Easy Money

pohtiongho By pohtiongho, 4th May 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/32lk7ecl/
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Short Stories

Have you ever wondered why it was so easy for the three thugs to cheat another person? These cheats are around us.

Easy Money

Low Ah Chong left school at the age of 18 after completing his Chinese Senior 3. He picked up odd jobs here and there but was never able to stay long on any of them. He was not able to secure powerful and influential contacts to bolster his social standing and make his boss think twice about offending him. He was aware of those methods like aggressive one-upmanship, backstabbing, and palm greasing to oust rivals. Ah Chong always believed he was a disgruntled worker and that his contributions were never appreciated. That was why ethical, religious or moral issues were never on his list. To him, people are living in a ruthless, tyrannical, dog-eat-dog world. It was only recently that the police smashed up one of those syndicates in the country. The fear of the death sentence was the tipping point when he thought of joining the heroin and methamphetamine trade. It was obvious there were people who got rich importing and trafficking heroin and ice.
At last the get rich quick idea flashed in his mind. He recruited two of his good friends, each possessed chivalrous manners, with good physique and personal charms. They appeared to be very honest too. By all means three of them put up with enough money to buy a block of gold worth S$80000.00.
The three of them spent their first day at the Carlton Hotel eating and drinking in the bar most of the time. After comprehensive survey they found an old man who was able to purchase the gold bars with cash.
Ah Chong introduced himself as an East Malaysia timber tycoon who was in the process of buying a piece of land at Kota Kinabalu worth S$1.8 millions, and that his father was in Montreal negotiating the opening of a five star hotel and therefore the bank in Kota Kinabalu was unwilling to release the money for the land transaction.
"It’s a pity the land owner could not wait until two days later. By then I’ll not have to part with the gold bars, "Ah Chong convinced the old man.
Puffing away the smoke, Ah Chong put the cigarette into the astray and pulled out a piece of gold bar from the trousers pocket, telling the old man it was worth S$70000.00, and that was the present for him from his father for Ah Chong’s last birthday. He claimed he had another 25 lengths in the hotel, each exactly the same as the other. As agreed, the bar was to be kept by the old man overnight. The old man stood up, made an excuse and went away telling Ah Chong he needed some time to make the decision. Fakery was very common in this part of the world. He went directly to a gold smith who confirmed that piece was genuine and was worth S$80000.00. He rushed back to the hotel to confirm the purchase of all the 26 pieces. It was agreed that the cash would be handed over the next afternoon.
Money was drawn from the local banks. Bundles and bundles of the 1000-dollar notes were nicely packed in a traveling bag. Before he fell asleep the old man wondered why Ah Chong wanted to part with the gold at a loss.
The following day afternoon, Ah Chong suggested that before they go to collect the other 25 pieces, they should celebrate the occasion with a feast. Since the old man did not object they again found themselves drinking and puffing at the Carlton. The old man got slightly dizzy. Ah Chong suggested that the money should be handed over at an isolated place so as not to attract unwanted attention because it was illegal to trade gold in the black market. The hotel was not a safe place either because of the video cameras installed everywhere.
"If we’re caught, no one can help us," Ah Chong was doing his best to intimidate and obfuscate this old man. Don’t you agree people can use fear to control others?
Ah Tee volunteered to collect the gold bars from the room upstairs and they took their rented car to the area behind the National Library. Alexandra stayed back giving the excuse he wanted to spend more time with his newly found Singapore girl. Before they reached the parking lot behind the Library, Ah Chong advised the old man to produce the gold bar he received yesterday so as to compare with the other 25 authenticated pieces.
"You never know, Ah Tee might be up to something," Ah Chong laughed heartily, chuckling and chortling.
While the transaction was in progress, a man with a gun in his right-hand, suddenly pounced from behind the bush shouting: Police! Police! Police! Ah Chong grabbed the genuine bar and dashed toward the bush. His member was waiting at the other side with a motorbike. Ah Chong jumped on the backseat and they sped of without looking back. Ah Tee who was holding the bag of money jumped on another motorbike few feet away. They headed towards the north, obviously on the way to Malaysia. The shocked old man ran inside the library and hid in the level one male toilet. When the victim came to his senses hours later, he came home to inform his wife who suggested that it must be reported to the police because there was a slim chance that he money could be found at the cause-way or the airport.
At the Changi Airport, Ah Chong was still panting and shivering. He checked in and went to hide in the toilet until the last announcement was made calling passengers to board the plane leaving for Shanghai. The five hours trip was still very painful because he was still thinking that the Shanghai police might be waiting for him at the airport.
It was a great relief that he checked out smoothly. The taxi brought him to The St. Regis where his room was already booked. Ah Chong was expecting his share of the money within the next 48 hours. What he did not expect was that he had a guest waiting for him in his room. He was Alexandra’s son, Johnny. Ah Chong was putting his briefcase in the cabinet when Johnny pointed a pistol at him.
"What’re you trying to do?" the shocked robber asked.
"If I don’t kill you today, by tomorrow the other members will kill me. If they fail to find me they will kill my parents. What are you compared to my parents? Whatever we’re told to carry out, we cannot fail. It will be most painful to fail."
"Please, Johnny, put away the gun. Let me tell you a good story."
Johnny was amused that a dying man still wanted to tell a story.
"OK. I’ll give you ten minutes," Johnny still pointed the gun at Ah Chong.
"You’re my son. I’m your biological father!"
"What? You take me to be a 3-year-old kid? That you cooked up a story like this that I can let you off and instead get myself killed?"
"No, I’m telling the truth. Let’s go for DNA test now."
"No way, if you walk out of this hotel alive I’ll be the one to die."
Johnny thought there was no harm in giving this poor and greedy bastard another ten or twenty minutes. So he agreed to the idea.
"In 1967, when I completed High School in Labuan, I came to Singapore for a job interview. I was given a first class ticket on board the ship Kemanis. The ship left Labuan one night at 2400 Hr. I boarded the ship at ten p.m. I went round to talk to whoever was willing to talk to me. I found your mother, sleeping on the canvas bed on the deck. She was friendly. I invited her to sleep in my room, which was air-conditioned. She came into the room to talk to me. Your mum didn’t want to have sex with me. She was very firm. But she could not set free because I overpowered her. She was really frighten and was shivering. I believe she was also feeling sorry for her husband because she unknowingly created such situation. I forced her on the bed, and told her it would be over in ten minutes. If she refused, I could still rape her and then kill her and throw in body into the sea, and nobody would ever find out. She knew what I was talking because the door to my cabin was immediately by the side of the corridor, and the sea was only about three feet away! She was still very dry showing obviously she did not wish to have sex. I had to use my saliva to lubricate it, forcing myself into her. But I was lucky she did not shout for help. I would have been put in prison for that. After the first intercourse, we went to sleep. I woke up at 3 a.m. and against we had sex. I was sexually experienced and knew how to make her orgasm to satisfy her sexual urges. She told me I was the only guy she entertained apart from her husband. The reason was that all those men she had around her were living in Singapore and she did not want to fall under their control. It is impossible to get away from those men once a woman had committed with them. These men would tell the husband about the sexual encounter unless she continued to entertain them. The only way to get out was to employ a gangster to kill those men. Immediately after the breakfast at 8 a.m., again we had sex. The ship took three days to reach Singapore. We had sex more than 12 times. Strong sexual urge hit her. She did not want to betray her husband. She couldn’t live without it either. We need food merely to sustain the body but we also need sex to live a balance life. Her emotion was running high, grief, anguish, anger, and fear, cannot be assuaged easily. We were very much in love. But she told me she was married and that the husband was working in a timber camp, coming home to Singapore for rest only one month for every 12 months contract he had completed. She begged me not to visit her in Singapore because she did not want the affairs to leak out. I promised her and we didn’t contact each other for a long time until two years later when she phoned me up to say the boy she gave birth to was my son according the DNA carried out in Singapore. Please call your mum in Singapore now and let her confirm it. Have you ever wondered why you have no brother or sister?"
"You bastard want to say my father was impotent? You silly bastard. I don’t buy this sort of cheap story," Johnny pulled the trigger three times. The casualty had three bullets in his chest and he died on the spot.
Johnny left the gun on the bed after washing it with water and went out, leaving not a trace whatsoever that the police can use to prove it was him who killed Ah Chong. Can you trust your gang members?
On the Singapore side, the police went to check the hotel. There were over 100 Malaysians checking out on that day. None of them had the name Low Ah Chong, Lau Ah Tee and Alexandra Lim. For Helen, even the surname was not known. Another two ladies who were in the photos from the security camera were from Johor Baru (JB). The police cannot nail somebody unless there is hard evidence. There were hundreds of Malaysian girls crossing the causeway to spend the nights with the rich Singaporeans every day. They would leave early in the morning at six o’clock to JB and continue their office work as usual. No wonder the JB gentlemen said the JB girls and fish were more and more expensive because of the influx of Singaporeans.
After two days of manhunt, Helen was identified. However the police could not go far because even Helen did not know much about the three gentlemen. Helen who had only recently suffered the complicated love life, was in despondent, and was leading alcohol-fuelled daily existence. She had to survive and thrive in a tough economy, and was relieved thinking that Alexandra was a God-sent boyfriend, for her to end a boring and dreary life.

She was more a one-night stand than a collaborator. And she confessed she thought Alexandra was her big catch because of the expensive car he was driving, the suits and the watch he was wearing.
Copyright © 2005 Poh Tiong Ho

JB stands for Johor Baru in Malaysia


Dna, Kemanis, Montreal, National Library, Timber Camp

Meet the author

author avatar pohtiongho
I have been writing short stories, poems and articles during the past 20 years.
My other talents:
Pipeline fabrications and training of 6 G welders
Oil and gas, Maintenance Services

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