It struck Kevin as a strange conversation to have, with anyone, but especially with detective Quinn.
It wasn’t that detective Quinn was an unpleasant fellow, just a bit rough around the edges. Nothing Kevin hadn’t seen before in the Great War; men of violence whose situation slowly eroded their civility. Perhaps it wasn’t so much an erosion of civility as a sharpening of their violent nature until they became the perfect soldier, devoid of the unnecessary trappings of civilised society. In detective Quinn’s case, he had probably galvanised into the perfect bloodhound, giving up superfluous things, like bathing and shaving, in order to gain focus and clarity.
“In all honesty, detective, I had forgotten all about the safety deposit box,” Kevin said, slightly bemused.
The detective scratched his head as he studied his notepad. “Now that I’ve reminded you about it, any chance you’ll clue me in on the contents of the box, Mr. O’Reilly?”
“Sir,” Kevin said. Quietly. Like he couldn’t help himself.
“What?” the detective said, crudely.
“Sir Kevin O’Reilly,” Kevin said, with slight hesitation.
“We haven’t recognised the monarchy since that little tea party we had in the Boston harbor, pall.”
“Yes, of course. I apologise, detective.” Kevin felt he was getting on the detective’s bad side and he might need the good detective to find his possessions. It might have skipped his mind that he had a deposit box at the local office of First National, but that didn’t mean the contents weren’t very dear to him.
It didn’t surprise Kevin at all that he had forgotten all about the deposit he made since all of the details surrounding that time in his life were a little distorted. He reckoned it was hard enough for the human mind to remember many of life’s details without the circumstances around those details being more than most minds could bear. In all honesty, even if Kevin could remember an accurate description of the items in the deposit, which he had a hard time recalling, he wouldn’t have given them to the detective anyway. Better not, lest the detective start asking questions about the origins of the ill-gotten items.
“Okay, your highness,” the detective said with an elaborate sweep of his arm, “should you be able to give me a few more details beyond ‘some papers and antiques’, let me know, if you please?” The detective ripped the page of notes he took of his interview with Kevin off the pad and paperclipped it onto the rest of the file of the bank robbery and placed the file on a stack of other files on his coffee stained desk. “Thank you for coming into the station. You’ve got my card, so ring me on the telephone or come by any time.” Both men stood up and shook hands. They walked across the large expanse of the office, past other detectives sitting at desks filled with papers and boxes of evidence, into the public area of the police station. “Have a nice day, O’Reilly,” the detective said and immediately turned to the next person waiting to be interviewed about what the robbers might have taken during the heist.
Kevin walked past the many waiting people and stepped outside. Slowly some of the details of the house at 25 French Hill Street and the church on Brown Street started to come back to him. They were details he had put to rest in the hope of never having to review them again. He had been forced to when the detective confronted him with the news of the bank heist, presumably performed by Bosso Morgan and his crew, and he felt a knot form in the pit of his stomach.