by Walter Brasch
Clutching a sheaf of newspaper clippings in one hand and a medical bag in the other, Dr. Franklin Peterson Comstock III, knocking down pregnant ladies, students, the elderly, and even two burly construction workers who were waiting for a bus, rushed past me, leaving me in a close and personal encounter with the concrete. Since he had given up medicine to invest in a string of service stations and an oil distributorship, I assumed what was in his medical bag was the morning's take from obscene profits.
"Medical emergency!" Comstock cried out. "Gang way!"
"You've returned to medicine?" I shouted after him.
"I'm going into un-medicine!" he shouted back. "I'm getting the big bucks not to operate!" This was a story too good to let by, so I gave up any hope of the 7:11 "D"-line bus arriving by 7:30, and chased after him.
"Slow down!" I panted. "You'll kill yourself!"
"No time to slow down," he said widening the distance, leaving a trail of broken bodies. "There's money to be gotten!"
"If you kill yourself before you get there--" I didn't know where, I just knew it was somewhere--"you'll never see a cent of it!" That stopped him, giving me time to catch up, catch my breath, and catch Comstock's latest scam. "Now, Comstock," I said, the air returning to my lungs, "if you're not going to operate, why the medical bag?"
"That's so I can get money from the Department of Agriculture," he replied.
"You're going to hold up an Ag Stabilization office?"
"In a way," he said, shoving a sheaf of the newspaper clippings at me. Some said that when doctors didn't operate, the death rate dropped."
"O.K., so surgeons kill patients. Tell me how that'll help you make a mint."