Thursday, December 03, 2009



Warning: If you are easily shocked with regard to contrary
points of view, conspiracy theories, offensive language, political
correctness, sex, violence, or anything else that may offend your
sensibilities or lack of open-mindedness, or if you're a minor
(but by no means limited to the aforementioned), please do
not read this novel. It's not for you…

Note: This is a work of fiction. The events described here
are imaginary: the settings, events and characters are fictitious,
and/or are the product of the author's imagination or used
fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual events or locales
or persons (living or dead) is entirely coincidental.

Copyright (C) 2006 by F. Scott Sinclair. All Rights Reserved.

Installment Seven of "The Walls Have Ears: A Novel of America"

By F. Scott Sinclair

Paul Krugar

Before Luther and I stepped into our apartment house
entryway, we both vigorously stomped the snow off
our shoes and trousers. As Luther opened the glass
plated wood door, I asked, “How about a nightcap?”

“I thought you would have had enough talking for
one night. What’s on your mind?” Luther asked,
glimpsing towards the mug between my ears with curiosity.

“Curiosity killed the cat, isn’t that how it goes?”

Rubbing his nose, he said with a straight face, “In
that case, how about a couple more brews, on you?”

“It’s my invite, ole buddy. But I don’t have any beer.
Would a gin and tonic suffice?”

With a shy grin, Luther says, “A taste of the high life
for once?”

“It wouldn’t hurt to experience how the other half
lives, now would it?”

“Point well-made... I’ve got some ice in the
freezer—I’ll get it—and I think we’ll be in business,”
he said, dashing off to his apartment with icicles melting
on his pants, and then collapsing on the hallway carpet.

I inserted the apartment key and twisted... My
apartment’s bright interior ceiling light blurred my
vision momentarily while my rods and cones corrected
themselves. Had I left the light, on or off, before we went
to Larry’s Tavern? I thought to myself. Jesus, am I
losing my marbles, or what? Shaking my head in disgust,
I went directly over to my little black book on the
coffee table. As I perused it, Luther knocked and ushered
himself in unescorted since I’d left the door cracked.

“So let’s have it, partner. What’s going on upstairs?”

I gazed at him incredulously, and said, “Upstairs...?”

“Yeah. In your noggin...!”

“Oh, sorry... I tell you in a minute, but first I’ve got
to call a friend.”

Reaching into his pocket, Luther retrieved his cell
phone. “What’s the number? A man on a budget needs
some help, don’t you think?”

Writing isn’t the most lucrative profession for a
freelancer, so I nodded my head and gave him my
friend’s number.

“Damn, now it’s my turn to be sorry. I forgot to
refill my cell phone. Guess we’ll have to use your
phone. The number again?”

I gave it to him as we both waited for my friend
to answer.

With the phone’s receiver nearly glued to his lips,
Luther says, “Hello. Wait a moment. I’ve got a friend
of yours here who wants to chat.”

Luther handed me the phone, as I said, “Chuck, is
that you? This is Paul. How’s it goin’?” The Middle East
accent was unmistakable. “Sorry, sir. I’ve obviously got
the wrong number.”

As the rattled caller made his displeasure known,
I cradled the phone, Luther says, “I must of screwed
up the call, huh?”

“Slightly, I’m afraid. Never mind. I’ll call my friend
in the morning.”

“Care for a drink?”

Flustered by the wrong number, I raised my gin
and tonic in the air, and said, “To the future...!”

“Boy, you are a mystery—you know that, don’t you?”

Seeing Luther’s perplexed expression and raised
brow, I said offhandedly, “I’ve got a strange feeling
that perhaps you’re right.”

“About our future?”

“Something tells me that we’ve got a lot in store
for us...,” I said, almost reluctantly. But my emotional
turmoil couldn’t conceal my inner feelings.

“I don’t know about you...sometimes. Care to elaborate...?”

I felt like I was in a game of five card stud and had
to put my cards on the table for God and everyone
to see: rightly or wrongly. I replied, “Later... Let’s
have a drink under our belt before we get too serious.”

He nodded and raised his glass as did I. The lime
quenched my thirst, and the gin soothed my wounds...

We spoke like two strangers who wanted to be
intimate, but neither dared speak first, not wanting
to offend the other.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Lonnie Hanson was at his NSA listening post eavesdropping
on his fellow Americans. Suddenly, he perked up. The pupils
in his eyes became dilated as though he’d just had an
orgasm, and shouts, “Phil...! Get your ass over here
on the double!”

Lonnie’s boss, Jack Gibson, says, “What’s up...?”

“Christ, I’ve been listening to this rag head for
nearly six months without even so much as a damn
nibble. And all of a sudden, I’ve got a sleeper cell
waking up...! Do you hear me? This sleeper cell is now
in the waking position!”

“Great job, Lonnie. This feat deserves an incentive
award,” Jack said, proud of his employee for finally
turning a six month old terrorist lead into a full
blown investigation.

“Man, just like clockwork... Hell, I’ve everything
you’d every want on this dude. The phone is
registered to a Mr. Paul Krugar. Look at this
instantaneous file. Hey boss, our Total Awareness
Program is alive and well, just waiting for the
fish—our fellow citizens—to fall into the trap.”

“I can identify with that... And you’re right; having
all this information is useful as hell. But for God's
sake, don’t let a word of this get out, you hear?”

“I’m a true blue bureaucrat, not like some of
those so-called patriots who’ve tarnished our
NSA image. Don’t ever put me in the same boat
with those friggin’ traitors!”

“Didn’t mean to... You know how it is.”

Lonnie laid back in his chair with a shiteating
grin on his face, and says, “Got’em bro... Jesus,
I’ve got this guy by the scrotum.”

“Yeah... And your fist is about to crush this
so-called freedom loving American’s balls.”

With a hint of sarcasm, Lonnie says, “You
might say: I’ve got his life and future in the palm
of my hand.”

They both did a high-five like they were a
couple of football players who’d just made the
winning touchdown.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *