13 Hangmen

13 Hangmen by Art Corriveau Read Free Book Online

Book: 13 Hangmen by Art Corriveau Read Free Book Online
Authors: Art Corriveau
Tony’s shoulder.
    He slowly turned.
    A kid his age was lying beside him, fast asleep.
    Tony yelped. The kid’s eyes flew open. He yelped too. They both leaped out of the bed and onto their feet.
    â€œWhat are you doing here?” Tony said.
    The kid squinted at him from across the mattress. He was wearing a set of embarrassing flannel cowboy pj’s. He looked a lot like Tony, actually, except he was a little taller and wasn’t overweight. The kid reached under the bed and pulled out a pair of horn-rimmed Harry Potter glasses, which he hooked over the backs of his tiny ears. The lenses were so thick, they made his dark eyes seem gigantic, like those of a slightly cross-eyed owl. “Sleeping,” he said. “What else would I be doing at the crack of dawn? What are you doing in my room?” He had a really thick Boston accent.
    â€œBut this isn’t your room,” Tony said, wondering if he was having one of those dreams about having a dream.
    â€œWhat are you talking about?” the kid said. He pointed down at Tony’s Red Sox comforter. “That’s the patchwork quilt Mama just made me for my birthday. That’s the Errol Flynnposter I got at the Boston premiere of
Robin Hood.
And those are all my Hardy Boys in the bookcase.”
    Tony had no idea who Errol Flynn was, but the poster this kid had just pointed to was definitely of Snoop Dogg. Plus Tony
hated
the Hardy Boys. The bookcase was full of much cooler mystery writers, in alphabetical order, just the way he had arranged them last night. “Wait, who
are
you?” Tony said.
    â€œAngelo Saporiti,” the kid said. “Who the heck are
you
?”
    â€œOh, I get it,” Tony said. “You’re just some guy from the neighborhood. The twins bribed you to sneak up here as a birthday prank and pretend you’re the ghost of Zio Angelo to freak me out.”
    â€œI don’t know any twins,” the kid said. “Is it your birthday? Mine was yesterday.”
    â€œNabbed!” Tony cried. “Zio Angelo’s birthday was in May, not July. He told me so himself last Thanksgiving.” He turned and called to the bedroom door: “Nice try, guys. You can come out now.” But the evil twins didn’t start laughing from out on the landing. He strode over and flung the door wide open. No one was there.
    â€œIt
is
May,” the kid said, shrugging. “Yesterday was May 5, 1939, the Feast of Saint Angelo—my thirteenth birthday.”
    Tony froze. Zio Angelo had, in fact, told him over turkey dinner that he was born on the Feast of Saint Angelo, hence hisname. And Tony was pretty sure the twins had rolled their eyes and excused themselves from the table by then. He glanced over at the vintage ball cap. It was just where he’d left it, covering the spiral.
    The kid followed Tony’s gaze. “Ted Williams gave me that yesterday as a birthday present,” he said.
    Tony perched on the edge of the mattress, trying to collect his wits. He knew for a fact the twins hadn’t been at the table to hear Zio Angelo’s boyhood story about the cap. They didn’t even know yet that it might once have belonged to Williams. Only Michael and Julia knew that. “Prove it,” he said. “Tell me exactly how you came by that cap. Don’t leave out a single detail.”
    â€œYou still haven’t said who
you
are,” the kid said.
    â€œWe’ll get to me in a minute,” Tony said.
    The kid shrugged. He sat on the other side of the mattress. “I’m a water boy at Fenway Park,” he said. “Williams is number 9, a rookie left fielder for the Red Sox. But he quit halfway through a Detroit Tigers game yesterday afternoon. So I invited him home to supper—”

ngelo waited, like everyone else in the Red Sox dugout, for number 9, the rookie outfielder from California, to step up to home plate. It was the Sox against the Tigers in the

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