Home > Back Spin (Myron Bolitar #4)(12)

Back Spin (Myron Bolitar #4)(12)
Author: Harlan Coben

The porch was packed with members. Most were men—elderly and red-faced and well fed. They wore blue or green blazers with different crests on them. Their ties were loud and usually striped. Many had floppy white or yellow hats on their heads. Floppy hats. And Win had been worried about Myron’s “attire.”

Myron spotted Win at a corner table with six chairs. He sat alone. His expression was both glacial and serene, his body completely at ease. A mountain lion patiently waiting for prey. One would think that the blond hair and patrician good looks would be life assets for Win. In many ways, they were; in many more ways, they branded him. His entire appearance reeked of arrogance, old money, and elitism. Most people did not respond well to that. A specific, seething hostility frothed and boiled over when people looked at Win. To look at such a person was to hate him. Win was used to it. People who judged purely on looks did not concern him. People who judged purely on looks were oft surprised.

Myron greeted his old friend and sat down.

“Would you care for a drink?” Win said.


“If you ask for a Yoo-Hoo,” Win said, “I’ll shoot you in the right eye.”

“Right eye,” Myron repeated with a nod. “Very specific.”

A waiter who must have been a hundred years old materialized. He wore a green jacket and pants—green, Myron surmised, so that even the help would blend into the famed milieu. Didn’t work, though. The old waiter looked like the Riddler’s grandfather. “Henry,” Win said, “I’ll have an iced tea.”

Myron was tempted to ask for a “Colt 45, like Billy Dee,” but decided against it. “I’ll have the same.”

“Very good, Mr. Lockwood.” Henry left. Win looked over at Myron. “So tell me.”

“It’s a kidnapping,” Myron said.

Win arched an eyebrow.

“One of the players’ sons is missing. The parents have gotten two calls.” Myron quickly told him about them. Win listened in silence.

When Myron finished, Win said, “You left something out.”


“The name of the player.”

Myron kept his voice steady. “Jack Coldren.”

Win’s face betrayed nothing, but Myron still felt a cold gust blow across his heart.

Win said, “And you’ve met Linda.”


“And you know that she is related to me.”


“Then you must have realized that I will not help.”


Win sat back, steepled his fingers. “Then you realize it now.”

“A boy might be in real danger,” Myron said. “We have to help.”

“No,” Win said. “I do not.”

“You want me to drop it?”

“What you do is your affair,” Win said.

“Do you want me to drop it?” Myron repeated.

The iced teas came. Win took a gentle sip. He looked off and tapped his chin with his index finger. His signal to end the topic. Myron knew better than to push it.

“So who are the other seats for?” Myron asked.

“I am mining a major lead.”

“A new client?”

“For me, almost definitely. For you, a barely remote possibility.”


“Tad Crispin.”

Myron’s chin dropped. “We’re having dinner with Tad Crispin?”

“As well as our old friend Norman Zuckerman and his latest rather attractive ingenue.”

Norm Zuckerman was the owner of Zoom, one of the largest sneaker and sporting apparel companies in the country. He was also one of Myron’s favorite people. “How did you get to Crispin? I heard he was agenting himself.”

“He is,” Win said, “but he still wants a financial adviser.” Barely in his mid-thirties, Win was already something of a Wall Street legend. Reaching out to Win made sense. “Crispin is quite a shrewd young man, actually,” he went on. “Unfortunately, he believes that all agents are thieves. That they have the morals of a prostitute practicing politics.”

“He said that? A prostitute practicing politics?”

“No, I came up with that one myself.” Win smiled. “Pretty good, no?”

Myron nodded. “No.”

“Anyway, the Zoom folks here are tailing him like a lapdog. They’re introducing a whole new line of men’s clubs and clothing on the back of young Mr. Crispin.”

Tad Crispin was in second place, a goodly distance behind Jack Coldren. Myron wondered how happy Zoom was about Coldren possibly stealing their thunder. Not very, he supposed.

“So what do you make of Jack Coldren’s good showing?” Myron asked. “You surprised?”

Win shrugged. “Winning was always very important to Jack.”

“Have you known him long?”

Flat eyes. “Yes.”

“Did you know him when he lost here as a rookie?”


Myron calculated the years. Win would have been in elementary school. “Jack Coldren hinted that he thought someone tried to sabotage his chances back then.”

Win made a noise. “Guff,” he said.


“You don’t recall what happened?”


“Coldren claims his caddie gave him the wrong club on sixteen,” Win said. “He asked for a six iron and supposedly his caddie handed him an eight. His shot landed short. More specifically, in one of the rock quarry bunkers. He never recovered.”

“Did the caddie admit the error?”

“He never commented, as far as I know.”

“What did Jack do?”

“He fired him.”

Myron chewed on that tidbit. “Where is the caddie now?”

“I do not have the slightest idea,” Win said. “He wasn’t a young man at the time and this was more than twenty years ago.”

“Do you remember his name?”

“No. And this conversation is officially terminated.”

Before Myron could ask why, a pair of hands covered his eyes. “Guess who?” came a familiar sing-song. “I’ll give you a couple of hints: I’m smart, good-looking, and loaded with talent.”

“Gee,” Myron said, “before that hint, I would have thought you were Norm Zuckerman.”

“And with the hint?”

Myron shrugged. “If you add ‘adored by women of all ages,’ I’d think it was me.”

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