When the traffic began to clear up, he thought of several things. It seemed to him a mental cruelty, the threat note he had found in his Jeep's windshield. He was confused - 'how had the note got on his windshield?'

Somebody must have followed him and Toby to the hospital; it was pure luck Toby took a cab to his house, and didn't see the note.

He had always been considered a calm person, difficult to alter. That was his better quality,
otherwise he would not be able to work with Toby.

Although it was spring and not cold outside, Sam fought with the heating in his Jeep while he drove towards his house. He was not able to take the control lever to heat. As a result of his effort, the Jeep left the rail, in the face of the fright of others drivers that reacted blasting their horns. Sam pulled the control lever with his hand and the plastic arm came off and fell down to the floor.


Sam noticed that his temples pulsated furiously, his hands were humid with perspiration. He breathed deeply. Tranquilizing himself, he began to analyze the situation. A question hammered in his brain. What for? The confusion began to metamorphose into analytic thought; Sam began to gain control. A quantity of inexplicable episodes that took place over these last days had gone by, but something began to take definite form his mind. Now he was surer that he had gotten into something important and strange with the ROGELIA case.

He was out but at the same time stimulated that somebody thought he was sufficiently dangerous as to is threatened. That could mean that he was on the correct path; maybe already he had too many answers that he arrived to understand. Perhaps he had the information, but he should solve the puzzle first.

' Toby had his reasons...between so much manure there should be a pony... '

It was after twelve o'clock when Sam arrived to his apartment. When entering the lobby, he saw his neighbor Gerald Bozovich taking a raincoat and a hat that reached his ears. Gerald was a doctor, and a little bit of a clown. Sam greeted him and he tipped the wing of his hat slowly. He had red eyes and a pale face.

-Hello Gerald newly arrives from your hospital, you lost your opportunity to retaliate of the last
poker game that I won, and they gave me the antitetanic.

-Maybe you were a bad boy, and got an injection for that reason?

- Very funny. I asked for you, but they told me that you're out sick. What made me happy was the fact that I remember the last time that you assisted me, I felt like one of your urine samples.

-You continue enjoying, I have caught a cold. - Gerald took a tissue and loudly blew his nose.

-What're you trying to do? It looks as if you had swallowed a cotton ball, - Sam said, smiling

-Many thanks, - he said puffing, - this it is not laughing matter.

Sam remembered the last time that had seen Gerald sick: he was panicky that his patients would find outs, what one called "the patient's impression." Once and for all Sam remembered accompanying him to visit another doctor colleague at midnight, hiding from all, as if they were thieves.

- It doesn't seem that you're as bad as the previous time, Gerald.

-JA! Can you believe? Listen, - he blew his nose again, with a long and strenuous sound, resembling the dying scream of a hippopotamus.

- How long have you had it? We don't see each other a lot.

- Two days, two wretched days. My patients are beginning to notice it. Also, it surprises me that we don't see each other a lot, in fact there are not many tenants in this building - you, me, Rupert who left on vacation, and Mrs. Allison who's so deaf she can't hear the screeches of her damn cat while it's pregnant, and who never hears when I greet her.

-I listen to the cat, it won't let me fall asleep during an entire night.

-Mallory, enjoy it!

- Mallory? that cat is called Mallory! - Sam raised his brows in astonishment.

-Yep! Hey Sam we should hang out, go for a beer, have dinner...we are few neighbors who never see each other; we could drift together with Rupert when he returns from his vacation and look for a cure for that cat.

The idea of eating with Gerald made Sam shudder. Other times when they dinner, it was something terrible, Gerald spent all the time sweating, staring at food. It is as if he imagined the plate full with colonies of germs everywhere. With each bite, he pictured swallowing a staphylococcus colony, streptococcus, and bacillus. Thanks to him Sam would not eat more than a hot dog or a hamburger in the morning after listening to the quantity of germs pathogens that they contain; according to Gerald, an innocent hot dog had enough quantity of germs pathogens to infect an army entirely.

-Ok - Sam said, depressed, not wanting to reject his friend's invitation, -you call me, you know where I live.

- When we have time, and I cure my cold, I promise it.

- What're you taking for that?

-Hot -coffee is the best thing for the virus. But the world is against me, Sam. Today in the one acme of my cold, they have given me an invitation.

- An invitation?

-Yes for the careers of sailing ships. One also arrived for you; I left it under your door.

Sam laughs, they said goodbye, and he wished him a calm watch and went to the door of his apartment. The encounter with his neighboring friend loosened him a little.

When he turned the key in his door he felt ready to be thrown in the bed and go to sleep. He wanted read the letter again, sheltering the hope it would not seem as horrifying as before. But he didn't have the willpower to discover it. He went to his bedroom to undress and take a shower, but he could not keep his eyes open. He rubbed his bottom, still hurting for injection. He threw out of plumb in the bed thinking that, if he could rest some minutes, he would be well.

Thirty seconds later and completely dressed, he slept deeply.

One hour passed by when Sam tired of not listening to the telephone, as it interfered with his calm dream. To the seventh ring he surrendered and looked above his head for the instrument that screamed at him from the bookshelf.

-S - Sam Seaborn, - he said half-sleeping while he yawned.

-There was no answer. He heard breathing, heavy and nasal.

-Hello! - Sam screamed. There was no answer, and he hung up. He allowed the headphone to fall into the pillow, next to his head. He knew that he should worry about that call, but he was so tired that didn't leave space for any other emotional thought. He was not able to remember why he should pay attention to that call. As he chose not thinking much of it, he decided that it didn't matter.

-Maybe it was a wrong number.

With certain annoyance, he sat down. He was exhausted, destroyed. He passed the hands over his face, unshaved, and over his hair, tempted to lie down and sleep again; he realized that he was even dressed. He stood without knowing why he made that effort.

Those minutes of dreaming attached to his general exhaustion made him to feel sick he had to put a hand on a night table for not losing the balance.

He took a whole minute in being guided before being able to cross the room to stumble. He directed to his stereo, chose Vangelis CD "Friends of Mr. Cairo" and went to the bathroom.

He stooped, listen the music and he thought, maybe that choice wasn't the better.

In that moment there was a blackout. All the lights of the house went out and then he remembered why he should have cared about that call. The letter.




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