Playing a Game (A Lieutenant David Chan Mystery, Chapter 17)

A man standing in front of Chan, turned to face him.

“Oh wow,” the man said, “look who’s here.  If it isn’t Lieutenant Chan.”

Every head swiveled in Chan’s direction.  The Fat Man stopped in mid-stroke, peering up over the rims of his glasses.

Chan looked at the man who’d spoken, eyeing him up and down.

“Oh wow,” said Chan, “look who’s here.  If it isn’t Mr. Kim.  Enjoying our vacation on the outside, are we?”

The man’s face took on a disgusted look.  Chan laughed at him.  “Well, Mr. Kim, take full advantage of your time in the sunshine.  I’m looking forward to sending you back inside real soon.”

The Fat Man stood, his eyes narrowing as Chan moved through the channel that had opened up for him.  It was hard to see how his lip curled slightly.

Chan said, “I know most of these fine people, sir, but I’m afraid we’ve never met.”

The Fat Man smiled.  “Ah, Lieutenant Chan, I’m humbled to meet you.  Unlike myself, your reputation precedes you.  Who hasn’t heard of the finest of HPD’s finest.”  He bowed slightly.

“I appreciate your kind words.  May I ask who you are?”

The Fat Man picked up a piece of chalk and proceeded to apply it to the tip of his cue stick.  “My name is Wo Chan.”  A small smile.  “I wonder if perhaps we migh be related.”

“I wonder that too,” said Chan.  “What school did you go to?”

“You mean here?”

“Yes, here.”

“I’m afraid I’m not from around these parts, Lieutenant.  I’m visiting from Shanghai.  My family originally hails from Manchuria.  I was born and educated there, then attended Oxford University.”

Indeed, the Fat Man’s English was perfect.  It would not have occurred to Chan that he was born and bred in Manchuria.

“Do you play?” the Fat Man asked with a sweeping gesture toward the table.

Chan shook his head.  “When I was young I did spend some time playing pool.  But it’s been a while.”

“I’ll bet you were pretty good,” said the Fat Man with sincerity.

“Ah, I had my moments.  But I’m quite rusty.”

“Oh come now, Lieutenant.  A little game is what you need then to shake off that rust.”

Chan looked the Fat Man in the eye then smiled.  “Well, if you insist, Mr. Chan.  I wouldn’t be living the spirit of aloha if I refused, I suppose.”

The Fat Man waited while Chan attempted rolling a couple of the cue sticks on the table.

“Here,” the Fat man said, “I think maybe use this one.”  He took one of the cue sticks off the rack, rolled it on the table, and nodded.  “Perfect.”

“Good eye,” said Chan.  “I guess you can see what I mean by rusty.”

The Fat Man laughed.  “Eight ball?”

Chan shrugged and nodded.

“Shall we roll for break?”

Chan shook his head.  “Oh no, it’s fine, you break.”

“You sure?”

“Yes, again, it’s part of the police department’s live aloha philosophy.”

* * * * *

Happy #WriterWednesday. Today’s #WritingPrompt is


Use it to inspire a piece of writing and then post that piece somewhere I can read it. I’d love to see what you come up with : )

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