Tape recording found among the possessions of Jack Lyle by the police after his overdose death.
“Despite all of the security, I got into the billionaire software developer Jason Atkins’ mansion on Mercer Island east of Seattle. I know that the family is in Majorca, and the staff has the night off except for some security people who ate sedated pizza an hour ago. Not as big and grand as the Gates’ place, but pretty damn big and fine. While looking for the facilities I found myself in the guest bedroom. It is huge with mirrors from the floor to ten feet above the floor. Despite my experience picking places apart, I can’t seem to find anything of value.”
“There are eight buttons above the bed. Just for the hell of it, I punch in his birthday 02/10/1953. Much to my surprise, all the mirrors light up and a menu appears in the wall just to the left of the bed. A number of kinky options are listed.”
“With no idea what awaits me, I choose straight sex.”
“The next menu gives me more choices. It names prominent Hollywood and porn stars to choose from as well as scenarios like: after the prom, first date, anniversary, bar pickup. I choose after the prom.”
“The mirrors become 3D screens which don’t require glasses. I get a show much as requested with my chosen actors, doubles or damn good simulations. The scene starts with the guy picking up his date from her parents’ house. The various mirrors show the scenes from different angles. Nothing out of order here. They drive to the dance and act like affectionate dates at an average prom. After awhile, I get bored of the prom scenes and notice a slide bar at the bottom of the menu. I move it up from 30 minutes to hour 3. By this time they are in a motel room and having a very good time. Now that I have the scroll system down, I go back and forth looking for the good stuff. It sure looks like Cathy Simpson from that restaurant show and Chuck Grant from that office sitcom, but could it be? Before I notice, two hours have gone by.”
“On the next try I get a lot of well known Hollywood stars. At least when dressed they look like the usual Hollywood stars. After another half hour it is time to leave. As much as I would like to try it, I don’t have time to try the voice activated controls. I check out the drawers one last time and spot a list of visitors. It includes the A list of politicians and executives who have spent the night in the room with dates and show preference. Surprise, surprise several conservative religious leaders have watched the mirrors.”
“I get out safely and back home; I do a little internet research. I see that the people on the list have done a lot of favors for Mr. Atkins. There is certainly a way for a smart guy, which I am, to monetize this information. A few anonymous calls should loosen some purse strings.”
Conversation after tape has been played:
Sergeant Stevens –“Captain, can we use this tape for anything?”
Captain Rogers – “We could never get a probable cause warrant on Atkins. What have we got, the ravings of a junkie thief on tape? Atkins has lawyers that make as much as our whole police department and we have nothing to show that anything illegal has been done. What we suspect and what we can prove are two different things.”
“Makes you wonder why Lyle was taping his robbery. Was he going to publish ‘The Memoir Of A Junkie Thief’?”
Sergeant Stevens – “That’s one of a long list of questions we’ll never get answered.”
A slightly different version was previously published in Down In The Dirt and the defunct AWS.