Tammy tore the envelope open as she walked back into the tiny living room of her apartment over Kelly's Diner. The sight of Mike's scrawling handwriting had thrown her for a loop momentarily, but she had quickly recovered.

Dear Tammy...

The former call girl sat down heavily upon her couch. Reading Mike's words brought back all the sorrow she had tried to banish over the past few days. It was as if she could hear the slightly raspy sound of his voice as she read.

Dear Tammy, she began again… I told you that day in the park that I would do my best to look out for you. So I took out an insurance policy the very next day and made you the sole beneficiary. Now that something has happened to cause my death, I wanted you to know that I thought of you.

Take the money and do one of the things you told me you always dreamed of doing. Go back to school or open that little shop you were always talking about.

Please don't give me a hard time about accepting the money. Michael doesn't need it, and Marcus would never accept it. Not from me. Not like this.

Take it and enjoy your life. Be happy and know that I will be watching over you forever.

Tammy wiped away the tears that streamed unchecked down her face. Despite his flaws, Mike had been one of the best things to happen to her life. They were friends first and foremost, and the relationship was easy and uncomplicated.

Through watery eyes Tammy stared at the copy of the insurance policy stapled to the back of the letter. With a red pen Mike had circled the policy's value of one half million dollars. And in what seemed like some sense of foreboding on his part, also circled was the policy's clause of double indemnity. In case of death other than natural causes , the money would be doubled .