The Mustache Man

Chapter Two


Vargas sat and waited patiently. For reasons he didn’t understand until later, much later he didn’t leave this underground place called “The Vault.” He got up after awhile and walked up ramps and examined exit signs and didn’t go through them. He walked inside a tomb of steel and black velvet interrupted by pockets of shadow and light created by rows of lap tops. He wasn’t surprised by Carlton’s vanishing act. He was just interested.

            For the first time in his life of thirty eight years he didn’t feel completely alone. Besides, Chance Montclair was looking for him. And if she was looking for him so were Jewels, her six year old little girl and that crazy old bull dog Bert that had once pulled her out of a flash flood and saved her life.

            The Mustache Man felt strangely comforted.


            Carlton returned hours later. Not that Pete Vargas kept time. He carried a cell phone but rarely if ever answered it. He couldn’t stand the electronic storms surrounding him everywhere he went. Anyway he didn’t need to know what time it was. Time was a ticking bomb and he carried the flow of the hours, the interruptions of the weeks, the years the seconds inside his skin. Time was always running out for the Mustache Man.

            He never knew when he’d be whisked away into the darkness of no memory-a place where space folded up and collapsed. He never knew when he’d surface and gasp for air.

            He knew Carlton had been gone for hours. He could feel the flow of time.

            Something very peculiar was going on down here. Why was this young women in her late twenties taking the time to probe him for his life? Who was she really? She called herself Detective Carlton Jamis and she ran a storage data center. Then she had disappeared without warning. He had to find who was interviewing him and why she wanted to help him.

            “Very peculiar,” said Carlton when she reappeared in her chair.

            It was as though she’d never left.

            “I haven’t been gone for hours Pete, just a few seconds. We can live out weeks and return in milliseconds.”

            “I never saw you leave.”

            “ Were you lonely?”


            “You’ve been looking at the data on the screens.”

            “Yes. Detective Jamis…”

            “Carlton, just Carlton.”

            “Are you an angel?”


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