The risk was handling a dangerous mobster, and possibly a psychopath who was ready to kill for the money. No problem then. She had played it through her mind several times. Isolate Sammy if she could. Then it was one on one. If any of Sammy’s thugs were waiting outside the apartment block that would be enough to postpone her demise, if that was the intention of Mason. And she had no delusions about that. She just had to find the right switch in his head that was all. She laughed inwardly at the thought. No big deal.
She finished her cigarette and stubbed it out in the overflowing ashtray. When it was all over she promised herself she would kick the habit. Already her clothes were beginning to smell and the apartment also, however much she sprayed with room deoderizer. She glanced at her watch. No good postponing it any more, she would go out to the phone booth on the corner and call BG.
“BG, it’s Emmy, remember me? I got another proposition for you. Want to hear it?”
There was a strangled gurgle at the other end. “Emmy, I thought I told you to butt out. And I’m not interested in what you’ve got to say.”
She threw the threat in quickly in case he was going to hang up on her. “BG, I’m the one who can end your career. And before the big game on Saturday if you don’t play ball.” He was still there. “Listen real hard. I have all the evidence on a flash drive. It’s yours for one final payment of a quarter million bucks. I’ll even throw in the laptop. It’s a bargain.”
There was a silence. She thought he’d just hang up. But he must have been thinking it through. His voice was slow, deliberate. “Emmy you trying to sting me again? I’m not happy you’re two-timing me.”
Emmy gave a hollow laugh. “Now you know what’s it’s like to be two-timed, you son of a bitch. This one’s final BG. You pay up; I’m out of your life for good.”
She heard BG making noises over the phone. Like having a debate with himself. He finally said, “It’s a lot of dough. I don’t have that kind of cash around.”
“That’s your problem. I’ll give you until tomorrow to come up with the money.”
He hummed a little. “Emmy if you’re pulling some kind of stunt on me, I’ll set Sammy on you, that’s a promise.”
She sounded braver than she felt. “BG if you try and set Sammy onto me, you are finished, that’s also a promise.”
BG coughed and spluttered. “This is definitely the final time, you hear me. Okay Emmy, I’ll play along. You got a deal. Where we going to meet?”
“I’ll call you first thing tomorrow,” replied Emmy, putting down the phone and re-dialling.
“Jake, it’s on for tomorrow. I’ll give you the exact time in the morning.” She ended the call and made one further call to her cell phone that Coach Mason had taken, and relayed the same message to him. He said he’d be over first thing to get prepared, as he put it. All the balls were up in the air, all she had to do was to catch hers when it came down. No problem.
She left the phone booth, walked over to the drug store, and bought some nicotine gum and a packet of Marlboro lights, with the message ‘Smoking is bad for your health’ on the side of the pack. Now all she could do was wait. With a physco for company.
Jake put down the phone and turned to Anna, sitting with him on the bed. “Emmy. It’s on for tomorrow. Any second thoughts?”
“Plenty,” she replied, picking up a pillow and hugging it. “Jake, there’s bad things going to happen, and we’re right in the middle of it. I’m scared. Suppose something goes wrong?”
“Anna, we’ve gone over and over the same things. Nothing’s guaranteed. There’s a risk, agreed. You want to pull out, I’m not going to stop you.”
She studied him closely. “So you’re going ahead, with or without me, huh?”
Jake picked up on the body language. “I want a better life for both of us. This is one hell of an opportunity.” He left it at that. It could test their relationship, either she was on board with him or she wasn’t.
Anna composed herself. “Promise me if we all get out of this, we’ll turn Mason in right away. That monster belongs behind bars.”
Jake hugged her. “Don’t you worry about that, he’ll be history tomorrow.”
“You want Emmy terminated, it’ll cost,” said Sammy into his cell phone. He put his feet up on his cousin’s balcony, and relaxed.
“Now hold on, you’re the one wants to terminate Emmy, remember?” replied BG.
“Things have changed. Emmy’s not my main priority. I got bigger fish to fry.”
“Sammy -- Emmy was there when it happened. Your sister, remember. You wanna make sure and tie up loose ends.”
“Like I say, it’ll cost, said Sammy. He was beginning to enjoy this. Fleecing the big man out of dough. It could be the start to many other payments. Payments that would keep him afloat in Tennessee.
BG’s voice interrupted his thoughts. “How much?” he replied.
“Half million, cash. Payment up front.”
It sounded like BG swallowing hard. “That’s big dough.”
Sammy was none too worried. “BG, that’s your problem,” he said. “Call me when you got it together.” He pressed the off button and poured another glass of Sicilian red. If Emmy Parton had any evidence that could frame BG, he would persuade her to give it to him. Yes, he would enjoy that. If BG had been with her, she would be eye candy. Then he had a better idea.