A richard l wren mystery.., p.10
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       A Richard L. Wren Mystery-Adventure Sampler, p.10

           Richard Wren
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  Five people plus four golf bags is a tight squeeze in a standard sedan. Three of us ended up in the back seat with one of the bags across our laps. Fortunately it wasn’t a long trip.

  Near Carpenter’s house, Smitty told the three of us in the back seat to scrunch down out of sight while he drove around and looked for a good place to park. Smitty found a street about two blocks from Carpenter’s house that dead-ended against the golf course. From the front seat, Smitty could see the course. He could see the fancy stacked log fence.

  “It seems like a quiet street, nobody walking around, but keep your heads down, just in case.

  It was getting too dark to even think about playing golf when we finally got the call that the last foursome was coming in. Smitty said to watch for them. He’d been told that one of them was wearing pink pants. Pink pants? At least they should be easy to spot.

  “Now we need a bit of luck,” Smitty said, checking the rearview mirror. “We don’t need anybody driving by ’til we get on the course.”

  Luck came our way. The street was totally quiet. Fortunately, the dead end street had only one house on either side.

  We exited the car, retrieved the rest of the golf bags from the trunk and snuck onto the course. The final foursome was about a hundred yards ahead of us and had no idea we were there. We walked big as life up the middle of the course as if we owned it. Smitty made a big deal out of having me carry his bag as his caddy. Promised me a good tip.

  Carpenter’s house, which looked exactly as Dave had described it, was easy to spot from the fairway. Dave verified that it was indeed the right house and we all melted into the shrubbery beside the course and waited for dark.

  Smitty whispered, “Okay, when I judge the time is right, I’ll call the guys and have them start doing their wheelies. We’ll hear them, for sure. After they’ve been doing it long enough to attract attention, we’ll start going in. Number Two’ll go first because he’s the youngest, smallest and the fastest of us.”

  Number Two. Oh, right – me! I’m going first? Why? I didn’t have time to object before he continued.

  “I’ll go second. Number three, you go after me. I want Nips – I mean, number three in there ASAP so he can get started doing his thing on the doors right away. Four and five, you better come across in your number orders.

  Once again we waited, giving me time to contemplate the problem I had with this numbering system of Smitty’s. Every time one of guys called me Number Two, I had a silly flashback to when I was a kid and bathroom breaks were called going number one or number two, number two being, to put it delicately, the more odious of the two. The mind sure does funny things when you’re under pressure.

  I think we waited about twenty minutes. When we ducked into the bushes, we’d just had enough light to see our way in. Now it was pitch black. Smitty admitted we were just lucky there was no moonlight. He’d forgotten to check for that.

  He quietly phoned the gang. “Anytime you’re ready, we’re ready.” He slid his phone back into his pocket, then whispered to me, “Real soon now.”

  All too soon for me I could hear motorcycles approaching. Just cruising in, all four of them together, made a lot of noise. Then the noise ratcheted up. I could picture them racing one or two at a time, up and down the short street, practicing wheelies.

  In a minute, Smitty was gonna shove me out into no man’s land. What if I get shot? Did he know something I didn’t know? Why did he want me to go first? Probably because I was the most expendable? How in hell did I get into this mess?

  “Get ready,” Smitty said.

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