Page 32 of Happy Ending (Fisher Brothers 4)

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“Until now,” I said with a huff.

“Until now.” Grant nodded. “But this is the first time anyone’s come looking, as far as I know. I didn’t believe Sam when he told me, so I didn’t ask a lot of questions.”

“Do you know where it’s hidden?” Frank’s suspicious expression was gone. I knew he now believed everything Grant was telling us.

Grant’s smile grew even wider, if that was possible. “I do.”

“The hell, old man? Get up and show us.” I glared at him, giving him a moment to move his ass before I hopped over the bar and moved it for him. Our livelihood was on the line, and I was tired of playing games.

“Do you have a safe in the office?” Grant asked, as if he didn’t know the answer.

A full-sized safe was in the back office when we bought the bar. It was way too big and we didn’t need it, but it weighed a million pounds, so we figured it was easier to keep it than to try to get rid of it or move it. Plus, it was cool as fuck to look at, and we liked it.

We filed into the office and stared at the safe like it was a brand-new addition instead of something that had been sitting here since the bar originally opened.

“Well, don’t just stand there,” Grant barked.”One of you dummies open it.”

Frank shot him an annoyed look and then spun the combination lock. He pushed the large lever down, and with a loud click that echoed in the small room, the safe door swung open. “Now what?”

We stared into the darkness, the three of us all too familiar with what lay inside. It was mostly empty at the moment, just a few important papers, some extra cash, and small boxes. We locked up the cash from the till, the credit card machine, and our business laptops inside the safe after closing each night, but that was about it.

“Sam said there was a false back.” Grant pointed toward the rear of the safe, where you couldn’t really see anything in the darkness.

“A false back?” Nick asked. “Like a fake panel that can be moved?”

I glanced around the office, convinced we were being punked. There was no way in hell this craziness was real. But then I thought about all the things we’d been through as a family, and realized that this was no more farfetched than the rest of our lives had been so far.

“Get in there, Nick, and check,” I demanded, and he narrowed his eyes at me.

“Why do I have to go in? You go in,” he shot back.

Frank and I both yelled at him in unison, “Get in.”

Nick groaned but did as we asked. As he crouched into the safe between the shelving, I shined the flashlight from my cell phone into the darkness. He inspected the back wall, feeling along its edges.

“Shit,” he said, and we all craned our necks to see what he was looking at. “This moves, I think.”

With a click and a small crash, Nick turned around to face us, a black steel panel in his hands. I shined my light around his shoulders and noticed a hole chiseled in the brick wall behind the safe. It looked like something out of a prison movie, where they started to try to dig their way out.

“Holy shit,” I whispered as Nick put the panel on the floor and snatched my phone from my hand so he could see in the hole.

“That old son of a gun,” Grant said, grinning. “He wasn’t lying.”

“Is there anything in there?” Frank asked.

“Yeah,” Nick said. “There is.”

He shined the light into the makeshift hole as he reached into it

, his arm almost all the way in to his shoulder. When he pulled it back out, he held three dust-covered cloth bags.

“Hold on, there’s something else back there.” He handed us the bags and shoved his arm back in the hole again.

Frank and I dropped the old bags on top of the desk and focused our attention back on Nick. His entire arm was inside that hole as he struggled to reach whatever it was that only he could see, his body wiggling and stretching. When he pulled back out, he had a faded piece of paper in his grasp.

We huddled close, struggling to all read it at the same time.

“It’s a deed,” Nick said, his brow furrowed as Frank asked to see it.


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