My Kind of Town

Don Chapman

Thursday, September 2, 2004

Ice cube memories


It was dark by the time Fon Du walked up 9th Avenue and saw Bodhicita Guzman's rented cottage. In the glow of a street light, he saw his black Mercedes in the driveway. Lights were on inside, shining through windows and the screen door.

He passed by on the sidewalk opposite the cottage. Lingering in the shadow of a large mango tree, he saw Bodhicita emerge from the bathroom, towel wrapped around her, and against his will his heart leaped, his stomach rolled, his pulse quickened. He never again expected to be with a woman as fine, as beautiful, as exciting as she.

She spoke briefly, gesturing with her one free hand, disappeared down the short hallway to her bedroom. He'd been there, remembered that afternoon they'd come from the beach. She was just supposed to grab clothes for dinner that night, they'd shower and change at the Kahala estate he shared with several colleagues. But he'd wanted her then, and there, in her bed. It was a hot afternoon, and she'd done things with ice cubes that he didn't think could be done with ice cubes, which did nothing to cool him down.

The guy dressed all in black who'd attacked him and two other Te-Wu colleagues earlier at the estate crossed the room, entered the bathroom, closed the door. Clearly, he was involved in the plot against Te-Wu. But who was he? A lover? A spy master? A cop?

Jealousy and anger rising, his first instinct was to sprint across the street, sneak in and attack Bodhicita while the guy was in the bathroom. But he was unarmed, and whatever was on the tip of the mini-dart the guy in black had shot into his neck (triple Prozac), it was making him way too mellow to attempt anything so strenuous or daring.

But she would pay. One way or the other, she would pay. So would the guy in black. Then there was the lama.

Fon Du continued down the street, lingered at a bus stop half a block away that gave him a view of Bodhicita's place. He saw a bus coming, departed before he could be identified -- he didn't think he'd been spotted leaving his neighbor's estate with the neighbor's yappy little dog and yardman in pursuit, but he couldn't be sure -- so he got up and wandered back down the street. He was again lurking in the shadows of the mango tree across the street when the guy in black came out the screen door.

Behind him, Bodhicita turned off the lights inside, locked the door behind her. In the glow of the porch light, she wore a short black skirt and a sleeveless, sheer white turtleneck -- covering the knife wound to her throat -- carrying an overnight bag.

He watched his car's tail lights disappear down the street, hoping Bodhicita still kept a key in that secret place.

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Don Chapman is editor of MidWeek. His serialized novel runs daily in the Star-Bulletin. He can be e-mailed at dchapman@midweek.com



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