Posted by: jockmackenzie | May 21, 2009

“Dealing with Dymans” Chapter 13, Pt. 2

Click the “start arrow” below to hear the audio of this chapter:

Mr. Douglas Dymans, over-worked owner of Adair’s oldest and finest jewellery store, was ready too. He was ready to rip into intestinal shreds anybody who messed with him today. He didn’t care if he was short staffed, he couldn’t care less if being short staffed put extra stress on him at what had become an even more stressful time in his life. He wasn’t going to hire some nimrod, slacker loser like the first walking zombie who had just left his office in tears. Who did these people think they were – blue jeans and pink hair? Did his store sell body piercings? Did you come to an interview with a resumé handwritten (and handwritten was a stretch) on a piece of paper torn from a note pad? He barked to Elaine to show in the only other candidate.

Brianne Larsen appeared at the door to his office. He eyed her from head to toe. Not overly attractive, medium height, medium build, brownish hair. Dressed like she might be applying for a job at a funeral home. Is that how people saw jewellery store staff? Well at least she didn’t look like she was on her way to a rock concert. She stood statue like, waiting. He sensed nervousness but a degree of poise. And damn it all to hell, he needed someone.

“Don’t just stand there. Come in and sit down. I assume that’s your resumé you’re clutching. Let me see it.”

Retreat or advance? Brianne advanced. The rather snotty older woman had offered a few words of warning, that Mr. Dymans just wasn’t himself lately, and that today was worse for some reason, to go in there and do her best. Despite the lack of conviction Elaine’s voice had held, Brianne always gave people the benefit of the doubt. Maybe snotty was just Elaine’s way of keeping people at a distance, her way of establishing herself in life.

“Hello, Mr. Dymans. My name is Brianne Larsen.” She removed the two-page resumé and handed it across the desk. She understood the movement of her prospective employer’s head to mean she should sit down. She did.

“Says here you haven’t done anything since high school.”

“Yes, sir. That’s right. I just graduated last June.”

Well, at least she didn’t natter on with a litany of unasked-for details. “Says you worked as a cashier.”

“As you will see, at three different stores – two grocery stores, and a ladies’ wear.”

Good to have someone who could work the till. Polite young thing. Bit of big nose. “Any trouble working with the public?”

“Oh no, Mr. Dymans. I just love people. They’re all so interesting. The only thing I love more is . . . well  . . . jewellery. All my life I’ve dreamt of working in a jewellery store. Excuse me for going on and on but I just had to tell you that.”

He had been just about to tell her to keep to the point but when he looked over at her, she sat there beaming. He looked back at the sheet. The kid had put together a good resumé, very good if one were prone to being honest, which he wasn’t. All of the right stuff was there.

“Minimum wage. Longer than average hours over the holidays, up to the end of Boxing Week. Period of probation until I see if you’re what I need. When can you start?” Douglas Dymans did not even pause to consider whether Miss Larsen had any questions or concerns or whatever. Either she wanted the job or she didn’t.

“Oh, thank you sir. I came ready to start immediately.”

“Fine. See Elaine.” Douglas had already been far too kind. He glanced at the door, a signal Brianne took for her to depart, and then turned to his computer screen.

Brianne almost floated out the door, the look on her face as close to ecstasy as one could imagine. She was about to start living the dream. She was proud of herself, proud of the way she had dealt with the out of sorts Mr. Dymans. But think how proud her parents would be, and Uncle Cleveland, and Grandma Ruby – the four most important people in her whole life.

• • •

Ben Vincent did not sleep in on Monday morning. Ben Vincent never slept in. Sleeping itself had become somewhat of a luxury. He sat in his office; he fiddled with his pencil as he stared out over the river. Then he stared at the pencil. Who would pay more than $1500 for a pencil? Well, a mechanical pencil. That’s what a Caran d’Ache was going for these days. What was the world coming to?

And what was the matter with that sadistic son of his? He’d heard Joey’s call to Dougie Dymans, had told him to make it. But what was with all this threatening, this violence? Of course, it had its place, but the threat of violence was usually enough. It didn’t have to become a lifestyle.

Ben sighed. Where had they gone wrong? Hadn’t he and Gina given Joey everything? Ha! Everything money could buy, “dirty” money some would say. How could two siblings be any more different? Sophie was a princess, sweet and kind – and respectful. But Joey was . . . was  . . . different. Always had been. Frying ants under the magnifying glass from his Junior Scientist kit, torturing gophers when they visited the kids’ Uncle Lou and Aunt Connie in the country. Joey had loved it then and he loved it now.

Somehow Joey had to learn. He was like a fighter with all wins and no losses; he had always been given his own way – or taken his own way. He didn’t realize that there was always someone bigger, meaner, more desperate – sooner or later.

Sure everybody looked at Benny “The Finger” Vincent as the boss. Everybody saw him as the final rung in the ladder, the man at the top. Ha! If they only knew. What if they knew about Sal at the coast, or his boss, Frankie, back home? And what about Frankie? Who did he answer to?

Answers. That was the key. Forget the journey; it was the destination that counted. What Joey had to understand was that Dougie Dymans played a part in a puzzle; he was just one piece of a picture that was bigger than an excuse for Joseph Vincent to employ his sadistic tendencies. Ben’s intellect would find the solution to the question of the day: Who was on to Dougie Dymans?

• • •

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