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Spadina Literary Review  —  edition 15 page 17

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“Snooping? No, no. Paying a visit. Dillon’s a buddy of mine from back in our frat days. He always used to say I should drop in sometime.”

“Are you sure about that?”

So he wasn't about to challenge me directly. I continued to brazen it out. “Those were great days,” I said. “My name's Tony Javelin, P.I.”

“Ah, I see.”

“And you?”

“Drake Looby,” he replied.

I knew he would say that. Drake was Dillon’s older brother. I’d seen his picture on the file.

We were in a banquet room lined with long tables like the hall of a medieval castle. Banners hung from the rafters, and there were trophies in niches in the walls. Drake flopped onto a chair and contemplated me.

“You won’t find Dillon here, Mr Javelin.”

“Where can I find him?”

“I don't know.”

It seemed like we’d hit a dead end. I glanced round the room, looking at the trophies along the walls.

“My team has won the local polo tournament for five years straight,” Drake explained.

“I was wondering,” I said, “how did Dillon manage to get fired from the family firm?”

He tapped a pencil on the table. “It’s like any business,” he replied at last. “You have to produce. Dillon wasn’t always in top form.”

“I feel I should let your father know that Dillon has fallen behind on his pledge to the alumni association.”

“You’re working for Carter Bacon?”

He was toying with me. I figured from the start that he had a source in Bacon’s office. I said, “I'd like to put things right between Dillon and the Association.”

“The old man is not as young as he used to be,” Drake resumed. “He doesn’t necessarily understand everything that’s going on.”

“I’m sorry to hear that.”

“Javelin, let me tell you, we’re very concerned about Dillon, the family is very concerned. When you find him, let me know where he is. I’ll provide you $1,500 to cover any inconvenience. Bacon doesn't need to know about it, of course. We just want to help Dillon.”

“Help him do what?”

“Just help him.”

“Ten grand,” I said. I wanted to see how bad he wanted the info.

He glared at me.

I glared back.

On the way back into town I ruminated over that exchange. My self-image is that I don’t live for money, but on the other hand money can really improve one's self-image. I pulled off the road to phone Sally to see if she’d turned anything up. She has access to the police database due to a favor the assistant deputy chief owes me.

“Listen to this,” Sally said. “Two days ago the cops stopped a suspect named Dillon Looby at the corner of Dundas and Burnsore. They confiscated some jewelry off him as possible stolen goods.”

“Gotta be our man,” I said.

“He goes by the nickname Lobo.”

<CONT...>