Catastrophe Planet by Keith Laumer

By Keith Laumer

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Bob's Adam's apple was vibrating like a cello string. I nodded. "Figured you knew what was up. You don't miss much, Bob. You've got enemies. Comes of being sharp, successful—like you. The word is it's one of those Chinese jobs—no bigger than a one-shot VD capsule but power enough to lift the roof off this place and dump the contents all over Biscayne Bay. " "Here, you mean—" "Keep it under your hairpiece, Bob. We're with you all the way. " "Tomorrow? Me sit here with a bomb ticking someplace—" "You're a cool one, Bob.

But the second time, I raise the price. I told him, if the police hear about it, finish! I don't tell them, but—word gets out. You know—" Rassias twitched his mouth in a half-smile. "They all know about my cargoes that go out and never come back. They too don't talk to the police. What for? Who are the police? Who knows the police? " He dismissed the police with a downward sweep of his hand. "Some tale," Carmody said. " The sailor looked at him from the corners of his eyes. " "I haven't called you anything—yet," Carmody grunted.

Carmody picked it up, weighed it on his palm, fingered it, tried a fingernail on it. "That's gold," he said. He studied the design, frowning at it in the subdued light. "I don't think I've seen one just like this before, Mal, but I think I can tell you what that bird is. " "Probably," I took the coin back. Nick came up behind him, soft-footed as a hungry lynx. " Carmody said. " "Hurous. Lives in a shack a couple miles east. " Carmody looked at me. "Come on, Mal. " *** The road came to an end a quarter of a mile from the spot we were headed for; it was a stiff climb up a goat trail to the hut perched on a cliff edge under a lone olive tree.

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