Ricardo walked me to the door, following me outside. I wanted to ask him a million questions, or at least some advice, but held back. Fact was I felt sick to my stomach of the whole business. Without a word Ricardo grabbed the chair the unconscious Bulldog still sat in and began wheeling him around the back of the building. A big part of me wondered what would happen to him next. I felt bad for the sucker and wanted to make sure he got his life back on track. But a little Ricardo-esc voice in the back of my head told me that’s why I could never be a good bounty hunter. I got too attached.
In the distance police sirens could be heard. With little else to do I listened to see what direction they were going. The sirens grew louder. Unexpectedly a fleet of cars came over the hill, speeding like nobody’s business. I watched with awed interest as it seemed to be one car chased by many, the later all being the source of the cop sirens. The first was a ridiculously nice convertible, top down cash billowing out the backside. It looked like a scene from a movie and as such, as the car passed me, everything seemed to slow. Looking at the driver, wearing sunglasses and a hat with wads of cash poking out of every which way, I couldn’t help but think it.
My God. That’s him. That is him.
The car sped by stirring up a gust of wind that caught the man’s hat and tore it from his head. The cops flew by after. A few spare dollars floated down here and there, the hat landing at my feet, as things settled and the sirens faded into the distance. I bent down and picked up the hat. Plain, maroon, ugly.
Crashing through Ricardo’s door I waved the cap around wildly. “Look!” I said with glee like a child. Ricardo was back behind his counter, Bulldog nowhere in sight. I ran up to the shopkeeper and waved my found item in his face. “Look! Mike just drove by!”
“What are you talking about?” He sounded annoyed the pest had returned.
“Did you hear those sirens? A bunch of cops were chasing after a car and I swear to God it was Mike.”
“How do you know?” Ricardo asked.
“Because he was driving a convertible with enough cash to buy my life in the back seat.” I said. “I just know. Like sixth-sense.”
“Uh-huh.” Ricardo snatched the hat from my hands and examined it with the utmost scrutiny. Silently I tried to settle my heart. I didn’t know what was going to happen. All I knew was Mike was in town and I had seen him. And I had his hat.
A crazy look came into Ricardo’s eyes. He whirled around and attacked one of his many filing cabinets, ripping the draws open until he found the file he searched for. It was thick, needless-to-say, as it was Mike’s. Gutting it on the counter he found a picture and held it up to the light. Catching a glance the face of the man in the car reflected back at me.”That’s him! That’s the guy!” I stabbed the picture furiously. A thought hit me. “Hold up, you have a picture of Mike? Do you know what the cops would do for that?”
“Do you know what the cops would do for this hat?” Ricardo asked, setting the picture down. “He’s here.” He whispered, seemingly in a daze. “Do you know what you have done? Do you know what this means?” Ricardo looked star-struck. “We’re back in business.”