Fiction: Enforcers


I don’t know when I first noticed them; or, why it seemed no one else saw them.  But, when I realized they couldn’t see me, I ran.


Some friends from our meetup group in Schaumburg wanted to meet for dinner.  So, I organized the meetup at the Weber Grill.

You would have thought I had asked a bunch of Republicans to meet with President Obama to discuss more wasteful spending.  Here are just a couple of the texts and emails I got.

“No, Jack.  Morton’s would have been better.”  Or, “Why not Wildfire?”

I even got a voice mail.  “Jack,” Sue whined.  “You know John Barleycorn is where all the rich and influential men go.  Why didn’t choose John Barleycorn.”

I sent one email to the group:

“You asked me to set up this meetup so we could plan our June outing.

I chose somewhere I could afford.  Next time someone else can plan and choose somewhere I cannot afford.  And I will just order water.

But, be there 7 PM. Thursday night.”

I doubt I solved anything.  And that email was just a bit short and to the point.

But, I was tired and grumpy.

My boss had me on the road all the time.  He was one of those ‘movers and shakers’ Sue like to rub shoulders with over at John Barleycorn.  In fact, the only four times I have been to that restaurant over the last three years have been business meetings with him.

Tim is an interesting boss.  Timothy Obediah Johnson.  He was a retired Marine Major who taught me more about Grambling State University’s Football program than I ever wanted to know.

Overall, he was a pretty good guy.  And at six-foot four, he stood out in a room.

He had me running parts all over the Chicago area.  We were putting together some interesting Remotely Piloted Vehicles.

Personally, I didn’t like our helping the government spy on Citizens, but a job is a job.  And this one paid real well.

Earlier in the day, I had been bringing back a truck load of equipment from Chicago Midway.  Going up the toll way, I noticed I was being followed.  When they followed me into Schaumburg, I called Tim.

“I thought something might be going on.  I keep detecting really weird activity.”

“Tim?  What are you talking about activity.  I have three black cars following me.  Two Continentals, and one Cadillac.  All with dark windows.  I am turning again, so I know they know I am being followed.”

“Where are you?”

“I am turning towards John Barleycorn.”

“Pull the truck into that parking lot.  Leave it to them.  And run like the Devil is after you.”

I thought I heard him whisper, “Because they are.”

A chill went up my spine as I pulled into the John Barleycorn restaurant parking lot.  I got out, and I was going to run.  But, they had pretty much blocked me in, and they were getting out.

The chill became the biggest case of ‘goose-bumps’ I had ever had.  Even more than when I had fallen in the lake in January … and it had been ten degrees.

They were big.

And ugly.

A metallic voice boomed, “Where are you?”  They kept looking around like they did not see me.

I had moved near the hood of the truck.  One of them opened the truck’s driver’s door.  “I don’t see him here.”

I ran.  I ran like the Devil was after me.

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