Two meetings were happening. One involved a young man telling his friends of all his efforts to protect them. The other was an elderly woman desperate to secure for her heirs something which had always been beyond her reach, power on a national scale.
“You remember when my husband was alive, how many promises you made to him? Now, after forty years, I’ve come to collect, from both of you!” One man was the leader of a huge political machine, and the other represented the most powerful criminal organization on the eastern seaboard.
The young man’s meeting was with Pin and Carl Lafayette. Edward Mallory was sure they had a very dangerous enemy, and he had a theory about who it was. “Edward, it’s impossible. He risked his life to save ours. He’s my most trusted advisor. Edwin Strand is no more our enemy than you are.”
“I wish that were true, but I don’t believe it. Do you know who Edwin’s family are? His aunt is Minerva Piper Harlowe, though she goes by her maiden name. Her husband was Adam Harlowe. In his day, he ran my party, and half of the other one too. Adam didn’t care how he got results, and Edwin’s mentor was Harlowe’s protege.”
“You can’t hold a man hostage based on his relatives.” Carl was convinced Edward was wrong. Pin wasn’t so sure. “It’s true that he may be nothing like his uncle, but it would explain how the Pick Axe men knew so much.” “Pin, Carl, I know its difficult, but his older brother is Artemis Strand, a major racketeer.”
The three men spent the next hour talking. Carl wasn’t convinced, but Pin was starting to believe. “Let’s talk more later. I have to go by the hospital and see a patient there.” Carl kept from smiling as Pin left.
The meeting in Boston had ended as well. “Ralph, take me back to my room please. Our trip here was very successful. Now we’ll spend a little time in Florida for the next phase of my plan.” Ralph tried to hide his fear, at least until Florida.
Once there, Minerva would have to find someone else to attend to her. He was going to disappear, this time for good. “What are you going to do in Florida ma’am?” “Hire a man to do a job for me.”
“That’s a long way to go just to hire a man.” “Yes, but there’s no one better for the job I need. He’s efficient, quiet, and has a proven record. We must see him in person, he has a particular way of working.”
Ralph smiled, and so did Minerva. She thought of the wire which had arrived that afternoon. ‘He fits the description Aunt Minerva, can you get rid of him?’
Florida would be a big trip. She would finalize Artemis and Edwin’s future. As well as eliminate a blip from the past named Ralph Hearns. Minerva shook her head. ‘They’re all grown up and I’m still tidying up after them.’