SEA CHANGE: ONE

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
Jeff Boston comes face to face with two clients he hoped he would never see again; and is reborn.

Submitted: March 08, 2016

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Submitted: March 08, 2016

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SEA CHANGE

A Short Story

Nicholas Cochran

Chapter One

 

 

Jeff Boston had been a Boston lawyer before relocating to the Costa del Sol of California, a few nautical miles north of San Diego.

His wife, Ellen was a glamorous brunette of thirty–nine who was a partner in a firm of architects in San Diego.

Jeff, forty, was a tall, dark-haired chunk of granite in the flesh, naturally muscled, with sloping athletic shoulders and giant quads that he hid in pairs of Ferragamo flat-front pants. Jeff practiced law with two partners in an office park in Oceanside.

The Bostons had two teenagers; Beth and Martin.

Jeff was your hail-fellow-well-met; a great guy.

However, Jeff Boston could barely tolerate the fat, the pierced and the tattooed. 

Of course he made exceptions if any of these were his clients; kind of the reverse of “everybody hates all lawyers except their own.”

Jeff never could explain with any clarity, why he—a man of his education and pure kindness of both spirit and deed—harbored these  prejudices, He had explained his problem to Ellen and the partners and had  participated in several sessions of psychodrama, but saw no measurable results. Now, still unhappy about them, he simply lived with them.

Jeff’s firm had taken the case of James Doyle Bond as well as that of his wife, Rebecca.

James—Jimmy—Bond had the face of a rat and was a Junior Partner in a tattoo parlor. Rebecca—Becky—had a ring through her nose; one in each eyebrow and four dangling from each ear. Nevertheless, Becky worked, reading books for AudioBooks with a perfect British upper-class accent.  

Somewhere in her disturbed childhood, a Duchess-on-the-run, had hidden out in Becky’s household with free room and board in exchange for teaching Rebecca correct pronunciation, perfect diction and; the ultimate gift: endowing the young girl with an accent that would have shamed the conceited Professor Henry Higgins.

The Bonds’ cases, along with any other number of funky cases, were shuffled to the firm by a friend of a friend of a lawyer who knew Joey the Chiro.

As long as somewhere in the chain of referral there was a genuine, fully licensed attorney without any discipline matters pending, the firm felt ‘barely okay’ in taking on the Quackoprictic cases; reluctantly.

Jimmy had ‘allegedly’ been injured by the negligence of one Darryl Dimplestein, a travelling Rabbi who peddled torah charms and solace for a meager donation to the All God’s Children Need a Home Fund.

AGCNSHF rarely saw more than a tenth of the Rabbi’s ‘collections’ but at least the dribbles and drabbles were steady and certainly did help to bolster the rather rocky boat of negligent-circumcision insurance. The premiums were due monthly and Rabbi Dimplestein could always be counted upon to produce almost all of that payment; a payment that hung like a sharp sword of fate above the unattended wee ones in need of a close shave and a nick—down there.

This institution-as-borderline racket was edging very close to the legitimate limit line, and veering toward fraudulence.

Rabbi Dimplestein was a chubby five eight with glimmering blue eyes and a kindly smile. You don’t find rosy cheeks much any more, but the Rabbi had two, and perhaps these, plus his perfect grinning choppers, winkled money out of breathing stones for his grift.

He tended to perspire at the first announcement of trouble and his pigeon toed feet would tend even closer to each other.

Before the ‘collision,’, the good Rabbi had been knocking back boilermakers as though he was caught in the loopy loop of a Groundhog-Day Hanukkah.

His favorite beachhead to tipple was known as Hot Harry’s to the tourists, and Hot Pants Malone’s to the grizzled buckets of scum who almost died there every night from inferior booze and poorly pickled eggs. Throw in some withered potato chips and a package of pretzels from the last time the Chargers won a Super Bowl, and you had the perfect mix of poisons tagged as the ‘coroner’s folly’ by the few wastrels who managed to survive both Harry’s—and Hot Pants.

Ms. Jessie Malone was a fugitive from the Hong Kong gendarmerie; a gal of considerable lascivious talents and the first Chinese woman to welcome aboard breast implants after the flurry of nips and tucks that followed the showing of “The World of Suzie Wong” throughout Hong Kong, the New Territories, New Kowloon and plain old ‘born-and–die-on-a-sampan’ Kowloon.

The ‘Hot Pants’ tattoo was Jessie’s own attempt at singularity, further confusing her clients about her ancestry.

Malone did the deed and Jessie’s mom, Soo Lung, said just that to the drunken Irishman. She bundled him into a rickshaw and they wheeled to the harbor where she took a tug and deposited him aboard the Winng Deeng, where he fed boilers and sweated out his black dogs and weird pleasures during fourteen hour shifts before the unforgiving maw of Boiler # 4.

The collision, sois disant, occurred when the Rabbi was drunken-stumbling out of his machine and hit the wrong pedal, easing his front bummer into the huge exhaust pipe of the ‘rolling thunder’ chopped Humvee attended by one James Doyle Bond.

Jimmy and the missus were on their way home from a tattooing convention where they had each received a freebie after signing up for a full-leg number within the coming season.

Apparently there is a ‘season’ in the tattoo industry that is dutifully respected by all those within the inked community.

The Rabbi managed to stop before hitting the rear of the Bond ride with any measurable force; a cut-off Humvee with genuine Iraqi plates and the original holes made by three strikes performed with grenade launchers.

Jimmy had added some art to each side, depicting rather crude approximations of a lightly clad nymph of the desert in positions not normally assumed in nature.

Becky, the little woman, a shortish lass, had botched bottle-blonde hair, and as noted earlier, had a silver ring through her nose, one through each eye-brow, and four droopers in each ears. However—implausibly—she had perfect dentition, killer implants, and spoke in an arresting alto, with the cultured English accent, bestowed upon her by the heretofore noted Duchess-on-the -run.

These last two bizzaros—the alto range and the cultured accent—gave one the willies; you thought you were hearing Margaret Thatcher trapped in a goat.

After a while, you truly forgot what you were looking at, and one was lulled into a mood of live and let live; even to the point of prompting Ms. Bond by repeated; “oh, do go on”s.

Jimmy would just beam a friendly rat-face at you and swell with rat pride, not unlike Uncle Rat from “The Wind in the Willows.”

 When Darryl Dimplestein finally managed to pull on the hand brake and flounce himself out of his tiny Subaru, he came face to face with a giant rat and a bobbing chrome mobile.

 But the rat was talking; and so was the mobile!

Seems the Bonds thought he had slammed into the back of their road version of a tank and had severely injured them. Both alternated groans with grimacing clutches of their lower backs and necks.

When the chilly marine layer penetrated the Rabbi’s booze-haze, he realized what a giant dill he was in.He suddenly snapped into his religious gear, fawning over both of them and promising payment for all their bruises of both the body and the mind.

The extremely unappealing couple became extremely appealing the moment the mobile spoke.

Darryl had always wanted to talk like a Lord and had even spent hours listening to discs of Lord Peter Whimsy cases in a determined effort to mimic his Lordship at every opportunity

 However, the results of all this concerted effort and hours of practice were that Darryl sounded like a British pimp on a Jewish retreat in the Catskills.

Jimmy and Becky took pity on poor sodden Daryl and agreed not to call the cops but, instead, to simply exchange license and insurance information.

Darryl wept over one of his Torah charms for hours; the Bonds stopped for a few beers of relief. They had no wish or intention to involve any law in their incident.

Their chopped Humvee was illegal on at least five counts; Jimmy had three outstanding warrants for driving without a valid license: Becky owed her piercer over a thousand dollars for both the pierces and the hardware; their apartment at the end of the street was in violation of the state recycling laws; they were two months overdue on their rent; and a rival gang of rats were after Jimmy’s hide, his bride and his coin.

Whew! Babe, did we dodge a BIG one.

They laughed and drank and loved and slept the sleep of fools.

 

 

End of Chapter One

 
 
 
 


© Copyright 2017 Nicholas Cochran. All rights reserved.

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