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Chapter #20

Declan 2.0 (The Fall Guy)

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The silence grew so dense that even the voices in my
own head fled away.
Then he laid back and started humming again.
Holy Fuck! I thought, eyes as big as saucers as my
heart's pounding became the loudest sound in the
room. The very implication of his words.
Then he came into his own again and said to me,
“Mostly we see, hear, and feel what the hosts are
feeling, hearing and seeing. We communicate through
the forefront of each other’s thoughts, but there are
those who dig deeper.
In fact, we refer to them within the unified mind as
Oh, no, oh, fuck, no. "Na na na na na na," I said
loudly with my fingers in my ears. I didn’t want to
hear none of this anymore. They were dividing the
unified mind! "La la la la; Dude, get unplugged and
take a pill. Now! That's my advice to you,” I told him.
"Listen," he urged.
“There's an election year coming up. I've trenched my
way into some serious shit, man. Some serious shit.”
He replied with a shaky voice filled with anxiety.
“And you tell me? I got the biggest mouth in town” I
told him. “I don't want to know. Just shut up. I got
my own problems.”
He laid back.
The adrenaline was flowing. Yeah, it was going
I laid back and tried to focus on my own problems.
Quietly, he started his humming ritual again.
It didn't seem to bother me as much as before.
In fact, I laid my head back and let his solemn
disruptions soothe my own weary soul and put me to

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Kung,Klang chk ck ck. What! oh oh I'm in the clink. I
looked up, but Otis the Walrus was gone.
I squinted to see in the poor lighting, and there was a
woman that looked like a resurrected World War
Three German Panzer-bot. She was wiggling a cheese
sandwich in my face. Then she raised it up and
dropped it.
I made the save, though. Caught it just before it hit
the ground. Good thing, too. I was starving.
I looked over at the wall where the Walrus was sitting
and noticed a drawing of a compass scratched into
the paint. It had a horizontal and a vertical line
marked x and y and an angled line marked z coming
out of a circle in the middle, marked with a T at the
intersection. Very peculiar, I thought.
I'm not sure what all of this means, but that was one
freaky dude. I'm sure the mind zombies are going to
eat him alive real soon.
I finished my sandwich and sat there.
Then I sat there a little longer.
Then a little bit longer than a little bit longer, but God
only knows.
Luckily for me, whoever welded the steel plate over
the window accidentally burned a small hole in the
plate. I spotted it there with no more than just a
sprinkling of daylight shining though the dimly lit
It was a little bit higher than eye shot while kneeling
and a little bit lower than eye shot standing, but still,
I spent all morning watching a couple of blue jays
across the parking lot do absolutely nothing. Oh, they
flew here and there, and I was happy to see them
come back because it was better than looking out at
the drab corridor with its monotone ensemble of walls
and bars, on this side of the burn hole.
I wonder how they survived the drought. Must've
been about noon when the familiar looking Sgt.
Friday greeted me at the door of my humble abode.

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I said, “Good morning, Sgt. Friday.”
He said, “I trust you slept well,” in a slightly sarcastic
Then he kindly escorted me to the interrogation
room. This time he handcuffed me to the steel bar
welded to the center of the table.
I looked at him and asked, "Really?"
He smiled a light smile and gave one of the cuffs a
couple of extra clicks.
Fuck, now one's tighter than the other. I sat there
staring at them.
Then the large detective from yesterday walked in and
Sgt. Friday gave him a nod, and said, “Morning,
He said, “Morning.” Then Sgt. Friday left the room.
Maybe it's not as late as I’d thought.
All I know is that, that cheese sandwich didn't do
anything. My stomach was empty, and my nerves
were shot.
I wanted to cry. I wanted to go home. I was trembling
inside. I could feel cold sweat starting to perspire
throughout my entire body and fighting off the
nervous breakdown drained every bit of energy that I
Then the door burst inwards and slammed against
the wall as Big Chief Michio walked through it,
carrying a brief case. He looked pissed. He slammed
the brief case down on the table and started pacing
the floor back and forth. He was livid.
He wouldn't even look at me at first. He just kept
pounding that floor with his feet, and his face was
tomato red from the blood pressure.
Big Eddie started to say something, but Michio cut
him off and pointed his finger in my face and
demanded, “Where's my money.” Then he started
poking the desk hard. As if I could just yank it out of
my little fro-frou and hand it to him.

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I was startled and speechless. I leaned back, shaking
my head no and told him, “I, I, I don't know.”
Ed, trying to be helpful, said, “We got your prints off
the table, nimrod.”
To which I replied, “Were they the only ones?”
Michio blew a gasket. He pointed his finger at the
door and told Mr. Ed, "Get the fuck out of here.” Then
he turned around and yelled, “Where is my
motherfucking money.”
I started shaking and trembling. I'm sure I was on the
edge of a nervous breakdown and a heart attack all at
He was about to beat the living shit out of me.
I cried out, “Bella's got it. We stole the money and
then she double-crossed me in the back of the
casino. She tied me up in the back of Victor's office,
but I escaped and broke the lock to get out. I don't
know where she went, but she stole Pumba's luge
mobile and took off to God knows where.”
Shocked, but not surprised he asked, “Bella? My
mother in law?”
“When was the last time you saw her?” I asked.
He walked over to the door and called out, “Ed, Ed,
come here. Pull up the satellite surveillance link and
check out everybody shop within a hundred miles.
See if you can find that stupid taxi. It shouldn't be
hard to spot. Then see of you can trace it back to the
casino and let me know if you find anything.”
I felt a slight tingling in the back of my head. Like one
or two hairs standing up.
And began to itch.
Michio shut the door, walked by me, palmed my head
and slammed it on the table. Then he put his fat
finger in my face and said, “If you’re lying to me,
nobody will ever hear from you again,” He walked
around the table and exclaimed. “I'll bury you
myself." Then he raised his voice excitedly and

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continued, "After inflicting a tremendous amount of
I wanted to fucking scream. I was freaking-out
scared, the front of my head was throbbing, and on
top of everything else the back of my head had an
itch that just was not going away, and I had no way
of scratching it with my hands chained to the middle
of this damn table.
Standing across the table from me, he leaned in
putting his hands on the table, one on each side of
I was almost expecting him to choke me with those
giant hands, like the time when he warned me about
looking at Cherahontas, his wife.
He said in a nasty low voice, “Now, what else did you
see while you were hiding in that tool room last
I said, “I didn't see nothing. Nothing at all.” Suddenly
I regretted the sarcastic tone I used when Eddie
Monster questioned me about the fingerprints on the
I put my best poker face on.
I don't know why, I always lose at poker, but I just
kept telling myself, I didn't see anything, I didn’t see
anything, I didn't see anything. Maybe if I keep
thinking it, I'll believe it.
Michio slid his briefcase over and opened it up then
spun it around to show its contents.
He took a three-pound sledgehammer out of it with
his right hand and four nine-inch nails that were
laying on top. He started clanking them together by
relaxing and tightening his hand. Clink, clank, clink.
He looked at me with a perfectly evil smile and said,
“You know what these are for?”
Trembling, I answered, “Are you going to nail me to a

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He shook his head then slowly answered, “No,
nothing that simple." Then he laid the nails down on
the table, one by one, pointing them straight at me.
clank, clank, clank, clank. Then he pulled a flat rope
out of the case and said, “This is a six-foot strap of
genuine, raw hide leather punk. You get this stuff wet
and you can stretch it out to about twelve feet." He
said with his hands stretched, then, "When it dries, it
shrinks right back down with enough force to pull a
man apart.” All the while admiring the leather by
pulling it tight in between his fists, then relaxing it
and letting it swag a little.
Then he looked at me with bulging eyes and said,
“The lucky ones get their eyeballs plucked out by
vultures that swiftly chow past them to lick their
I didn't know what to say. So, I didn't say anything.
He packed up his briefcase then gave me that evil
smile again and said, “Those who keep Big Chief
Michio's secrets live well on the inside. But don't fuck
with me again, kid. I'm warning you right now, don't
fuck with me again.”
Then he opened the door and told Ed, “Arrest him for
the heist and hold him until the trial comes up. No
But I cooperated? I embellished the truth a little, but
fuck, man, I can't believe it.
Holy smokey!
I'm headed to the pokey!
Eddie came in and uncuffed me from the table and
put my hands behind my back and informed me
officially that I was under arrest.
Then he escorted me out to the paddy wagon that
was parked underneath the shade tree near the blue
jays that I’d been watching earlier. One of them was
playing in a puddle that formed in a pothole on the
edge of the parking lot.

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I guess it must've rained while I was in the
interrogation room. I wondered if the drought was
finally over as he helped me into the back and
secured me to the seat. I leaned my head back and
relaxed. Finally, I got to scratch the back of my head,
I thought while moving it back and forth on the back
of the seat.
We drove straight out into the desert for about fifteen
or twenty minutes, crossed some old railroad tracks
then followed the road that ran along beside them. It
was a bumpy, dusty ride.
I watched the jailhouse fade into view in the distance,
across the long, flat terrain of the desert floor. A
feeling of dread fell all over me and grew thicker as
we got closer and closer to our final destination.
They're going to pin this whole thing on me.
Man, I can just see it now.
This was not good at all.
We pulled up to a stucco building with narrow
windows after driving through a guard gate with
armed guards, dogs, and tracker droids.
There'd be no escaping. Those tracker droids are
amazing. I saw a clip that showed them running at
eighty miles an hour in rough terrain. They looked
like shiny metallic panthers running through a forest
in the short clip.
Eddie Monster escorted me into the building. It
looked about half the size of the county jail back
He dropped me off along with some forms at the
processing desk.
I sat on a bench as the secretary finished up some
clerical work that he was doing.
My throat was tight, and my muscles were tensed,
but humbly I asked, “Say, man, do I at least get a
phone call?”
He looked over at a round-bellied man in a tie who
answered, “Yeah, why not.”

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Then he opened a VeeM and downloaded my contact
Fuck, I don't think Duboc Fonzarelli has a contact
list. A little surprised, the Guard flung the virtual
monitor over to me and there was one name on the
list, and it wasn’t even a name, it was a number. A
very curious number zero.
I pressed the button and after several rings Tonto
answered the phone and said, “Operator.” I knew his
I said, “Tonto?”
He said, “Of course, who else do you know in the
identity business?”
I felt a little relieved. I asked, “How's Pumba?”
He replied, “Oh, he's fine. We had a few drinks at the
Tiki hut last night, got drunk and talked about how
much we were going to miss you.”
Then he laughed at me.
Then he said, “Don't worry, Declan, you're exactly
where you need to be right now. It'll take some time,
but this may be just what I need to clean up your
identity crisis.
"You'll be Dicky Duncan Declan again in no time.”
I said, “Can you connect me with my mom somehow?
I'd really like to talk to her. I'm sure she's worried to
death about me.”
I really, really wanted to talk to Mom. I'm going to jail
here, you know.
He said, "Of course" and then her phone started
The guard looked over at me and motioned, it's time.
I held my hand up and said, "Please, dude, it’s my
mom, she just got home, I was talking to my Uncle
Jed waiting for her. I just want to tell her that I love
Just then, Mom answered.
“Hey, Mom, how are you?” She said, “Declan? Where
are you I've been worried sick about you.”

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I said, “I'm doing fine, but It might be a while before I
can call you again.”
She asked, “Are you in trouble?”
“No, no, it's nothing like that. I just have to take care
of some things. I'll be fine.” I said.
She said, “I thought I saw one of them spy bugs the
other day. There was this weird chrome spider with
two rows of eyes that looked like tiny cameras on its
head in the windowsill. But when I squished it, just
guts came out. Then I looked out the window and
saw its web just outside. Kind of felt sorry for the
little fella. I guess I really should get that screen
“I have to go now, Mom. I'll see you as soon as this
ordeal is over with.” I said.
“Well, ok, I love you, son, you be careful out there,”
she said.
“Love you, too,” I said.
Then I got processed.
I mean to tell you that I got formed, numbered,
checked out, poked, prodded, masked and gassed,
showered, shaved, ruled, chipped, and all dressed up
in a fine-looking bright orange zoot suit that
resembled a Halloween pumpkin outfit.
Then a fine-looking woman in a uniform walked up to
me wearing a very sexy smile.
Whoa, my, she was checking me out, too.
Oh, no, this could be trouble. My eyes were locked on
to her, and I couldn't help but notice that she had big
breasts for such an athletic build, and there's just
something about big breasts tucked tightly in a
She said, “Come with me, Mr. Fonzarelli.”
I was tripping.
And what the hell am I thinking about? Here I am
headed to jail and all I can think about is getting
some tail.
I asked, “Is it far?”

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She replied, “I like to take the long way, so I can walk
all the prisoners past the virtual torture chamber lab
to remind them who's in charge.” Then she threw me
a wink and whispered, "The VTC."
“I've heard those things are worse than going to hell.”
I said back, while undressing her with my eyes.
She said, “Yeah, you especially don't want to get
Hisler as a programmer. She just genuinely hates the
entire human race, including herself. I hear she really
hates good-looking men, like you, Doobie.”
“Doobie?” I remarked, as we were walking by those
with a fate worse than the damned.
“She gave that sexy smile again and said, “Doobie
Duboc, yeah, that's you, alright.”
Then she laughed at me and said, “Welcome home,”
as cell number one thirty-seven opened wide.
“Can I have a hug?” I asked, as I stepped into the cell
and waved goodbye to her.
She just smiled and walked away slowly, swinging
her hips like she knew I was watching. And you know
there was just something about a plump round little
butt tucked neatly into a uniform.
Strange. The place was very quiet and empty except
for a bald, funny looking man with a fat, wrinkled
Besides a short grey headed weasel that was reading
a book a few cells back, I didn't notice any other
prisoners. I can't really remember the last time I saw
a real book.
That guard was smoking hot. I'd like to get into her
“Home, sweet home, sure enough. Reckon I won't be
leaving here for a while.”
The cell had dingy white cinder block walls on three
sides with a long skinny window on the side across
from a barred wall with a barred, jail cell door in it.
I looked out the window and thought, well, at least I
got a room with a view. As I noticed the railroad

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tracks running parallel to the desert horizon. I looked
off to the right and saw the signal light about a
quarter mile in the distance.
I sat down and heard cage doors opening and closing.
I got up and looked out and I saw prisoners making
their way back to their cells. I could hear them
talking about the events that happened out in the
yard and how awful the lunch food was.
Fuck, I missed lunch, no surprise the way my life's
going these days.
All in all, it appeared that only about a third of the
cells around me were occupied. I was kind of glad I
didn't have a cell mate. That would suck. I think that
there's anybody in here that wouldn't annoy me to
I got up and wrapped my hands around a couple of
bars on the cell door and looked around, but there
wasn't much to see.
I could hear a couple of guys talking across the hall
to each other. There was a third voice next to the one
across the hall.
I didn't know what they were talking about. I guess I
just didn't care enough to actually listen.
I could only see into about three cells across the
narrow hall. There wasn't anyone occupying the one
directly across from me, or to the left of it. To the
right there was a chubby fella with a smart mouth.
He yelled out, “Heads up, ladies, we got a new girl in
one thirty-seven for ya!”
Thanks a lot, I thought as I faded into the back
corner out of sight.
Some of the other prisoners were Whoo-whooing and
laughing at his remarks.