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da kid

A Harry Mickey Shorts Mystery

- Rich Kisielewski

Much to his surprise, Harry Mickey Shorts gets a call from Mel, his ex-brother-in-law, who needs his help. It is a rare occasion when Mel asks Harry for anything at all never mind his help. When it does happen Harry takes notice and drops what he is doing to see what it is that troubles “Big Mel.”  

Over a few cool ones Mel tells Harry a long-winded tale from his past involving a kid he had coached. Little Billy Burns had walked out of the gym before the end of a basketball game and soon vanished all together. Mel’s belief that he had somehow failed Billy has lingered and he now sees an opportunity to rectify that wrong.

With the help of his friend, Tom, Harry’s investigation takes him back to Central Pennsylvania to meet with Billy who currently resides in the Cumberland County jail. Their journey begins with an introduction to Billy’s extended con-artist family and ultimately to some Las Vegas hustlers who are looking to continue their venture into golf course swindles. And at long last is Mel’s reunion with Billy. At the same time Harry’s part-time interest in his ex-wife, his love for his children and his continued attempt to become an integral part of their lives, continues to complicate his own life.

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Chapter 1

Eighteen years old. No, make that more like eighteen going on forty-three. He had seen, and done, and probably forgotten more “stuff” than any ten normal kids his age combined. Unfortunately, all of his streetwise wisdom and “I can do dat better than you can, succa” attitude don’t add up to squat when the man lays the cuffs on you and drags your sorry butt down to the place with bars on the windows and three free squares a day.

Maybe I should jump back a few steps and let you in on what’s going on here. My name is Harry because I’m told an aunt promised to lay some bread on me if my mom named me Harold. I don’t believe it one little bit because I didn’t see a single dime and, to my knowledge, neither did my moms.

Oh yeah, it’s Harry, or should I say Harold Mickey Shorts, which wasn’t my given name when I was ushered into this wonderful world of ours. My original name didn’t cut it in my eyes and the Mick, Mr. Mantle, is my all-time favorite ballplayer courtesy of my dad. Plus, my original last name was way too long. Wearing tee shirts and shorts is how God intended us to dress, so that’s how I came up with my new and improved name—"Shorts"—which just happens to be a great conversation topic for the ladies.

By trade I guess you would call me a private investigator, but I’m not your ordinary run-of-the-mill, every-day private dick. Kizmet Incorporated is what my business card would say, if I had one. Mel had called and said he needed help. My help. For Mel, my ex-brother-in-law (EBIL for short) to ask Harry Mickey Shorts for help, any help, hell would have had to have frozen over and the “Devils” would have been practicing a long time for the upcoming hockey season. But, when I’m asked for help you best jump back because I’m coming through to do anything in my power to mend what needs mending.

Yup, here we go again…Harry Mickey Shorts style.

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