Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 123

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 123

…Constance’s “friend” Fanny is back home in Tallahassee working on a case referred to CCPI by attorney  Moore…

“Dr. Sapp speaking,” the Havana Florida doctor awkwardly answers his own office phone. Staff nurses have not made the smooth transition to office secretary, so he does not force the issue.

“My name is Fanny Stanwick from Jacksonville and I have been referred to you by our family physician.”

“Always happy to help my fellow doctors, what is your situation?” Had he not just dealt with a Jacksonville teen not all that long ago? Must be a coincidence.

“It’s not me,” Fanny does not lie about that, but she is no more a mother than a bull moose. “My daughter Millicent has missed two cycles and we are afraid she may be with child.”

“How unfortunate; has she ever missed before?”

“Well she is only…….,” she makes up a number, “…. 14.”

“That is awfully young Mrs. Stanwick.”

“It is Miss Stanwick doctor.”

An unmarried mother has a pregnant teen; if that isn’t a recipe for disaster. If he had a dollar for every white girl that had come a beggin’ to end her pregnancy, he would be rich by now. But he is rich and he has gotten many a Caucasian parent off the embarrassment hook. But he is old and he is tired of risking his retirement doing something that the state of Florida has deemed a felony.

“I’m not accepting new patients, but I do have names of good doctors who do abortions, most of them are in South Carolina though,” he is trying not to overuse that Alpha Campbell over at Laura Bell Memorial Hospital in Tallahassee, but he sees a desperate mother’s big puppy eyes and relents. “There is a Doc Campbell; he is black, but very proficient in the field.”


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Forever Mastadon


page 108

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 109

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 109

…Slow down sweetie, you lost me at ‘Hello Ace’…

Constance continues her twisting tale of woe to Ace Bannion, the newest addition to the CCPI team.

 Long_Story_Short“And what’s this stuff about the Devil? Are you sure you haven’t had some bad Chinese food or maybe psychedelic mushrooms?”

“I am not joking AB. There is some crazy stuff going down and it’s becoming downright dangerous. Beside the misplaced scientist, we have a dubious suicide, a mysterious man struck and conveniently killed by a lightning bolt, the guy we hired to drive us e-v-e-r-y-where gets shot trying to rescue his kidnapped wife… and that’s for starters.”

“Friendly little town.”

“And much closer to home, Fanny was abducted by guys named Bing Crosby & Gene Kelly, but I killed them the other day and since returning to Florida, Fanny finds out that someone tried to blow up our building leaving 1500 Lira behind.”

“You can always count on my help, you know that, but it sounds like it may be hazardous to my health.”

“Hey, we got the science-guy back, thankfully Fanny back, Eddie & Edie D. back and now you have my back.”

“Sounds like you have a back problem, when, about a week back?”

“Funny, very funny. This goes all the way back before the 1951 even got rolling.”

He is discovering that Constance has some pent-up frustration.

“I’m not just going to get back at them, I plan to get even,” she promises. “Are you up to a trip to Italy?”

“Why… because Betty found some Italian money blowing around in your backyard?”

“Not just that Ace, oh no! We’re kinda working with a CIA guy, with about 10 different names, and he tells us that he’s been inside the devil’s headquarters, in Rome. And, and that they are behind the Forever Mastadon movement who is behind all the kidnappings.”

“Slow down sweetie, you lost me at ‘Hello Ace’.”

“Do you want to help or are you here to make fun of me?”


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Forever Mastadon


page 97

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 107

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 107

…Once again, Constance intentionally avoids bringing up the subject of Ace Bannion…

Connie has gotten the message loud and clear, hearing of the attempted destruction of her Tallahassee roots, while driving over to Merrill C. Meigs Field to pick up Ace Bannion. It looks more and more that she may have to include him in this fight with an international aftertaste, feeling the need to retaliate in some way or shape or form.

She, in her detective(ly) duties, has been playing defense for the entire Libby Affair, at least from the standpoint of the opposition, other side. The only saving grace is the fact that Libby is alive and not dead. But Pentateuch is operating with undeserved impunity, even though he is basking in a fool’s victory.

“That does it, I’m going to call that CIA guy and find out where these people live.”

“What if that means going to Italy, where Agent Daniels has been undercover?” Fanny wonders.

“I don’t know Fan. I will do what I have to,” is the way things are left.THE LIFE AND TIMES OF A BLACK SOUTHERN DOCTOR

Fanny gets past revenge and gives her a report on the Campbell case, much less dramatic than the Chicago drama, but important in its own right. Doc Campbell has been a significant part of the Tallahassee medical scene for four decades and is need of backup from longtime friends. Fanny will gladly fill that role.

“Those cowards can’t keep dumping their smelly leftovers on Alpha Campbell. Do you know that he does not turn down charity cases to this day, whether they can pay or not.”

Constance encourages her partner to soldier on, but once again intentionally avoids bringing up the subject of Ace Bannion.

Worth Moore, L. Dick Cannon and A.O. Campbell are new players dotting the Constance Caraway landscape. The anti-God forces of Forever Mastadon and World Agnostica has been joined by The Church of Spiritual Engineering. Fanny Renwick has traded Windy City intrigue for Sunshine State shenanigans. Eddie Dombroski and his stories are on the shelf, but Ace Bannion has flown in to add his legendary dimension to the narrative.

A departure implies leaving — a change from the usual.

The status quo is always subject to change.

Some changes are more welcome than others…


Constance Caraway P.I.

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Forever Mastadon


page 95 (end Ch. 9)

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 106

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 106

 …All the regulars: the mailman, clients, Jimmy from Western Union, etc… come to the front door. Nobody uses the rear…

All the Regulars

Molly’s tail wags enthusiastically at the sight and familiar smells of Fanny Renwick. Dogs cannot tell time, but they do get happier the longer they are apart from their owners and two months in the care of a neighbor most certainly qualifies.

It turns out that she had not been so friendly the day before, when someone was nosing around the fringes of the Constance Caraway Private Investigation building. While out doing her business in the back yard, she startles someone who has left a package on their back porch. All the regulars: the mailman, clients and Jimmy from Western Union come to the front door. Nobody uses the rear.

Molly-001… As the story goes, the guy takes off running, losing some papers & money in the process. Molly’s range stops where the alley and Calhoun Street meet, so she turns tail back to the house, whereupon grabbing this guy’s lunch bag—or so she thought. When the woman’s’ best friend brings the bag to Betty, the alert neighbor notices a ticking sound and lunches do not make sounds, so she takes it back to the back and tosses it in the direction of Image result for bomb gifthe garbage cans… in a flash and bang, there are no more garbage cans, replaced by a 10 foot circular crater, three feet deep…

“Sheriff Odz told me that it was a good sized bomb and if it was left at your back door—that somebody probably wants to send you a message.”

“Oh swell! So now “they” know where we live?” Fanny is disgusted.

“Who are they Fanny?”

“They are some bad folks connected to that case Connie is still working on up North. But now they are hitting too close to home Betty,” she doesn’t go into great detail with the shell-shocked neighbor. “Where is that money you were telling me about?”

“Well it looks like money, but I can’t read a word on it, what is a L-I-R-A?”

“It’s Italian for trouble,” Fanny cautions. “I have to let Connie know what’s going on.”

The two friends are working at more than arm’s length for a change, in order to cover more ground.


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Forever Mastadon


page 94

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 99

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 99

…Fanny is genuinely exciting at having the chance to spearhead her own investigation…

CCPI is getting briefed on an upcoming case…

“James Ferrell’s (Campbell’s longtime “get his ass out of a jam” lawyer) health prevents him from doing his usual good job, if you know what I mean,” R. Worth Moore asserts. “This girl from Jacksonville was sent to Campbell by a white doctor from Havana and now she’s having trouble with her baby. She is afraid that it is going to be stillborn and with the anti-abortion sentiment flying around prosecutors’ offices down here, I don’t want A.O. getting involved but I am afraid it’s too late.”

“Fanny and I are up in Chicago working, but I think I can send her back to help.”

“Fantastic Miss Caraway, I will not forget this! I can wire you the money to a Western Union near you.”

“That’s quite alright, Mr. Moore. Doc Campbell is always there for us, I think we can wait until the job’s done.”

“I insist that the plane ticket will be on us. down in Tallahassee” Constance gives Moore their Kimbark Street Chicago address. The $50 dollar TWA ticket is usually reserved for the wealthy traveler, so if he insists, Constance will not protest too much.

Fanny is genuinely exciting at having the chance to spearhead her own investigation, a rare morsel of autonomy from her boss, not that she “isn’t her own woman” when quibbles between them arise.

“I’ve ordered a taxi to take you to Midway Airport, 5:35 TWA flight to Tallahassee with one stop in Baltimore.” After one flight to Chicago, Constance rattles off the itinerary like a pro.

“Are you going to miss me Connie?” she is fishing for affection.

She gets her hug, along with a dose of realism, “We have to keep things running at home. I think I’ll be able to clean things Ace Bannionup here and I will feel better having you away from this madness, safe and sound.”

Constance fails to tell Fanny that she has been contacted by Ace Bannion; of all the people on Earth, he represents the greatest perceived threat to the depth of their relationship.


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Forever Mastadon


page 90

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 98

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 98

…Betty has been reading too many books, the kind that equate airplane pilots to rapscallions and womanizers…

Private lines are generally taken up by businesses like Constance Caraway Private Investigation, or in the case of Chicago just about every phone line is private.

Neighbor Betty dispenses one more tidbit to share with Connie from 1000 miles away, “Oh and one more thing… that scoundrel Ace Bannion called wondering where you were.”

“What time did he call?” The time of day will tell her what may be on his mind, along with, “Did you tell him where we are?”

“After I went to bed, of course and no, it’s none of his damn beeswax.” 8 P is late nowhere else in the world.

“Good job Betty, talk to you soon.”

The well-intentioned neighbor has been reading too many books, the kind that equate airplane pilots to rapscallions and womanizers. Ace, for all his ins and outs, is really cut from the same cloth as Constance. The two have an understanding, without the need to cater to ceremony or unnecessary pretense. Whenever they get together it is like time has been interrupted, stopped in between but easily carried on.

In this case, Ace has to wait while Constance looks into Attorney Moore’s inquiry. You have to take care of those hometown folks, it is plain good business. A good referral is worth 200 business cards, 2 newspaper ads (services section) and 1 radio spot (WTAL 1450 AM) put together.

The new lead lawyer for Dr. Alpha Omega Campbell has need of some good dirt on one of the doctor’s clandestine clientele. For his part, Doc has promised to stop doing abortions for those endlessly disparate white girls who need to have their affairs kept quiet; two or three hundred temporary dollars are not worth future aggravation. But even with his new residency at Florida A&M Hospital, that mortgage payment on Laura Bell Memorial Hospital comes due on the 1st.


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Forever Mastadon


page 89

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 97

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 97

Chapter Nine

DEPARTURE

 …Good neighbors are a treasure, so you treat them like family. Betty Black is one of those…

It has been a relatively mild winter in Tallahassee Florida, in temperature only. This news travels up to Chicago by word of mouth, through the delightful household invention called the telephone. Instead of the time-consuming hassle of sending a telegram, or God forbid, writing a letter and mailing it and waiting for a letter in response —- P-leaze.

IMG_0122

Molly

Constance has been wondering about her four-legged friend who is in the good care of their Tennessee Street neighbor, Betty. Molly, the Yellow Lab, is probably in her upside-down-dog pose on the lady’s front room couch right this very moment, waiting to be fed and then go outside to do her “business”, as the daily ritual goes.

But Betty is also Constance Caraway Private Investigation’s De facto secretary in their office during their absence. Good neighbors are a treasure, so you treat them like family. Betty Black is one of those.

“Weather has been good, but frost got my petunias.” She speaks to the one month’s lack of communication, “You must be busy Miss Constance,”

“I mean you to tell you Bets, if I’m lyin’ I’m dyin’,” she states with a twist of familiarity. “How is my Mollyputz?”

“As long as she gets a treat around eleven o’clock she is happy,” Betty loves that dog like her own. “But there are some other matters that require your attention.”

Constance will routinely juggle more than one case at a time, “Are the natives restless?”

R Worth Moore-001“A Mr. R. Worth Moore stopped by the other day asking for Fanny, he left me his business card.” She relays the telephone number.

“Attorney Moore is an associate of James Ferrell, I wonder what he wants?” She thinks back to the 30’s (19) when Fanny was involved in the death investigation of Doctor Alpha Omega Campbell’s mother-in-law.

“He wants one of you to call him, seemed a bit antsy.”

“I’ll speak with Fanny and call you back later Betty.”

“Remember that I’m on a party line with that nosey Quigley woman, in case you don’t want to have your dirty laundry hung out to dry.”

The term “party line” is the telephone configuration where four or five households share their number, so if you are speaking to someone, any one of those other folks can pick up their receiver and listen on your conversation.


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Forever Mastadon


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