FloatersLarge Print - 1996
As boat patrol boat partners Fortney and Leeds prepare to monitor the America's Cup race, they are distracted by a redhead whose bizarre behavior leads them to two murder victims
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The sun was about to set and guests waited, hoping for the green flash. It was caused when an atmospheric change in air density created a bending of the light when it crosses from cool to warm, as in a giant prism. Blue and green refract more than red and yellow, the blue scattering more vigorously, and if the green is properly positioned, the red fireball may permit a magnified rim of burning emerald as it drops into the sea. Hence, the green flash. Ambrose had heard of the Scottish legend that promised love and eternal happiness to all who sighted the green flash. It was a lovely thought.
"Even though lots of political leaders had crack-pot spouses. People like Abe Lincoln, Ferdinand Marcos, Nelson Mandela, Hillary Clinton."
Fortney said, "Don't let it ruin your appetite, Junior. When you get to be my age, life is just food and drink and lots of bed rest Everything else is footnotes."
Johnson outboards were no match. When the cigarette boat got past the jetty, it turned toward Imperial Beach and was gone. "Like a dachshund chasing a whippet," Fortney said.
Norman G. "Letch" Boggs was one of those middle-aged cops immune to sexual-harassment complaints. Letch was short, bald, lardy at the hips, with the muscle tone of a bruised banana. He smelled worse than a Beastie Boys concert because he consumed more garlic than Sicily. He loved it roasted, fried, sauteed, raw. He ate tomato-mayonnaise-and-raw-garlic sandwiches that made people want to puke just watching him. Convinced that garlic retarded aging and enhanced potency, Letch claimed he'd get garlic withdrawal if ever he missed a day. So he didn't.
"He swings like one of Jerry's kids," Fortney said. "Get him a telethon. Tonight he'll be in the cabin with palms up staring at a crystal pyramid and listening to Yanni. I've seen chimps better dressed on the David Letterman show."
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