This is something I've been meaning to do since like 2012. One day I thought "If CBS brought back Hawaii Five-0, why shouldn't they bring back Magnum too?" So I created a rough plot, found actors who might work in the roles, and then let it sit. Well, I finally wrote what I call to be my pilot, although I doubt I'll write any more, unless there's a desire for more from my readers.
The actors I had chosen are:
Magnum: Josh Holloway
TC: Chad Coleman
Higgins: John Bowe or Ian Bleasdale
Rick: Mike Lombardi
Tanaka: Marcus Coloma
One final note: this takes place in 2010, assuming it was airing right alongside Hawaii Five-0.
Days Gone By, Days Yet To Come
Lights and sounds filled the cool night air in Hawaii, centered around a large, three-story mansion. There was a large bonfire on the beach where many people gathered. There was even a bar situated nearby. The rest of the party was occurring inside.
The sounds of a woman could be heard on the third floor balcony, looking out over the driveway. She was shouting something. And then her body hit the cement below.
It took a little while before anyone realized something had happened. As soon as a few people saw her, more people began to run and gather around. Finally came the woman's husband.
"Lilith?" he shouted, running to her. He crouched by her side, "Lilith? No! Lilith! Lilith!" He turned and looked at all the people standing around, "Who did this?" he screamed, coming to his feet, "Who? Who?"
Music wafted out gently from the small beach house. There was a wonderful view of the ocean and the sands, with a large mansion sitting on the other side of the building. This small place was a paradise, even grander than the mansion, to someone who could find true appreciation for it.
"He kept dreaming that someday he'd be the star. Superstar, but he didn't get far."
I always felt off about that line. I feel like that's a dream we all aspire towards; to be the star, to do what we love, to be successful, famous, powerful. Not everyone can reach it. Most don't. I think I'm one of the lucky few who made it, and is living it. I mean, I'm working security at a Hawaiian mansion, live in a nice little house on the premises, have no bills to pay… It might not be the stardom I thought about as a child, nor what others think about, but this is paradise. I challenge anyone to say it's not.
Thomas Magnum sat on the couch, leaning his head back against the backrest and looking up at the ceiling. The music drifted around him, and there was nothing else. That was the extent of his purpose here today.
He didn't hear the door open, nor the footfalls of the man as he approached.
"Magnum." Nothing. "Magnum," more insistent. Nothing. "Magnum!"
Thomas lifted his head and looked around before setting his sights on the door, "Oh! Higgins!" He quickly came to his feet, "Um…can I help you with something?" He looked at the table he had had his feet resting on and then reached over, tidying up the mess of objects, "I was working late, and well, things just get cluttered."
Higgins sighed, "I've told you before. Robin Masters allows you to use this as if it were your home. You don't need to tidy it in my presence."
Thomas stopped, "Last time you were here you yelled at me," he reminded.
"Yes. Yes I did," Higgins responded, walking from his spot and looking at one of the recliners. He eyed it for a moment, then chose to remain standing, "Now, the reason that I'm here."
"Is there something related to the security that I forgot about?" Thomas asked. He got up and walked over to the mantle, "I have everything scheduled…or, well, I think everything. If I forgot, I'm only human."
"No, there's nothing of the sort," Higgins told him, watching as Thomas flipped through a datebook.
Thomas stopped, "Yes there is," he said, turning it over and pointing to the date, "There's something here."
"Yes, and I dealt with it. As I said, nothing of the sort. Because it's already been taken care of."
"You could have gotten me," Thomas said, "This is my job after all." He looked at his datebook again, "Besides, do you know how to use electronic locks like the ones we were supposed to get today? I mean, your…," Thomas paused, "What was it?"
"The Dhofar Rebellion of the 1970's," Higgins stated.
"Right, that," Thomas said, "I mean, you didn't have anything like this back then. In Iraq…"
"That's enough," Higgins said, "You've oft interrupted my stories and cited them as boring or dreadful. I'd like to think that I take a higher road than you do, but I must insist you not tell me your stories."
"And why not?" Thomas questioned, "You've told me so many of yours, even when I profusely begged you to stop!"
"Because I know how to tell a good war story. You're young and just blather on about it," Higgins said.
"Me? Blather on?" Thomas questioned, raising his voice.
"Yes," Higgins said. "Now, the reason I came."
"I imagine you want me to make up missing the appointment," Thomas said, "But I was out late working a case last night! The governor's cousin's friend was claiming he was being stalked, and I…"
"Blathering on again," Higgins said.
"How is that blathering?"
"Thomas," Higgins said, "No. I do not expect anything. You were hired by Robin Masters to provide security for his estate. He hired you for your skills as demonstrated in the Iraq War. I appreciate your war service, as I served in my day as well…"
"In the Doorman Rebellion, yeah," Thomas said.
"Dhofar," Higgins corrected with some emphasis, "Now, I respect your service. I respect your security sense. Your first job is to do security for this estate, not to be out running around at night looking for stalkers and the like."
"Private investigator is my job," Thomas reminded Higgins, "It was my job when Robin hired me. It's still my job. I even asked him if I could work while employed here, and he okayed it himself."
"Yes, but your job here comes first," Higgins said.
"Fine, fine," Thomas said, flipping through his datebook, "I see there's something in two weeks. I'll make sure not to do anything that day."
"It would be greatly appreciated," Higgins told him, moving towards the door. He paused and turned around, "One more thing. There was a message left at the main house for you. Someone is coming to meet with you at noon. You may want to straighten up."
"Can I use the main house?" Thomas asked.
"No," Higgins answered, leaving Thomas.
Thomas stood there for a moment, then threw his book onto the couch.
There are things about Higgins that I really do like. We give each other crap a lot, but I feel like that's how we play. We're both men who know what we're doing, and we're both professionals in our own way. He's snotty and British and proper, and I'm, well, not.
We both served our countries and fought in wars. I feel like that brings us a bond that neither of us would really care to admit to, but that only makes the bond stronger. He may not let me use the house for this meeting, but that's ok. That's just one more bottle of wine I can…borrow without him knowing about.
The clock hands showed noon as Thomas sat around at the table in his small house's living room. He had cleaned the table, the couch and both recliners. The entire room was mostly clean. He glanced over at the door to his bedroom, seeing something sticking out of the crack between the bottom of the door and the floor.
He hurried over and opened the door slightly, but it took some force. He reached down and shoved the sleeve of the shirt back in, then closed the door again and hurried to the couch.
Soon came a knock on the door. Thomas rose and answered it.
"Bill!" he exclaimed.
"Thomas," Bill answered with a solemn smile. Bill was a man in his forties, with short brown hair and a mustache and beard combination. He was dressed in a suit and carried a briefcase with him.
"It's been…how long?" Thomas asked, "You know I was never good with dates."
"Five years or so," Bill said, "It's good to see you again Thomas, but I wish this was under better circumstances."
"Well, anything's bound to be better than last time," Thomas said, "Right?"
"I don't think so," Bill said, walking in and moving to the table. Thomas looked at him and moved to close the door.
Bill and I served together for a time in Iraq. There were a number of us who operated together, including my friends Rick and T.C. The last time we were all together we came under fire and Bill took a bullet and a lot of shrapnel. We didn't think he'd survive, and the doctors were skeptical he'd keep his leg. But everything worked out for him in the end.
When you have such an uncertainty of if you're going to live or not through something, you tend to reevaluate your life. I know I did on multiple occasions in Iraq, but for Bill, he really changed. He cleaned up his act, invested wisely and worked at his father's company for a while until everything paid out. After that he took to living every day like it might be his last. I've heard of his parties here in Hawaii. He seems like a real Gatsby.
Thomas sat down, "So, this is serious then," Thomas said, "When I saw you I thought this might be pleasure, but I'm assuming it's business."
"It's business," Bill confirmed.
"Is this the first business since Iraq?" Thomas asked.
"I spent two years working at straight business," Bill said, "First time since then."
"What disturbed your life of perfect pleasure?" Thomas asked.
"You didn't read the newspapers then? Or turn on the news?"
Thomas shook his head. He picked up the remote from the table and tried to turn on the TV, "Higgins refuses to give me a working television. I haven't seen the need to buy one yet. Or, well, I don't have a proper way to get one here… And Higgins doesn't let me have the papers. He thinks I'm too immature to handle them."
"Sounds like you," Bill said, although his tone was grave.
"Ok, enough of this," Thomas said, "Why are you here? What happened that I didn't know about?"
"My wife died," Bill said, keeping it brief.
"Bill…," Thomas said with more sensitivity, "What happened?" He subconsciously reached over and rubbed his own ring finger a little.
"I don't know," Bill said, shaking his head, "People give conflicting stories."
"What are the facts?" Thomas asked. He paused, "Sorry, I'm used to talking to clients…"
"Well, aren't I a client?" Bill asked.
"That's why you came?" Thomas asked, "Not as a grieving friend?"
"No. I want to be your client," Bill said. "I want you to find out what happened. I want you to find who killed Lilith."
"Are you sure she was murdered?" Thomas asked.
"Some people say they heard her screaming. Some say she was shouting for help, while others say they don't know what it was. She jumped, or was pushed, or fell, or…something from the third floor balcony and died on impact with the driveway. The police have ruled it as a suicide. They found no signs of a struggle, and assumed she jumped."
"And what do you think?" Thomas asked.
"Everything was her idea," Bill said, "Yes. I had a hard time in Iraq, yes, I wanted to have a livelier life. But it was Lilith that wanted all of these parties, that had all of these friends…all of this was hers. This wasn't a life I forced onto her; this was her life that she drew me into. She wasn't depressed, she wasn't unhappy. There's no reason for her to have taken her own life, Thomas."
Thomas nodded, "What's in the briefcase?"
Bill opened it and turned it to Thomas, "Some things of hers that I thought might help you."
"You didn't give these to the police?" Thomas asked.
"They already ruled it a suicide," Bill said, "I don't think this could have changed their minds."
Thomas picked up a VHS tape, "Nostalgic," he said. He looked to Bill, "What's on it?"
"I don't know," he said, "We didn't have a VHS player."
"Of course not," Thomas said, "The main house has one. I'll go use it later." He set the tape down and looked back into the briefcase. He gently lifted a ring with a strange set of engravings, "And this?"
"She wore it to social functions," Bill responded, "I don't know what it is, and she never told me. I asked, but…"
Thomas nodded and set it down. The last thing he lifted was a document, "Investment records?"
"I thought it might be worth something," Bill said.
"It may be," Thomas answered, setting it down, "I'll look into these things. I don't know if it'll turn anything up, but…but I'll help you get answers."
Bill nodded, "If you need anything more, ask me."
"If you find anything more, give it to me," Thomas said, "As it stands, a mystery VHS tape, strange markings on a ring, and investment reports might not lead to anything."
I can see how Bill thought this might play out. If she was murdered, the VHS might have clues, or evidence against who murdered her. Maybe she was into some shady business and made a recording. The markings on the ring might indicate a society or group of some sort, and then there was the investment document. If this was something involving business, well, I won't need to be putting that in the book I want to someday write on how to be a private investigator. That one's obvious on how it's useful.
Thomas watched Bill leave and then returned to the table and looked at the three items. He picked up the ring first and turned it over in the light, "These look familiar," he muttered. He set it down and pulled out his cell, "Rick? I need to see you. Can you…ok, fine, I'll come to you. …what do you mean not now? This is important!" He sighed, "Fine, fine. I'll come by in an hour." He hung up and set his cellphone down.
He reached his thumb over and gently rubbed his ring finger. He lifted his hand and looked at it, "Stop it," he told his thumb before walking into his room and forcing the door open. "I'll get this clean one of these days…"
He walked over to his nightstand and lifted a small box from the top of it. He opened it and drew out a silver ring with a cross engraved into it. The cross had two bars across the center instead of one.
He slid it onto his ring finger and headed back out before picking up the tape, document and ring, and leaving.
Three slow, heavy knocks came. Higgins walked to the door and opened it a crack, "Yes Thomas?" he asked simply.
"Higgins, let me in," Thomas told him.
"You weren't here for the installation of the new electronic security locks. I feel like this is ample punishment," Higgins told him, "If you'd been here, you'd have known the password."
"I was doing an investigation for the governor!" Thomas told Higgins.
"No need to lie, Thomas," Higgins said.
"You know what I mean," Thomas said.
"As surely as you know what Rebellion I fought in," Higgins responded.
"Ok, look," Thomas said, "The man who came today. His name is Bill Fuller. He was with me in Iraq for a while, but took a bullet and almost lost his leg to shrapnel. His wife was killed last night, and he thinks it was murder. I need to come inside so I can try to investigate."
"And how will coming inside help?" Higgins asked. He stepped back and opened the door.
"You didn't even wait for an answer," Thomas told him as he walked inside.
"I'm not heartless," Higgins said, "How will this help?"
Thomas held up the VHS, "Because this might have some clues."
"Come," Higgins said, leading Thomas through the hall, past the kitchen, and into a room with a large television and multiple items hooked up. Thomas inserted the tape into the VHS and Higgins pressed play.
The image of Bill's wife Lilith displayed on the screen. She was young, in her thirties. Bill had married someone nearly ten years younger, but it was happy on both of their ends. She wore her black hair long, but looked somewhat plain. She had no jewelry, like a necklace or earrings, despite her wealthy status.
"Bill…Bill…if…I can't even say it," she said, looking down. She took a breath, "If you've found this tape, then I hope it was by mistake. If you just found this and put it in, then please, shut it off and come talk to me. But, if something happened to me, then please, keep watching…"
Higgins watched the screen while Thomas drew out a notebook and pen and paused the video for a moment. He made a few notes and then pressed play.
"If you're still watching this, then I'm probably dead," she said softly." She took a deep breath, "But please, pay attention and don't do anything stupid or on your own. You're not cut out for it anymore, and I don't want you to die as well."
Thomas paused it and looked at Higgins, "Did Bill leave a number to call him back at?" Thomas asked.
Higgins nodded, "I made note of it on the pad by the telephone," he responded.
"Good," Thomas said, "I'm going to need to have a conversation with him soon…" He reached over and pressed play.
"You know that my friend Remy started a company a year and a half ago as of this recording. You know that I invested two million dollars into it and told you not to worry. I lied to you that day. You probably should have worried. Remy is a good woman, and I trust her completely, but I don't trust her business partners. While it was legitimate, it was also a front for the Yakuza. The money was to save Remy's life. I might have to pay them more later, I…I don't know. But please, if something has happened to me, don't go to Remy. Don't put yourself in danger by exposing yourself to them. Just move on and leave the island. Stay away from the Yakuza."
There was a long break of silence. Finally Lilith spoke again, "I love you."
The tape ended.
"That solves that," Thomas said, writing his notes, "I need to find this company and this woman."
"You're going to go and get involved in the Yakuza then?" Higgins asked.
"If I have to," Thomas said, "If Remy can't give me answers, then yes. Bill needs answers, and this tape isn't enough."
"So, now it's revenge," Higgins said.
"It's justice," Thomas responded, "I won't kill them, I'm going to find those responsible for her death and bring them to justice."
"You're not going to have an easy time with that," Higgins said.
"I know, but I have to try. For Bill's sake," Thomas said.
"And your own?" Higgins asked.
"What?" Thomas questioned, on edge. His voice took on a harder tone.
"Your friend brought you this problem. I can't imagine you'd hand him this tape and call that good. You're a better caliber man than that."
"Y…yeah, that's what I thought you meant," Thomas said before picking up his things and going.
"You're bartending now?" Thomas asked as he walked along the beach towards an outdoor bar. A few people were sitting around it with drinks, but paid him no heed.
"Being a manager means wearing many hats," he responded as he set a drink down in front of a man, "What is it you wanted?"
Thomas sat down on one end of the bar where there was nobody else, "You remember Bill?"
"Of course I do," he responded, "Poor bastard almost lost his leg in Iraq."
"He came to me for help, Rick," Thomas told him.
"And what sort of help did he need?" Rick asked.
"His wife died," Thomas responded, "The police call it a suicide, he thinks it was murder."
"And what do you think?" Rick asked, leaning against that end of the bar, on the inside.
"I think he's probably right," Thomas said, "She recorded a VHS and basically said if she dies, the Yakuza is likely to blame. It's a whole investment into a friend's company which turns out to be part Yakuza thing."
"You say that like it's a common occurrence," Rick said.
"Isn't it one for you?" Thomas asked.
"I don't do that stuff anymore," Rick said. There was a moment of silence as Thomas eyed Rick, "Ok, well, not much anymore." Another moment, "Not more than once a month." More, "Twice a month."
"You're the guy I need to talk to," Thomas said, "You have an in with the Yakuza."
"Technically I have two ins," he responded.
"Oh, Icepick is in with them now?" Thomas asked.
Rick nodded, "Yeah. Business partners. Which part of the Yakuza do you want? And are you sure this is a smart idea?"
"I don't know, and I know it's not," Thomas said.
"Then why push it? If you think the Yakuza did it, tell Bill and tell him to move on with his life."
"The love of his life was murdered by them," Thomas said, "Would you move on?"
"You did," Rick said.
Thomas remained silent. He drew the ring out and put it on the table, "This was hers. Do you have any idea what those markings are?"
Rick picked it up and examined it under one of the lights of the bar, "Yeah, more or less."
"What are they then?" Thomas asked.
"Some parts of the Yakuza, at least on the island, have started to move away from using their native alphabet to leave messages. They instead have crafted a code of sorts. This is part of that code. I can't decipher it, but I can recognize it at least."
"Do you know who can translate it?" Thomas asked.
"Icepick could," Rick responded, holding it out. Thomas took it back, "I don't know if he will."
"Can you call in a favor with him?" Thomas asked.
"I could," Rick said, "Doesn't mean that I will."
"Why not?" Thomas asked.
"Only a few people get these symbols," Rick said, "If he deciphers it for you, and you go and do something stupid, then who do you think the Yakuza will figure betrayed them? Probably the American associate, considering, well, you're American."
"That's kind of racist," Thomas said.
"But it's correct," Rick responded.
"Yeah," Thomas said, standing up, "I guess I'll follow up the company lead then."
"Which company?" Rick asked.
"It's run by Remy Jacobson. It's apparently a manufacturing company that does high end furniture…," he skimmed the document, "Ah, here's the name. Mosaic Furnitures."
"Ah yeah, them," Rick said, "Nice stuff. Really in deep with the Yakuza."
Thomas lowered the document, "Maybe Bill should have just come to you then if you know all of this."
"I'm not the PI," Rick said.
"Private investigator," Thomas told him before turning and heading back down the beach.
It's hard to forget the past some days. There are days like today when someone like Bill turns up and you either get a happy reunion, or you get something bad. This was something bad, obviously, otherwise you haven't been paying attention. But that's not it. There are some things I'd rather not think about, and it keeps coming up today. It's not even a part of the same past, and yet…well, no. That's not for now.
Magnum drove the 2010 Ferrari that Robin Masters had on his estate. The wind flew through Thomas's hair, and it was glorious. The car was beautiful, handled beautifully, and was just so free.
He came to a red light and stopped the vehicle. He looked at the address on the document and then looked back at the light. "Here's hoping that Higgins doesn't notice you're missing… Oh, who am I kidding? Higgins would never drive you."
The light turned green and he drove on for another block before pulling into a large parking lot. He looked at the large warehouse-like building ahead of him and hurried over towards it.
As he entered, he approached the front desk. "Hello," he smiled at the receptionist, "I'm looking for Remy Jacobson. I'm a friend…of sorts."
"And your name?" the receptionist asked.
"Thomas Magnum. Tell her I'm a friend of Bill's. The late husband of her friend, Lilith."
The receptionist gave no sign of if she'd repeat it or not, but she left and went into the double doors not too far away. Magnum stood and waited around until the doors opened.
"You may enter," the receptionist said. She returned to her desk as Thomas walked into the large office. He saw a young woman sitting behind the desk, typing at her computer.
"How may I help you, Mr. Magnum?" the woman asked.
"Well…," Thomas said, looking around the room, "I have no idea if I can speak candidly."
"How else would you speak" she questioned him, looking up at him as he stood near her desk.
"I'd be using cloak and dagger. Or well, no. Not dagger. I don't do daggers. Not a big violence fan."
"Saw enough in Iraq?" she questioned.
"So you've heard of me?" he asked.
"If you're a friend of Bill's, I'm assuming Iraq," she responded, "Lilith always said he complained about work, so it wasn't from the office."
"That would be right," Thomas said.
"Speak," Remy said.
"Lilith is dead."
"I'm aware. I read the papers."
"Bill hired me to find out what happened to her," Thomas told Remy, "And I've made it this far. She implied that…you know who is behind this."
"I don't know anything about that," Remy said, "And no, I'm not playing stupid. I'd tell you if I knew, but I don't know anything. She was my friend, and if I'd be afraid for my life or not, I wouldn't keep that from you, or the authorities."
"What does that mean?" Thomas asked.
"The police were here earlier," she told him.
"They were?" Thomas asked, "But they ruled this as a suicide…"
"There was only one man," she said, producing a business card, "His name was Lieutenant Tanaka, he said. He wanted to follow up on this lead, since apparently Lilith investing into my company was suspicious."
"To be fair, it in fact is," Thomas said.
"And he didn't know that," she told him.
"Or did he?" Thomas muttered. He held the card, "Can I keep this?"
"I made a copy," she said, "Take it."
He nodded and turned to go, but paused. He drew the ring out and set it down, "Do you know what these say?"
She turned it over, "I don't know the code, but I can identify it," she said.
"You're the second person to say that…," he muttered, picking the ring up. He left the room with the card in hand.
I didn't know why that Lieutenant had paid Remy a visit. Sure, an investment followed by a death was suspicious, but that investment had happened a few years ago, and shouldn't be suspicious without having seen the video. So did Lieutenant Tanaka know something that I didn't? I needed to find out.
Thomas sat in the Ferrari and remained outside the police department. He had a picture on his phone of an Asian man in uniform.
"Lieutenant Yoshi Tanaka," Thomas said, "Now, are you going to come out, or do I have to go in?" he muttered.
Finally Thomas saw him emerging. He got out of the car and hurried over before Tanaka did anything.
"Lieutenant?" Thomas asked as he approached.
Tanaka slowed, "Can I help you?" he asked.
"My name is Thomas Magnum," Thomas told him, "I'm a private investigator, and I was hired by Bill Fuller to investigate his wife's death."
"We already did so," Tanaka said.
"You ruled it a suicide, I know," Thomas said, "Bill thinks it was a murder, and I believe you do as well."
"What makes you say that?" Tanaka questioned.
"You spoke with Remy Jacobson," Thomas said, producing the card, "She gave me this."
Tanaka looked at him for a bit, "We'll talk somewhere else."
"Choose the venue," Thomas told him.
The two men sat in a dimly lit bar. A few other people were around, but nobody was paying attention to anything but their drinks, displayed on signs around the bar. The drinks were cheap, at least.
"Can you drink on duty?" Thomas asked.
"Who says I'm on duty?" Tanaka asked, taking a drink of his beer, "And no."
"So, why'd you ask me here?" Thomas asked.
"This is just a good place to talk," Tanaka said.
"It's rather seedy," Thomas said.
"I'm sure you don't mind," Tanaka said, "You're a private investigator after all, I'm sure you've been to plenty of seedy places."
"Point," Thomas said.
"I'm trying to put together a case," Tanaka told Thomas, "We know that Mosaic Furnitures is in deep with the Yakuza. I've been working that case for a while now, and have seen the money trails. When I found out that Lilith Fuller had died, I decided it wasn't likely to be a coincidence. I knew she invested in Mosaic, I knew it was for nothing good, and then she died, even if it was a few years later."
"How many others know?" Thomas asked.
"I'm the only one who was in the investigation who knew. The others who are working the Yakuza and Mosaic stayed out of it."
"Do you have any specific leads within the Yakuza?" Thomas asked, "Like, low level hitman, someone higher up?"
"We don't," he responded.
Thomas produced the ring, "Any idea?" he asked.
"This was Lilith's ring, I take it?" Tanaka asked, turning it over in his hand.
"Bill thought it was useful, so he gave it to me."
"Good man," Tanaka responded. He set it down, "We have someone working on breaking the code. I can't do anything with this, but he can. May I?"
"By all means," Thomas said, "As long as you keep me in the loop."
"You're a private investigator, not a cop," Tanaka said, "You have no authority to go after the Yakuza."
"But I was hired by the husband of someone murdered by them," Thomas said, "I have my pride and my honor. I'm going after them. I'll bring her killer to justice, for Bill."
Tanaka shook his head, "You'll get yourself killed."
"I went to hell once," Thomas said, "I came out of it. I'll be fine."
Tanaka laughed a bit and shook his head, "I can't let you."
"Damn it, don't stop me Tanaka!" Thomas hissed, trying to keep his voice down, "Bill's my friend. He almost died for me. He came to me, and I have to help him. I know police investigations can take a long time, and go through all sorts of red tape. Let me do my job, and my duty for my friend."
"It's your duty now, is it?" Tanaka asked.
"Yes it is," Thomas said.
"Your duty as a private investigator, a soldier, or a friend?" Tanaka asked.
"All of them," Thomas said.
Tanaka nodded a few times, "You have until we figure this out. I'll give you what we find out, but we're acting as soon as possible. Don't die."
"I don't plan to," Thomas said, "Enough people have died for me, and I haven't honored their memories yet."
Tanaka nodded, "I know the feeling," he said, taking another drink.
Rain fell outside. It was a hard rain.
There's something about rain, and I don't know what it is. Maybe it washes away sin, maybe it's playful and brings out the child in me who wants to just run out there and play in it. It's something, and I don't know what. But today it's keeping me in the main house, because it turns out I don't want to get drenched trying to get to my little abode.
"How goes the case?" the British voice of Higgins questioned as he walked into the room.
"I don't know, to tell you the truth," Thomas responded, "This is kind of a mess."
"What's happening?" Higgins asked.
Thomas turned, "You didn't even care last time! You thought I was just running around in the dark and chasing after stalkers and peepers and…"
Higgins held out a drink for Thomas, "Scotch. Drink it." Thomas took the glass, and Higgins kept another in his hand, taking a drink from it, "Yes. I did say that earlier." He walked over to a fireplace and started it before sitting in the recliner beside it.
Thomas moved towards him and looked at him. Higgins looked back and gestured to the other chair. Thomas lowered himself into the chair and leaned back in it as the fire came to life. The two men sat there, taking drinks of their scotch.
"This is good," Thomas said, "You're giving me good scotch?"
"Yes," Higgins said, taking another drink, a bit of a longer one this time, "I may have put it disrespectfully earlier, but know this, Thomas. I respect that you make difference and try to improve the lives of people. It may be minor, it may be major, but you help people, and I hold you in higher regard for that. And now you're pursuing the Yakuza, and could get yourself potentially killed. That's rather selfless."
"I don't think about it that way," Thomas told him, taking a bit of a longer drink.
"In which way? Selfless?"
"That I could be killed," Thomas said.
Higgins laughed a little, "Your friend took a bullet for you. Maybe it's time you took one for him."
Thomas took a much longer drink. He drew the glass away and let out a sigh.
Higgins raised his glass, "A toast."
"To days gone by," Higgins said.
Breaking and entry is illegal. Let's make that perfectly clear. When I get around to that book, that's going to probably be the first topic of the first chapter. The second topic of the first chapter is going to be this. If you can't get consent and it's important, you shouldn't frown upon it. Just don't think of it as breaking and entering.
Thomas picked the lock and slowly opened the door to Mosaic's factory. There was a lot of equipment for furniture production all around, but he wasn't interested in that. He closed the door behind him slowly and then began to make his way towards the other side of the building.
He came out in the area next to the receptionist's desk, but nobody was there. He crept slowly towards Remy's office and put his ear to the door, trying to listen. He drew his lock pick set up and began to work on the door when he heard the door behind him being unlocked. He moved and hid behind the factory door, closing it until it was a crack. Someone walked inside and opened up Remy's office before stepping inside.
Thomas crept out and laid on his stomach. He pulled himself closer and glanced inside the open door, seeing Remy at her file cabinet. He observed for a few moments as she pulled documents out and started to hastily shred them.
Thomas moved away and headed out through the factory again.
"So much for that lead…"
"So, I was sitting there, thinking to myself. Who likes puzzles? Instantly only one person came to mind," Thomas said, speaking rather excitedly, trying to talk it up.
"What sort of puzzle?" T.C. questioned warily.
"The puzzle that requires a lot of paper strips and tape," Thomas said.
"How much are we talking?" T.C. questioned, "Because I don't want to do your dirty work, but if it's only going to take me like twenty minutes, ok, fine. You owe me. But if it's going to take hours, I'd rather not have a favor."
"Well…I don't have the paper yet," Thomas said, "But I can get it!"
"Why didn't you ring it then?" he questioned.
"Because she was still shredding and I didn't want to stick around," Thomas said.
T.C. stared at him, "Ok, so, you're the PI, and you get bored watching someone destroy evidence, so you come to me to ask a favor for something you don't even have yet. I'm just a helicopter pilot, but I still could be a better PI."
"Investigator, I know," T.C. told Thomas, "I pay attention! But you're getting on my nerves with this lack of professionalism."
"You make it sound like it's more than just this one thing," Thomas said.
"Well, of course it is," T.C. told him.
"All those times you came to me asking for help," T.C. told him, "Like the time there was a runaway dog, and you asked me to fly you around the island looking for it. Do you know how expensive it is to fuel my helicopter? Do you know how ineffective it is to look for a dog in it? I told you you'd be better off driving, but oh no, you know better about helicopters and searching from one than the guy whose job it is to fly one!"
"Ok, two times," Thomas said.
"The time you thought we could clear that grove of trees…"
"Hey! We cleared that just fine!" Thomas told him.
"Yeah, but it scared the hell out of me," T.C. said, "There are others. Want me to keep going?"
"We don't have time for that," Thomas told him, "Look. Will you help me?"
"Get me the papers and I'll do what I can. Bill's a good guy, and he doesn't deserve to have this happen to him. If there's justice, I want to help get it for him."
"Thanks a lot, T.C.," Thomas said.
"Just remember. You owe me," T.C. said.
"Maybe you can get Bill to owe you. He's rich, you know," Thomas told him.
"Yeah, but he lost his wife. I wouldn't feel right…"
Thomas put a hand on T.C.'s shoulder, "It never is."
"At least Tina's only a few miles away," T.C. said.
"Yeah. Believe it or not, getting divorced made you the lucky one…," Thomas said, walking towards the Ferrari.
My investigation had gone on for a total of two days. Day one was Bill coming to me, followed by the VHS, meeting with Rick, meeting with Remy, and then meeting with Lieutenant Tanaka. Day two was drowned out by rain, and then back to Remy's office, to T.C., and then back again to drop off the papers. Of course I replaced Remy's shredded documents with more shredded paper, so hopefully she wouldn't notice.
There were still a lot of questions on my mind over this case. One of the bigger questions wasn't related, however. It was why Bill was hosting another one of his parties.
Thomas was on his surf ski in the ocean, looking out towards Bill's mansion. He saw the lights, he saw the fire on the beach, he heard the music and the sounds of the people. He began to paddle towards land.
The night is a beautiful time. Darkness, stars, romance, quiet. The water is so peaceful as well. When I'm on tough cases, I find myself unable to sleep. I usually just cash all of the sleep in after I solve it. Most nights I find myself doing a myriad of things, from randomly surfing the internet, to watching television (if I had it working), to exercise. Tonight was working the surf ski, and well, maybe I wanted to see how Bill was doing.
Magnum dragged the surf ski onto the beach and walked towards the fire. He gave nods and greetings to people as he approached the bar.
"Really? A mojito?" Bill asked as he walked closer, "Not Coops?"
"You're too classy for Coops," Thomas replied.
"I stocked up," Bill said, "Get him a Coops," he told the bartender.
A beet was set before Thomas in a few moments. He nodded his thanks and started to drink.
"So, what brings you here?" Bill asked.
"Well, you hired me to look into your wife's potential murder. You know, I'm just checking in and seeing how you're doing as a client and friend." He looked around, "Looks like you're doing well…"
"It's what Lilith would have wanted," Bill told Thomas.
"You're like a genuine Gatsby," Thomas told him, "Except he stopped hosting parties after losing the girl."
"I'd like to think I'm the closest thing to a real Gatsby that there is," Bill told Thomas.
"You do realize that's not a good thing, right?" Thomas asked.
"Of course it is."
"Do you take that book at face value?" Thomas asked. "You know what, never mind."
"What have you learned?" Bill asked.
"A lot," Thomas said, "I don't think I'll share any with you, for safety reasons, but I have leads, and it's being closed in on."
"What, are you afraid if you tell me that I'll go and get involved too?" Bill questioned, "I saw enough in Iraq, I don't want to go running around and playing soldier or something here in Hawaii."
"Love makes us do stupid things," Thomas said, "You'd be surprised by what you might do."
"Are you speaking from personal experience on this one?" Bill asked.
"Actually, no," Thomas told him. He took another drink of his beer and set it on the bar, "Now, please, excuse me." He walked away from Bill and the bar and headed back towards the surf ski.
In private investigation, patience is one of the greatest virtues to have. It's not really optional, it's far more of a requirement. You just can't be a private investigator and not be patient. Of course, there are various types of patient. There's sitting outside of a sleazy motel and taking pictures as evidence of a cheating spouse, and then there's patience in piecing together shredded documents. I'm more of the former.
"This is ridiculous!" Rick complained as he leaned back into the couch in Thomas's small house. A half completed document was sitting on the table in front of him, and a lot of shreds of paper were sitting near it.
"Come on Rick, this is for Bill," T.C. said, taping a few shreds to the rest of his document.
"Yeah, but why isn't Thomas here helping us then?" Rick complained, "Look, I'm all for helping Bill, but Thomas should be here too, not out on his surf ski. I mean, I'm no PI, but I don't think going out in the ocean at night is how you solve a case."
"Private investigator," Thomas said as he slipped inside with only his trunks on. He moved to his bedroom, "And I was out investigating."
"Investigating what?" Rick questioned.
Thomas returned and sat on the couch next to Rick, "You're not getting very far," he told Rick.
"Investigating what?" Rick questioned, putting emphasis on the 'what'.
"I went to Bill's," Thomas said.
"That's…damn, how far is that?" T.C. questioned.
"Too far to take by surf ski," Thomas said, "Remind me not to do that again."
"Why didn't you just drive?" T.C. questioned.
"Higgins doesn't know I've been…borrowing the Ferrari," Thomas said, "And it's harder for me to get it at night."
"What did you see at Bill's?" Rick asked.
"He was having a party," Thomas said, "As usual. Nobody was depressed or anything, it was like nothing had happened."
"Maybe that's how those people grieve," Rick said.
"Maybe," Thomas said, "I just don't know. Maybe it's nothing, maybe it's something…"
"Whoa, hold on," T.C. said, "Are you trying to imply you think Bill might have killed Lilith?"
Thomas shook his head, "No, no, of course not! But there's something weird there."
"Thomas, in all my time at the King Kamehameha Club, let me tell you what I've learned," Rick said, "I've learned that there are people who lose a loved one, come in, and just drink their worries away. They don't talk much, they keep to themselves, and they just drink. I'll give them a few free drinks because, well, I feel for them.
"There are others who come in already rather drunk, and seem to be happy. They're trying to put the tragedy behind them. Those happy drunks drink a lot, and then usually pass out. Most of the time those seem to be rich kids, not the older, solemn fellows.
"The point is, people grieve differently. Sure, it's mostly the rich kids who are happy drunk, and the older people who are solemn and depressed, but it can go the other way around too. It's not like once you cross a certain age that everyone reacts the same way to death."
"Yeah, I guess you're right," Thomas said.
"I got it!" T.C. yelled, holding up a document, "One down!"
"How many did you see her shred?" Rick asked.
"I saw her shred at least three, and heard her shred at least one more," Thomas replied.
Rick hit his head back against the couch, "We're going to be here all night…"
"Well, I'm here to help now," Thomas said, "I'll get going on these with you guys." He started to pull shreds of paper towards him when his phone went off. He picked it up, "This is Thomas Magnum," he said. "Lieutenant? You decoded it then? Excellent!" He waited, "Ok, thank you." He ended the call and set the phone down.
"What was that about?" Rick asked.
"The ring was decoded," Thomas said, "Basically it pegs Lilith as a high ranked Yakuza member. She wasn't just trying to save her friend, she was in deeper with the Yakuza than we imagined."
"Thomas," T.C. said, holding over his document. Thomas reached out and took it, "What do you make of this?"
Thomas skimmed it over, "Nothing good," he said, "Well…no, not necessarily. This can be good."
"What is it?" Rick questioned.
"It's a list of names of Yakuza members," Thomas responded, "That, and how to reach them. If we can get some money together, I imagine we can try to set up a meeting and see where that gets us."
"You actually want to set up a meeting with the Yakuza?" Rick questioned, "I'm out."
"That's fine," Thomas said, "I'd rather do this alone anyway."
"You're not," T.C. told him, "We always had each other's backs in Iraq, and if you're going into something like this, well then, we're coming too."
"Don't drag me into this, please don't," Rick told T.C.
"Too late," T.C. responded, "You're in."
"Where are we getting this money from?" Rick questioned, "See? We don't have it, we can't do this!"
"I have an idea," Thomas said.
"You want to use money from evidence?" Tanaka questioned Thomas as the former sorted through paperwork at his desk.
"Yeah," Thomas said, "I mean, you guys do that, don't you? Just take all the drug money from the evidence room and use it to try to buy people to do things? Or buy drugs? Or something?"
"We do," Tanaka said, "But that's for police investigations. You're a private investigator, and I don't have the authority on my own to release that money."
"Can you try?" Thomas asked, "We have this list of names! We can get somewhere!"
"We can get a meeting. Maybe," Tanaka said, "It's a start, but it's far from everything."
"But it's a start," Thomas said.
Tanaka sighed, "Ok, I'll push a request through, but it'll take some time."
"Higgins, please!" Thomas pleaded, "Lieutenant Tanaka said it would take a few weeks to get this paperwork through!"
"I can't imagine it'll take that long," Higgins responded as he tended to the flowers outside.
"I don't know if that's just how long paperwork takes, or if they're busy, or what," Thomas said, "But this can't wait! Who knows how long this list is good for?"
"So, you want me to give you the money that Robin Masters leaves in this house?" Higgins asked, "And then you want to take it to meet the Yakuza and demand answers about a murder they may have had nothing to do with?"
"Yes!" Thomas said.
"I will give you ten thousand dollars to borrow, so long as you don't make another such request of me again," Higgins said, "And so long as the money returns."
"I'll get it back," Thomas said, "You have my word."
"Let's hope your word is good," Higgins said, moving towards the door, "Come with me then…"
The thing about giving your word is this. You can give it, but you don't have to keep it. Of course, if you don't keep it, then whoever you gave it to won't trust you again. If you keep your word, then they know it's good, and you can do it again if you need to. I find that it's better than a favor, because it's trust, and you're doing something back right away. In this case, I'm returning the money, not keeping it.
The other thing about giving your word is this. Sometimes, no matter how much you want to keep it, you just can't. Walking into a situation with the Yakuza, I knew that I might not be able to get Higgins the money back, and I was hoping that if that happened, Robin Masters would understand that his ten thousand dollars were helping to solve a murder investigation for an old friend of mine.
Thomas sat at a table inside of a warehouse. He looked around, but there was nothing there except what one would normally expect to find. A few crates, some old machinery, that was about it.
"Interesting place you have for meetings," Thomas said as he turned back, "Very minimalist. Not much of an office though."
"It suffices," the man said. "You have ten minutes."
"Ok," Thomas said, lifting the briefcase up, "Here's ten thousand dollars. I was hoping, well…ok, I've never done this before…," he said with an embarrassed tone, "I…I don't even know how to say it…"
"Nine minutes," the man said.
"That wasn't a minute!"
"You had ten from the moment you arrived," the man stated, "Now speak."
"Ok, ok," Thomas said, "I…I want you to kill someone for me. Or well, not you personally. Unless you do that."
"You want a hit," the man said. "For ten thousand, you'll get a decent assassin. Who is the target you want killed?"
"It's…it's a woman I used to be in love with," Thomas said, "She…ok. I'm new to the island. I came here to make a new life for myself, and it's not working. I see her around, and I've tried to ignore it. She's married now, and…and I just can't stand it! I don't want her husband killed. He…he never did anything to me."
"He married the woman you love," the man said.
"Yeah, but it's not like he was out to hurt me. She was. Anyway, I want her dead."
The man said nothing. He glanced to Thomas's finger, "That is an interesting ring."
Thomas looked at it, "Yeah, I guess it is…"
"What is it?"
"I'm on the clock," Thomas said.
"The clock is paused," the man told him.
"It's the Cross of Lorraine. It was used by the French during World War II as a symbol of freedom and resistance. I…I had an old girlfriend whose grandfather fought in the war. She was French."
"Was this before or after the one you want dead?"
"You turned over a French woman?" the man questioned.
"The accent isn't all it's cracked up to be," Thomas said. "She gave me this ring, and…and I guess it holds a special place in my heart. I mean, she didn't break mine. Maybe I just keep going back to it because it was a time when I could genuinely be happy."
"Then go find her, don't waste your money on a hit."
"You're trying to talk me out of hiring you," Thomas said.
"Believe it or not, I believe in love," the man said, "And also in spite, and the feelings you must feel towards both these women. Now, what is this woman's name?" the man questioned.
"Michelle Hue," Thomas said, looking at the ring.
"The one you want dead," the man corrected. Thomas's eyes left the ring, "I imagine that was the French woman."
Thomas nodded, "Yeah, sorry. You've got me being nostalgic. Her maiden name is Lilith Meyers. Her husband's surname is Fuller."
"Lilith Fuller…she's dead," the man said.
"What?" Magnum shouted in fake shock, "H…how? When?"
"You don't read the papers or watch the news, I take it?" the man questioned, tensing up.
"Who are you?" the man questioned, standing and drawing a gun, training it on Magnum, "You have five seconds."
Magnum put his hands up, "I'm just… I'm a private investigator, and Bill Fuller is my friend. You people killed his wife. Now you're going to kill me, right?"
The man said nothing. Suddenly voices filled the room, "Drop the gun!" was being barked repeatedly as police closed in from all sides, guns drawn.
The man looked around. Thomas grabbed the briefcase and swung it up, knocking the gun from the man's hand. He pushed it forward into his face, taking the man down as police closed in.
"I guess I didn't even need the money," Thomas said as Tanaka walked over, "He never opened the case." He set it down on the table, "Now what?"
"We can try to get information from him," Tanaka said, "See if he turns over any cohorts. But we have him on attempted murder at least."
Thomas nodded, "Let's just hope this leads somewhere."
As the Yakuza man sat in holding, a man in a suit came in with a briefcase.
"You are my lawyer?" the man asked.
The other man nodded and sat down, "Yes. Now, let's get to work."
"He said he's a private investigator. He's friends with Bill Fuller. Find this man, and kill him," he hissed.
The man opened his briefcase, "I seem to have forgotten a pen…," he closed it and rose, "I'll be back for you."
The man smiled as his 'lawyer' left.
"All of it is here," Higgins said as he counted the money.
"I told you it would be safe," Thomas replied.
"And you kept true to your word," Higgins said, "Was it worth it?"
Thomas shrugged, "We don't know yet. He did pull a gun on me when I asked him to kill a woman who was already dead. I mean, maybe he reads the papers, I don't know."
"I hope it works out, for your friend's sake," Higgins told Thomas.
"Thanks," Thomas replied.
As Thomas lay in his bed at night, he stared up at the ceiling. He got out of bed and went to his sitting room, pulling up his laptop. He turned on a lamp and looked at the other documents. "They finished one?" he muttered, picking it up. "Nothing." He sighed, "Maybe these are useless…" He lowered it and started to type. He brought up a baseball game, then picked up the document again, "Wait…this looks like embezzlement…"
He set the document down and picked up the pieces of another. "Yeah…this all looks like embezzlement records…" He set the document down and closed the laptop, "Ok, so she's embezzling. Did Lilith find out, and Remy had her killed? But…but Lilith is a high ranked member of the Yakuza apparently…that's what her ring says…"
He heard something. It sounded like a siren. Thomas got up and ran to the door, looking out across the yard. Lights were on in the house, and the back door had been kicked in. "Shit," he muttered, running back inside. He grabbed his handgun and ran across the yard, lifting his weapon as he entered the house.
He turned a corner and saw a man in black with his gun pointed at Higgins, who had his hands up.
"Where is the PI?" the man shouted.
"Private investigator!" Thomas shouted. The man turned and Higgins dropped. Thomas shot him twice in the chest and he fell. "Higgins! Are you ok?" Thomas shouted, running to the man's side.
"Quite alright," Higgins said, "He didn't hurt me."
"Good," Thomas said, running to close the back door, "What happened?"
"The back door was broken in. I went to investigate the sirens and he pulled a gun on me," Higgins said.
"Are you sure it was just the back?" Thomas questioned, "And that there was only one?"
"I don't know," Higgins admitted. He crouched down and picked up the assailant's gun.
"Call the police," Thomas said as he moved through the house, turning on lights and looking into rooms. Nothing.
"The police are on their way," Higgins said as he joined Thomas in one of the outer rooms. Thomas pulled back the blinds and the glass next to him shattered. Both men dropped.
"They're outside," Thomas muttered. He picked himself up slowly and dropped down again before another shot flew in. "At least three of them."
"You gave them your name, didn't you?" Higgins questioned.
"No! But…but I did say I was a private investigator and I knew Bill Fuller…"
"You told them too much!" Higgins told Thomas.
"I know that now!" Thomas shouted back.
The two men kept low and left the room. They moved towards the front door and crouched there on either side of it. As soon as it burst open, Thomas grabbed the man and threw him into the wall before punching him.
Another man came in. Higgins shot him once and he fell. "It's been so long since I've had to do that…," he muttered.
"One more," Thomas said as the one he punched fell.
The last one came in and raised his weapon to the side, to Thomas right away.
Higgins smashed his gun into the back of the man's head and he fell.
"Thanks…," Thomas said, letting out a breath.
"I swear, dogs could do a better job at security than you did tonight," Higgins muttered.
"I saved you!" Thomas shouted, "I heard the alarms and I came running!"
"Tomorrow I'm getting dogs," Higgins said, leaving Magnum standing there with a dumbfounded look on his face. Higgins walked back in after a moment, "Don't bring your work home with you ever again." He paused, "Don't even mention your work to me ever again!" And with that, he left.
"Well…guess there goes our shot at being friends," Thomas muttered.
"I got Icepick to get the Yakuza off of you guys," Rick told Thomas as the three men sat at the bar of the King Kamehameha Club.
"How much do I owe for that?" Thomas asked.
"I'm shocked you're not just calling that a win and moving on," T.C. laughed.
"He says it's fine," Rick said, "You don't owe him."
"Good," Thomas said, "I have no idea how to repay someone like him."
"So, did you figure it out?" T.C. asked, "Did any of the Yakuza guys confess yet?"
"No," Thomas said, putting his beer back down, "But I have something to try."
"What would that be?" Rick asked.
"I need to visit Mosaic Furnitures."
Thomas set the documents on Remy's desk. She looked at them for a moment, then looked back to Thomas.
"What are these?"
"Oh, well, this one has Yakuza information. Contacts, names, things like that. I spoke to one, almost got killed by some Yakuza hitmen. Now, these other documents are records of this company's embezzlement."
"And this is supposed to mean something?" she questioned.
"Well, it means you're in bed with the Yakuza, and that your company and you yourself have embezzled funds," Thomas said, "But, I feel like there's something else."
"I'm calling security," she said, reaching for the phone.
"You killed Lilith Fuller," Thomas said. Her hand stopped. "You were in deep with the Yakuza, and they were probably going to kill you over money. However, your good friend Lilith came to your rescue and funded two million dollars to save you and your company. After that it looks like you started to cooperate with the Yakuza, since, well, you have these names and stuff.
"Knowing Bill, Lilith wasn't an active part of the Yakuza. Sure, somehow she came to be high ranked, but she was a good person. Bill's a great judge of character. Or at least he used to be. And she's a wealthy socialite. Surely that's going to draw attention if she's out helping with illegal activities. Or at least the police would start investigating her at some point. I checked; they hadn't. They had nothing. So that leads me to believe she had nothing to do with anything.
"Now, assuming she was this good person, as per Bill, she didn't want to see her friend murdered. No one would. So…of course she bailed you out. But you wanted more. You started to embezzle money, probably on behalf of the Yakuza, since you're clearly with them. But then, your friend who saved you, who has a moral standing, finds out you're embezzling. Or rather, maybe she doesn't, but she's onto you.
"So, you go to the parties she and Bill host almost every day. You find her, approach her. You two are friends; it's easy to separate her. And then you kill her and blend into the crowd. You're a grief-stricken friend who was bailed out, it's not like she had slighted you, she helped you. What motive would you have?
"You couldn't let her find out about the embezzlement. That's your motive. You killed her."
Remy glared at Thomas, not saying a word.
"I'm right, aren't I?" He paused, "Oh, wait. Maybe there's more."
"You were supposed to get the Yakuza off my back," she muttered, "You were supposed to free me from them by taking them down in the process…"
"Well, I took out four of them at least," Thomas said. "And that sounds like a confession."
"You have proof of my embezzlements. You have proof of Yakuza ties. I'm already going away."
"So, you confess to the murder too, because you feel like someone who cannot tell a lie?"
"Because I can't lie about murdering my best friend when I'm accused of it. If I didn't care about her, I could lie, but…but not for her. Not for my best friend."
"I'm sorry," Thomas said, "If nothing else, I'm sorry I couldn't do more to get the Yakuza off your company. I feel sorry for whoever succeeds you."
"As do I…"
"It was Remy Jacobson…," Bill muttered, taking a drink in the cemetery. He stood at his wife's gravestone, looking down at it, "Your friend murdered you…"
"I'm sorry, Bill," Thomas said softly, "She did it to try to get the police after the Yakuza. She murdered your wife for her own safety."
"And now she's going to rot," Bill said, downing the rest of his drink. "Thank you Thomas. If nothing else, you've given me closure."
Thomas nodded, "Yeah. You're welcome. For whatever it's worth."
Bill turned away, "The best days are behind me," he muttered.
"Yeah, but there are still days yet to come," Thomas said.
Bill nodded, "Yeah…yeah…"
The two men stood in the cemetery as the sun started to go down. Thomas rested his hand on Bill's shoulder as the two walked away from the grave.