Monk’s job is as a courier/go-between/contact man for the law firm Aeschylus and Associates. In that capacity, and because their clients are somewhat eccentric, he often finds himself in, for him, interesting situations.
“Yes?” A fairly stiff older gentleman was less than excited with my ringing the doorbell. I, on the other hand was rather amused.
“I’m from Aeschylus and Associates,” I informed him.
Apparently he would need more.
“Is there a Torvas Takalagas here? This is the address I was given, and while I’m sure you’re interested in my intentions, I’m afraid I can only speak to Mr. Takalagas.”
“And yet you feel the need to speak to me.” A wan grin crossed the old man’s face.
I had no answer for that.
He allowed me in and pointed to an alcove by the door. “Please wait here.”
He left, I assumed, to inform Mr. Takalagas.
I waited as voices carried down the long hall.
“Why is a man from Aeschylus and Associates here?” the man who greeted me demanded loud enough that I could hear.
“I have some documents for him to take. I’m allowed to do that, am I not?” This from whomever the old man was talking to.
“I made it clear to you that no correspondence would pass from this house without my say-so…” There was a momentary pause before the old man continued, “You expected me to be out of the house, didn’t you?”
“I think you’re overreacting; I don’t actually remember if you had a reason to leave or not. This is a personal matter that does not concern you.”
“Everything that happens in this house concerns me, Rodger!”
I looked again at the note I had with the address. I quietly opened the door and checked the number on the house. It matched my notes.
The conversation continued.
“We had an agreement, Rodger, an agreement about conduct and communication. I want to know exactly why that man is here!” the old man’s voice was becoming strained.
“Bellow a little louder, Alan, that way the neighbors can hear you too!”
It was good to have names now to go with the voices, which became muted after Rodger’s admonition. The house, however, was acoustically alive and continued to carry their quieter conversation throughout this part of the foyer where I was standing.
“Why is he asking for Torvas Takalagas? Why did you give him that name?” Alan was asking.
“Why not? You’re quite defensive today, Alan. I’m surprised. It’s just business and that name is associated with our business, is it not?”
“It’s a private name! I don’t want some office flunky knowing that name!”
“Office flunky? Oh come on, Alan, do you honestly believe Aeschylus and Associates would send over an office flunky? I’m sure the man has been properly vetted. Better yet, he’s still here, why don’t you go and grill him now? I’m sure he’d be more than accommodating.” Rodger was laughing.
“I want to see those papers,” Alan demanded!
“No,” was Rodger’s reply.
The sound of footsteps brought a fashionable middle-aged man to the foyer. I assumed it to be Rodger.
“You’re the man from Aeschylus and Associates?” He had gray eyes and a smile that favored the right side of his face.
“Are you Torvas Takalagas? I’m supposed to ask.” Boyer, my contact at Aeschylus and Associates had insisted.
“I am not. My name is not germane to this transaction. Mr. Boyer sent you, did he not?” Rodger continued to smile.
“He did.” I returned the smile.
“And who might you be, mister…?”
“Buttman, Monk Buttman.”
Rodger’s smile did not abate, but expanded to reveal his pearly whites.
“Clever, Mr. Buttman.” He handed me a large manila envelope. “Please give Mr. Boyer my regards.”
I noticed Alan standing just down the hall, a glower upon his face. Rodger turned towards him.
“Unfortunately, Mr. Takalagas does not. Good day.” Rodger thoughtfully opened the door and I was on my way.
©2019 David William Pearce
One thought on “A Day on the Job”
Reblogged this on David William Pearce, Writer and commented:
Short vignette featuring characters from Where Fools Dare to Tread, A Monk Buttman Mystery.