Raven’s Run 123

People make too much of burglary. It isn’t brain surgery. I broke the window in Davis’ kitchen door and let myself in. I was wearing rubber gloves and carrying the .44 out of sight under my shirt, with a pocket full of spare ammo. No alarms sounded as I entered. Either there were no alarms, or they were silent. I went through the kitchen quickly, and moved into the living room, deciding where to begin my search. After the incident in Jacks’ office, I was in a state of high readiness, but nobody came boiling out of the woodwork. In ten minutes I had made one quick pass through the house, memorizing the layout. No one had come to shoot me, so I went methodically to work.

It takes time to properly search a house. Davis’s place had two bedrooms, a kitchen, a living room and all the personality of a Holiday Inn. He had a rack of shotguns and rifles in the hall leading to his bedroom. Recreational weapons: a twenty gauge over and under, a long barreled 12 gauge pump, and a lever action .270 Winchester. His business weapons were in a suitcase at the back of his closet: an assortment of nine mm. automatics and a sawed off double barrel shotgun. There was a bag of suspicious looking white powder taped under the bathroom vanity, and a wad of pot stowed more casually in a shoe box under the sink. 

He had pants and shirts and shoes and flour in a bag, and coffee in a can, and all the thousand and one things we all have in our houses. I looked at it all, and none of it gave me a clue that would help me get Raven out of trouble.

*       *       *

It took hours to search Davis’ house. Then I started on the garage. Fortunately, Davis hadn’t been a keeper. There was a BMW, a bicycle and a lawn mower, a toolbox with wrenches and screwdrivers . . . and fifty thousand dollars in wrinkled bills stuffed down into an ammunition can and hidden behind a false partition.

I say fifty thousand. I didn’t count it, but I counted a handful and did a quick estimate. They were twenties and fifties, and there were a lot of them.

It was interesting fodder for speculation. If Davis was carrying the money for his boss, it certainly would not have been left untouched all these weeks since his death. It could be his share of the profits, but it didn’t look like the place a person would put his life savings. It looked like a hurried hideaway. Was he skimming? Maybe. Did it have any bearing on Raven? Probably not.

I sat for a while, just looking at the money. I’ve gotten used to being broke, but I don’t like it. Fifty thousand is no fortune, but it was more money than I’ve ever seen in one place before. Or might ever see again. And no one else knew it existed. And it was certainly drug money. My enemy had no legitimate claim on it and it could not be returned to his victims. more tomorrow


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