More from The Cortez Case. This one is a continuation from the past entry "Maid In Columbia." Hope you enjoy and thanks for reading!
A high pitched yapping from a toy sized dog approached the backside of the grand oak door.
Knock. Knock. Knock. The slow and steady rhythm mimicked the percussion of Fog Hat’s Slow Ride. A distant whine summoned the maid unsuccessfully. The stomping tantrum of a teenager grew closer. An impatient diva restraining her black poodle appeared through the opening. She glared disgustedly at the slob on her front stairs. A Brazilian man with a beer gut and a cologne resembling tuna smiled back at her. She recognized that slimy receding hairline and scruffy face instantly. She cinched her nose with her free hand.
“Pe Pe,” she broadcasted behind her in a nasal tone, “El Booger is here.”
He stepped into the foyer of the Cortez mansion. This place never ceased to amaze him. Marble columns and dark wood side tables complimented the Incan relics displayed on them, giving the home a museum feel. The well groomed foliage in the backyard rolled downward to meet the Atlantic. This place was fit for a noble; and his boss certainly was a noble of the crime world. Sierra roamed away silently, leaving him waiting for the scurried tardy arrival of the maid.
“Allo Monsieur Moco,” she greeted with clearly feigned manners.
He grumbled in dissatisfaction, “Bah, no French. It is ‘Oy Senhor Moco’ where I am from. Please show me you are not a stupid bitch and use the right language next time.”
“You are right Senhor Moco, je regrette.” She beamed a smile that could not be more fabricated. She wanted to kill Moco ever since she had met him. He was as chauvinistic as he was odious, but that was not the worst of it. She had no idea just how terrible his personal hygiene habits were until she discovered a hidden remnant crusted to the underside of a patio table after one of his recent visits. It was no surprise he earned the sobriquet ‘Moco,’ Portugese for mucus. He had squeezed her ass several times that same visit. Who knows where else those fingers had been. She had to shroud true feelings, for it was no secret this scumbag was Cortez’ right hand man.
“Somezeen to drink?” She thought, Arsenic perhaps?
“Caipirinha, extra lime,” he patted her behind as she departed for the kitchen. Saw that coming. “Right away Senhor. Monsieur Cortez ees on zee patio.”
Moco strolled through the home with hands behind him. A tropical autumn breeze met his face as he opened the French door to the patio. The man on the patio stared through reading glasses at a laptop. He stroked his goatee, fixated on the screen.
“Oy Moco. Come, sit. Just finishing up here.”
“Oy sir,” Moco sat opposite his boss.
“What is the report?”
“We got three more from Spain over the weekend. Just spoke to Carlos, we have two more on the way from the States. One of them is Thomas’ daughter.”
“Raul Thomas is out of the way,” Santino spoke with disinterest. “Totals, Moco. I need totals.”
“Dúzia, sir. One dozen.” Moco sought a response in Santino’s stoic face, still glued to the activity of the laptop monitor. “Doing some bookkeeping?” Moco finally burst with curiosity.
“Haven’t I taught you anything? What do I always say…”
Moco swallowed hard, “Asking questions will get you killed.” He knew that Santino trusted him, but Santino’s trust had been shattered in the past. Moco would not leave the mansion alive if Santino commanded it. Still refusing to look at Moco, Santino squinted in contemplation, “Mahjong.”
“I said Mahjong. Love Mahjong.”
The maid arrived with a clear drink in a short glass, crushed lime beneath a surface of ice cubes. He sipped the beverage before continuing, the maid retreating through the French doors. “Policia searched my car yesterday. No drugs found. Shoulda seen ‘em, they were pissed.”
“They think we are amateurs. Drug lords,” Santino chuckled, “Every wannabe crime lord on the Columbian coast has their hands in that market. Too predictable, too much supply, too easy to track these days.”
“You are a wise businessman”, Moco commented, “We should make some good money this weekend.”
“When is Carlos arriving?”
“Good. See to it our new assets get safely to the winery,” Santino continued to click his wireless mouse.
“I will sir.”
“Very well. Keep security tight, we don’t need complications this close to the auction.”
The maid, just inside the French doors, quietly departed. She climbed the stairs in the foyer and travelled to the far side of the house, the master’s chamber. She retrieved her unnoticeable phone in her garter belt and pressed a fast dial. The phone rang several times.
“What are you doing?” The teenage diva in the doorway folded her arms.