It's two o'clock in the morning and the place is pretty much deserted. There's the odd night owl replenishing a depleted caffeine level in order to get through an all-nighter, and there's Carly Cliff sitting alone in the corner, peering through the steam from her mocha-java across the room at Table Six -- the only table worth eavesdropping in on. And then there's the twosome she's looking at, steeped in shadows in more ways than one, so hunched over their empty cups that they seem almost like caricatures of conspirators. Carly watches unobtrusively, wishing she could hear what only we can...
And then there's the twosome she's looking at, steeped in shadows in more ways than one, so hunched over their empty cups that they seem almost like caricatures of conspirators. Carly watches unobtrusively, wishing she could hear what only we can...
Rad Cliff sits opposite Thor, a fearsome Viking if ever there were one.
From the pristine leather Coach backpack slung over one shoulder, Rad pulls a thick manilla envelope and pushes it across the table to the huge blond man whose crystal blue eyes conjure up strains of Grieg's piano concerto and images of Nordic saboteurs cross-country skiing toward the fascist targets of their missions against the Nazi occupation.
THORYou got my ten grand? RADYou think I'd be here if I didn't? THORYou're late.
Rad chews his lower lip anxiously as Thor opens the envelope and rifles through the wad of bills inside.
RADBetter late than never.
Thor gets up, tucks the envelope into his magnificently intricate Nordic sweater, where it is swallowed up by the sheer bulk of the man, and heads out.
THORYou know, it's normally Cosa Norske policy to charge a couple "C"s for an extra day's interest, but I'm going to let you slide. RADCuz you like me, right? THORBecause I'm never going to do business with you again. The books are closed, kid. RADAre you saying you won't make book for me anymore?! With the Championship series coming up?! That's not fair. THORLike Grandma Sonia always said, "Fair, schmair." Your business just ain't worth the aggravation. RADWhat are you talking about? THORI got a call from Detective Goswell at the suggestion of her close personal friend, your aunt, the mayor. Just a friendly chat peppered with choice phrases like "racketeering charges" and "RICO violations." That's what I'm talking about. RADShit. I settle up and still have enough left over to bet on the Sonics and you won't even take it?! Why can't my damn family just leave me alone? THORYeah, I know what you mean. My mother's always on my case about wearing something to protect my knuckles. RADExactly! THORGood. Then we understand each other.
Wait a minute! I thought we'd found some common ground here! But he's talking to the big man's back. Thor makes his way out of the coffee house, leaving Rad at the table, dejected despite having managed to pay off his enormous debt. Carly rushes over.
Are you okay?
She stands abruptly and storms out. He calls after her...
CARLYWhere's you get the other seventy-five hundred? RADI got lucky in a poker game. CARLYPoker?! When are you going to learn? RADLearn what? I won, didn't I? CARLYYou call ten thousand dollars down the drain winning? We could have used that money for the sound system. RADAll of a sudden you're a big civic booster? The sound system is the college's problem. Insurance'll cover it. CARLYYeah, but not by opening night. RADMy heart bleeds. CARLYLook, maybe you don't care, but it's important to me. RADWhy? Because of Dylan? CARLY(FURIOUS) Next time you need money, don't bother asking.
... but once again, he's talking to a back. Lacking a better idea, Rad grabs his cup and heads across the DeCafé for a free refill.
RADHey! I'm sorry, okay? I'm just a little frazzled right now.