COOL JOE , Chapter 15

COOL JOE , Chapter 15

A Story by Betty Hermelee



COOL JOE, Chapter 15




Boy, I just got a call from Pete, and he is fuming because he got tricked once more by the Boss. From the sounds of it he’d like to break Garcia’s neck for giving him the run-around at the garbage dump. Now we know where dear Robbie lays, at the bottom of the East River, at least that’s what we were told. We’re mentally exhausted from all of this trauma and chaos. I’d really like to help Pete out from under this horror, but I’m not that well connected to the Boss, or even Eddie. Now that we know where our dear brother lays, I think we need to plan a memorial for him. Then we gotta deal with Sylvia and Simone’s disappearance. We think Sylvia took revenge by killing Robbie’s body guard. I wouldn’t blame her and Simone for escaping; they’re probably in Arizona by now at some sweet resort. I think we need another pow-wow to plan Robbie’s service, and then deal with Sylvia’s safety.


I am going to ring Pete right now.

“Hi Pete, it’s your bro Tommy here. Listen I don’t know if anything has been planned, but we need to think of Robbie’s memorial service, right?”

“Yes, we do, Tom, and that means another pow wow with the family. I’ll call everyone and try to set it up for tomorrow evening, again at my place, okay for you?”

“I’m sure it is, but I’ll check with my beautiful Angela, I’m sure she can make it too, and the kids can take care of themselves; I don’t why I just said that but I guess they can. So 7:00 PM tomorrow?”

“Sounds good, if anything changes, I’ll give you a buzz”, says Pete with a broad smile on his face.



“Okay everybody, slurp down your beers and let’s get down to business. It actually was Tommy’s idea to have this meeting sooner than later, so we could say our goodbyes to dear Robbie who departed this world way too young, may he rest in peace. In fact, let’s all say our prayers to Robbie in silence


“Now that we’ve taken care of that, I think we need to talk about the details of the memorial service”, says Pete. Do any of you have some ideas?”

“Well, I think we should have something outside, since it’s summer, maybe at ma and dad’s graveside”, says Danny. “I think that would be very special right?”

“Wait a second”, declares Maria, “how about having it in our church. Wouldn’t that be more appropriate?”

“Not necessarily”, say Margaret; “I kind of agree with Danny, that outside near our parent’s gravesite would be great.”

“I think maybe we should have It at one of our houses, then it would be very personal”, says Margaret, sort of defiantly.

“I have an idea”, declares Maria. “How about we each write our choice on a piece of paper, put them in a basket, mix them up and let Pete pick one out.”

“I think that’s a great idea”, say Frankie, “it’s the fairest way to do it.”

“Okay kids”, say Pete, “without looking, I will pick one of them; remember only one choice per person.”


“Ah Ha”, he says with a funny laugh, “and the winner is (drum roll) Margaret!!!!”

Everybody claps and Margaret gets up and takes a bow.

“That means”, says Pete, “That we will have the memorial service at the grave site of ma and dad!!” That’s what I really wanted anyway, but I stayed out of it.

“Now that everyone who wanted to got to speak, I will pick the date and time”, declares Pete. “I think that it would be nice if each of our women in this family lays a bouquet on or near the graves of our parents, to commemorate them and Robbie. I will order a small stone for Robbie to put next to them. Does everybody agree on this plan?”

We all say yes at the same time, which delights Pete.

“How about one week from today at noon, does that work for everyone?”

They shout YES!

“I can get the stone engraved quickly. How about the words on the stone?”


Everybody nods and agrees on these words. After another brief conversation, we go home.


On our way home, Angela and I discuss the ideas and we are happy that we could all agree, because that’s not always the case. We get home and our five kids are eating popcorn and watching TV. Angela yells at them to brush their teeth and go to sleep.


© 2021 Betty Hermelee

Author's Note

Betty Hermelee
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Is this piece the burial of no body, the remembrance of Robbie, and the planning of revenge at some stage.
I know this is a stupid question, but is Robbie definitely dead.
Just in case you're winding us up and he sort of turns up wondering what the service is all about.

Posted 1 Week Ago

Betty Hermelee

1 Week Ago

Hi Paul, there’s always that 1% doubt, cause they’ve never seen the body, although Pete did drea.. read more
This chapter seems to be something of a transition piece, as it deals with the family's efforts to plan Robbie's memorial service. The family seems pretty much all on the same page here, as agreement is reached on having the service at the parents' gravesite. I think the chapter is moving us subtly into more intense action as the story unwinds. I do have one question here: At the end of the first section, when Tommy is talking to Pete on the phone, are we to assume they are on either FaceTime or Skype? How else would Tommy know Pete has a broad smile on his face?

Posted 2 Weeks Ago

Betty Hermelee

2 Weeks Ago

Thanks for your loyalty John, They are not skyping or face-timing, it's just a remark by the writer;.. read more
Betty Hermelee

2 Weeks Ago

Since each chapter is in the first person, to give some physical expression, the writer inserts some.. read more

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2 Reviews
Added on April 5, 2021
Last Updated on April 5, 2021


Betty Hermelee
Betty Hermelee

Black Mountain, NC

I have emerged as a poet ! I have written over 300 poems, mostly about slices of life, happy and sad, deep or light, sometimes tragic. I try to use vivid images in my poetry. I also write about my .. more..


A Poem by Betty Hermelee