I remember when Bob bought her a friendship ring, Thai style. Engagement, he said. Undoubtedly she possessed the required assets, and he was smitten. But not her ex-partner, who slit Bob’s throat with a carving knife. Or so I conjectured.
CCTV was a game to Bob. Porn flics. He’d invite his bar-stool mates to watch his latest conquest. There were many before Goldie.
I was his link to normality. Before Goldie, Thailand had sucked it out of him – each day, more excesses, drugs, sex, and rock & roll were his to devour. Around eleven some mornings he met me at the condo pool for a pre-lunch swim and a smoke, while relating his hedonistic life-style, sometimes smirking and other times not so.
Perhaps I felt sorry for him – difficult to understand why, really. I suppose it could have been me if I’d had his disposition. He sensed it as well. I had little doubt he considered me to be an image of what he should have been – as if he was seeing himself in my eyes.
He entrusted me with his apartment key a short while after he met Goldie. His expression oozed trouble, but he never told me why and I didn’t ask.
The news of his demise filtered through to me like Chinese whispers from the local bar-stool grapevine. I gathered ‘a friend of a friend’ had seen his body being carted off by an ambulance, presumably to the local hospital morgue.
‘Definitely dead, man. Head nearly severed. Lots of blood.’ My source reached for his pint and glugged it down. ‘Someone had it in for him, that’s a no-brainer. Ain’t that right, Dave?’
Dave peered through blood-shot eyes, dragged on his fag. ‘Bob was a bit OTT, wasn’t he? You know, girls hanging off every limb.’ He gasped out a throaty roar. ‘And the police are saying suicide.’
I nodded. Said I had business, and left them to it.
An hour later, I revisited Bob’s apartment. Looked like shit, but that was perfect. Police wouldn’t reveal foul play. Not upset the apple cart. Tourist dollars, more important.
Before he died, he’d told me where the CCTV was stored. Pretty please. No way would I be implicated. Once more, I could rewind the tape and enjoy his demise, and my ex would come back.
I giggled. ‘I’m coming for you, Goldie.’