Trafika Europe 2 - Polish Nocturne
The phone was Nokia’s granny model. It wouldn’t have brought more than twenty euros on the street and the screen was cracked. I brushed the scroll key and a photo appeared. The gravestone was dark gray with an image of a swan flying away and a simple bit of text: Paula Johanna Salo, 1985–2012. “What business does Santa Claus have with my phone?”
The man’s voice had a stronger ring now.
“How else can Santa figure out who’s been naughty and nice? May I see your ID?”
“You don’t have any right, you’re not the police—”
“I can get the cops here in a flash if you want them. I’m guessing you’re an old buddy of theirs.”
The man wiped the sweat from his brow and claimed that he’d left his wallet and papers at home. I asked him if he wanted me to pat him down right there in front of everyone or in the back room. He tried to whine something about me not having the authority, but I grabbed hold of his broken- off finger with a grip that a bit tighter would have dislocated the remaining stump. The junkie was right: I did
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