You stay here long enough, you don't leave. I know, I'm a lifer.
You get too settled, America becomes this weird … thing … He waves
his hand airily. You should settle down in Taipei, get a girl,
make a decent living, it's just as easy here. Easier. Plenty of opportunities
for us. The lao wai man with a plan and his ABC front man.
Silence falls upon them for a few moments, and just before it passes
the threshold of discomfort, C.J. asks:
Was that Liu on the phone?
Mmm! Yes! Turns out the police records on Mr. Chen's death have gone
missing. What do you say about that?
I'm sure that's what the widow and daughter would like us to think.
Maybe they paid off the appropriate folks to "lose" them. But it does
leave us at square one. What's your take, C.J.? Where should we go
Allen clasps his hands together, rests them on the table, leans forward
with his restless eyes locked on C.J. All at once, C.J. remembers
why he dislikes the man. He remembers their first meeting in that
loud restaurant, the one foreigner in the crowd. Allen had made the
initial approach: They tell me you're a fellow American expat!
My name's Allen. What are you doing here in Taiwan? C.J. had responded
with what he thought was perfectly fine equanimity: Oh, I haven't
decided yet, I'm just here to see what's available. But in the
midst of giving this