Roots: Alpha Omega Campbell M.D. (Ch12 pgs 166-168)

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ROOTS

Alpha Omega Campbell

 

“What can you tell me about old man Lewis,” Fanny Renwick has examined the finances of the married couple in question and is narrowing down the irregularities. She is speaking with someone who should know plenty about the banker. Not only does Lewis own the mortgage to LBMH, but Alpha Omega Campbell suspects that his wife may have had a tryst with him. Had he not had an affair of his own, it would have been more of an issue.

Worth Moore and Agatha Ambrose are also in the reception area of Laura Bell Memorial Hospital, with Fanny as they investigate the financial shenanigans of their client’s husband Angus. Moving money, for the sake of hiding it, does not make for marital harmony and George Lewis of Lewis State Bank may be in cahoots with the Scot.

“Well ya know, he is friends with Maggie Lou and even gave us the money for this place three years ago, $300,000 dollars.”

“That’s about how much is missing from your joint savings account,” Fanny concludes while Agatha reacts to the sizeable sum.

“Where do you send your mortgage payment to Doc?” Fanny is on to something, suspecting that missing assets were being laundered, away from prying eyes.

“It’s to one of those newfangled post office boxes they have, no street address. Heck, I could be sendin’ our money to a total stranger.

“Here, I have the number: P.O. Box 13 Tallahassee Florida USA. I tried to give it to the bank directly, but Lewis said my $289 dollars should be paid by check to that there box.”

“And made out to whom,” Moore hesitates to guess?

“The Consolidated Association of Surgical Hospitals, I leave off the “the”.”

“C-A-S-H is the acronym. That is not funny!” The doctor is 62 years old, but Fanny does not suspect senility. She knows what it’s like to have blind faith; trusting, innocent and the opposite of wary. “I think we should find out who rents that post office box.”

“That won’t be easy Miss Fanny, the US Post Office is a government agency and they don’t give out personal information,” Attorney Moore would know.

“Fine, then we can do it the old-fashioned way. What day is it,” she asks?

“The 27th; is this a leap year?”

The consensus is no, “So mail your payment on the 28th and I will be waiting to see who picks up their mail at box 13 on the 1st of March, or the 2nd or 3rd, however long it takes.”

“Some men must think that we women are stupid, I’ll tell you; barefoot and pregnant that’s the way they want to keep us.” Mrs. Ambrose’s scathing assessment on the rights of women is partly personal and yet not so far out of line. Women have only been voting for three decades, but many a 1950 husband will tell her how to vote because he “said so”.

“I treat my wife like a queen,” Doctor Campbell tells the truth about his home life. “She has a cook, a gardener, a housekeeper…….”

“Mr. Ambrose has all those too and she’s called ME! If you get me my money Mr. Moore, I will reward you and Fanny handsomely.”

“We are working for you in the name of justice.”

“God bless you two, you make a good team.”

They are indeed; people come to Worth with their troubles and for the last two of his cases, Fanny has come through with flying colors. He is fond of her, but in more than a professional way. She may be all business right now, a tough nut to crack, but given enough time he believes she could come around. After all, he has inherited all of James Ferrell’s former clients and his reputation is beyond reproach. Perhaps with Constance away, far away, maybe, just maybe.

“I personally have met the nurses that worked at LBMH for Doc Campbell. A scene like this one in 1951 takes me back to the 12 years  it took me to write THE LIFE AND TIMES OF A BLACK SOUTHERN DOCTOR (1896-1959).

Gwenny

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