Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 179

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 179

…”Okay, Miss Coriander, I’m ready to roll.” Right girl, wrong spice…

“I think something big is about to happen,” the ever alert private eye warns the documentary maker.

More awake and suddenly motivated he moves to his equipment bag to retrieve his last 35mm blank, slapping in a fresh two thousand feet into the front reel chamber.

“Let’s get outside for a better angle,” she notices that he has airport credentials that give him freedom of movement. “I’m with him,” she tells a security guard who is guarding access to the tarmac. “Here comes an arrival, there hasn’t been one in 30 minutes and it should be the busiest part of the day.”

“Okay, Miss Coriander, I’m ready to roll.” Right woman, wrong spice.

The entire passenger cabin has assumed the head-in-lap position, no use looking out the windows now. “Brace yourselves for a rough landing…” Ace has briefed them on what the airport expects of them upon touchdown, panic is not an option. He reminds them that it his skill that will determine the outcome and nothing else. What he doesn’t tell them is that because of the sharp descent angle they will be doing the equivalent of a swimming pool belly flop.

He throttles the new turbine engines back to the minimum required RPMs to stay airborne as he clears the perimeter fence and goes full flaps after that. After the two front wheels are weighed down by the descending fuselage, they curl up like a petunia at sunset and the only thing between the bottom of the plane and the cold concrete is five foot layer of air, which disappears after the skilled flyer shuts down the engines, makes a sharp right turn and takes the aircraft into the wet grassy soil and ultimately to the end of available real estate.

Chain_Link_Fence

The only thing left between the screeching plane and Central Avenue is a chain link fence, which stretches out to its max, but stops forward progress when the wings finally contact the reinforced barrier. Ace gives a friendly wave at the stopped line of cars that was headed east on Central… those going west go around the scene like The Blue Ridge Angel is a fallen tree. Places to go you know.


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Forever Mastadon


page 151

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 177

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 177

…So you wanna be an airline pilot, eh?” Ace chides the young man in the chair to his right…

“The wheels aren’t locking, Captain Bannion!”

“That is not good.” A dozen scenarios are running through Ace’s head, but none of them good. “How much fuel do we have in the tanks, kiddo?”

“About two thousand liters,” he reports a partial load of 100 octane blend.

“Good thing we didn’t fill‘er-up at KC,” he calmly moves on to plan B. “The gear is going to collapse shortly after we touch down, so we are going have to set this plane down on its belly. Go back and tell Mr. Graham to come forward.”

When Billy ducks under the cockpit bulkhead, Ace gives the plane’s owner the bad news, “The landing gear will not lock Billy. We have tried 5 times, but the hydraulic system is messed up. I think I can put her down without too much damage, but you have to be the one to break the news to our people; you have that way of making prayer a part of everything we do, well, no better time than now.”

While Billy preaches to the choir in back, Ace talks to the tower at Midway Airport, “This is Graham flight number 2 zero-niner requesting a clear runway, we don’t have gear.” Simply put.

“This is the tower 2 zero-niner, we want you to put down on Runway 13C, and do a two pass fly-around to give us time to get ready. How many folks do you have onboard?”

“Thirty-one passengers and five crew.” That question was asked so that they can have enough emergency personnel at the scene.

So you wanna be an airline pilot, eh?” Ace chides the young man in the chair to his right.

The airplane intern straps himself into his seat after checking with the navigator, who is almost as young and not feeling too confident about the heading he has figured.

“I’m taking us into a 20 knot northeast breeze, which should slow us down some… damn, I mean darn, there are enough ambulances down there to light up the whole airport.” The captain swallows hard. His final order is supposed to be funny, “Turn on the windshield wipers.”


Constance Caraway P.I.

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Forever Mastadon


page 150

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 163

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 163

…”This is bloody bullshit. What kind of cops are you?” Constance cuts thru the nonsense…

Seal of Approval-001“You can tell quite a story Mrs. Dombroski.” states the impressed lawyer from the South.

“She learned it from that guy in the other room,” Fanny has consumed dozens (by osmosis) these past 2+ months.

At that point, the attending emergency room physician comes in to gives his two recent patients some news; neither good nor bad, “The CPD is here and they want to interview you two, and then I am going to release you, you can go home.”

“What about Eddie?” inquires Edie. She is worried about the $52 dollars a day they are paying for his hospitalization, “We don’t have insurance.”

“Mr. Graham has taken care of that — what a gem he is. He stopped in and visited all our rooms before he left.” Fanny speaks of a good man, from the soles of his Godly feet to the wavy hair atop his 6 foot frame.

“I can take you all home after you are finished with the police. The two cars I saw out there need to be pried apart,” Lawyer Moore will be looking out for Fanny and Edie’s interest from here on out, so he ushers the plain clothed investigators into 314.

“From what we can see, you pulled out into a lane of traffic and caused the other vehicle to run into you. That is a violation on your part. The driver of the other was killed in the accident thereby making it vehicular homicide. We are going to have to take you in and seeing you are from out of state, we will hold without bond.”

“But there was no driver!” Fanny is beside herself.

Constance has joined the discussion, having come to the hospital to check in on everyone.

“There was no driver, detective. You can ask the emergency room people. They did not find a driver, dead or alive.” Correct, Mr. Moore.

“We found a body behind the wheel and how else would the car get there in the first place?”

“This is bloody bullshit. What kind of cops are you?” Constance cuts through the nonsense.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 140

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 155

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 155

…“Hey that’s why we pay AAA for insurance, you know like for exploding garbage cans, accidents with driverless cars…

After accident the scene is medically triaged and processed by police, there is time to decompress. Everybody is in one piece, two such more bruised than the others, Edie with a stiff back and Fanny with a sore shoulder; if you are going to be in an accident, a hospital parking lot is the best choice. As opposed to, a funeral home, which would be skipping the survival scenario.

Eddie Dombroski is wheeled in to see the two new roomies next door in the persons of Fanny and Edie. Suddenly his spirits soar, given the new concerns about the important women joining him in this convalescent covey, a welcome tonic for a mending body.

“I thought I would drive up and visit Eddie… sorry about the car Connie.” Fanny is unnecessarily apologetic.

“Hey that’s why we pay AAA for insurance, you know like for exploding garbage cans, accidents with driverless cars…”

“The paranormal meter needle may seem like it’s bouncing around the red zone folks,” Billy Graham knows that they are not in complete control. “But I encourage you to call out to God when confronted with these confounding situations. I believe He is watching with intense interest and is poised to intervene. But He prefers to be called upon. When we call out for help, it is like an infant baby crying, for food, for comfort, for everything it can’t get by itself.”

Graham takes his leave following those words of wisdom, his own self being marred by the extraordinary experience.

“Like I was saying Fan, I am happy to see you and see you safe and sound. You can tell things have been a little crazy here.” Connie realizes that the unresolved issue is standing in the corner.

“It’s a good thing you have Ace around for protection.”  Do we detect a hint of sarcasm in Fanny’s tone?

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Both sides of the Fence

“Yes, he is a definite upgrade from Martin and William.” Constance has to play both sides of the fence: Ace and Fanny, Fanny or Ace. Her emotions are a muddled minefield, with unresolved issues littered about. One wrong step will certainly injure one or the other.

But when it comes to what really counts, not a soul on the Libby team has a shadow of doubt.

There is no real compromise between right and wrong. Choose a side or the side chooses you. What you think may be a gray area is actually a temporary stop on the way to the truth.

You should never wonder about real truths; in the checker board of life, they will always be marked by either black or white (or so we think).


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 33 (end Ch. 13)

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 154

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 154

…“Do you know that woman… she saved us from unspeakable harm…

She is my partner, Fanny Renwick…

When We Last Left

Constance, Ace Bannion and Billy Graham are departing from their hospital visit of Eddie Dombroski, when they hear a symphony of city noises.

They barely notice the commotion, when another car rushes into their isle, blocking accidentthe path of an oncoming four wheel projectile. The blocking car is t-boned, nearly causing it to roll onto its side.

Ace and Connie dash over to the side of the car where the driver is slumped over the steering wheel. The car, that did the ramming, sits hissing and smoking.

“There’s no driver in that fool car!” Ace is the first to peer through fogged-up windows, while Constance and her nose for trouble, picks up on the telltale odor of singed hair. They both recognize the deep auburn hair in the other sedan.

Graham runs into the lobby to get some really nearby medical help.

“That was no accident Connie. Fanny saved us from being run down,” Both of Ace’s assessments are correct. Fanny’s actions saved them from a car without a driver?

The tall and lanky Graham leads emergency room staff to the scene, who give Fanny the care she needs.

“I do believe that car had bad intentions,” he concludes. “The police should be here any minute to arrest that maniac.”

“There was no driver,” Constance relays the improbable circumstances. She then turns to Ace who is still scratching his head, “Who expects to be run down by a speeding car in a hospital parking lot?”

“Nobody can predict accidents, Connie… and Fanny, out of the blue?”

“No, I had no clue that Fanny was coming back to town, though I bet you that Edie D. knew, probably going along with the surprise.”

“Surprise guys, I just came to save your lives,” Ace puts words into Fanny’s silent mouth.

“Do you know that woman… she saved us from unspeakable harm?” Graham raises his hands to the sky.

“She is my partner at CCPI, Fanny Renwick.”

“Wow, imagine that, just what you need, right when you need it. That’s how God works alright!”

“There is someone else in the back seat,” yells a nurse attending the wreck! “Get another stretcher!!!”

“That is Edie Dombroski, Ace!” She is freaking out. “This is getting g**-damned complicated!”

The tall and normally quiet Graham emphatically opposes her use of foul language, “Please Miss Caraway, do not use the Lord’s name in vain, it offends my ears, but burns His.”

The worst of people can leak out in the heat of the moment.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 133