The Story of Dixie Jonas
a short story by
Dixie Jonas and his woman, Myra Livingston, lived about ten miles out of Kingston. The two bedroom house was rented. Myra operated a shop off Constant Spring Road, while Dixie sold a numbers game called Pot of Cash for a woman called Miss Linda.
It was a Monday evening and they had already eaten dinner. Dixie was drinking some stout and milk.
“Myra, you know that you would make more money if you start selling Pot of Cash with me.”
Dixie had been down on her to come and start selling the game. His commission was ten percent of his sales amounting to almost seven thousand dollars a day.
“I’m all right where I am. I’m supposed to get another loan from my agency so I should be able to get some more stock.”
“I want to change my car next year, buy something brand new.”
“With the amount of money you are making you can soon afford anything. But how long is it going to last? I am wondering.”
“With the two of us bringing in that kind of money every day, think of what we could do? Five years from now and we could be rotten rich.”
“You remembered last year in Treadways? You were saying the same thing, but we had to move overnight.
“It’s just some bad vibes that went down, baby. Don’t worry yourself, nothing like that will happen again.”
“How am I sure it’s not some pyramid scheme you are in again? By the way, where is Miss Bidwell?”
Dixie opened another stout and started drinking. He looked at her before replying.
“I’m surprised to hear you asking about Miss Bidwell. You know that after the scheme collapsed, she ran away to America. She has money for me and several other persons and even you too.”
Somebody was knocking on their gate. Dixie could see Myra’s face turn ashen white. He drew back the curtains and peered outside.
“Who’s out there?” she asked.
“It’s a man,” Dixie replied and went and slightly opened their front door.
“What do you want?”
“Are you Dixie? Elder sent me to you. He says that you can help me.”
“So long as is Elder who recommended you, you can come in, just pull the gate. What is you name?”
“They call me Nully. Are you sure your dogs won’t bite me?” Nully pulled the gate and entered the yard.
“We don’t have any dogs. But I always have my dog in a convenient place where I can reach it anytime,” Dixie told him as the man came on to the verandah.
They went into the living room. Nully greeted Myra.
“Elder says that you know some people, who can set up things fast. I want to reach America in ten days time.”
Dixie considered for a moment. He looked over at Myra, her brows were knitted, he was wondered if Nully saw it.
“What you want is no problem, but it’s going to cost you. It’s one hundred and fifty down and fifty more when the job is finished.”
Nully took out a brown paper-bag and handed it to Dixie. Dixie took out the contents. The notes were wrapped in plastic and in several denominations. Dixie didn’t attempt to count them there and then.
“I am taking your word that it’s the right amount of money. Elder will know that you gave me this money and I have my woman as a witness.”
“Why does your wife look so nervous? For a moment she had me scared, like something bad was going to happen. Anyway, like you said, you always have your dog ready, I’m always heavy.”
He patted his side as he had on a long overcoat.
Dixie didn’t want to get into a sparring match with Nully. He just wanted the man to be gone so that he and Myra could start counting the money.
“She has a nervous condition. Like you said, if Elder says everything’s all right I have to take his word for it.”
The two men shook hands and Nully departed.
Dixie went out to the verandah and watched until he drove off. He rushed back inside and hauled Myra out of the chair.
“What happen to you? Little most you spoiled the deal. I don’t know why you have to be so nervous all the time.”
“Let me go, Dixie. I’m sorry I returned to Jamaica. I should have stayed in America. You don’t see that the man is a policeman.”
Dixie pushed her away from him and hissed his teeth.
“If he was a policeman, Elder would never send him to me.”
He took up the bag of money.
“Come, help me count the money.”
He went and made sure that all the windows and doors were bolted before he and Myra sat down to count the money.
Dixie made sure that there were no marks on the money and he passed each one of them through the tester he had taken away from his days in the pyramid scheme.
Later that night Myra lay in bed thinking. She had to do something fast. Living with Dixie had brought her too close to prison and her death. It was now three months since she had returned to Jamaica. When she started out with him he was a clerk in a betting shop. Then he started selling drop-hand (a numbers game) for a woman named Miss Beatrice. When she became bankrupt, they fled to Linstead.
In Linstead, Dixie started a rental and employment agency. He then started a scheme to get employment for persons in the Cayman Islands and the Bahamas.
Dixie came home one evening looking very disheveled.
“Myra, we have to leave now. Prudence stole all the money the agency had. She and her husband cleaned out the bank account and I don’t know where to find them.”
“I can’t believe Prudence would do something like that.”
“You see a person’s face, but you don’t know what they have in their heart,” Dixie said as he started putting things in the removal van.
“But, Dixie, it’s not you who stole the money. What are you worried about? They can’t blame you.”
“Both of us controlled the company. If they can’t find her they are going to come after me.”
Myra had no option but to help him put their things in the van and they left to live in Unity Lane off the Old Harbour Road.
Myra later learned that Dixie had collected hundreds of thousands of dollars from his clients. Prudence Charles had to face the wrath of his irate former clients.
It was then that she decided that she was leaving him and contacted her sister, Glenda.
“Glenda, I have to leave Dixie. He is a trickster and I don’t want the police to lock me up or people to shoot up our house when they come looking for him.”
“I will help you look about your papers and I’ll contact Fay and see if she can set you up in a job when you go over there,” Glenda said.
Glenda began to look about her papers and Myra had left overnight.
But America was not as Myra had imagined it to be. Fay was hardly making it. She had to do three jobs. Myra had a hard time picking up a job despite paying money at the employment agency. She got several weekends but she soon became homesick.
Glenda phoned her one day about four months later.
“Myra, Dixie is driving a brand new sports utility vehicle and he’s planning to move from Unity Lane.”
“How do you know that he’s planning to move out?”
“Somebody said that his things are packed up. Myra, listen to this, I heard that the winning lottery ticket was bought in Unity Lane and it was Dixie who bought it.”
“Jesus, I can’t believe it. Have you ever seen him, Glenda?”
“Every time I see him, he’s asking for you and I tell him that I don’t know where you are. Hear this, you remember Lue Ann, it’s she I see him driving with in his SUV.”
“Glenda, things are hard up here, but I’m not sure if I want to come back anytime soon.”
“You are going to lose out on his lottery money and let Lue-Ann get what you should get.”
“I will think about it.”
Myra remembered Lue-Ann. She was always trying to get close to Dixie. She
had nearly gotten into a fight with her at a dance. Myra decided that she had spent too
many years with Dixie to hand him to Lue-Ann on a platter, lottery money and all that.
If she wanted Dixie she had to be prepared to fight for him.
The same day that she returned to Jamaica she realized her mistake.
“Glenda, what kind of thing is this? The SUV that Dixie is driving belongs to his employer. His things are only packed up because his landlord gave him notice.”
“So what happen to his lottery money?”
“He never won any lottery. I don’t know where you got that from.”
“I’m sorry, Myra, I’m really sorry.” Glenda tried to hold her but Myra moved away.
“Where were you, Myra? I asked Glenda for you many times and she said that you ran away and she doesn’t know where you are,” Dixie said to her one evening when he came and saw her in the house.
“The only reason I left was because I couldn’t stand the type a life we were living. I went back to live with my parents.”
“So which man you ran away to live with? Don’t tell me that you don’t have a man because I heard about it.”
“So if I was with any other man how come from I start living with you again no man has come to look for me.”
“Maybe they don’t know where to find you.”
“So what are you doing with yourself now, Dixie?”
“I am working for a place that you can make plenty money fast.”
Myra came and sat closer to Dixie and hugged him.
“Why do you believe that I had run away? You know that I love you.”
“By the way somebody told me that Lue-Ann was around almost every day that I wasn’t here.”
“Yeah, she was pushing herself on me but I backed her off. That girl is just a money grabber.”
“I hope you really warn her off because I don’t want to have to do it myself.”
“Don’t worry yourself, you don’t have anything to fear from Lue-Ann.”
He told her that he was now employed to a Miss Bidwell. Myra later learnt that it was a pyramid scheme she was operating. Dixie told her how the scheme operated. Once you made an investment, it would grow by the amount of persons you got to invest. Dixie said he was a partner along with Miss Bidwell, and some more people. Myra had also been persuaded to invest.
Then one morning employees turned up for work to find the place battened down and a sign marked ‘Closed’ on the building. Dixie was the only other person, who knew that Miss Bidwell had fled with millions of dollars from the scheme. He and Myra packed and moved overnight for their present location.
“Dixie, I don’t understand what’s going on. Last night when I was coming home, I saw a sign ‘Father Dix, it’s you who run things up here’. I don’t understand, maybe you had better tell me what’s going on.”
“The people are complaining about bad men roaming the village, holding up people and firing shots at anybody they see on the road after twelve o’clock.”
“Is it true what you are saying? But from I live up here I’ve never heard a gunshot yet or that anybody got robbed.”
“It’s because you sleep so soundly why you don’t hear the gunshots or people crying out for help when they get robbed.”
“They are putting a tax on everybody who lives up here. Business people will have to pay more. Anybody who passes through has to pay it too.”
Dixie said that several youths would gain employment by becoming enforcers. Most of the money from the scheme would be used to put on treats for the kids, feed the elderly and help to send needy kids to school.
Dixie further explained that he didn’t stand to benefit in any way from the scheme, but as the organizer would get added stature.
Nully came to pick up his visa and had to pay the tax. Myra was at work that Monday morning when their landlord, came to her with a notice to vacate the property.
“What is this, Mr. Brown, notice to leave your house? Every time I ask Dixie, he says that he has paid you the rent.”
“From you paid me the first month rent, I don’t get another red cent,” the man replied.
Myra had to hastily find the money to pay him. He explained that he had made several attempts to come for the money but several boys were always stopping him and telling him that he had to pay a tax to pass through the village.
“Dixie, I had to pay two month’s rent today to prevent Mr. Brown turning us out of his house.”
“How is that man so wicked? I told him that I wanted to buy the place and he agreed to sell it to me so how come he is giving us notice. He must be joking; you shouldn’t pay him any money.”
“Dixie, anywhere in the district I go I see your name splashed about the place. D.J it’s you who rule, big up Don Dixie. Dixie, Super Don, you are the only government we have.”
“They are glad about what I’ve done for them since I’ve come up here.”
Dixie explained to her that several adjoining districts had also sought out his help in quelling the violence. He said that he would be doing a lot of travelling and as such had brought in some youths to go on selling his game for him.
Some nights Dixie was gone the entire time. Other times he would leave at midnight. Then this last time when he returned, she could swear she saw blood on his shirt sleeves.
Myra was surprised to wake up one morning and find a gun on their dresser. When she came from the bathroom it was gone. Dixie was out murdering people, she was sure of that!
Then Dixie started to take her to work and pick her up in the evenings. Myra noticed something else. Felicity, who occupied the shop beside her, had brought her teenaged sister, Almira, to help her sell. But when she went to buy lunch the girl was behind her and if she said she was going to the plaza she would be behind her. Myra knew then that she was being watched. Almira usually left to go home to look after dinner, but Jumpy, Felicity’s son, would come to take her place. Dixie had set it all up. When Dixie came for her he normally took whichever one of them was there, to buy a burger at the nearby fast food outlet. She was sure that they would give him an account of what she did.
She was at her shop one day when she received a strange call. She ran into the bathroom to answer it.
“Myra, why are you so stubborn? You left him already and you ran back to him, mind you get hurt.”
The man hung up and try as she could she couldn’t place the voice.
She was over by the nearby supermarket with her tail behind her as usual when a man came over. It was Benson Charles, Prudence’s husband. He looked her squarely in the face and said.
“So the big man turn Don now. All I’m telling you is to get out because it’s Saturday we are come for him,” Benson said and moved off.
She called Glenda immediately and told her what was going down.
“Glenda, I found a gun in my house. Every night Dixie goes out, saying he’s helping to guard the village where we live. It seems as if he’s out there killing people.”
“Have you heard of any murders where he’s operating?”
“No, but they could be hiding the bodies.”
“I believe he’s watching me because he’s afraid I might go to the police about him.”
“So what do you want to do?”
“I want to leave him, but he has other people watching me. I can’t go anywhere and they are not behind me.”
“I have a friend who has an empty small side of house. I am going to ask her if you can stay there until you get somewhere.”
“I am going to ask our cousin, Bertie, to come for me when I’m ready to leave.”
“All right, but don’t bother let him know anything.”
“Are you mad? I don’t want him to know where I am after I leave.”
She called Bertie. He was a taxi driver, who lived in an Inner City community. That Saturday morning after Dixie dropped her at work she called Bertie and told him to meet her in Constant Spring.
At lunch time she said to Felicity.
“I am going up to the Square to pick up something.”
“I am coming with you, Myra,” Almira volunteered.
On reaching the Square she saw that Bertie wasn’t there as yet. Two minutes later she saw him coming.
“Lend me your cell phone, Almira. I left mine down at the shop.”
She took the cell phone from Almira and moved to the car as it stopped. She pulled the car door open and jumped in.
“Drive, Bertie and don’t pay any attention to that little girl,” she said as she saw Almira running towards the car.
Bertie started the car and they drove off with Almira shouting at them.
Reaching Standfast, she told Dixie’s men that she had forgotten some things she needed to sell. They let her pass and didn’t tax Bertie.
Myra took out all of her clothes and other possessions and packed them in the car.
They had just driven off when a car resembling Dixie’s came up and tried to block them but Bertie got around it. A SUV was behind Dixie with a woman driving it. Myra began to worry, she knew that Dixie would never let her escape.
Dixie spun around his car and started after them. The SUV also spun around too.
Bertie was pressing hard on the accelerator, but Dixie and the woman in the SUV were catching up with them.
“Jesus, I don’t know how I ever got you into this, Bertie,” Myra wailed.
“How far we have to go before we reach the main road?” Bertie asked as they heard a loud explosion.
“They are shooting at us, they want to kill us,” Myra cried.
Bertie pressed harder on the accelerator as Dixie and the SUV were gaining on him.
More shots rang out, but they flew wide and didn’t damage the car. Suddenly there was a loud explosion.
“They shot out the car tire,” Bertie shouted as the car swerved off the road.
“We are going to die!” Myra screamed as Bertie pressed hard on his brakes as the car hit a big tree near an embankment and he and Myra were thrown forward but were saved by their seat belts. They sat it the car coughing and spluttering when Dixie ran down on them and opened the car door. He dragged out Myra and put her on the ground. The woman had come out of the SUV. It was Miss Bidwell!
Dixie opened the other door and took our Bertie. Myra looked over and saw that Bertie could hardly walk.
Dixie laid him on the ground and stood over her.
“So you let your man come for you and you were going to the police about me. I am going to kill both of you,” Dixie said going to Bertie and pointing the gun at him.
“Dixie, he is my cousin and he was only trying to help me. Kill me, but spare him because he has his wife and children to go home to,” Myra begged.
“Do what you are doing fast, Dixie, because I have a plane to catch,” Miss Bidwell said looking at Myra.
Myra looked at the tall, well dressed woman. She had on a pair of expensive sunglasses.
“Linda Beatrice Bidwell, Dixie’s boss. I want back my twenty thousand dollars that I put in your scheme,” Myra said to her.
“Who is she, Dixie?”
“Oh, so you don’t remember me. You have a short memory; my money would almost double by now so I want it back. By the way it’s you, Dixie was out there killing those people for?”
“Dixie, I don’t know this woman and I’m not going to listen to anymore from her.” Miss Bidwell stamped her feet and moved away.
Dixie turned to Myra.
“Since you ran way, my feelings changed towards you. Lue-Ann is still my woman, so hold that,” Dixie said as a taxi came up and stopped and a woman came out of the car. It was Lue-Ann!
“What happen, Lue-Ann? I told you to go to the airport before us. Why didn’t you do that?” Dixie asked.
“I called your phone and never got you so I just came to make sure that everything was all right. But what’s she doing here?” Lue-Ann asked pointing at Myra.
Lue-Ann was wearing jeans and a body hugging blouse. She was an inch taller that Myra.
“So it’s a lie you were telling me about her,” Myra shouted at Dixie and sprang at Lue-Ann.
Lue-Ann sought to fend her off and backed away when she saw that Myra was intent on wrestling with her. She was shouting for Dixie to help her when a police car came around the corner followed by two other cars.
“Police, Dixie,” Miss Bidwell shouted as the cars came to a stop.
Dixie ran to his car with the policemen giving chase. He started the car and sped off. Miss Bidwell had also driven away.
Thee Sergeant, a Corporal and two Constables jumped into their car and made after the fugitives.
Myra and Lue-Ann had stopped fighting. Myra went to examine Bertie. He was groaning and in pain she thought.
They heard gunshots ringing out. Lue-Ann sought to hold Myra but she pushed her away.
There were more gunshots. Then there was silence.
When Myra, Lue-Ann and Prudence got there in Benson’s car. More police vehicles were there and the place was being yellow taped.
“Both Dixie and the woman got shot and are on their way to hospital,” the Sergeant informed them.
Myra learned that Miss Bidwell had also engaged the police in the shoot-out.
An old man told her what happened.
“The man just fired a few shots before he threw down the gun and ran. It’s the woman who fired all the shots. She took a long gun out of her vehicle, put it on rapid. The policemen had to dive for cover and call back-up.”
Myra wondered if it was true the old man was telling. A lot of shots had been fired and from some heavy weapons based on what she heard. But what would Miss Bidwell be doing with guns when she was on her way to the airport, she wondered.
Lue-Ann was detained by the police but released the same day. Myra later learned that the youths working for Dixie, had only been paid for one month. Nobody knew what he did with the money he had collected. Those selling his game for him were also owed several week’s wages too. Myra now knew that Dixie and Miss Bidwell had used the money to buy visas. The whole thing was set up for her, Myra, to be blamed. Dixie had started a rumor that the Pot of Cash Scheme had been bought out by her. He had also told the youths working for him that he gave her the money to bank.
The police are investigating several unsolved murders to which they believe Dixie and possibly Miss Bidwell might be linked. In the meantime they have several fraud charges which they can lay against them. They also informed Myra that Miss Bidwell was Dixie’s half-sister and that her real name was Linda Beatrice Bidwell.
“See back your phone here, Almira. I don’t know why you and your nephew were following me round the place,” Myra said to Almira.
“Myra, Dixie told me that you robbed him two hundred thousand dollars and ran away go America. He found out where you lived and got you deported back a Jamaica. He said that it looked like you didn’t want to pay him back his money and out to run away again.”
“That’s why he asked me to make my little sister and my son watch you. You never heard me call you deportee several times. I was only warning you.”
“I remember, but I never knew that it was me you were talking about. Still I don’t hold any grudges against you and I understand when you say he used to give them money.”
Myra is still living at the house she rented from Glenda’s friend as she went for the rest of the furniture she had in the house in Standfast. She has also relocated her shop to another part of the city as she feels that Dixie has friends who might try to hurt her especially if they believe she is going to testify against him.The End. Please visit my blog at:http://stredwick.blogspot.com