Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Mike Hanner: Private Eye VI

There may be more constructive ways to spend a Tuesday afternoon, but drinking cool ones at the Double L Lounge was working out pretty good so far. I’d been there for almost three hours, drinking the usual, and mixing in the occasional shots and shooters. Seeing as how I was pondering the Dale Jr/Victoria Lane case, I consider this billable hours.


I turned in my chair, “Wha…”

“Mike Hanner, what are you doing in here?”

My eyes were focusing now. “Traci? Traci, with an i?”

She laughed a little. “Traci with an i. You remembered.”

I told her, “Of course I remember. Who could forget?”

And that was no lie. Those Caribbean blue eyes were rather unforgettable. She was standing too close, wearing a bikini top and some kind of something wrapped around her hips. I wasn’t sure if it was the shots of Jose, but I was feeling uncomfortably warm all of the sudden.

I thought quickly and asked her, “You’re a NASCAR fan aren’t you?”

“Yes, I love it.”

I continued on, “How about Victoria Lane, what’s her story?”

She laughed, “Let’s just say that she gets around. Girl loves to party.”

“She’s not a one man kind of woman?”

More laughter, “Hell no. she likes ‘em all. Old ones, young ones, chunky ones. And that’s just in the last month or so.”

I arose from my chair and told her, “It was great seeing you again, but I have to run. Have to get back to my office before end of day.”

“Don’t tell me you’re afraid of little ol’ me, Mike.”

“No,” I stammered. “Well, maybe.”

“Why didn’t we ever hook up, Mike?”

“Probably because we both had someone waiting at home?”

She pressed closer, “You have a girlfriend now?”

“Not really. But, there is someone who would be mad if she heard me say that.”

I walked quickly out of the conditioned air of the bar into the blasting heat of Carolina in mid-July. Between the heat from the girl and the 100 plus degrees simmering on the asphalt parking lot, I was sober by the time I climbed into the old Chevy.


I got back to my office and turned the thermostat down to sixty. Even with the A/C on full blast in the El Camino, I could feel my shirt clamming to my back.

I needed to make some phone calls, and try to glean some more information about Miss Lane. Something just wasn’t right with her damsel in distress act. I know that the only time women act helpless is when they need a patsy. I know that, yet I keep falling for it time after time.

I looked up Frothy’s phone number, and called up there hoping to talk with that barkeeper, CK. He seemed to know a lot about the inner workings at the race track. He wasn’t there so I left my number and a message for him to call me.

Shaft called back first. He seemed excited, and Shaft never gets excited.

“Yo, Hanner.”

“Yeah, what you got for me, Shaft?”

“Man, my baby girl has hacked all up in NASCAR’s computer system. And, whew, do those cats have some dirty deals being done round there.”

“So where does Victoria Lane get involved in it?”

“Bruh, she’s in it. NASCAR’s in it, they kingpinnin’ it. The TV networks are in it. It’s big, dude.”

I hoped that Shaft wasn’t exaggerating, “Cam, Is this legit?”

“You know I ain’t never lied to you. This is the real deal, straight up as six o’clock.”

“Alright Shaft, I need to see this stuff for myself. You have anything on paper?”

“Paper! Damn, son, my girl’s got it on disc. How you live like that?”

“Sorry. I need that disc, bro.”

“Well, you know I like doing business with you Mike, but that disc is worth a lot of money to the right people. How high can you stack the cheddar?”

“Damn, Shaft! How come you want to do your boy like that.”

“It’s just business, Mike. I got to make a couple more calls, then I’ll call you back at seven o’clock.”

Son of a bitch! I couldn’t believe that Shaft was getting so greedy, over something that I turned him on to. Damn!


My cell phone rang at eight, it still wasn’t Shaft. The caller ID lit up, Frothy’s Bar, Brooklyn, Michigan. The bartender was calling me back.

I hit the send key, “Hello.”

“Is this Hanner?”

“Yeah, how’s it going CK?”

“This isn’t CK. He can’t make it to the phone. Ever.”

I felt the adrenaline, “Who is this!”

“There you go asking questions again, Hanner. That’s a real bad habit you got there, that and sticking your big nose in other people’s business. You know that bad habits kill people, don’t you?”

“Who in the hell is this?”

“This is someone with some advice that may keep you alive, Hanner. Everything was fine until Victoria wanted to see Jr. We sent her to you because, well lets face it, even Ace Ventura has solved more cases than you. You need to go back to what you do best, drinking. Keep filing those BS reports with Vickie, and this will all blow over. Capiche?”

“Now hold on a goddamn minute…”

“Hanner, you do want Shaft and his daughter to stay alive don’t you? If you do, stick to what you do best, alky.”



  1. Remember Mannix and McCloud and Columbo? That's what this reminds me of, not anything today! It could be a made-for-TV series. LOL

  2. That's hardcore, bro.

    WTH happened to my boy CK?? AAHHH...

  3. Jokerswild says

    Oh Oh sounds like Hanner is getting in deep -Better be carefull don't want him swimmin with the fishs-

    Great story Hanman always a fun read

  4. Belle...I do remember McCloud. He was great, riding a horse thru the city!

    Hanner is a throwback to the old pulp fiction detectives, in today's world.

  5. I agree with belleofsavannah, this could be a made for tv series. Each time, I read one, it leaves me wanting the next installment.

    It is a whodunit NASCAR style two of my favorite things all wrapped up in to one.

    Great job Hanahan. Can't wait to see what Hanner does next.

  6. Lori....We'll have to see how CK turns out in the future. Doesn't look good right now, though.

  7. J Dub....thanks for dropping in. We'll leave the light on for you...lol

  8. Not to worry, I think I saw CK running down pit road yelling "Dario Dario!! get your hands off her..."

    I am more worried about Hanner -- I hope he isn't kissing the fishes like they were doing at Victory Junction camp today.

  9. Tsfan....Thanks. I tried to wait on Jr to give the story a happy ending. Finally had to go in another direction.

  10. Kristen....I sure hope that CK got away....wouldn't count on it yet though.

    As for Hanner, the hero always makes it to the end of the story. Doesn't he?

  11. Great job Gene, I have been jonesing for a Hanner installment. I think you need to do a whole book. There is a woman that does great with Nascar themed romance novels. A Nascar themed Detective story would be great. Kinda like the Alex Delaware books by Jonathan Kellerman. I have been reading them, and I love them.
    Thats just an idea for you. If you don't write them maybe i will. I always wanted to write a book, but never had any good ideas.
    Anyway great job, look forward to reading the rest.

  12. Stork....Thanks, bro. I think real names would have to be used to make a NASCAR themed book interesting. And I would probably get sued for libel...lol

  13. Another great installment as always.

    Is Traci you're new damn of the day picture??? I bet the reason Hanner blew her off was because he decided to think with the right head... lol.

    Now this is turning into a murder case...

  14. Gonger....Thanks.

    It was very un-Hanner like for him to blow her off. Not like him to choose work over women..LOL

  15. This is starting to get ominous. Moving to the dark side. Do I want to know all the shady dealings of the NASCAR underworld? Jeremy Mayfield's Meth Lab.., Is it real, or just an elaborate set up by Mike Helton? Teresa's secret agenda, Michael Waltrip's dealings with the Tokyo mob, Brian France's connections to Obama... Please, no more! Well, maybe another chapter. Yes, one more turn of the page, and I'll put the book down.

    LOL... great read as usual, and even better on this high faluting blogspot.com site!

  16. CR....Dang. Great plot ideas. Maybe I can stretch this out for awhile.

    What are Brian's connections to Barry O?

  17. This is gettin' GOOD. And ominous. You have a hit series right there! But you CANNOT have Brad "Pretty Boy" Pitt play Mike Hanner, under ANY circumstances! You need a grizzled, gruff, character actor playing Hanner.

  18. LOL @ Gene. Well, I'll give you a clue on the France, Obama connection... It envolves Timothy Geithner, and Government Motors... I'll get more info for you, but my source, we'll just call him Deep Throat, wants to keep this on the hush hush. He's a Senator. Did I say that out loud?

  19. Jon...Thanks.

    I just hope that it's an actor young enough to get the girl....lol

  20. CR....You may have said too much already. Don't want NASCAR's goons to come after you. Like they did with CK and Shaft...lol

  21. Looks like those bad habits finally caught up with CK....damn, kind liked him. Reminded me of somebody I know.

    I starting to think Danica Patrick is behind all of this. She's got photo's of France and Helton doing something they shouldn't have.


    Great stuff man, great stuff

  22. Moseby....Due to popular demand, CK may end up being the hero.

    Danica getting a guided tour (by Newman) of SHR shops!!!??? WTF?!?!

  23. Oh now CK is in danger -- Hanner may be in over his head-- ominous characters answering the phone at Frothy's-- Shaft and babygirl are possible targets---
    Fickle Vickie better be paying her bills before Hanner is unable to spend the dough.

    Keep 'em coming

  24. Yee...yes, business is picking up for Hanner. Does he take the goon's advice and keep drinking, or does he crack the case and save his friends?

    I'm glad I don't have to make that choice. Oh, I do.

  25. I think Victoria Lane has it in with Mark Martin now. Seems like an easier catch.

  26. Photogr....He sure seems to be seeing a lot of her...lol