Thursday, October 25, 2012

Corcoran Story - Chapter 13 - Blaine

The night I became an elder, on my return home from Roscoe's, I nibbled a slice of leftover birthday cake

and mixed a Fine Fruit Triple Epic Blast with a Quirk, a thing I did not ordinarily take.

I was about to toss it when, for some unknown reason, I changed my mind.

Unthinkingly, burnt out after a dull evening

With the spectre of an equally lacklustre morrow, I raised to my lips a sip of the Triple Epic Blast in which I had soaked a morsel of birthday cake.

No sooner had the fiery liquid mingled with the birthday cake crumbs touched my palate than a tingle ran through me and I stopped, concentrating on the incredible thing that was happening to me.  An ineffable joy had invaded my consciousness, something unique, outside of my experience, with no hint from whence it came.

And at once the vagaries of daily life had become irrelevant,

its disasters insignificant,

its brevity illusory --

this new sensation having had the effect, which love has, of filling me with a precious spirit, or rather, this spirit was not in me, it *was* me.  I had ceased now to feel ordinary, mortal.  Whence could it have come to me, this omnipotent elation?

I feel that there is much to be said for the belief that the souls of those whom we have lost are held captive in some edifice, and thus effectively lost to us

Until the day (which to many never comes) when we happen to obtain possession of the object which forms their prison.

Then they call us by our name, and as soon as we have recognised them the spell is broken.  Delivered by us, they have overcome death and return to share our life.

At the hour when I usually went downstairs to tend the garden, I would inspect the platoons of grapes, drawn up in ranks and numbered, like little purple marbles, ready for a game; but what most enraptured me were the lifefruit, golden tinged, through a series of imperceptible gradations to their haloes -- still stained a little by the soil of their garden-bed -- with an iridescence that was not of this world.  I felt that these celestial hues indicated the presence of exquisite creatures who had been pleased to assume vegetable form and who, through the disguise of their firm, comestible flesh, allowed me to discern in this radiance of earliest dawn, this hinted rainbows, these blue evening shades, that precious quality I should recognise again.

The moment came when I saw Marlowe, dressed, as the populace imagine kings to be dressed, in luxurious athletic wear such as no other man wore, occasionally looking up at the pulse monitor, and paying scant attention to the passers-by, as though his sole object was to take exercise, without thinking that he was being observed and that every head was turned towards him.

Always try to keep a patch of sky above your life, Little Boy.  You have a soul in you of rare quality, an artist's nature; never let it starve for lack of what it needs.

The belief that a person has a share in an unknown life to which his or her love may win us admission is, of all the prerequisites of love, the one which it values most highly and which makes it set little store by all the rest.  Even those women who claim to judge a man by his looks alone, see in those looks the emanation of a special way of life.  That is why they fall in love with soldiers or with firemen; the uniform makes them less particular about the face; they feel they are embracing beneath the gleaming breastplate a heart different from the rest, more gallant, more adventurous, more tender; and so it is that a young king or crown prince may make the most gratifying conquests in the countries that he visits, and yet lack entirely that regular and classic profile which would be indispensable, I dare say, for a stockbroker.


Saturday, October 20, 2012

Corcoran Story - Chapter 12 - Marlowe

Let me show you a place where pulp fiction and film noir fear to tread:

Toddler hell!

Cocktail hours are deader than Marley.  Jacob or Bob, take your pick.

Lazy afternoons in the pool are in the same boat.

Sleuthing isn't faring much better.  Occasionally I go beachcombing for clues.  The beach is balder than Jean-Luc Picard.

The occasional stakeout comes up emptier than a barfly's billfold on Thursday night.

My cases these days are more like "Which diaper is the stinky one?"

Or "Find the missing heir".

Devin is as blond and high-strung as Inky.

While Macklin is such a chip off the old block as to remove any doubts I might have had.  No cuckoos in this nest!

Speaking of cuckoos, Roscoe, at the bar, went off the deep end

So Blaine is putting in a lot more hours there.

Three adults keeping up with two toddlers is like Canute sweeping away the tide.  Without a Shop-Vac.  Two adults and you take away his whiskbroom.

If you thought you noticed a third kid on the way, bingo!  No wedding bells tolling.

With Byron's arrival

The garconniere is as packed as a Tokyo subway at rush hour.

Inky did her best to corral the twins for their birthday.

Macklin went along with the gag.

While Devin flew the coop.

And Blaine neglected to mention that it was his birthday as well.

He did tap me for a loan to buy the bar.

I told him I was hard pressed to afford a bottle.

It's made an old man of me.

With still one toddler left to go.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Corcoran Story - Chapter 11 - Marlowe

Don't let anyone tell you that private investigation is all nightlife and gorgeous babes.

The nightlife around here consists of one dive bar, Roscoe's on the beach road.

The scenery there is like the Hope diamond in a gimcrack setting, not half bad.

Inky'd had a rotten break, what with her family kicking off like the blackhats in a bad Western.

She bought herself a swanky place on the beach right after it happened

And found herself rattling around in there like a cue ball chasing the lone eight ball.

So when she asked, I moved in, even though I'm not looking to complicate my life.

It's not like she's looking for bling and promises.

After all, she's a copper and knows the score, even if they did park her in undercover vice.  She fulminated like an old 60-cup percolator over that one.

She's like a teppanyaki chef at the chess table.  No surprise there; the grandad who taught her was a Grand Master.

She could probably mop the floor with me in a few other ways as well, if it came to that.

We spend a lot of time at Roscoe's


And chatting up well-buttered suspects.

We made a great team until the bartender showed up here, down on his luck

And she moved him in with us.

I could have been jealous.

But I don't think he rolls that way.

Still, I was miffed

Until she wormed her way back into my good graces.

I can't say I object to the extra help.

And Blaine's not a bad sort, if you like the puppydog type.

So we're muddling along pleasantly enough.

When a babe starts worshipping at the porcelain altar, you know the plot is about to thicken.

 Twin boys, she says.

I have a feeling my life just got very complicated indeed.