down at the kitchen table and made a list of the contraband.

'Where are my, uh, friends?' Tyrone Calhoun asked.

'On their way to jail,' Carr said.

A few minutes later, Calhoun, wearing his white uniform, stepped in the door.

'Who are you?' Carr said.

'I'm the boy's father.'

'It's not my stuff, Dad,' said Tyrone.

'I guess it don't really matter now, do it, Mr. Jive-Ass?' Calhoun said.

'The bail will be twenty thousand dollars,' Carr said. 'We're booking him in at the Terminal Island federal lockup.'

'I'm sorry, Dad.' His voice cracked.

Calhoun took off his hat. 'Officers,' he said, 'this boy is set to join the U.S. Army. He wants to be a paratrooper. He's done passed the test and filled out all the paperwork. Isn't that right, son?'

The young man gave his father a confused look, then nodded. 'I'm supposed to be sworn in any day.'

Calhoun straddled a chair at the table. 'Officers,' he said, 'this arrest will ruin the boy's life. It'll mean that he won't get accepted into the army.' He hung his head. 'If you could see your way to giving the boy a break on this case, I give you my word that he'll go in the army and never cause any trouble again. I'm a member of the Los Angeles junior Chamber of Commerce.'

Kelly continued to write on a pad. 'Bullshit,' he said.

'I swear he'll take the oath the very moment the recruiting office opens up tomorrow morning,' Calhoun said. 'Please don't ruin this boy's life.'

Carr avoided looking Calhoun in the eye for fear of laughing. Instead he glared at the young Calhoun with a look of mock enmity for a moment. Then he stood up and nodded at Kelly, who followed him to the corner of the room. They feigned whispering. 'You're the boss,' Kelly finally said in a louder, disgusted tone. 'But I still don't like it.' He buffed back to the kitchen table. Angrily, he shoved the counterfeit money and the narcotics into a paper bag and strode out the door.

'I've decided to give the kid a break,' Carr said. 'But we're keeping the evidence. If he's not sworn into the army and on a bus to basic training by tomorrow night, we'll be out looking for him. I'm holding you personally responsible for what happens.'

'You have my word of honor, Officer,' the elder Calhoun said. He stood up and shook hands. Carr stepped behind Calhoun and removed his handcuffs.

The young man rubbed his wrists. 'Thanks a lot, Officer,' he said. 'Thanks a lot.'

Carr walked out the door. He and Kelly made it into the sedan and closed both doors before they broke into hysterical laughter. Carr caught his breath. 'Operation Shanghai.'

Kelly kept laughing. He used the back of his hand to wipe away tears of mirth. 'After his first day of basic training, he'll wish he'd gone to jail instead!' The laughter continued all the way back to the Federal Building. Before entering the underground garage, Kelly tore up the counterfeit tens and tossed them and the narcotics into a storm drain.

Back in the field office, the phone on Carr's desk rang. He picked up the receiver.

'I heard you were back,' Linda Gleason said.

'Long time no see,' Carr said.

'I have a homecoming present for you, Charlie.'

'And what might that be?'

'A fugitive. Do we have to talk on the phone?'

'I'll come over,' Carr said. He hung up and turned to Kelly. 'Linda Gleason,' he said, 'she's got something.'

'One good case coming up,' Kelly said. 'Good ol' Linda is money in the bank.'

Carr stood up and put on his suit jacket.

'That's the way it always is,' Kelly said. 'Good informant, good case; bad informant, bad case. Everything depends on the quality of the informant.' Having said this, he picked up the newspaper.

'You're right,' Carr said on his way out the door.

Chapter 4

As Carr maneuvered the G-car into a hypnotic stream of headlights that was the Hollywood freeway, he pictured Linda five years ago: She was standing in the living room of her apartment; glass was everywhere, the front window blown out by shotgun pellets. She was wearing a housecoat. Her flashing green eyes were minus the map of lines that had developed around them in the years after.

'I knew this would happen eventually,' she'd said. 'Snitches always get killed.' She broke into tears. 'I'm gonna get killed just like my husband did.'

Carr had put his arm around her shoulder and said, 'I'll help you find another place to live. They won't be able to find you again.'

He'd helped her pack and put her in a hotel room for the night. A day or so later, he and Kelly moved her into a new apartment and gave her a new name. It was months before Carr succeeded in building up her confidence again. He took her to lunch, sent cards, gave her little tasks; but if there had been any one reason why she'd begun feeding him information about passers and forgers, con men and scam artists again, he would have to say it was the money-Uncle Sam's reward at the end of every case. There was more money for printers and fugitives than phony-twenties passers; but all in all, it was a nice extra income for nothing more than listening to bar talk, getting samples of the current variety of phony paper, making an introduction or two. In this way, she was like most other informants.

A green freeway sign: HOLLYWOOD-NEXT THREE EXITS.

Carr swung onto an off ramp that led down a hill. He snaked off the main drag into a residential neighborhood made up of apartment houses that, like everything else in Hollywood, were not worth the money. He parked his car half a block away and walked.

On his way up the street he checked the parked cars. They were all unoccupied. He looked around once more and jogged a few steps into a courtyard with a swimming pool. Linda's apartment was on the first floor. He knocked and she let him in.

Carr made small talk as Linda Gleason, wearing a long dress with a slit up the side, served coffee from a little silver pot. Without asking, she mixed Carr's double cream. It was the ritual of their meetings. She lit a cigarette and sat in a chair across from him.

Linda crossed her legs, making no attempt to cover her thigh. 'I don't know Paul's last name,' she said. 'But he told me he's wanted. He was talking to Teddy Mora for a long time down at the Castaways … definitely business.

Teddy sells any kind of paper he can get his hands on. He only comes in on Fridays; I think he lives out of town. He stays all day and deals paper just to people he knows. He and Paul were talking big figures. Teddy calls him Paulie. I made it a point to meet him because my sixth sense just told me he was a crook. I even had him over here to the apartment and he still wouldn't crack with a last name, though he did tell me he was wanted by the feds for a funny-money caper. I think he's got something cooking right now. He made a couple of phone calls that sounded real strange.'

'What kind of calls?' Carr said. He sipped coffee.

'The first call was something about inks and paper,' Linda said. 'He used the name Robert French. The other one might have been to an answering service. He told them to answer the phone by saying, 'International Investigations.'' She puffed her cigarette. 'God only knows what kind of scam that is.'

Carr put his coffee cup down on the table and pulled a pen and notepad out of his coat pocket. 'What does he look like?' he said.

'Over forty, medium build, graying hair that might come from a bottle. He has a missing finger-little one, left

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