“So, what does the other guy look like?” Miguel asked, jokingly.
From behind Brett, Bunny put his forefinger to his lips in a shushing motion telling Miguel to cool it.
Brett didn’t notice. It hurt just to walk. There was ample evidence on his face that he had been in a fight.
Standing behind Brett, Bunny silently held up five fingers.
Miguel’s eyebrows shot to his hairline and Miguel mouthed “Five other guys?”
Bunny nodded his head in confirmation.
Bunny let Brett get ahead of him.
“Tell the guys were are in Indian country. The boss got jumped by five thugs last night. If they don't understand what Injun Country rules are, explain it to them” Bunny said. "And you might tell them this is not a good day to give the boss any shit."
“So, getting back to the original question, what do the other guys look like?” Miguel asked.
“I talked to the waitress. She said that four of the five were carted away in ambulances. Lots of busted furniture. The boss air-mailed one of them through the plate-glass window” Bunny said.
“Did the police file charges?” Miguel asked.
“Nope. The waitress heard everything. The thugs claimed the boss called one of them a ‘nigger’.” Bunny said. "The boss didn't say a word, just took care of business."
“And the cops believed the waitress?” Miguel asked.
“They should. She grew up in West Africa before coming to school over here. I reckon she knows the word ‘nigger’ when she hears it.”
After dropping the phone off at the courier for hand-carried, overnight delivery to Houston the previous night, Bunny did damage control.
Brett had already offered his company card to pay for damages. The manager was stunned. Nobody ever offered to pay damages. That is what insurance was for. Brett insisted that he draw $5000 and told the manager to reverse charges for what wasn’t used. Insurance doesn't cover everything.
Bunny tipped Judi, Brett’s waitress, a $100 and assured her Brett was going to be fine. He also apologized for the mess and extra work and hoped she would understand that Brett would not be eating there anymore.
Making a wild stab in the dark, Bunny ask Judi if she was the one who had found the phone and given it to Brett.
It was a good guess. “Yes, mister it was me. I saw what that girl was trying to do and there was no way I could let her have that phone back.”
“How did you get it from her?” Bunny asked, curious.
“She left it on the table when she go to help her boyfriends. She a little late though. She the one the big boy throw trew da window.”
Bunny had been in his fair share of “scuffles”. He knew better than to ask Brett what happened. It just turns into a blur. Bodies in front of and behind you. Hands grabbing you. You don’t see faces or colors or clothing. You see targets and act accordingly.
Bunny peeled a couple more hundreds out of his wallet and a business card. “I don’t know what you get paid, but if you ever want to make real money, get a job working in the petroleum industry. Tell them Bunny Hefflescour sent ya.”
"Show them the card. I ain't like some people. I might hand out two business cards a year. They mean something."
She gave him the look. She wanted to take them but it didn’t seem right.
“I am going to leave them on the table. Either you get them or the bus-boy does.”
And then Bunny walked out.
Bunny’s next call was to Brett’s boss. Bunny explained what he knew and said the phone should be arriving by courier early the next morning.
The tech weenies in Houston sucked out the phone's brains and rapidly parsed through it with big-screen monitors.
A half-hour after they had downloaded it, Brett’s boss was on the phone. He didn’t call his Representative or Senators. He called his competitors.
Invariably, his competitors answered with “Good morning Mikhail. What can I do for you?”
They were cut-throat competitors but some issues transcend simple business. Nobody used the private numbers unless it was important. VERY important.
Mikhail prefaced the conversation with “We have a problem.”
The second thing he said was "I have a video I want to send you."