Monday P.I. — boiled down

Dublin: Monday, 21 January, 22:30

I was in the Dublin airport, waiting for my flight to Chicago, when I got my next chance to stop and think. On the phone about eight hours before, Eddie explained his situation, and he bought me a ticket on Aer Lingus as we talked. After grabbing my luggage, I stopped by my doll’s office to brief her on my trip and on the situation in Dublin. Before catching a taxi to see my girl, I did manage to snap some photos of those “lasers” being tested.

I sat in the business class lounge at the airport, watching the ice melt in my glass of Powers whiskey. I started a list of the developments of the past twelve hours. First thing in the morning, I found that I’d aroused the ire of someone associated with Fitzwilliam Square, or whomever it was doing construction on the site. The second item was a hell of a coincidence: Eddie Washington had aroused the ire of someone doing construction in Chicago. Third, I was leaving my other half to handle the first item alone.

There wasn’t much to do about the Fitzwilliam situation. I didn’t have a client and I didn’t have a clue about what was going on. I did know that any threats of violence wouldn’t have much effect on the little lady. To be honest, she’s more capable of handling hooligans than I am. I’d fire up my US mobile once I landed, and check in once a day. I had to admit that Dublin would take care of itself in my absence.

As for Eddie and Chicago: I was nervous. Eddie asked me to testify on his behalf in a cockamamie legal matter that he didn’t understand. Well, he didn’t understand the legal bits, but the underlying motives were crystal clear. Someone wanted to send a message to the union leaders that dealt with Chicagoland’s developers. And that message was: We have you by the balls, even long after you leave the business. As with so many other rackets, you can never retire from a career of service to the working class.

So,on Friday, I would put on my one good suit and go into a place that I avoid more than any other: a courtroom. And a Cook County courtroom, no less. As it turns out, you can never retire from Chicago, either.

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