That morning, around eleven when he usually lumbered in, I did phone Weinstein who said he heard "my friend" was still in intensive care but was so scared shitless he didn't say a thing to the cops. I'd chilled a little by now and was reconsidering having Pagoda whacked. Like they said, it took two to tango. Anyway, Weinstein had some business to discuss. About that "something that had come up." I knew it was an important kind of something when Stones says to meet him at the overlook above Detmold Park on the East River. Weinstein only went in for that secret agent bullshit when he got paranoid, which he only did when he figured something important was in the wind.

So I stand at the overlook, a cold wind cutting against the back of my head. Though I had my collar pulled up, I couldn't keep it out. White smoke billowed from the roofs of buildings and morning traffic whipped by on the FDR Drive below me while a Harbor Patrol chopper nosed at the skyline like a monster dragonfly hunting for a mate. While I'm studying the ice floes going past on the East River, I hear somebody coming and I see it's Weinstein with Bosco and Bobby Adams up on the street above the steps that lead down to the park.

"Fuckin' cold," he says.

"You picked this place, not me," I tell him.

"Yeah," he tells me with a laugh. "Yeah, I did. Look, I'll give you the basics. I was telling you about this thing that came up."

"Yeah, the thing," I said.

"Okay, so I got a deal lined up down in Boca with some people," he says. "It's a simple transaction. You check out the merchandise, and if it's the right thing, you hand over the buy money I give you."

"What's this 'merchandise' we're talking about?" I ask, studying another ice floe as it goes by in the direction of the South Street Seaport. First he doesn't answer, so I get a little hot. "What, you think I'm wearing a wire?" I grab his hand. "Here, feel my asshole. That's where I got the mike. Grab my balls. That's where I got the recorder." My uncle pulls his hand away. "Ga'head, Weinstein. Feel it," I holler. "Feel it, you fuckin' schmuck!"

"Okay, okay, you made your point," he says. "We're talking fifty kilos of heroin. High grade."

"From who?" I ask. This is not right. Who goes to Florida to make a heroin score?


"You putting me on or what, Weinstein?" I ask. "Since when do the Colombians deal horse big-league?"

"This is something new for them," he says. "That's why I wanna do the deal. They're letting me have it at cut-rate prices."

"Us, Weinstein," I tell him. "I go down and do the deal for you, I want points. You did me a favor, sure. But this is business."

"How many?"


"That's too much."

"Take it or leave it," I tell him.

Weinstein goes for it. He's got no choice because I'm the only one he can trust with this. I get my points, which he pays me up front, and he gives me a key to a safe deposit box at Citibank where the buy money's at. I watch Weinstein head back over the snow-covered bridge and go back to studying the ice floes in the East River. When I turn around again, my uncle and his two mutts are nowhere to be found. I turn around and head back across the bridge myself.