I've always wanted to go on a Treasure Hunt - Part 20

Here’s the thing...

Every time I close my eyes, I see something different.

I’d like to think the cinema of my dreams is playing a double feature but it’s a bit like a comedy cartoon night on Fox.

But these dreams are nothing to laugh about.

Once again there's a new instalment of an old feature, and we’re back on the treasure hunt.

As we all stood either on or off the boat, two things were clear to me.  The first, Rico’s genuine surprise at finding the body on his boat, and the second, how quickly the authorities had circled in for the kill.
I know calling 911 was supposed to get a rapid response to dire situations, but to get from the police station to the pier would take at least five minutes longer than it had, and that was breaking all the speed limits.
I might be jumping to conclusions, but someone wanted Rico to be found with an unexplainable body.  His recently departed friend’s maybe?
Johnson waited until the officer off the boat had finished his call, and asked, “What are we doing here?”
It was now obvious the men on the boat was either state police, the coast guard, or some Federal branch-like FBI or, if Rico was suspected of dealing or trafficking drugs, the DEA.
“Take him into custody.  Some of our people will be along to sit in on the questioning.  This is an FBI crime scene and we’ll take it from here.”
“These two?”  Johnson nodded in our direction.
“They’ve just found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Cut them loose, they have nothing to do with this, other than to contaminate our crime scene.”
And that was it, more men, this time in white overalls, came up from below the deck of the newly arrived boat and came over.  Crime scene investigators.
Johnson grabbed both of us by the scruff of the neck and shoved us in the direction of the shore.  “Get out of here before I find something to charge you with.”
Neither of us waited to be told a second time.  We were lucky, very lucky.
And Johnson was not happy his investigation had been pulled from under him.  He needed a case like this to enhance his prospects for the upcoming election for the new Sherriff.
On dry land again I stopped and turned to look back at the boat, and Rico, now handcuffed and guarded.
In the background something else caught my attention, slowly cruising past the unfolding scene aboard Rico’s boat.  A large ocean-going yacht, one that was owned by the Benderby’s.  With Alex standing at the back of the bridge looking at Rico’s boat, and two others at the stern, dressed in what looked like diving suits, putting equipment away.
Even from this far away I could see the smug expression on his face.
No prizes then, for guessing how the police got an early warning.
Equally so for guessing who it was most likely to dump a body on a boat and have someone else take the rap for it.  I had no doubt that a quantity of drugs would be found in some hidey-hole on Rico’s boat where he usually stashed the drugs he picked up from out in the sea lanes.  A win-win, for law enforcement on many levels, and Benderby.
The question then I needed an answer to was, who was the dead man, and what was his relationship with the Benderby’s.  I think I was now certain Rico had no idea who the man was, or why he was found on his boat, dead.

© Charles Heath 2019


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