Two doors down from Larson’s was the kind of neighborhood bar that seldom saw strangers…especially in the middle of a Tuesday afternoon.
Sure enough…when we walked in…the three men at the bar turned at the sound of the door opening…stopped talking and just looked at the two of us.
Tommy gave them a nod and then guided me to a booth way over in a corner by a window. It was stuffy in the bar and Tommy opened the window a little. The cool air felt good.
An older woman…perhaps in her sixties came right over and leaned against the side of the booth. I had a feeling she may have been the owner.
She gave us a cool smile…and I’m sure she was thinking…”Now…who the hell are you two?”
But she said pleasantly, “Nice rainy day, right?”
I returned her smile…and desperately tried to think of something I could say or do to get me out of this booth…and away from Tommy.
I had decided…pigs can’t fly.
“Where is the ladies’ room?” I asked.
She looked away from us and pointed to a neon sign on the other side of the bar…past a few tables.
I made a move to get up…but Tommy reached across and put a restraining hand on my arm…
“Riley, can you hold on for just a couple of minutes? Let’s order first. I’m starving.”
He gave the waitress a big smile and said, “We’ll need a second or two.”
He reached for the little menus propped up by the salt & pepper shakers. His jacket fell open a little.
That’s when I saw the holster…and the gun.
“Sure, blue eyes…I’ll be back.”
Tommy smiled at her again and then turned back…but there was no smile for me…he knew I had seen the gun.