The dame gives me the low-down on Paulson. "He's been a high-stakes gambler for years," she says between sips of wine. "Poor idiot doesn't know when to stop, though. So he pulls schemes like this to make it up."
"Like what?" I ask. Going in, all I knew was he scammed like the best of them. No one mentioned this dame as his partner, either.
"His latest one was trying to sell air. As in, the air we're breathing right now. Not one of his better schemes, but would you believe some people were falling for it?"
I'm a little shocked as she pulls a bottle of wine from her purse. Granted, she's been putting them back, but I'd have figured her as a flask kinda girl.
"He's near the tracks," she says, nodding toward the railway by the river. "When you find him, offer a glass of this. He won't be able to resist."
"'Tears of the panther,'" I translate with my flawless Italian.
"It's his favorite, but this bottle has something ... special in it," she says.
Getting directions, I head out, looking like the classiest wino in town with the bottle at my side. Near the tracks, this shady character is looking around.
I offer him a glass of wine from the start, figuring it will relax him. Paulson doesn't even blink; he says yes as I realize I've forgotten both a cork screw and a glass. I shove the cork into the bottle and hand him the whole thing, and he pulls a crystal goblet from his jacket pocket. What kind of guy is this? I wonder.
He sips, casually talking about the fool he just sold some air to. It doesn't take the dame's trick long; he begins to slur after a few minutes, and as the train comes rushing by, I cuff him.
"You won't get away with this, Noir!" Paulson shouts as the cops lead him away.
But I already have, and I'm satisfied at another job well done. Now I'll be the one selling air to the foolish.