fee. What if the dividends are sent to me prior to using up these funds?" Ronny shook the check.
"Don't worry about it. If I die beforehand, keep the change. I've instructed Hugo Barucci to start payments to your agency upon notification of my death.
“Thank you. The changes to the contract,” Keith held up his pen. “we've included them, and I agree to the terms. Do you have the account set up?”
“Yes, everything is being left to Cat’s Heaven, and you’ll make sure Kat doesn’t go through hell again, like this attack incident.”
“We'll keep a close eye on her, Keith. I know she’s your baby, and I’d want that for mine.”
“Good. Good.” Keith had slid down in his chair and attempted to sit up, a gauze bandage covering the back of his hand, rubbed against the chair's arm and skin tore above it.
"I'll give you a hand." Ronny went over to him, placed his hands under Keith's shoulders, lifted him to a sitting position and placed him against the cushioned seat.
"Thanks." Keith's eyes followed Ronny back to his seat.
“Is there anything else before we proceed? You don't feel she'll try to fight for her inheritance? What does she know about Cat’s Heaven?” Ronny pulled his seat up behind himself.
Ronny handed Keith the contract. Keith noticed the changes as he read through it. “This is what I want,” he smiled, inking the papers. "My kitty Kat is to never know." Keith grimaced for a long moment, his body tense. Finally, he let his breath out. "Help me to my car. Will you?" He put his hand on the table, but wasn't able to push back in his chair.
Ronny stood behind Keith, inserted his hands under the ailing gentleman's armpits. "Ready?"
Ronny lifted Keith to his feet, as Keith held onto the edge of the table and steadied himself.
"Where's your nurse?"
"She's in the car."
Ronny pressed the reception button on the conference table phone. "Get Mr. Holmes' nurse from his waiting car."
"Ron, I want to thank you for taking care of my baby. She's everything to me. Don't take your eyes or ears off her. I'm worried that sum' bitch will return for her. They never found him, ya know?"
Ron nodded and smiled. "You sound like Jackie Gleason, the way you say 'Son of a Bitch.'"
Keith grinned, but it faded when his thoughts returned to why he was at the security agency. "She likes being independent, and she swears she's being careful, but how is that going to keep her completely safe? She said she'll check every buyer through her office first and never meet them directly at a property again without getting their information. She took her attacker’s word that his license had been photocopied the day before, when he'd suposidly stopped in at her brokers - Ryder Realty."
The nurse entered the room.
"I've got it all down in her file, everything thing you've said about her and also every bit of material we've collected on her. We've been watching her for a week all ready to make sure if we had any questions, you'd be here to answer them. We're off to a good start, and every buyer has checked in at her brokerage first." Ronny put his hand out to Keith.
Two weeks later, Keith passed peacefully with Kat by his bedside. Not long after, the housing market crashed and Kat Barringer found herself scrambling for work.
Next: THE KAT DOESN'T KNOW SHE HAS A TAIL- JOE COFFEE CHRONICLES - Segment 2
The plastic surgeon had done a good job, but Kat was self-conscious about it. The bruising and swelling was gone, but when some people looked at her, they'd stare, or gasp, or look away. Others would ask about the attack, and she didn’t want to hear about it; she wanted to move on. She smoothed concealer onto her temple where her face had been gashed.
New JOE COFFEE segments will be posted Monthly on rjgrand.com's blog. Don’t want to worry about finding it or missing the next dose of JOE COFFEE CHRONICLES? Have your doses of JOE COFFEE delivered to your mailbox free by entering your email address in the prompt on the page or go to the "Contact" link on the above menu bar.
R.J. Grand is the author of the Fortier Series Mystery Books - THE PAINTING OF DECEIT and ON THE INSIDE.