I knew my dark-blue blazer was in the closet somewhere. Exactly where was difficult to say now that the “Lifetime” LED ceiling light fixture had burned out. I groped around in the dark fully expecting to find myself holding a cat by the neck the next time I withdrew my hand. My knuckles smacked the sharp corner of a box causing thousands of dollars to tumble across the floor; too bad it was only Monopoly money. Losing my balance, I lunged into the black void. The quick flash of a steel blade caught my eye as I fell.
I lay on the floor in the closet with my would-be assailants on my chest. Judging by the archaic appearance of the attackers, it was obvious they hadn’t seen action in a while. I clambered around trying to get to my feet as the black clad figures fell to the floor, choking on their own dust. They kept their grip around my ankles as I extricated myself from the den of doom. I dragged those culprits with me into the sunlight streaming through the torn window shades. It was at that moment I recognized them as the Riedell Brothers.
Even from their compromised position on the bedroom floor, the brothers disparaged me. They recalled a lost passion from my youth; comparing me to a younger, stronger man who paraded in public with scantily clad dancing girls, older “experienced” women and connoisseurs of fine drink. All of us in the above company could often be found lying tangled in a pile of sweating bodies, our dripping chrome reflecting the glints of the disco ball. The bothers were right; it was time to feel that old pain again; those tightly tied strings of the past cutting off my circulation.
I fueled up the four-door and blew down Route 422 headed for a date with destiny. As I wheeled into the driveway, my accomplices were waiting for me. We stuffed the Riedell Brothers in the trunk to keep ‘em from clamoring; we figured they’d try to cut us if they got close enough. Riding down 19 in the dark, we didn’t know what to expect. We were going on a tip; take the brothers to Mario’s joint. There, it would be easy to put ‘em on ice without drawing a lot of attention. Good thing. I didn’t want to break any legs or heads.
We walked right in the front door like we owned the house. Mario was nowhere to be seen even though his name was all over the place. The lights were low and the music was loud. That made it easy to sneak the Riedells in and tie them up. My Lieutenant moved upstairs to keep an eye from on high while me and my girl took out the brothers. “This is the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done” she said as we worked our way across the floor, looking to blend in. I was ready to make up for lost time and keep a promise; the first dance at the Lemieux proved it. I had my daughter by the hand and the Riedells on my feet and it felt great! It was her first time on the ice, and my first time back on it since throwing the Riedells in the closet 20 years ago. I might just find myself skating through the rest of my life.
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