The One Hundred Dollar Bills – 2 & 3 –


The wind blew another few bills and spread them on the ground. Spencer picked them up one by one and looked around. They surely belonged to somebody, maybe to the guy sleeping on the shore not far away.

Just to be honest, Spencer knew he wasn’t a perfect guy. He often got drunk, liked a good smoke now and then, nothing too strong, and enjoyed women’s company a lot. However, he had the kind of integrity to give back what didn’t belong to him and help people in need.

“Hey, pal, is this money yours?”

Another hundred bill was fluttering partially caught under the man’s foot.

The guy didn’t answer. Spencer didn’t give up and bent over him. Maybe he was high on something. “Hey, buddy, can you hear me? You lost all this money…” The man didn’t move. Spencer shook him by his shoulder and the guy rolled on his side, uncovering a large bloodstain sucked into the sand.

Then Spencer went into his emergency mode. He searched the guy’s vitals. The stranger didn’t have a pulse. Spencer pulled up the stranger’s shirt and saw a big wound in his abdomen. He knew what to do. He called 911 and performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation for the next 3 minutes until the lifeguard came and took over without success. A couple of police cars arrived and the law enforcement secured the perimeter. Two fire trucks blocked the streets and the whole area was filled with police officers in no time. The ambulance was waiting for the detectives to finish with their work and take the body to the morgue.

Spencer gave his first declaration at the scene and handed the money to the detective who was writing the report.

“Death by stabbing with a sharp object, maybe a kitchen or a butcher knife.”

“Butcher knife?’ Spencer asked pretty animated. “My new roommate is a butcher.”

“And where is your roommate now, sir?”

“I don’t know. Maybe he was still sleeping in his room when I came to the beach this morning. I didn’t check.”

“Do you mind if we go and talk to him, sir?”

“It’s all right. Maybe it’s the best if we walk. I live two minutes away.” Spencer really didn’t want the neighbors to see him coming out of the police car.

“Let’s walk, then,” the detective approved, and one officer joined them.

The young man grabbed his surfboard and walked back to the cottage. The sun was pretty strong already. Spencer turned the key in the keyhole and stepped inside in silence. The policemen pulled out their weapons and made a sign to the young man to wait outside. Spencer went outside and walked around the house, stopping under his roommate’s open window.

Next second, the butcher landed on top of him, crashing him to the ground.

“What’s wrong with you, man?”

Jeb was totally wasted. He remained flat on the dirt and mumbled, “No one makes fun of me on social media. No one. I have nine hundred followers and this guy mocks me all the time. Not anymore.” The detective cuffed him easily. “I’m arresting you under the suspicion of murder. You have the right to remain silent. Everything you say may be used against you in the court of law.” The second police officer was holding a plastic evidence bag with the knife.

Spencer followed the small cohort to the street. “This guy seemed normal,” he confessed to the detective. “He was supposed to bring me his background check today or tomorrow. Paid his first and last months, has a job, never uses the kitchen. Cool. I assure you, he looked normal. I had him in my house for three days.”

Waiting for the police car to come, Jeb sat down on the sidewalk. “Would you call my boss and tell him I can’t go to work today?”

“We’ll take care of that at the station, sir.”

The butcher spat on the ground. “I really didn’t want to kill that guy. I wanted to scare him, that’s it. He pulled a knife, I pulled my knife and…” A trace of saliva made its way on the man’s chin. “Do you have a beer?”


A police car stopped in front of them and the officers helped the man get in the back with no problem. The atmosphere was calm and the street was quiet, only the new guy watching from the second floor of the next door house shouted, “If you need a lawyer, call me! Chris Andrew. My number is online.”

“Yeah,” Spencer yelled back, “they will give him a personal laptop at the station.”

The neighbor closed the window.

Spencer dragged himself to the neighborhood store to get something to eat and a six-pack. He still had a month to find a new roommate.


The End


On the Other Side – The HOUSE – 33

Blue planet

CONTINUATION (Read “Shred of Light” first.)

Phillip saw the despair in my eyes and reached to my face, in a gesture of tenderness. “Sophie, I will not let you drown here. Be sure of that.”

I needed that. “Come,” he commanded and pierced with his body somewhere to the other side. I took a deep breath and said a short prayer. I followed him. Starfish and shells were attached to the blocks all the way. I fought to keep my mind calm and let myself watch the beauty under the waves. It didn’t take long until I started to swim up, to the sunlight. I could see Phillip’s legs moving under the water in front of me. Then they stopped.

I fret. The oxygen in my lungs was gone. Would now be the moment when my brain would blackout and I ‘d faint? There were a few seconds when my whole body moved chaotically to get out of there. I screamed from inside, but nobody could hear me. I struggled to move myself up pushing into the rocks on the side, when two arms reached to me.

“Adam,” I called without a sound.

“Sophie,” I heard like from a mile away, and I closed my eyes.

Shaking, I took my first breath of fresh air.

“Adam, ” I called again.

“It’s Phillip,” I heard and clang to him with both hands.

“Easy, easy,” and he helped me lean my body weight on one of the rocks. “Are you O.K.?”

I nodded my head, busy to take in more air. It was so good to hear his voice again. The imminence of unexpected death was terrifying.

I looked around. We were at the end of one of those rock constrictions built to break the waves. I couldn’t see where we were exactly, but somehow I knew we were still in Newport Beach.


-To be continued –