The Spy in the Ointment (1966) – Random House

New feds assigned to me had a habit of treating me like I was James Cagney, and these two were no exception. They came in, snicked the door shut, and one of them said severely, “You are J. Eugene Raxford?”

“J. Eugene Raxford,” I said. “Right. Just a minute.”

I started away to get the coffee, but the other one stepped quickly in front of me, saying, “Where do you think you’re going?”

(FBI men never tell you their names, so I’ll have to identify these two simply as A and B. A had asked my name, and B was now standing in front of me, blocking my path.)

To B, I said, “”I’m going to the kitchen, get the coffee.”

“What coffee?”

“The coffee I put on for you people.”

B looked at A and made a head motion. A promptly left the room, apparently to search the kitchen, and B turned his attention back to me, giving me the gimlet eye. “How’d you know we were coming?”

“You always do,” I said.

He said, “Who called you?”

I looked at him, astonished. Didn’t he know my phone was tapped? I said, “What? Called me? Nobody called me.”

A came back from the kitchen and shook his head. B grimaced and said to me, “Don’t give me that. You couldn’t have known unless somebody tipped you.”

“Then,” I said, “why don’t you pick up the phone and ask your man in the basement to play you the tape of the call? Maybe you’ll recognize the voice.”

A and B looked at one another. B said, “There’s something wrong with the security here.”

“No, there isn’t,” I said. “You people have me under constant surveillance. Frankly, I think you’re doing a first-rate job.”




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