If you’ve signed up for the newsletter, you’ll know that Mister Miracle is now live! This is very exciting as I’m very proud of my book. It’s already gotten a five star review, which made my day as reviews are very hard to come by for me. If you’ve read it, please take a moment to review it either on Amazon or Goodreads or anywhere you talk about books. It may not seem important, but many people will look to reviews before buying.
I’m very proud of the slate of books I’ll be releasing in the coming months. Keep an eye out for my next book, Gray’s Ghosts – A divorced couple host a reality show and get caught up in marijuana trafficking in South Carolina.
I thought I’d share the opening scene to Mister Miracle. Hope you enjoy!
WHAT BOBBY LIKED TO do was go up to these nice houses while he was wearing his Icarus Heating uniform and tell the people inside he had some check to do. He’d tell them he got a call from headquarters and made him come down, just a working stiff hating it as much as the person opening the door. He liked calling it headquarters, gave the whole thing an official feel – like a military thing and people didn’t say no to the military.
What he would start with was saying it was time to do a checkup on their furnace. Most people didn’t know when they were due and even more people didn’t care. If that didn’t work, he’d dish out the headquarters gimmick and that would get him in. Once he was inside he would scope the place out and decide if they had anything worth stealing.
It was LaGarrett that told him to be more careful. “Man, you going to go digging out someone’s house on your route? What happens you going on by for real with your work? You just being there a week before ripping the man off, you bet your ass to plastic he going to be thinking something foul.”
Bobby had a hard time understanding LaGarrett when he was smoking dope. LaGarrett explained further, “You having your route right? Got all them houses and furnaces and shit listed on a little clipboard? You go to the house spouting your headquarters shit, getting in the joint, then you come back a week later do it on company time?”
“I get them on my route, I just don’t go back the second time. Check the box that says every thing’s okay.”
“Well, shit, that’s smart. So long’s you don’t go forgetting what houses you been to.”
“I should make two lists then?”
“You ain’t going to none on your official list, ain’t got to have but the one telling you where not to go.”
“How am I going to know who’s a customer of Icarus and who’s not?”
“They be having some master list or some such shit?”
“How would I know?”
“They got one of them beady eyed motherfuckers wears glasses and a tie where you work? Ask him.”
So the next day Bobby went to work and had a chat with Kirk in IT about getting a master list of all the clients Icarus dealt with. He told Kirk to keep it quiet, saying he was working on a project he wanted to take to the boss for a sales pitch. That was LaGarrett’s idea, told him “Everyone’s aware of the boss man wanting to make a bank. You telling the people it’s for money, you trying to move on up that ladder? They going to oblige you.”
LaGarrett was right. Kirk handed over the list as long as Bobby promised to include him on the sales pitch when it came time for it. He mumbled on and on about breaking into the sales and customer support computers and talked about compiling and sorting and indexing and how it took him all day and most of the night. Turned out, Kirk had some ideas of his own about streamlining this or that with a network and some Cisco shit Bobby had to hear about.
Armed with a list of where not to go, Icarus’s customer list, Bobby would go to the houses that looked promising, wearing his Icarus uniform and driving the Icarus truck and say the things he said that got him inside where he could see if they were worth robbing.
No one ever put the furnace guy to the robbery, most people forgot he was even there. No one paid attention to him, and they paid even less attention to the uniform he wore or what was written on his van. Simple fact of the matter was no one cared.
LaGarrett wanted to be smart about it, that was always his plan. He got one of those white board calendars that had all the boxes on them so you could fill in the dates yourself then erase it and start all over when the next month came around. He also got a blank one. When Bobby would tell him of something he thought was a good score, LaGarrett would write the address on the blank board, then go and watch the house and decide on the best time to hit it. When he was satisfied, he’d write the address in a square on the calendar. Depending on what they got and how he felt about it, they’d either go to a pawn shop right away or wait a week or two.
“Why don’t I ever sell the shit?” Bobby asked after a few robberies.
“Same reason I ain’t be going in no house and talk about furnace meters and shit. Ain’t nothing out of the everyday a black man selling shit to a pawn shop. You think rich white folk going to let a black man in their house with no suspicion?”
“I can sell shit at a pawn shop.”
“You sore on a stereotype puts you better than me? Shit Bobby, we trying to game the system, not change it.”
So that was the way they operated and it worked pretty well except Bobby got tired sometimes. He’d work for Icarus five days a week, nine to five, then sometimes he’d nap before going out to rob the houses. By the time the adrenaline wore off, he’d get maybe three hours of sleep before he’d have to get ready for work again.
It didn’t give them much money, surely not worth the lack of sleep he got some weeks. What he wanted was a bigger score. And that’s exactly what he stumbled onto when he got the call one afternoon telling him to go see a Mrs. Gallant.
Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it! You can grab a copy of Mister Miracle on Amazon here.