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She thinks that there is a conspiracy spearheaded by her husband, who is trying to take over the company that her father left her. Sam is initially taken in by her beauty until Rose, his secretary/ assistant walks in. Rose had previously ...
She thinks that there is a conspiracy spearheaded by her husband, who is trying to take over the company that her father left her. Sam is initially taken in by her beauty until Rose, his secretary/ assistant walks in. Rose had previously walked out on Sam because he owed her a lot of back pay.
He drinks alcohol constantly. Rose is eyeing the lovely lady from head to toe and quickly takes over the conversation. But Sam begins to think there is more to this problem than an egotistical husband and his conglomerate.
Sam looks upon the case as a challenge because it involves U S government contracts and foreigners trying to take over. That makes it a case of national security. This book is both entertaining and educational.
I heard a knock on the door; I thought I was dreaming—there it is again. Must be me knocking at St. Peter's door, I thought. I had been sitting in my office at my desk all night and had no idea what time it was. I could see that it was daylight outside. I tried to make it to the couch last night. I stop when I realized that I would have to move with a lot of effort.
What a hangover!
My name is Sam Buck, I live in Atlanta, Ga. I am a private investigator, and a very good one when I am not drinking scotch and water, which is apparently what I was doing last night. Normally, I would've gone home and drank, but as of a few days ago, my office became my home. It is a long story. I'll try to make it short.
People have been confusing me with being a descendant of Rufus Buck, leader of the notorious Rufus Buck gang that reportedly carried out law and order, among other things in the Arkansas, Oklahoma territory back in the 1800's. That is a very remote possibility. I have not seen any documents to substantiate that claim; however, I have learned that Rufus Buck was a native-American, the same as me, and his other associates were Negroes mixed with native-American, the same as many people—some are featured in color more than others.
I had an assistant/secretary whose name is Rose Scott. She walked out on me a few days ago when I couldn't pay her—I owe her one month salary. We argued a few times about my money going to the liquor store for scotch. She called me an alcoholic. I sometimes wonder if she was right—I really miss her.
Clients have been far and few lately. Money has been very tight. The landlord of the apartment building where I was living told me to 'get out.' He said that I was four months in arrear of payments. I ask the guy if he would give me an extension of a month and I would catch the payments up.
He said a flat out "no" with authority!
Hold on, there's that knock at the door again.
"Come in" I whispered—only because it would've been disastrous to my head to yell.
When the door opened, I almost sobered up.
I have got to tell you, those scholars such as: Thorndike-Barnhart, Noah Webster, left this world without providing me with a majestic adjective, adequate enough to describe this light bronze beauty that just came through my door. Those pundits really failed this lady miserably.
I have seen my share of bronze beauties in my life, but nothing like Miss Gorgeous. She asked, "Are you Sam Buck; the private investigator?" I replied; "no," I stammered with my mouth open in awe. After I recovered; I said, "I sorry, yes I am, Miss ..."
She answered; "Mrs. Diamond Cassidy."
That was stupid of me. I should have known that anyone that lovely would be married. Regardless of what it takes. Men usually sweep those ultra-beautiful women off their feet. Often times, they live to regret it because of conceit attributed to the beauty.
"Please have a seat" I said to her.
She sat down, crossing those lovely long legs.
"Now, how may I help you?" While checking my mouth to see if I was drooling.
"I would like to hire you to do some investigative work for me."
Oh oh, I thought, here it comes; a cheating husband, the stupid idiot. How do you run around on something as lovely as this female? I'm jumping to conclusion.
One thing that you need to know. I am Sam Buck, a former active duty marine, not a lovesick school kid. I have been all over the world, seen many places and females, but never, ever do I remember having seen a creature as lovely as the one sitting in front of me.
Before I could say anything, the door opened and in walks Rose. I have to think that she was either, on her way to see me or she was watching my office and saw Mrs. Cassidy come in.
Hello Rose, I said. There is someone that I would like you to meet. I could see right away that Rose was a little jealous. She didn't have a need to be jealous, in awe maybe, but jealous; no—you see, Rose is a stunning bronze beauty also.
Rose was technical an employee of mine, of course; I owe her money. She looks at our relationship as more than that. After I introduced her to Mrs. Cassidy, she said: "please to meet you, Mrs. Cassidy; how may we help you?"
I knew what that we meant; she was not going to let me handle business with Mrs. Gorgeous alone. Maybe she thought that I was going to get fleeced by Her Majesty and was trying to protect her back pay.
If you believe that, then you will believe I am King Hannibal, and that I led 10,000 black men across the mountains on Elephants in 2012.
Mrs. Cassidy spoke up and said "I'd like you to investigate my husband."
I thought to myself while still jumping to conclusion; is he crazy? Why is he running around with his secretary or some bimbo while married to this creature? The stupid idiot.
"Do you have a picture of him and her?" I asked
"I have a picture of him, but there is no her that I want you to investigate. I'm sorry if I gave you the wrong impression." I began to feel like the idiot that I had just called her husband.
"No no, you have nothing to apologize for; I'm the one that jumped to conclusion. Shall we start over, I promise that I won't interrupt anymore," meanwhile, Rose is still eyeing me very carefully.
Mrs. Cassidy continued; "my father left me a very lucrative business named Pi-Ni Industries. I think that someone is planning a hostile takeover and that same person or persons is spearheading the entire operation by wooing the small stockholders. I own 50% of the business and my husband has 7%. My father gave him 2% as a wedding present. I think that he has a very devious plan for a group of people to take control of the company by remaining a silent partner during the take-over."
"I realize that with his 2%, it would be next to impossible to gain control of the company. But I don't think that is exactly what he wants. I have gotten a whiff of his actions from some loyal friends who said that they have been approached by a few people asking questions about the inner workings of the firm."
"How is that associated with your husband?" There was this feeling of getting over being in awe of her beauty. I was seeing dollar signs once again. I could tell that Rose was relaxing more and more by my action.
"The people who approached my friends are close friends of my husband and among other small things that are happening, lead me to believe that a hostile takeover is in the works."
"When I said that I don't think that he is trying to gain controlling interest; I meant that I think his intentions are to dethrone me and lead the company into an entirely new leadership, which he hopes would give him more voice and soothe his macho ego."
"You see; my father never wanted me to marry Jeff; that's my husband name; Jeffery Cassidy. There was something that he saw in Jeff that he did not like. He would not tell me any thing except that he feared Jeff was a fortune hunter—Maybe he was right."
"If your father felt that way about your husband, why did he give him 2% in the business as a wedding present?"
"Daddy gave him the 2% as a good-will gesture to please me. The reason why he did not give Jeff more is because he didn't trust him. Somehow, Jeff manage to buy 5
% from Mrs. Bowden, the company secretary. I know where he got the assets to buy 5 of her 10%—that is not what troubles me. He and his partner have a small business flying cargo Will you take the case?"
"What make you think that I know anything about hostile takeover and corporate business?" I asked
She said Mr. Buck; "Why do you think that I came to you? This is not the swankest place in the city. You have an office that is small, rundown, cluttered, and an overall dump in a rundown section of Atlanta."
Rose hollered; "now just a minute, if you came here to insult us, you can let the door hit you in the rear."
Lovely Legs said; "please let me finish. With all those downfalls, you came highly recommended so I checked you out extensively."
"You went to a university in Arkansas and majored in Business Administration with a 3.2 GPA. Some people think it would've been higher if you didn't drink so much, get into fights and become an all around pain in the rear."
"Whew! Thanks, I think."
* * *
Apparently Rose started to see dollar signs and said; "okay, we'll take the case, what do we do now?"
'Legs' was still waiting for me to answer. I finally said; "okay, we'll take the case like the boss said, but if it gets too complicated, I'm off the case. I get the distinct feeling that those high salaried corporate guys are way above my league." That made Rose feel better than a laxative. I had to figure a way to get on her good side—I think the like the boss said remark did it.
The reason that I told Mrs. Cassidy those last sentences was that I got the distinct feeling that she wanted someone that was used to getting their head knocked around if the situation called for it, and I looked the part considering my demeanor.
I told her that I would need a list of all the characters involved: the suspected ones, and all of the major and minor stockholders. She agreed to get it to me by tomorrow before noon. I told her that Rose and I were a team; she may have to give Rose a job in the office, on salary of course so it won't draw suspicion. As we worked out the financial details, she said; "You are a shrewd operator, Mr. Buck," obviously referring to the bit about Rose being on company salary.
The hair on the back of my head was standing, which signified that something wasn't altogether on the up and up with this deal. I had a real funny feeling about what I had just agreed on.
The money that she had agreed to pay for my service was adequate enough for a much more high-class outfit than mine. I began to think that if this case becomes too "involved, I might have to "bail out."
* * *
Mrs. Cassidy stood up and told me that she would give the list to Rose to keep from arousing suspicion. Rose saw me 'eyeballing' Mrs.
Cassidy legs, also her figure and said; "I will be the liaison between you and Mr. Buck."
Rose is an extremely observant woman.
She told Mrs. Cassidy; "I will see you out."
Rose close the door after Mrs. Cassidy left and said; "I saw you checking her out from head to toe."
"I have one question." I said
"Where did she buy those legs? They are too perfect to be grown."
I can't repeat some of the words that Rose said. She mentioned something about me being a skirt-chaser and not a business person.
I told her that she was out of her mind.
"What do you think of the case so far?" She asked.
"I have reservation about it—there are certain restrictions concerning this case."
"What restriction?" She asked.
"Well, in order for me to rub elbows with that corporate crowd, I have to look and dress the part, and that means buying new suits; you know how I hate to dress up in a suit and tie."
"I hate to break this to you, but unless you slow down on you drinking, no amount of clothes is going to make you look the part of a Wall Street Broker."
"What are you talking about? What is wrong with how I look?"
"You are drinking entirely too much alcohol; it's making your skin look dead, and your eyes look like a giant road map." She said.
"Well!! Is that all or do you have anymore insulting things to say?"
"I have one more thing to say. I want to see you in a suit and tie so I can get a feel of how you will look when you slip the ring on my finger."
"What ring?" I asked, playing dumb.
"The ring that will make me Mrs. Sam Buck when this case is over."
* * *
She said, "We'll go up to Buckhead and shop tonight."
I hollered; "oh no! I can't afford the clothes in Buckhead, and plus the fact—I have very little money."
"I'll use my credit card to invest in you because this case is going to pay off big, then you can pay me back" she said.
I thought about it for a moment and finally I said; "all right, but Buckhead is out; I can't afford that area. We have to go downtown Peachtree St. area or Goodwill."
Rose looked at me as though I was joking when I said Goodwill. I was as serious as a heart attack. Most Goodwill stores have nice used clothes.
When Rose got ready to leave, she said; "remember, no booze. You have to look the part" when she got to the door, she turn and said; "on second thought, maybe I had better keep you with me the rest of the day, and then go clothes shopping."
I said to her; "what's the matter, don't you trust me?" She quickly said; "uh, uh, I don't."
I said; "I am getting tired of you insulting me, I am your employer." "Then pay me all my back money, Mr. Employer." She said
I told her to shut up and let's go.
That night Rose and I went shopping for clothes. I wanted to catch the goodwill store; Rose said, "no way. I'll grant you that there are nice clothes in Goodwill. They are not for this high-leveled job that we are about to undertake. Maybe the next case that we take on, you can dress in goodwill's clothes."
The next morning Rose showed up at Pi-Ni Industries ready to work. Mrs. Cassidy greeted her. She immediately began to introduce her around the office and explain her duties. Mrs. Cassidy had already call the principle people involved in running the firm. She told them that she had hired an old friend who had recently moved back to Atlanta, to be her assistant.
Rose duties consisted of taking care of matters that Mrs. Cassidy passed down. A real good cover because no one could ask her to perform a job specification that would require super knowledge of administration.
Mrs. Cassidy tried calling to tell us that she could not get the names to us last night. We were out shopping for my clothes, which incidentally, I have been told by store employees that I look good in them. Anyway, she gave the names to Rose while they were huddled in Mrs. Cassidy office trying to look busy.
Rose met me at the end of the building and gave me the list.
Here is the list of names on record at Pi-Ni Industries: (Shares)
* Mrs. Diamond Mann Cassidy
* Mr. Jeffrey Cassidy
* J.W. Tyler
* Mrs. Connie Bowden
"Loyal" 20 year Secretary 5%
* Colin Lefcourt
Company Attorney 5%
* Alton "Big Al" Mann
Late father and founder of firm
Those are the extent of company shareholders whom I'm interested in for starters. The other 28% is scattered around, which is not important right now.
I'm going to start with the husband: first, I want to study him and see what his secret is to be able to land a breath-taker like Mrs. Cassidy.
What is wrong with you Sam, I thought; that is none of your business—stick to the business at hand and act like the professional that you are suppose to be.
I learned Jeff Itinerary from Mrs. Cassidy through Rose, of course. He likes to play golf and rub elbows with the elite crowd. It doesn't matter what race or color that they are, in other words; Jeff Cassidy is a "wannabe."
* * *
Along with the itinerary, Rose gave me the color and the type of cars that the people directly involved in the company drove. Jeff Cassidy drove a red Mazda 626 which stood out like a 747 on Broadway. I thought that my first order of business was to locate and follow him places to see who he talk to and does business with.
The next morning, I drove to Pi-Ni office. I didn't park in the parking lot—I parked about 40 yards away and observed the flow of traffic that went in and out of the office. I saw Rose's Accord parked in the lot in the second row. In the 1st row close to the office where the 'bigwigs' park were Jeff's 626 and J W Tyler, the Chief Operating Officer's black Mercedes.
The other personnel cars on the list were: Mrs. Cassidy's parking space which was the first near the door: she drives a maroon Jaguar, Tyler's black Mercedes, Jeff's 626 and a dark blue Lincoln Navigator that belongs to Colin Lefcourt.
After sitting there for a short period of time, I decided to get out and survey the place when a rose colored Toyota Camry pulled into the lot. It also parked in the first row. I began to check my list of top personnel cars that Rose gave me.
Hmm! I thought; I had better wait and see who gets out. From the description that I had been given of the personnel list: that had to be the loyal secretary. I was parked too far away to read the signs that showed the parking spot that each one was assigned. I wasn't too far away that I could not tell that she was also very lovely from that distance.
Ah! The loyal lovely secretary turns out to be a lovely dish, and as they say in the movies; the plot thickens.
"Cut it out Sam" I thought, "what plot? You haven't even started on the case yet."
Again, as I was about to get out of my car, Jeff Cassidy came out and got in his car. He was a well built Ivy League type guy that looked like he played around a lot.
When he pulled out of the lot, I decided to follow him. He drove through some side streets until he came to the Interstate.
He entered onto I-85 and followed it to I-75 where he went north, with me still following him. He continued on I-75 into Cobb County to lower Roswell Rd. to Johnson Ferry Rd. After a while, he turned on a small street and parked. That red Mazda was easy to spot in the traffic. I went past, circle the block and parked.
Excerpted from SAM BUCK: P.I. by Bill Moore. Copyright © 2013 Bill Moore. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Chapter 1.................... 1
Chapter 2.................... 10
Chapter 3.................... 29
Chapter 4.................... 39
Chapter 5.................... 50
Chapter 6.................... 61
Chapter 7.................... 78
Chapter 8.................... 94
Chapter 9.................... 106
Chapter 10.................... 117
Chapter 11.................... 129
Chapter 12.................... 134
Chapter 13.................... 149
Chapter 14.................... 166
Chapter 15.................... 173
Chapter 16.................... 185
Chapter 17.................... 190