C'est dangereux

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 14 (v.1) - Second Part / Chapter 4

Submitted: July 28, 2019

Reads: 17

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Submitted: July 28, 2019

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SECOND PART / CHAPTER 4

 

The company Signe d’argent has an unofficial name among the employees Mirage. This is because Signe d’argent promises loans to corporate clients and individuals at a low-interest rate in the market (in other words, the most favourable conditions). In fact, there is a slightly different scheme:

Sum €5,000, Rate of bureau 30% (rate: €1,500), Normal rate 30% (rate: €1,500).
Sum €1,0000, Rate of bureau 42% (rate: €4,200), Normal rate 30% (rate: €3,000).
Sum €2,0000, Rate of bureau 46% (rate: €9,200), Normal rate 30% (rate: €6,000).

They promise everyone thirty per cent, but if the loan amount is more than €5,000, the interest ‘grows a little’. The greater the amount, the higher the percentage increases. The higher, the more chaotic.

In other words, the staff of the company Signe d’argent twist interest-rate as they want, not disdaining to lie the clients. All documents indicate that the amount of interest consists of value-added tax and other expenses, and may not always coincide with the ‘approximate interest’.

Professional lawyers and economists bypass this ‘bureau’ to another side. But that is not the worst. Exactly the same scenario of working with loans is used by all other companies on the market, and Signe d’argent is no different from them, like two buildings that were built according to one architectural project.

Nicole knew and always considered bureaus with ‘small loans’ a deception, parasitism in the financial and banking sphere. Formally, the ‘bureau’ is called ‘Signe d’argent’ (banknote), but in fact, the French word ‘mirage’, as the employees call it, and even Pierre Moral himself, suits it better.

They were all engaged in deception. Nicole herself deceives clients and Ragna with Raimon deceives them working in the ‘mirage’. Gardinier also supervised this branch of the ‘mirage’ with the chief accountant. They all had different reasons and motives for why they worked in such a place.

Of all these people, only Raimon seemed like an odd man. Why did he choose this particular job? Why does he need training on the topic of finding information on the Internet? Perhaps someone’s programmer? But why here?

Nicole knew that working in such places was not very respected by financial institutions, and if she ever left the ‘mirage’, earned enough money to break away from Francesco, she wouldn’t tell anyone under any circumstances what worked at Signe d’argent. Pierre didn’t seem to be the seller of the list of former clientele.

Some people, not the most honest businessmen, are known for this. Anyone can buy a base, but often these are advertisers who need phone numbers to call. Therefore, people in civilized countries are using answering machines. At least, we are not talking about any blacklists.

Alain Renard told Nicole about how he took this post at the bank, about the previous employee who worked before him. This made her shudder, be on the alert, and not try to harm the bank. Pierre may have already killed someone. But the case is dull, and it is more expensive to dig against the chief, which means no one would be engaged in it.

As you know, the nature of the relationship of Banque de Morales and the mirage is not advertised. The fact is that the mirage receives funding through a false account, which is associated with the bank. The character of this account is disguised, which makes it harder to trace.

First, the money is transferred to this account from the bank itself, which is issued to some relative Morales, and then from this account to the ‘mirage’ under the guise of some ‘sponsor’. So Pierre tried to be safe from too curious tax inspectors who can sell information about the discovered account to some idiot or a reporter.

Imagine some short-run French newspaper. No one remembers exactly how it was called, Alain Renard himself did not know that either. Let us call it for the sake of convention La petit vérité (French: A Little Truth).

So, information was published in La petit vérité that Banque de Morales and Signe d’argent, or rather ‘mirage’, are linked together by a common source of funding. Information was given to reporters by an employee named Gerard Ruse, who headed the same subdivision before Alain; anonymously, but Pierre still understood.

Both companies have officially denied this information. As evidence, which did not contradict a trade secret, he had a clue that both companies were not public, but some of the information was open. Moreover, the same part is open: the number of branches, the number of loans issued (loans and deposits in a bank), the year of foundation.

At the same time, one detail did not converge: Banque de Morales has open information about the authorized capital, but information about authorized capital in the mirage is closed. The inconsistency of this detail allowed for convincing reporters that the financial support of both companies is in no way related to each other.

This was achieved by Pierre Morales: to make the company ‘look different.’ Possible reporters wishing to investigate his activities, including his connection with the crime, would have been defeated. However, Gerard Ruse’s activities through La petit vérité did not please the chief, and he decided to kill the one who spoke.

In the winter around 18:00 local time, when Gerard Ruse left Banque de Morales, moved out through his motorcycle (he believed that it was better to get to some parts of Paris on a motorcycle than on a clumsy car: he had no family or special cargo), some people approached him. They threw him on the ground, put a transparent bag over his head with a gag and, almost without any noise, which can be noticed, pushed him into a van.

After several attempts, he was persuaded to drag the motorcycle into the same van, allegedly voluntarily. There, Ruse was pumped with some kind of sleeping pills intravenously. Closer to two in the morning, the body was taken out of the city and sprayed with hydrochloric acid.

A deep hole was prepared for the motorcycle in advance. Morales rented an excavator, a specialist. Passersby must think that the city authorities were repairing some communications. The license plates, the engine, the battery and the windows were removed from the van. They quickly repainted it in a different colour. Some doors were opened.

The mirrors could have been broken, but the looted van was pulling at the crime scene and most likely would have attracted the attention of the police. The owner allegedly left it in the forest for unknown reasons, and Pierre, who developed the script of abduction, murder and burial of the critic, knew that the abandoned transport vehicle was the least interesting for the police. Spare parts of the van thrown into the same pit as the motorcycle Gerard Ruse.

After the excavator’s driver finished work, around three or three-thirty a.m., local time, he was met by some armed man with a pistol hired by Pierre Morales. He stood in front of the excavator’s door and told him:

“You saw everything, you know, but you must be silent. Our people will let you go to the house, but you should never speak to anyone and with whom you cooperated. In this case, we won’t harm you or your family, you just dug communications.”

Gerard Ruse is still considered missing. No one even looked for him. The excavator driver didn’t talk about anything. He never contacted the police, and they didn’t touch him. Alain Renard had heard this story. He told Nicole about it. Ruse’s bike was buried by the excavator driver. His body itself was sprayed.

After some time, the police appeared at the bank’s bureau, but all the employees were saying exactly the same thing. Gerard left somewhere; he allegedly voluntarily put his motorcycle into a van of some transport company and wanted to transfer things.

Since then, Alain Renard has replaced Gerard Ruse himself.

“I have two questions for you,” said Nicole. “Who gave you the information about the murder of Gerard Ruse? How exactly did you get to this bank without an economic education? Did you have a ‘guarantor’?”

It was on Saturday. Nicole didn’t hurry to the ‘mirage’, and they had more time to clear up the gaps. But Alain long tried to ask her at least about some part of her past, she was silent to the last or fought back with short remarks about her bad stepfather, a mother with a police character.

When Nicko told him about white fish in a restaurant, at least some progress was made in the ‘food’ theme. But he wasn’t interested in her stomach. He was interested in her feelings and memories.

“I told you enough about my knowledge of this bank. And now it’s your turn to answer questions. I think you’ll answer me.”

“Maybe I’ll answer, and maybe I won’t,” Nicole said as if she’s a sophist.

“Tell me any substantial information about your emotions, feelings. Who are you? I live with you for months, and still I don’t understand it. Besides that we’re classmates, we don’t know each other.”

“Hallå!” Nicole used ‘Hello’ in Swedish. “You better ask a specific question. You’re interested in this so much that you better to become me, Nicole, than to answer these questions.”

“Tell the first major memory except for white fish. I already heard about it.”

“I told my mother that I rented a flat alone. It’s allegedly being renovated in one of the rooms, so I’m not inviting her. She’s not much with dust. She starts to suffocate immediately, and this version is quite realistic in terms of why she shouldn’t appear here.”

“Why can’t I meet your mom?”

“You know the answer. Our relationship at school wasn’t approved of. Everyone hated us, the teachers, too. At the age of fourteen, I shaved my legs without her permission.

With a mom who has a police character, this is not worth doing. Mom decided that I already had sex as if I slept with someone. She took me to a private gynaecologist.”

“But it was at fourteen.”

“Because formally, I’m still married. I think my mother won’t really like the fact that I’m walking from a ‘beloved’ husband,” her intonation in the word ‘beloved’ was intentionally false.

“Who is this mysterious official husband with whom you just can’t divorce?”

“He can kill me, Alain. He’s not associated with such crime as Pierre, but he can just kill me in cold blood because I didn’t give him birth to a child. I had a miscarriage. Perhaps this is his fault, but I don’t know.”

“Do you need big money for a gynaecologist and a lawyer?”

“You have already answered the questions. Are you satisfied? Now let me be alone.”

“After you get a job at a bank and earn a lawyer, will you marry me?”

“Maybe. I like you, really, and maybe I’ll introduce you to my mom.”

Nicole wasn’t sure about that. She rather said that he expected to hear, and then, later, she couldn’t decide for herself. Her condition could be explained by likening it to an elevator descending from the Eiffel Tower, when a passenger, standing in it, can no longer stand, and her body simply slides down the wall to the floor. And the elevator still has to go, go and go.

“After you earn a lawyer and a gynaecologist, will you leave Pierre’s business?”

“Maybe. I had an idea to start my own business.”

“What do you want to sell?”

“I don’t know.”

“There is no strategy behind your words.”

“As if your work of an ever-firing banker is more of a strategy. You, Alain, are almost like Ragna.”

“Ragna?”

“The woman. She is the one with whom I work in the mirage. Chestnut hair laid in a hairband, white wool turtleneck. She was born from members of the Ragnarok cult, a Pseudo-Catholic group of fanatics. They read the mantra every hour and are hungry until five in the morning. She had suffered a lot from them. And by the way, Ragna is her real name. She knows that her name is stupid, but she had accustomed to it.”

“As I see, Nicole, you’re good at the understanding strangers. And you’re not in a hurry to open your emotions. But it’s good, in our time this quality is rarely met. Appreciate it.”

“Well, I’m flattered by your compliment. But if I try to open up to other people, I hear leading questions. I just want someone to listen to me without any leading questions and stupid assumptions.”

“I can prepare better. You can tell me as much as you want. I also wanted to ask why you don’t spend your finances very effectively?”

“And what’s wrong with spending money that I earned myself?”

“You bought a thick German dictionary. It’s cheap. You could ask me. Save your money for a gynaecologist or a lawyer.”

“This is the thing that my ‘husband’ destroyed, and I wanted it back. It doesn’t hurt my savings much.

“By the way, the criminal nickname of Pierre—Sang (Le Sang, French: Blood). Do you know the French idiom Bon Sang? (French lit: Good Blood, the equivalent of What the Hell?).

Nicole didn’t say that the ‘husband’ didn’t destroy anything. She just ran away from home and was unable to capture all this.

Gratte bought two notebooks on forty-nine pages: one for unknown words in German, the other for unknown words in Swedish. They added a notebook with large lines: it’s like a notebook. It’s for German idioms, perfect for short recordings. But there are only lines on the front pages: there is nothing on the non-front pages. Alain wrote phone numbers unknown people to her, most likely entrepreneurs who were denied a loan and should be redirected to the ‘mirage’.

Nicole didn’t object to writing in this notebook but didn’t understand why he couldn’t buy his own. Looking through the notebooks in her absence, he noticed among the German words a lot of those that are negative.

hesitate___zögerlich
fragility___die Gebrechlichkeit
unstable___benommen
and vice versa___und umgekehrt
compromise___mittlerer Boden
ally___Verbündete
to anticipate___vorhersehen
cramped___verkrampft
postpone___verschieben


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