Copyright 2001-2008, James J. Belcher. All rights reserved.
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Copyright 2003 James J. Belcher. All Rights Reserved.
Alex, Heaven and Hell
hangover God ever laid on me as a curse could stop me the next morning.
Heaven on earth was waiting. I
considered my resources. I had
about fifteen thou in the bank, plus another thirty in a safe deposit box that
even my ex-wife and her lawyer never knew about, and maybe another five if I
sold the car, after deducting the auto loan.
I knew a lot of guys at the tabloids, including one staffer who was a
computer hacker. I stared at a
globe for a while and a plan started coming together.
sheik lived more or less on the other side of the world.
He had oil wells to go with the robes.
He had the money for whatever, so he undoubtedly had computers and used
E-mail. So Dr. Mark Fontaine would
have communicated with the sheik by E-mail, time zone difference and all.
Thank God for the Internet.
to Sidney, I had to wait about two or three months before the place would be
built and ready for me. And the
sheik was in a hurry, didn't want to disappoint the staff. We
were alike in that respect – I didn't want to disappoint the girls either.
In fact, I got hard just thinking about it.
called my friend, the computer hacker. Professional
ethics forbid my naming his employer. "Sleazoid
you'll have to do better'n that." I
liked his attitude.
know, last name close to grotesque." Sometimes
I could do without his wit.
have your hacker license?"
working for Cleveland Clinic. Did
some cardiology work on an Arab patient, Qatar or maybe one of the UAE.
Mark Fontaine, that's F-O-N-T-A-I-N-E.
Need to know name and E-mail address of a probable E-correspondent, the
a problem. Every cardiologist or cardiovascular surgeon would have a
private office with its own computer and computer address book.
I don't even have to crack the Cleveland Clinic intranet.
Gimme an hour and a half."
just under an hour, my phone rang and it was Ernie.
I say? Piece of cake. Office
down the street from Cleveland Clinic's Euclid Avenue address.
Two names that sounded Arab, but one is an MD from Louisville and the
other has a surname of Faisal and a physical address in Qatar."
you're my kind of crook."
from you, I'm not sure whether to be pleased.
Have you got a pen?"
Fattah El-Aziz Faisal, email@example.com"
read it back. "All I need, I think."
up with a towel head, anyway?"
Jewish and I'm going to fuck half his harem."
asked. Oh, by the way, what's his physical address?"
I took that down also.
real journalist has to think a certain way.
First, realize that most people are stupid and easily fooled.
Sound important and they open up easy, like a kid's piggy bank to a
hammer. I called patient
information, Cleveland Clinic and asked for Sheik Faisal.
No response. I spelled the
no listing for anyone by that name. Are
you sure he's still a patient?"
he's checked out, who would know?"
records, I'll transfer you."
you have a former patient named Mohammed El-Aziz Faisal?
I'm trying to get hold of him. Some
items left in the room safe here at the Grand Hyatt."
Mr. Faisal was here for several weeks, but he was discharged as an
inpatient earlier this month. However,
there is an indication that he underwent a bypass operation and his cardiologist
was a Dr. Mark Fontaine. He may
still be seeing Dr. Fontaine at the doctor's private offices.
Would you like that number?"
and the address, if you don't mind. Frankly,
we're a little queasy about having to hold on to expensive jewelry."
was the voice of the absolute innocent. "Don't
you just hate it when you have to give stuff like that back?"
but it goes with the job, which I'd lose if the Hyatt ever found out.
Not worth it." I took
down the information from Ms. Helpalot.
enough, the white pages and Yellow Pages were full of corroborating data.
Mark C. Fontaine, MD, cardiologist, with a Euclid Avenue office address
and matching number to that given me by CC's Helpalot.
No doubt I had the name of the doctor, knew the patient's name, home
address and E-mail address.
doubt that doctors are greedy. I
called the good doc's office and tried to make an appointment.
First, the time of day. I
suggested noon, and his gal said the office was closed for lunch between 11:30
and 1:00 every day. I picked a
Wednesday afternoon a couple of weeks away.
"Heavens no, we're booked until the last week of February, and
that's well over a month away. Anyway,
he plays golf on Wednesday afternoons, so the office closes at 11:30 those
made an appointment for a checkup for Tuesday, February 25th, 1:00 p.m., noting
I had occasional irregular heartbeats.
"That's arrhythmia, common and generally no cause for alarm.
Pain with that?" "No,
just worrisome." "Well,
that's what's the doctor's for. Best
to check it out." I thanked
the little pimple brain. God bless
as I expected. Fontaine makes close to a mil a year, has one gal working for
him, overworked, probably been there forever and underpaid.
She's nice and quiet spoken and basically a dumbass that can be expected
to be careless, just what I needed.
Time really crawls when you're waiting on fun to happen.
Well, I could do one thing right away, and that was to get the good doc a
Hotmail address. A few keystrokes
and FontaineMCMD@hotmail.com came to life.
His biographical details shown with Hotmail fit him to a T.
I was at it, I looked up Fontaine in the back issues of the Cleveland Plain
Dealer. Sure enough, charity function for the heart association this
past winter, with his wife, Janet, and the pair dressed to the nines, teeth
flashing pearly white. I bet her
dress set him back at least a grand, but he could afford it.
God for the Internet. While I was
at it, I looked up the sheik – sure
enough, he was a sheik, but he had a title, Minister of Internal Affairs,
Qatar. That's rich, a pussy hound with a job description to match.
I had the E-mail memorized. "Dear
Minister, I have a favor to ask . . ."
used the computer and the Internet again.
Seychelles Archipelago consists of a number of low-lying coral reef islands and
a few mountainous islands, granite outcroppings in the middle of the Indian
had a national airline, Air Seychelles, which had a special deal from London,
about $1200 round-trip, to the capital, Victoria, billed as the smallest
national capital in the world. With
a population of less than 60,000, that sounded about right.
in the island paradise were very expensive, typically $400 a day, including
breakfast but no pussy.
It sounded too easy. That should have made me suspicious.