The Posture of Innocence, day 43

in writing •  2 months ago  (edited)

Captain Lee, Mr. Black, and Commissioner Scott lay their plans, without knowing how Captain Lee's mighty grandmother is about to change those plans...

To get totally caught up on The Posture of Innocence, here are the prologue, day 1, day 2, day 3, day 3.5, day 4, day 4.5, day 5, day 5.5, day 6, day 7, day 7.5, day 8, day 9, day 9.5, day 10, day 10.5, day 11, day 11.5, day 12, day 12.5, day 13, day 13.5, day 14, day 15, day 16, day 16.5, day 17, day 18, day 19, day 19.5, day 20, day 20.5, day 21, day 22, day 22.5, day 23, day 23.5, day 24, day 24.5, day 25, day 25.5, day 26, day 26.5, day 27, day 27.5, day 28, day 28.5, day 29, day 29.5, day 30, day 30.5, day 31, day 31.5, day 32, day 32.5, day 33, day 33.5, day 34, day 34.5, day 35, day 35.5, day 36, day 36.5, day 37, day 37.5, day 38, day 38.5, day 39, day 39.5, day 40, day 40.5, day 41, day 41.5, day 42, and day 42.5!

After Captain Lee and Mr. Black returned with their warrant, they had a conference with Commissioner Scott. It was decided that the bail situation still needed to develop, because potentially Lieutenant Deadwood and other assassins operating in Officer Cadbury's stead still needed to be flushed out.

“The noise on the subject will start tomorrow morning,” the commissioner said, “and that ought to give time for us to watch all day – money is going to start to move to Francis Lofton and then to the assassins, and if we miss every flow except to Deadwood, we can trace it back when we get the rest of the assassins in hand.”

“Maybe it's just Deadwood,” Mr. Black suggested. “How many more people at his low rank are living that far above their means?”

“Good point – but that means even a fifty percent down payment on him taking out fellow officers who know he'll be coming will be huge.”

“Unless,” Captain Lee said, “ they hire someone else for the job because their targets know he is coming. They may be using him to just watch and be a decoy, but will hand the job to someone else – while they are worrying about him, the attempt will come from another direction.”

“Do we suppose he knows that he may be demoted?” Commissioner Scott said.

“No, we do not,” Captain Lee said, “based on the fact that he still is planning to spend large sums of money on a new personal project, according to information I have received.”

“Still, a huge sum of money must soon move – the key is watching Francis Lofton,” Mr. Black said.

“He is being watched,” Captain Lee said. “Lightfoot and Carter have now been assigned during the day, and Jorgen and Dell on the night shift.”

“Who do you have slated to grab Lofton in the end, Captain Lee?”

“Longstreet and Anderson. We do not anticipate that he will put up any resistance.”

“All right. 12 hours until things really start to pick up.”

Or, so the commissioner thought, not knowing how Selene Slocum-Lofton was working her contacts...

Late that evening, Francis Lofton was seen driving from his brokerage firm to go to the Starview neighborhood home of someone he knew from casual society gatherings: Mildred York, a charming old woman who was mother-in-law to one of his Slocum-Lofton dupes. She had heard of the success, if you will, and the nice payments her son-in-law was getting, but she was the type of person who liked a more institutionalized approach. It so happened that Mr. Lofton could accommodate her, as he had at hand the agreements by which money moved through certain channels to fund everything that had kept the scheme going for 27 years. He quickly threw together an offering document based around the financial partners who had been working together to make the whole thing work, and presented it to Mrs. York, who oohed and aahed and giggled at his jokes and seemed reassured by how long they had been working the prison project, etc.

Mrs. York asked for a couple of days to talk things over with her advisers, including how much she could invest – somewhere between $5-7 million or so. Mr. Lofton was glad to give her those few days, and left lighthearted, knowing that Mrs. York could not put the significance of what he had given her together, and pleased at the idea that he, once again by his own cleverness, had established an extra stream of income that those above him and within the financial partnerships knew nothing about. After 30 years of being the trunk to the whole tree of profit for everyone else, he deserved the excess. Mrs. York's millions would be a crowning achievement.

Mrs. York had no idea what she had been looking at, as Mr. Lofton had anticipated. What he had not dreamed possible was that Selene Slocum-Lofton would step from behind the heavy curtains in the sitting room after having heard the entire conversation, and put her hand out for the document Mrs. York was holding.

“Here you go, Selene,” she said. “I did just as you said.”

“And I thank you, Mildred. Did he say two percent annual interest?”

“Yes. He and his offer were both very attractive, alas.”

Mrs. Slocum-Lofton scanned the document – yes, Mr. Lofton had used the real names of the real partners, not bothering to make up anything new because he knew Mrs. York wouldn't know one way or another.

“Con men always are. Thank you for this, take this, and say nothing to anyone about this matter.”

Mrs. Slocum-Lofton took out her checkbook and wrote a check for the two percent annual interest on $7 million for Mrs. York.

“Oh, Selene, you are a friend.”

“Don't mention it – really.”

“I won't, Selene. We've always been able to count on each other, and I'm not changing now.”

“I know, Mildred.”

Mildred York … one of those wonderful people whom one did not have to kill, because they knew how to play the proper role when their betters needed them to do so. Mrs. Slocum-Lofton felt about Mrs. York as she would feel about a loyal Yorkshire Terrier. The check was the petting of the pet.

Once at home in the Blue Ridge neighborhood, Mrs. Slocum-Lofton had her evening butler, Tracy, copy the document, and then had him call an overnight courier to get the document delivered to headquarters, addressed to Captain Lee, first thing in the morning. Meanwhile, around the cul-de-sac the family lived on, much anger and frustration was boiling, but, nobody dared take any action not sanctioned by Mrs. Slocum-Lofton. She walked over to Alexis's home around 9:30, for he was a good mouthpiece.

“Have no fear,” she said. “Mr. Lofton's payment for what he has ripped off is now on its way. Henry will prove himself very useful in this matter.”

Day 44 is up

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