Curnow stretched and then relaxed, slouched on the couch while I sat in an armchair on the other side of the coffee table.
He said, “I wasn’t going to fuck that bitch, you know. I was just putting a scare into her.”
I said, “yeah,” as neutrally as I could. If I let it go too easily, or pretended I believed him, he’d get suspicious. I didn’t want to get him angry, either. I’d be a fool if I wasn’t scared of him. But also, I didn’t want him to leave. I wanted him to talk.
“You fuck her?”
“Not even going to answer that.” But I couldn’t stop myself from shaking my head.
“Yeah, yeah. You know, the boys thought you were fucking her. You were being such a white knight. But I knew you weren’t. You’re a faggot.”
I sighed. That wasn’t worth an answer either.
“Oh, now you’re feeling all righteous because I said faggot. Faggot. Faggot. Faggot. But I got nothing against faggots. Usually. But you, you’re just a faggot in every damn way. Course you wouldn’t fuck her. Your client.”
“Yuh. My client.” I held the tumbler to my mouth again, and tilted it.
Curnow looked at me. “You’re not drinking. You had whisky on your breath when you answered the door but you weren’t drunk. You’ve only played with your drink since, while you’ve been pouring me glasses. There was a photo of me taken while I was outside on your porch. It would’ve gone to a security company, wouldn’t be hard to find which. You sneaked a pic of me with your cell phone when I was in the corridor and sent it to someone. I guessing that lawyer bitch, Siv, Silver, Siebel. Jane Siebel, right?”
I inclined my head, neither yes nor no.
“So someone’s got proof I been inside the house. And now you’re trying to get me drunk. For fuck’s sake. Faggot, I’ll say what I’ve come to say quicker if you don’t waste time insulting my intelligence.”
I said nothing. We were both trained interviewers, so silence wasn’t going to be as powerful as it sometimes is. But I let it stretch on. Eventually he recognised the interrogator’s pause and chuckled. I laughed too.
“All right. I’m going to go working in security. Damn near three times the pay. I don’t really care that I got fired; I was going to quit anyway. So I don’t need to do anything to you. Killing you’d be easy, but you’re half clever and the covering up afterwards’d be a pain in the ass. Understand where I’m coming from?”
“No kill I.”
“That’s Star Trek, isn’t it? The one with the acid pizza that eats rocks and kills people.”
“‘Devil in the Dark’.”
“Jesus, you are a total fucking faggot.”
“Yeah. You’re not really hear to tell me something. If you were you’d have told me by now. You want to ask me something, and you want me to think it’s safe to answer you. So what do you want to know?”
“Good. You know that dope in that bitch’s room. That baggie of coke. That I got set up with, so it looked like I’d planted it. That was a brilliant sting, that, and I walked straight into it. Now, I know Jane Siebel wouldn’t do that. She’s got a bigger stick up her ass than you have. So did you put it there, or did that bitch put it there herself?”