Margaritaville By: C.M.Dawson

“Wise guy, huh!” Perry insisted.

“Not at all, Serge. I just said, I’m not guilty of first-degree anything.” Peck retorted with a grin.

Sergeant Perry loomed over Camden. “Listen, Peck, I’ll lift your license!”

“Again?” Peck replied.

I yawned as I checked my nail polish…….chipped again in the line of duty. I grumbled some obscenity.

“What’s that?” Serge grunted.

“Skip it.” I continued popping my spearmint.

“Tell me again what happened. This time put some truth into it.” He said, growling like a cur.

Camden ran his fingers through his blond hair in frustration.

“Celia and I were down at Toddie’s having dinner to celebrate. Big Ed O’Donnely and his squeeze, Judith Something, were just entering as we were leaving.”

“Hold it! You sure Big Ed wasn’t trying to plug ya over the skirt?”

Camden grinned. “Not me. I like brunettes.”

I resisted looking at the copper who was glaring at me.

“What were you celebrating?” His lip curled around a cigar like a snake’s around its

fangs.

“Big day at the track..long shot named Placibeaux.”

“Liar!” Perry declared.

I fished out the ticket Camden had bought and threw it at Perry.

He examined it, obviously pleased. “What’d ya do?”

“Twenty-three to one. I laid down a twenty.”

“I’ll just keep this for…um…evidence, you might say. Then what?”

“Ed was sore. I told him to get over it. We fought. He pulled a gun and fired at me. He missed and hit the dame. I fired back but I didn’t miss.”

“Goodbye.” Peck stood and slapped the fedora on his head and we clamored down the backstairs to the Packard.

“What’s the plan?” We ran the street light on Hill and Temple.

“Well, baby, we wait for the track to open then cash in the real ticket and make for La Jolla like we planned.”

I checked the ruby-reds in the review.

“Anybody see you take Ed’s ticket out of his coat pocket?”

“No.”

“Then who’s following us?” I glared at him.

“Probably his goons. They were there when Ed told me that only a fool would bet on a long shot like that. It was just dumb-luck I saw him at the betting window ignoring his own advice.

“They’re gaining!” I gasped. The tires squealed as we rounded the corner onto San

Fernando Road

“I’ll take care of it.” He handed the roscoe to me. “Guess we better make it

Margaritaville instead.”

I fired at the windshield of the roadster but it ricocheted. They returned fire. I fired

again and by accident hit the front left tire and they swerved out of control and down an embankment. As I settled back to remove the high-heels we heard an explosion behind us.

“Not bad!” Camden congratulated me. “Margaritaville, it is!”

That meant Mexico. Again. We were going from flea-bitten nags to flea-carrying greyhounds!

“I need a drink!” I sighed as I reloaded.

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