Wednesday Words

He pointed to the middle container and said, “that one, D359R723.”

The dockmaster pulled a tool from his back pocket and started removing the locking bolts. Five minutes later, he pulled open the heavy door and stepped aside. “Did you bring a flashlight?”

”We did not,” Leonardo said, his tone conveying impatience and irritation.

The dockmaster pulled open the other door and shrugged. “Next time bring a flashlight. Probably should’ve brought a crowbar, too. I’ll be back to lock this up when you’re done.”

 Jack glared at the man as Leonardo looked inside the open shipping container. It was stacked from floor to ceiling with wooden crates. The two men wrestled one of the crates out and nearly dropped it, both surprised by how heavy it was.

“Jesus Christ,” Jack exclaimed. “How many did they put in here?”

Leonardo smirked. He trusted Jack with his life, and the two men shared an easy rapport when they were alone. “I take it you didn’t think about bringing a crowbar either?”

“Sorry boss, I expected the dockmaster to be a bit more helpful.

“When he’s on our payroll, he will be. I plan to  purchase this area within the next month or so.”

“Boss said you might need help,” a black man said, startling them both. He wore overalls and a dirty T-shirt. A crowbar was slung over his left shoulder.

Jack pointed at the crate. “Would you open this please? We wanna inspect what’s inside.”

“Sure thing, boss.” The man approached and set about opening the wooden crate with his crowbar. A minute later, we pulled off the top and set it next to the crate.

”Thank you,” Leonardo said. 

”Sure thing, boss,” the man repeated. “How many more you gonna open?”

“Just the one for now. How about you take a break for a few minutes?”

The dock worker nodded and moved off, giving them privacy.

Jack squatted and pushed the packing material aside, some of which spilled over onto the concrete dock.

“Got one,” Jack said. Then, he carefully lifted a wooden frame that held a large, slightly convex gray metal plate shaped like a hexagon. He turned it over in his hands but didn’t see anything interesting. He looked at Leonardo and waited.

“There should be tons of those things, plus other equipment.” Both men looked into the container and saw it was full of similar looking crates.

“Are we going to go through the entire container?” Jack nervously asked.

“Are you kidding me? I don’t have time to waste inspecting this shit. Now I can tell the Council I visually verified the shipment arrived safely.”