Chapter Four: Welcome to Jamaica Welcome to Jamaica, the land of many Sunshine. The land of wood and water and also, "the land of many peoples." Just like the travel posters say: Welcome to Jamaica, the greatest little country on the planet, and the best place to live, work, play, and retire. So. on down to Jamaica, they went, in droves, to cash in on the bonanza, the retirees' dream.
The Jamaican government was actively working at promoting the country to those particular demographic categories of people: the rich, the returning residents, (particularly the rich returning residents), and the rich and famous types from every other sphere of life. “You can retire in absolute comfort here in this tropical paradise just like these our subjects here today did, and enjoy every minute of it too, just like they are doing.” Said the reporter as the camera started to roll.
“Today we are going to hear from the Toppings as we try to get the perspectives of people who have actually lived “the Jamaican dream,” just like Jason and Irene. But how did they do it? Let's go find out, let's ask the Toppings themselves.” Interviewer: “So who wants to go first?” Mr. Toppings: "Irene will, she's the journalist and talker in the family" Interviewer: Okay then, so I understand that you were from the US, how did you end up here, how did it all get started for you? Mrs.
Toppings: “I started out writing that’s how, from very early on in life, my dad used to say: “a short pencil is better than a long memory.” So I wrote down everything.” “That’s where it all got started for me. But I don’t think that is what you really want to hear from me today, today you are after the juicier kinds of stuff I believe,” (laughs). “Well, she continued, I was here to report on the summer games, I was an intern with the AASN, that is, the all American sports network. Jamaica was hosting the games, the very first for an English speaking developing country, it was a big deal then and no better place for an intern sports reporter to be than at the Olympics game, in Jamaica.
After checking in at the Jamaica Calling hotel that night, a couple of other young reporters and myself decided to go out on the town for a while. We ended up at the trendy new hotspot: The Toppings spot- which later became known simply as: "the spot." Boy! That place was hot, and I don't mean it in terms of the sizzling heat of the Jamaican summer sun, I mean, I mean: it was really, really happening.” Let’s pause here for a commercial break. To be continued. ……
The white Knight Rider Lasco, rode into town and a trail of dead bodies were to follow. Many refer to him as the white Knight but a more suitable name should probably have been: the white knife because, wherever he went, dead bodies followed, and the place where he chose to stop that time around was Jamaica, and the outcome was to be no different.
He would have followed the hip and trendy crowd who was, ironically, trying to escape the likes of him in those cities from whence they had come. In the wake of his crimes. He had plundered and spoiled such cities as New York, Miami, Toronto, and LA. And since Jamaica was in those times the hippest place on Earth to be, why wouldn't count Lasco be there too? The police federation wasn't mincing words.
Jamaica, the commissioner told him straight up, Jamaica is an open and accommodating society, we are happy to have you here and will bend over backward to make sure that your stay here is a memorable one, but make sure that, all of those “shit?” I have been hearing about you? Those things which are constantly being said about you, and which is being associated with your name, or any part of it that might be remotely true, be sure to shake and leave it over on that side of the bay from whence you came.
Lasco just grinned his gold-studded teeth and grunt, huh, "No problem man," in his best Jamaican wanna-be accent and tone, "the word is good," he continued. But the astute and very aware commissioner Watkins knew better than to hang on to any word spoken by the likes of Lasco, so his eyes and ears were ever open to his every move from then on and after, so far as was humanly possible.
Meanwhile, Sadie's stars would have been going nowhere but up in those days, her name was in flashing neon lights, atop The Jamaica Calling hotel, she was “the madam” there, some said. Others said she owns the damn joint. One way or another, she was not one known to be missing out on a chance to get a good time on, and since Count Lasco and his Entourage had been "making it Jamaica regularly of late," and the Jamaica Calling, their Jamaican aboard of choice. Sadie has got opportunities aplenty to do what Sadie does best: She danced.
Chapter five: Lasco rode into town
“Think you've got trouble? Wait till you've got trouble. You'll see.” It was an accident, everybody knew it, but… The kid was scared, behind all of the tuff guy facades, Sergeant Kennedy could see that he knew more than he was saying, he was fidgety and sweating rather profusely.
What was he afraid of, was it the pinch of dope over the legal limits which he had on him when they brought him in? Or was there more to it? Sergeant Kennedy gambled that there was more, and like always, this time too, he was right. Lasco was coming out of the washroom, the young man (as of yet unidentified,) was going in. If only he had knocked before entering like his mother had thought him to do, chances are, none of it would have happened.
Just as The Count was reaching out to take a hold of the washroom door handle in order to pull it open, the door was to have busted open fast, knocking him smack dab on the knuckle, and nearly broke the middle finger: you know, his favorite f-you finger, in a couple of minutes he would be perfectly fine, but for the time being, it hurts like hell. The young man solemnly apologizes, repeatedly bowing the knees before “the count,” and clasping his hands as if offering up a prayer.
"No problem man" and a gold teeth grin was all that he got back from the departing stranger, the man whom he thought was, just another of the many rich and famous house guests who in those times, delighted in staying at the Calling The young man then went on to do what he'd gone in there to do in the first place, while still sorry-moaning over what had just happened.
He did not pay much attention to the two people who walked into the washroom next, just others like himself who were there to do the same as he was there doing he thought, but then… Someone was to have grabbed him from behind. While the intruder was covering his mouth with one hand, the knife in the other, he (the intruder) reached down and then back up with the knife, slashing through the young man’s right hand which by then had shifted from the support role it was playing, to be attempting to protect the family Jewel.
The knife-wielding intruder took the jewelry, the chest, and all four fingers and part of the thumb of the right hand which was playing the guardsman roll, while in the self-same motion, slashing up and through the abdomen, leaving the intestines a-washed in blood, partially digested food and other bodily fluid on the washroom floor. There was blood everywhere. Meanwhile, the other young man: Robbie, just happened to see it all as it went down.
He was vending marijuana to help himself through college, in the age of the partially legalized status of the wisdom weed. Five ounces were what was allowed at any given time on an individual person, anything over that, and one would run the risk of jail time for possession and transportation among other possible charges. Robby always tries to make sure that he doesn't exceed the five-ounce limit. He would meticulously weigh and measure in order to ensure he stayed within the legal framework.
Though everyone knew he was vending, whenever he was confronted on this, he would always say it was for his personal use, and since he was by all other accounts and indications a decent, upstanding and progressive young man, no one bothered him over a bit of the common weed. He too would wind up dead in the strangest of manner just days after the departure of Lasco, after one of his now regular visits to Jamaica had ended. And he was, quite conveniently, off-the-Island at the time of those happenings.
The young man was found dead with his hands tied behind his back, both hands tucked into the pocket of what was (supposedly) his pants, before wrapping the legs of the pants around his waist and tying the legs in a knot. Some theorized that it's a message to say: "Take your hands out of my pocket." Commissioner Watkins didn't buy that, not one bit, he had quite another theory. But.