Article - Laura Knight-Jadczyk
I was disgusted with the whole thing. I couldn't figure out why Pam just couldn't see that the guy was a con artist from the word "go," and why did she keep dangling after him when he hadn't put up a single dime?
Well, she came over wanting to discuss every detail of what this man had told her, every thing he had told her son, dates and times and just the whole scenario and it was so bizarre as to baffle the cleverest mind. He couldn't be old enough to do all the things he claimed, and his wife wasn't young enough to be the mother of a pre-adolescent child! It was perfectly weird!
Well, we decided that the guy was a complete fraud and con artist. I just wanted him gone and my magazine printed. Apparently, Pam had been ashamed to call me for advice without being able to produce something of what was supposed to have already been finished, and she had prevailed on Patrick to print the inside pages. So, Frank and I were invited to the shop the next day to get all the pages of the magazine assembled. Now, all that was left to do was to print the covers.
So the next evening, there we were, in the print shop after closing and the doors were locked. The presses were running in the back, and Patrick seemed to be more stable than usual. He was working hard and doing a very good job. I was thinking that things might work.
A knock came at the door.
It was the "mysterious stranger" just "dropping by" to say that he would be there with the "big check" in the morning. He was full of all kinds of apologies for having had to "leave town on a special assignment that was an emergency." Never mind that he was retired from "cloak and dagger" stuff. They had had an emergency that only he could handle! Now he was back, and all would be well! Then, out of the blue, in response to no question whatsoever, he began to point by point give explanations for all the difficulties we had found with his story, including the fact that he was from a family that just simply did not show their age, even though he was now claiming to be well into his 60's. So, naturally, that explained how he could have been a spy against the Nazi's and still look young enough to go undercover with the Outlaws Motorcycle Gang! His wife, on the other hand, had been horribly injured because of some of "secret agent" work, and that was why he had had to divorce her - for her safety - and when they remarried, she was still undergoing plastic surgery that "went bad" and that was why she looked so old. But she was really much younger than she looked! But, they had dreamed of a "regular family" and had gotten help with in vitro conception, even though she was still older than she should have been to have a child, while being younger than she looked, and so on and on.
No problem. Everything was explained.
The only thing was: no one had asked any questions about these things or voiced their doubts and questions; at least not to his face!
Yet, he had just stood there and, point by point, in the same order we had discussed them, answered every question we had established as important in our private conversation of the night before. My back was to him as I listened as I was working on collating pages, and I can tell you that my jaw dropped to the floor when he started on this subject. The hair on the back of my neck stood up and my skin felt like it was going to crawl off my flesh! I had the most bizarre sensation of time stopping and I almost froze in my rhythmic paper stacking motions; I had to force myself to keep working and to show no sign of surprise or curiosity.
Then, just as if he had done what he came to do, he gave everyone a cheerful good night and left!
We all turned around and looked at each other with our mouths hanging open, our eyes as big as saucers, and said: What the HECK just happened here?! The three of us could hardly speak. We could only sit and look at each other and feel like the laws of the universe had been violated somehow.
After a few minutes Pam breathed "Jesus H. Christ! It was just like he had been listening to us talking last night!"
And she was right.
We called Patrick out of the press room and told him the story and he looked at all of us with disgust on his face and pronounced us "paranoid."
Well, maybe we were.
But maybe we had a reason to be. The next night, Frank was at his job, sitting at his desk, when he stood up to go to the water fountain. As he rose from his chair, he turned and looked at the window of the office building where he was employed, and there, standing and staring inside, was the "mysterious stranger." As soon as he saw Frank stand up he began to move away as if he had just been "passing by," but it was too late. Frank knew he was being watched.
He called me when he was home and told me. The main thing we couldn't figure out was how did this guy know where Frank worked and what his schedule was? I called Pam to see if she had told the guy anything. It turned out that even Pam didn't know where Frank actually worked!
How did this guy know? Why was he watching Frank? Who was he and what did he want? How did he know about our private conversations at MY house?! What was this deal about the Outlaws?
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